prep-logo-waterloo west.jpg

CEDAR FALLS — Cliff Berinobis was not a happy basketball coach at halftime Friday.

The message was heard loud and clear by his Waterloo West boys’ basketball team.

Using an 11-0 run to open the third quarter, the Wahawks surged to a 50-36 victory over Lee’s Summit Christian Academy in the Jerry Slykhuis Basketball Showcase at Cedar Falls High.

“The first half we came out kind of sluggish,” said West junior Caleb Haag, who led all scorers with 19 points. “Coach kind of chewed us out and it is what it is, and we went out there, worked our tails off and took the win.”

West led 23-20 at halftime, taking the lead for good on a Haag 3-pointer with 2 minutes, 9 seconds left to halftime. Up until that point, the Eagles and Wahawks had exchanged the lead seven times.

“Just disappointing in the fact, if you want to be a winner, you have to step on the floor ready to play and it was obvious we weren’t tonight,” Berinobis said.

After giving up 89 points in a loss on Tuesday to Waterloo East, the Wahawks (2-1) were much better defensively against the Eagles (0-3), and that was no more apparent than in the third quarter.

Every shot by the Eagles was contested, and lanes to the basket closed as quickly as they opened as Summit Christian went 1-for-12 in the third. Meanwhile, Haag scored on a drive and hit a 3-pointer the next time down the floor to spark the 11-0 run. The Wahawks outscored the Eagles, 14-2 in the third.

“Our defense was better tonight than it was a couple nights ago, by far,” Berinobis said. “Amar Kuljuhovic was one of the biggest differences why. He gave us a big spark and gave us big minutes, and I thought he was really, really good tonight.”

The 6-foot-5 Kuljuhovic, a sophomore, scored six points, re-directed several shots and cleaned up the defensive boards.

You have free articles remaining.

Become a Member

Summit Christian closed its gap to 39-31 with 5:58 left in the fourth, but Haag drained his third 3-pointer of the game with 4:02 left, and West went on a 9-0 run to push its lead to 48-31 with 1:25 to go.

Isaiah Johnson added 16 points for West.

“It is hard to walk out of here happy ... I don’t want to take anything away from Lee’s Summit, but I know our kids are better than that,” Berinobis said.

West 50, Lee’s Summit 36

WATERLOO WEST (2-1) — Sebastian Gunderson 1-3 0-1 3, Caleb Haag 8-16 0-0 19, Isaiah Johnson 8-16 0-0 16, Michael Robinson Jr. 1-3 0-0 2, Jaden Keller 0-1 2-2 2, Mitch Fordyce 1-2 0-0 2, Amar Kuljuhovic 3-4 0-0 6, Mondre Lagow 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 22-50 2-3 50.

LEE’S SUMMIT CHRISTIAN (0-3) — Chris Tsamas 3-10 2-2 11, Griffin Kliewer 5-13 0-0 11, Zach Porter 0-1 0-0 0, Ethan Moore 0-1 0-0 0, Jared Gerdes 5-13 0-0 10, Luke Poppen 0-0 0-0 0, Grayson Sprouse 0-2 0-0 0, Cal Bagunu 1-2 0-1 2, Glenn Valide-Lewis 0-0 0-0 0, Zeke Oppriecht 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 14-42 3-5 36.

Wat. West 10 13 14 13 — 50

Lee’s Summit 11 9 2 14 — 36

3-point goals — West (Gunderson, Haag 3). Lee’s Summit 5 (Tsamas 3, Kliewer 2). Total fouls — West 10, Lee’s Summit 12. Fouled out — none.

Subscribe to Breaking News

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Sports Reporter

Sports reporter for The Courier

Load comments