Thursday, February 2, 2023

Geneva outlasts Beachwood in double overtime

Brandon Smith drained a pair of free throws in the closing seconds of double overtime to lead Geneva to a 73-71 Chagrin Valley Conference Chagrin Division win at Beachwood on Tuesday.

The Eagles overcame a 10-point fourth quarter deficit to force the extra time and avenge their loss to the Bison, also in overtime, back on Dec. 14.

“Every win on the road in this conference is an exciting win,” Geneva coach Eric Bowser said. “It feels good to sneak out of here with the victory in double overtime.”

Leading 42-41 heading into the fourth quarter, Beachwood scored the first nine points to extend its lead to 51-41.

Jayson Woodrich led the Bison with 28 points.

“We were having trouble stopping (Woodrich),” Bowser said. “He’s such a phenomenal shooter, but we were able to get a couple of steals late and aggressively attack the basket. I have to give credit to our guys knocking down their free throws at the end.”

The Eagles rallied back and tied the game at 56-56 on a Grant Mihalick basket with less than 30 seconds remaining in regulation.

Woodrich buried a pair of 3-pointers in the first overtime but the Eagles responded with clutch baskets of their own to force the second overtime.

Smith led Geneva with 26 points, Mihalick finished with 16 and Nick Stoltz added 15 points and pulled down 15 rebounds.

Dakota Harvey’s layup gave Geneva a 69-67 lead in the second overtime but Woodrich cut Beachwood’s deficit in half when he split a pair of free throws. Smith converted a pair of free throws to extend Geneva’s lead to 71-68 but Woodrich buried his fourth 3-pointer of the game to tie it.

Smith closed out the scoring with his clutch free throws.

“We played much better transition defense in the second half and overtime,” Bowser said. “We know we have to do our best to take (Woodrich) out of the game. They were successful in running him off screens and getting him some looks. We were able to keep the rest of their guys in check for the most part. Our guys are scrappy and work hard.”

Geneva improved to 7-6 overall and 5-3 in league play while Beachwood dropped to 6-4, 5-2.

Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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