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Bryan Hudnell | Staff Writer

The Mason Boys Basketball team won a physical defensive matchup at home against Lakota East 48-34 Tuesday night.

The two teams entered the game tied for second place in the Greater Miami Conference. A win would keep them in second place and only one game back from Oak Hills. Senior forward Matt King said the team wanted to secure the win to keep pace with the Highlanders.

“It was really important to get this win to set us apart (in the GMC),” King said. “Obviously we’re still chasing Oak Hills, but it was important to get this win to stay close to them.”

The Comets had their way on defense to start the game, not allowing a basket for the first three and a half minutes. Senior forward Evan Kuhlman drilled a three to put the Thunderhawks on the scoreboard. After King made two free throws, junior guard Jackson See’s shot beat the buzzer to end the quarter. Mason had a small 11-9 lead.

With 4:25 left in the first half, senior guard Carlos Lewis intercepted See’s pass and got fouled on the opposite end. After making one of his two free throws, the Comets were holding on to a 20-17 lead. With the half coming to a close, the Comet defense swarmed junior guard Jarrett Cox with a double team, forcing him to turn over the basketball with an over and back call. Assistant coach Kyle Peters was pleased with the Comets’ defensive effort.

“If we play good defense then we’re going to give ourselves a chance,” Peters said. “The harder you make them work on offense, the harder their shots are [going to] fall and that’s our staple. We did a good job.”

Mason ended the first half with a 24-18 lead.

Both teams traded baskets back and forth to begin the second half. Towards the end of the third quarter, King cut towards the basket and received an impressive bounce pass from Lewis and finished at the rim with a two handed dunk, giving the Comets a six-point lead. Mason extended their lead to eight with a 36-28 lead to end the third quarter. King said the dunk was a huge momentum changer in the game.

“We were playing great defense at the time, running great offense, getting good shots and I got a great pass that allowed me to finish at the rim,” King said. “I think we fed off it to finish the game.”

The Comet offenses heated up in the beginning of the fourth quarter. Senior Eddie Puisis scored nine straight points for the Comets and capped off an 11-0 run. East was held to six points in the fourth quarter and couldn’t keep up with the highflying Comet offense. With the win, the Comets advance to 6-1 on the year. East falls to 2-3.

Puisis was the leading scorer for Mason with 12 points with King and Schutte not too far behind with 10 points each. Jarrett Cox entered the game as the second leading scorer in the Greater Miami Conference averaging 21 points a game. The Comets defense was able to hold him to just eight points–his lowest on the season.

The Comets look ahead to a road matchup against Hamilton on January 6. King said the matchup will come down to rebounding and getting quality shots off on offense.

“Hamilton is a really good rebounding team so we definitely got to rebound well against them,” King said. “If we run a good offense, get good shots, share the ball, then I think we’ll be fine.”

Check out the article on the CSPN: http://thecspn.com/?p=41628

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