GATES MILLS– A fast start and a strong first half led Hawken to a 58-49 win over visiting West Geauga on Tuesday.
The Hawks used an early 5-0 run to build a 17-13 first-quarter lead and then added a 13-1 run in the second quarter, coupled with a stifling defense, to increase their lead to 32-16 at the break.
“We have been talking a lot about activity,” said Hawken coach Josh Nugent. “That’s been a word we have been using like crazy. When we are active with what we are doing, we are pretty good.”
Hawken maintained its pressure in the third quarter and closed that period on a 5-0 run.
“The word we have been using on offense is patience,” Nugent said. “The other thing we have been emphasizing is trying to get paint touches as much as we can, to put pressure on opposing defenses.”
A.J. Sands led Hawken with 14 points while Dom Johnson contributed with 11 and Jalen Suggs also scored in double figures with 10. Quinn Peterson added eight points, Taj Caver and Cooper Bryan both pitched in with five, and Edward Ross and Khalil Suggs both finished with two points. Jonathon Drockton added one point in the win.
West Geauga’s troubles began with a lack of ball movement in the first half.
“We were not moving the ball enough,” said West Geauga coach Jim Fisher. “We are a good shooting team; unfortunately, we just weren’t making the shots tonight.”
Jerry Kline-Ruminski led the Wolverines with a game-high 22 points and Angelo DeScicio scored 10.
“We really struggled tonight,” Kline-Ruminski said. “We couldn’t really hit any of our shots, but we just try to fight to the end and try to get better every night.”
With the win, Hawken improved to 4-5 overall and 3-2 in the Chagrin Valley Conference Chagrin Division. The Hawks host Gilmour Academy in a non-conference game on Wednesday.
West Geauga fell to 3-10 and remain winless in league play. The Wolverines travel to Perry on Friday.