The Solon High School boys’ basketball team is the Cleveland Jewish News-Buffalo Wild Wings Warrensville Heights Player of the Week.
The Comets, 27-2, were the Division I state runners-up, losing to the Cincinnati Archbishop Moeller Fighting Crusaders, 83-65, on March 24 in Columbus. It was the Solon boys team’s first appearance in the state championship game, and they ran into a Moeller team that had won 20 straight games. The Comets were led by senior point guard Sincere Carry, who scored 27 points in the state championship loss and was a finalist for the state’s Mr. Basketball award, the top individual honor given in boys’ basketball in Ohio.
Solon boys’ basketball head coach Tony DeCesare said it was an amazing season, despite not ending the way the team had hoped.
“We set out with a goal to get to Columbus and play for a state championship, and I’m sure there are dozens of other teams in the Greater Cleveland area and throughout Ohio that had that same goal, so to be in that game and to compete in the last high school game of the season was an amazing experience for our guys,” he said.
DeCesare said at the beginning of the season, the Comets had discussed being a team that could contend for a state championship, but weren’t necessarily the favorites they were at the end of the season, when they had the top ranking in the tournament.
“I think that was the big difference,” he said. “In the beginning, we believed in ourselves, and when it was all said and done, a lot of other people – coaches, teams – saw us as a team that had a real chance to do it. I think that self-belief really pushed us throughout the year and we turned a lot of heads throughout the season.”
DeCesare said when a team has a player as special as Carry, they always have a chance, particularly with improvement from players like junior guards Mike Bekelja and Trent Williams. DeCesare said Williams was Solon’s best defensive player and often guarded the top player on opposing teams.
“A lot of credit does go to Sincere,” DeCesare said. “He was as good as there was in Ohio this year, and when you have the best player on the floor every night, you have a chance to win night in and night out.”