By Tom Williams
Shortly after tonight’s Youngstown Christian-Brookfield boys basketball game begins, it will be stopped.
Brookfield senior Jeremy Quinlan needs just two points to reach 1,000 for his varsity career.
Tuesday during the Warriors’ game against East, it looked like Quinlan would reach his milestone in the second half. Entering that game, Quinlan needed 22 points to reach 1,000.
At halftime, Quinlan had nine points. He matched that total in the third quarter.
But in the final minute of the third quarter, Quinlan picked up his fourth foul.
After one more basket in the opening minute of the fourth quarter, Quinlan was assessed his fifth foul with about 6:35 remaining.
“That was a hard 20 — bloody lip, loose teeth,” Brookfield coach Bill Kovach said. “He really played hard. It was a physical game.”
Quinlan said he was elbowed in the face three times. “My lips were bleeding, I don’t even know what this is,” said Quinlan, referring to something on his gum. “It’s killing me.”
Quinlan’s final basket was a beauty. Off-balance for a fadeway jumper, Quinlan let the ball fly and was body-checked to the floor. No foul was assessed.
“I thought it was a foul-and-one, but they didn’t call it,” Quinlan said.
Jeremy’s twin brother, Jimmy, is the Warriors’ point guard. Quinlan had a surprised look when he received his fifth foul.
“I didn’t think it was on me, I thought it was on my brother because I really didn’t touch [East’s Marquis Cotton],” he said. “Their size — they jump out of the gym.”
Quinlan didn’t realize how close he was to the milestone before Tuesday’s game.
“I thought [I needed] 29,” he said.
Another interesting game tonight will be played in Canfield (14-4, 7-1 All-American Conference American Division) when Poland (15-2, 6-2) visits.
Tonight’s result will go a long way to crowning a champion.
Poland head coach Ken Grisdale, a Canfield graduate who’s battled his alma mater for 20 seasons, can sense the excitement in the locker room.
“I think knowing that it’s 224 Week, it kind of lifted them up a little bit,” Grisdale said. “I honestly think if I have to do anything to motivate them, they’re half-dead. So we should call the emergency room and get an ambulance here.
“Honestly, I need to low-key it because I have a tendency to be too emotional when it comes to this game,” Grisdale said. “If they’re playing tight, we’re in trouble.”
Correspondent Ryan Buck contributed to this report.