LEES CREEK – Fairfield won its second consecutive game and improved to 4-5 with a 67-37 victory over the East Clinton Astros Friday night in non-league boys basketball action at the EC gym.
East Clinton remain winless on the season at 0-8.
Fairfield had a balanced scoring attack with four starters in double figures. Wyatt Willey led the way with 18 (16 in the first half), Sam Buddlemeyer followed with 14, while James Bentley added 13 points and Bryson Simmons scored 12 for the winning Lions.
East Clinton’s top scorers, with 12 points each were Branson Smith and Matt Mitchell.
Astros’ head coach Tony Berlin did not sugar-coat anything in his post-game comments.
“Tonight was a huge step backwards for us and I am not at all pleased with the effort. We need to look ourselves in the mirror right now,” Berlin said. “We’ve got a long way to go. We’re just glad 2018 is now behind us, and hopefully when we get back on the court in 2019, things will get better.”
On the strength of nine first quarter points from Willey and six each from Bentley and Ethan Saunders, the Lions jumped out to a 25-14 first quarter lead. Fairfield came back with an 18-13 margin in the second quarter to take a 44-27 advantage into the locker room at the intermission.
Starting the third period, Fairfield went on a 7-2 run, en route to a 15-8 margin for the period, making the score 59-35 after three quarters.
East Clinton was victimized by turnovers, committing 17 in the game, including 11 in the first half. The Lions did a much better job controlling the basketball, with 11 in the game.
East Clinton will resume with SBAAC conference action Jan. 4 at Georgetown.
December 28, 2018
@East Clinton High School
Fairfield 67 East Clinton 37
(67) FAIRFIELD (2fg-3fg-ft-tp) Willey 6-1-3-18, Buddlemeyer 6-0-2-14, Simmons 6-0-0-12, Bentley 5-0-3-13, Setty 1-0-0-2, Saunders 4-0-0-8, Watson 0-0-0-0, Priest 0-0-0-0, Teeters 0-0-0-0, Payne 0-0-0-0. Team Totals: 28-1-8-67.
(37) EAST CLINTON (2fg-3fg-ft-tp) B. Smith 4-1-1-12, J. Smith 1-0-1-3, Peterman 0-0-0-0, Rolfe 0-0-0-0, Norman 0-0-0-0, Neanover 3-0-0-6, Mitchell 2-2-2-12, Swayne 1-0-0-2, Vadnais 1-0-0-2. Team Totals: 12-3-4-37.
Bill Liermann covers college and high school sports for the News Journal. Follow him on Twitter @lierjet.