Scotus boys rain 3s on Schuyler
Caden Pelan sank five 3-pointers, the Scotus Central Catholic boys hit 14 overall and the Shamrocks cruised to a first-round Holiday Tournament victory (75-27) over Schuyler on Thursday inside the gym at Lakeview High School.
Pelan was part of a blistering start from the outside for Scotus, which included the senior hitting twice from distance, junior Tyler Palmer sinking two of his own first-quarter 3s and the ’Rocks building an 18-point advantage through the first eight minutes.
Pelan finished with 19 while Palmer had 20 and sophomore Josh Faust had 11 off the bench.
Scotus, which has won the last five boys Holiday Tournaments, will face the winner of Lakeview and Twin River in the 7:45 p.m. Friday championship game.
“Usually, coming off a break, you don’t shoot well, you can be sluggish offensively and the defense can be slow to react, but I thought our kids did a good job stepping up and creating their own energy,” coach Tyler Swanson said.
“The effort was good, we hit shots and we executed our sets. Like I told them, it was probably the best we’ve played coming out of the break in my three years.”
Schuyler found some semblance of an offense in the second quarter and scored 11 but managed just 12 total points in the second half. Meanwhile, Scotus continued to knock down shots.
Pelan had 16 at the half and four of his five 3s while Palmer had 15 through the first two quarters and three makes from the outside. The Shamrocks sank eight of their 14 perimeter shots in the first 16 minutes.
They lead 38-15 at the half and 60-21 at the end of three. Swanson emptied the bench to begin the fourth.
“Caden played really well. He shot when he was open, I think he started 4 for 4 from 3, got to the rim well and made free throws,” Swanson said. “That’s the kind of player he has to be for us. He’s got to be a guy who comes in and scores 14 to 18 points for us.
The teams traded baskets to start the third before Scotus ended the period on a 12-0 run.
Faust hit his first three in the final minute, then added eight more points in the fourth - scoring all 11 of his total in the second half.
“The way we shot it, I thought, surprised us,” Swanson said. “We had a little shootaround this morning, a little practice, and we didn’t hit any of the goals we usually hit in shooting drills. I thought we were going to come out slow. We looked sluggish in warm-ups.”
Initially, it might have been déjà vu all over again for Swanson, who was critical of his team’s start six days earlier in a loss to St. Paul.
The Shamrocks were coming off a big road win at Crete then laid an egg at home on Dec. 21 in the loss to St. Paul. Lack of energy was a big sticking point for Swanson.
“But the way we played early on, we did exactly what we wanted to do,” Swanson said about Thursday. “We scored points and we defended well. You don’t usually play that well coming out of the break.”
Scotus moves on to play the winner of Thursday’s final game between Twin River and Lakeview.
“I’m excited about it. When you get a five-day break, I like to play again right away. Then we get close to 10 days off after that. We’ll be able to play tomorrow night, figure out what we need to do better and then go at it really hard before our next game,” Swanson said.
“We’re in sort of a weird spot, but a really good spot for this team right now.”
Nate Tenopir is the sports editor for The Columbus Telegram.
Nate Tenopir is the sports editor for the Columbus Telegram. Reach him via email at firstname.lastname@example.org