Swanton sank a bevy of 3-pointers en route to a 60-37 home win over Otsego on Thursday in boys basketball. They also added a victory over North Central Saturday to improve to 5-0 on the season.
“We shot the ball well, which gives you confidence in all other areas of the game,” said head coach Bruce Smith after the Otsego game. “I was really pleased with our defense (only) giving them 16 at the half. They got a couple kids that I think are very good players. I think together they might have had three points at halftime. So we were pleased with that.”
The Bulldogs jumped out to a 15-5 advantage in the opening quarter on the back of a pair of Drew Smigelski 3-pointers and one for Cole Mitchey. They would take a 20-7 lead into the second quarter.
Swanton maintained their double-digit lead in the second quarter — and for the rest of the game for that matter.
Triples by Smigelski and Ryan O’Shea extended the margin to 32-14 with 1:37 before halftime. Smigelski finished the night knocking down five from long range.
“We’ve been waiting for that,” said Smith. “I told him if he wanted to play extended minutes this year he’d have to make that shot. Because he’s probably gonna be guarded by the fifth defender to be honest with you. And maybe he was, maybe he wasn’t tonight. But that was certainly nice. I’m happy for him.”
Following two free throws by the Knights, Mitchey got free inside for a hoop then Luc Borojevich’s basket off a steal with five seconds left put the Dogs up 36-16 at the half.
Swanton doubled up Otsego in the third quarter, putting it out of reach. They got it started with consecutive hoops from Hayden Callicotte, then two straight by Mitchey pushed it to 44-16 at the 4:17 mark.
Otsego got on the board in the third with 4-4 from the foul line. Around that the Dogs kept stroking it from deep, as after Borojevich went 1 of 2 from the line, Mitchey connected on a three followed later by another from Smigelski for 51-20 difference.
Then, with 1:22 left in the third, O’Shea hit a three on an out-of-bounds play to make it a 34-point Bulldog lead. The Knights scored the final five points of the frame, but up until that point it was tough sledding facing the Swanton defense.
“The fact that we didn’t butcher and foul and put them on the free throw line. We kept them out of the lane,” Smith said on what he liked from his defense. “They had some good three-point shooters; we didn’t lost those guys. We lost one of them once in the first half and he made us pay for it. But just the fact that guys followed the game plan, and that’s always rewarding for me as well.”
With Swanton utilizing primarily its back-up players for much of the fourth, the Knights were able to dig into the lead a little bit. They outscored the Dogs 12-6 over the final eight minutes.
Two nights later Smigelski was hot again from the outside in Swanton’s 72-36 thrashing of North Central. He hit four threes for a 20-point scoring effort. Mitchey added 14 and Callicotte 12 against the visiting Eagles.
Swanton has just one game this week, when they travel to Edgerton on Saturday.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010.