Coronado frustrates Olekaibe, Cimarron

Holding an opposing basketball player to 29 points in a game might not seem a great accomplishment.

But Coronado’s boys team couldn’t have been more proud Tuesday.

The Cougars held Cimarron sharpshooter Kevin Olekaibe to 29 points — 11 fewer than his average — en route to capturing the championship game of the Sierra Vista Invitational with an 81-60 victory over the Spartans.

Olekaibe entered Tuesday averaging a fraction more than 40 points per game and hung 51 on the Cougars when the teams met in pool play Monday.

But the Cougars never let the Cimarron senior guard out of their sights.

“We neutralized him by knowing where he was on the floor at all times,” Coronado coach Paul Berg said. “Being aware of where he is helps. He has his spots he likes on the floor.”

Olekaibe often cashes in with several transition baskets and open 3-point shots in his biggest scoring games.

Outside of a dunk six seconds into the game and three 3-pointers — in 13 attempts — he didn’t get many easy points. He was 10-for-11 on free throws.

Thanks to a monster first half by Brandon Glanz, who had 15 points and 13 rebounds in the first two quarters, Coronado bolted to a 45-31 halftime lead and was never seriously threatened.

Any chances Cimarron had to try to rally were thwarted by junior guard Austin Nelson, who had 18 of his 28 points in the second half.

“He was incredible,” Berg said. “Austin just kept taking the ball to the basket.”

Glanz finished with 22 points and 15 rebounds, and Adam Schmitt scored 14 for the Cougars.

Contact reporter Bartt Davis at bdavis@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5230.

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