The Newman Comets had a big match up Friday with the Annawan Braves to see who would move on to the state final. Unfortunately, for the Newman Comets the Braves were too much to handle. The Comets had a size advantage with Devon House standing at 6'7, but the Braves had two athletic players standing at 6'4 in Ben Buresh and Owen Landwehr who made some big plays. Landwehr finished with 19 points and Buresh ended with 12 points. The Comets struggled with fouls as Devon House and Travis Williams were in foul trouble early in the game. Williams eventually fouled out late in the 4th quarter. The Comets seemed sluggish and wore out when they took on the Braves. The grueling 61-60 victory over St. Mel and the long bus ride to Peoria could have been a factor to why the Comets seemed a bit off. Also, the three-point shooting for the Comets wasn't there. Against St. Mel the Comets shot a mind-blowing 55%. Against Annawan the Comets shot only 17%. The Comets were defeated 59-44 but there was still a lot to play for in the third place game on Saturday against Goreville.
When the Comets took the court Saturday against the Goreville Black Cats they looked loose and ready for the challenge. This was a redemption game for both Gorzny and Williams who had lackluster performances against Annawan. Against Goreville Gorzny exploded for 15 points after only scoring 6 points against Annawan. Williams scored 11 points against Annawan, but was in foul trouble for the majority of the game. Against Goreville Williams scored 20 points and limited his fouls to stay on the court to lead the Comets. Devon House scored 11 points but found himself in foul trouble. This allowed Jake Terveer to have a more prominent role providing the Comets with some stellar defense and tallied 7 points to keep the Comets ahead the whole game. Also, Gehrig Koerner contributed 8 points with some key three-pointers in the first half.
Against Goreville the Comets never trailed. Goreville would make some make some runs to get within 6 points, but then you would blink and the Comets would push their lead back to double digits. The Comets took down Goreville 65-50 to finish third place in the class 1A state playoffs. The Comets had an amazing season and were able to go further than any other Newman squad has ever been. This year was filled with exciting games against Bureau Valley, Hall, Milledgeville, Eastland, River Ridge, East Dubuque, and St. Mel. We saw this Newman team be tested time and time again, but they always seemed to come up big in the biggest moments. Congratulations to the Newman Comets on their third place finish at state. We'll have to wait and see what next year brings for the Newman Comets