In general, boys basketball at Solvay and Jordan-Elbridge has existed in the long shadows of more successful programs in their neighborhoods.
All that might change now, though, as the Bearcats roared out to a 2-0 start last week and the Eagles continued to build upon its early success, improving to 3-0.
Solvay hosted Cazenovia last Wednesday night and played close to perfection on both ends in the second quarter, which made the difference in a 69-49 victory over the Lakers.
Solvay was down 19-18 when, in that second period, it hit every kind of shot and shut down Cazenovia, too, in the course of a 26-3 blitz that produced a big margin that the Bearcats protected the rest of the way.
Hot shooting from Brock Bagozzi sparked Solvay as most of his 22 points came from five 3-pointers. The Lakers couldn’t focus on Bagozzi, though, because Justin Scott was putting in 20 points as Elijah Wright got nine points and Rob Clark hit a pair of 3-pointers to account for all of his six points.
Solvay moved to 2-0 on Friday by handling LaFayette 90-68, a game that was close for quite a while as the two sides traded lots of baskets, especially during a third quarter where the two sides combined for 54 points.
Yet it was the Bearcats putting things away in the final period, outscoring the Lancers 24-5 as Scott, who finished with 21 points, led the charge. Bagozzi’s 19 points included three 3-pointers as McKyle Sands had 17 points, with Connor Lee getting 12 points.
Before all this, Jordan-Elbridge made it two wins in as many games last Tuesday by ripping Homer 59-34 The Eagles held the Trojans to four points in the first quarter and was up 32-13 by halftime.
Again, Jeremiah Sparks proved tough to stop, leading J-E with 25 points, but getting some help from Alex Pond, who had 13 points (including three 3-pointers), and Alec Henderson, who got eight points.
Seeking its third win in a row on Saturday, J-E hosted Westmoreland, and on this occasion everyone on the Eagles joined in the fun as it zoomed past triple digits and bashed the Bulldogs 104-72.
All through the first half, J-E seemed to convert at will, eventually building a 56-26 margin, and from there the only question was whether the Eagles would get to the century mark – which it did late in the fourth quarter.
Sparks, before exiting, set a new career high with 40 points, but he had a lot of help as Mitch Holt poured in 23 points to set his own career mark. Carson Ashby had 12 points, while Tyler Waldron got 10 points and Henderson earned nine points.
J-E’s only game this week is a Wednesday visit from Vernon-Verona-Sherrill as Solvay would host Fulton Tuesday night and then visit Altmar-Parish-Williamstown on Thursday before a Saturday game against Institute of Technology Central as part of the Fastrac Tournament at Corcoran High School.