Your Prep Sports
TIFFIN – In five seasons at Clear Creek Amana Brandon Clubb had led the Clippers to WAMAC Conference and the state tournament.
One thing Clubb hadn’t done was beat Solon.
The Clippers made sure their head coach crossed that off his career achievement list on Friday.
Clear Creek Amana held off a fourth-quarter Solon surge and snapped a four-game losing skid with a 56-48 win over the Spartans in its season opener in Tiffin.
“Hopefully this game drives us for the future,” Clear Creek Amana senior Ben Swails said. “We hadn’t beat Solon in six years so that’s a good stepping stone for us and hopefully it drives us for the future.”
Kyle Schrepfer scored a game-high 18 points and Swails and freshman Brody Clubb each had 11 as the Clippers beat Solon for the first time since 2015.
Clear Creek Amana saw a 19-point third-quarter lead shrink to four in the four in the final three minutes but held Solon (1-1) without a field goal over the final 2:44 while closing the game on a 6-2 run.
“We did what we had to do, we got physical and we kept on pushing through,” Schrepfer said. “We had a good amount of turnovers but we kept going and we hit shots when we needed to. We knew what we had to do against them, we had a good game plan and we played our game.”
Schrepfer and Swails were the only Clippers to see extensive action last season.
The two were key for Clear Creek Amana on Friday but got plenty of help.
Clubb had 11 points and Grant Kruse, Harrison Rosenberg and Baylin Zimmerman combined to score 14 points on 5-of-8 shooting as Clear Creek Amana shot 49 percent from the floor.
“We have guys that have had success in other areas and other sports and its huge that they’ve been in those situations in other sports,” Clubb said. “But the first game where you have to make those plays down the stretch and we did it’s obviously encouraging.”
Clear Creek Amana took control of the game with a 21-6 first quarter run.
The Clippers led 36-23 at the half and took its biggest lead at 46-27 with a 10-0 third-quarter run capped by a 17-foot jumper by Clubb.
“We got the nerves out, we knew we were going to be a little nervous for game one,” Swails said. “We got the nerves out early and I think we started to settle in.”
Trailing 48-33 after three quarters Solon made a run.
The Spartans scored the first 11 points of the third quarter to pull within 48-44.
Senior Kinnick Pusteoska had six of his team-high 13 points during the 11-0 Solon burst.
Clear Creek Amana had the answer.
Grant Kruse hit a pair of free throws with 2:08 left and the Clippers didn’t allow a field goal the rest of the way.
“We matched their physicality and they are a super physical team,” Clear Creek Amana coach Brandon Clubb said. “Not only did we match their physicality I think we weathered their storm mentally. We knew they would give us a couple of punches and they did, they obviously fought their way back in but I was just really pleased with how we handled it mentally.”
Clear Creek Amana held Solon to 29 percent shooting from the field (16-of-55) and forced the Spartans into 13 turnovers.
Pusteoska had 13 points and 15 rebounds but no other Spartan had more than seven.
“I think defense will be one of our best points this year,” Schrepfer said. “I think our defense can be really good. I think that’s what is going to keep us in a lot of games and is going to win us a lot of games. It’s what we focus on and what we try to do.”
Solon 10 13 10 15 – 48
Clear Creek Amana 21 15 12 8 – 56
Solon (48) – Blake Timmons 1-6 3-4 5, Brady Mullen 2-5 2-2 7, Carson Miller 1-2 0-0 3, Jacob Timmons 2-6 0-2 4, Logan Sieverding 0-5 2-2 2, Kinnick Pusteoska 5-17 3-4 13, Aiden Doyle 0-1 2-2 2, Oaken Foster 1-4 0-0 3, Sean Stahle 0-5 0-0 0, Grant Gerdin 2-2 0-0 4, Gehrig Turner 2-2 0-2 5, Totals 16-55 12-18 48.
Clear Creek Amana (56) – Kyle Schrepfer 6-14 2-2 18, Ben Swails 4-11 1-2 11, Harrison Rosenberg 2-2 0-0 4, Grant Kruse 1-2 4-5 6, Baylin Zimmerman 2-4 0-0 4, Gage Freeman 1-2 0-0 2, Brody Clubb 3-4 5-5 11, Totals 19-39 12-14 56.
3-point field goals – CCA 6-11 (Swails 2-4, Schrepfer 4-7), SOL 4-18 (B. Timmons 0-2, Mullen 1-3, Miller 1-2, J. Timmons 0-3, Sieverding 0-1, Pusteoska 0-3, Foster 1-2, Stahle 0-1, Turner 1-1). Rebounds – CCA 31 (Kruse 7), SOL 35 (Pusteoska 15). Turnovers – CCA 16, SOL 13. Total fouls – CCA 11, SOL 13. Fouled out – None. Technical fouls – None.