Published in The News-Herald
January 25, 2020
Kenston flipped the proverbial switch in its WRC matchup with visiting rival Chardon on Jan. 24.
Leading just 28-27 to start the second half in what appeared to be anybody’s ballgame, the Bombers “got back to playing their brand of basketball.”
What that entailed was unselfish play, strong defense and heating up offensively.
Those factors resulted in a dominant, 23-7, third quarter that ultimately led to a 70-53 Kenston victory, nearly matching the 71-53 win the Bombers had over Chardon on Dec. 10.
Four players scored in double figures for Kenston, paced by senior Alan Wood, who was 6 of 8 outside the three-point arc for a team-high 18 points. Sophomore Andy Kooser added 16 points-all after halftime-and juniors Kyle Quinlan and Ethan Thorne tallied 11 and 10, respectively.
“It means a lot to us,” Kooser said of the sweep of one of Kenston’s main rivals. “We lost the last couple of games, so to get a win like this gets us back on track.”
Geauga County’s two biggest schools traded baskets to start the second half, leading to a 39-34 Kenston advantage. The tide turned completely in the Bombers’ favor at that point. A 12-0 run to close the frame, keyed by 3s by Kooser and Wood and fueled by 8 of Chardon’s 19 turnovers, gave Kenston a 51-34 lead and firm control of the contest.
“Alan got hot, and we just stepped it up on the defensive end,” Kenston coach Derrick DeJarnette said. “We came out playing our game in the second half.”
Wood began heating up with three triples in the second quarter, and kept it going with three more in the second half. Kooser, after a scoreless first half, lit up the scoreboard with 10 points in the third stanza.