WESTFIELD — Carson Swanson comes from a family of star athletes. His brother, Darien, was a Wolverines star a year ago at Section VI champion Westfield. His parents, Amy and Nolan, are members of the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame as his grandfather Mel Swanson.
On Friday night, Carson Swanson took on two of Section VI’s top scorers, Ray Cortez and Matt Walliben of the Silver Creek Black Knights. “Both are great players.”
Still, of all the star power surrounding him, Carson Swanson was the brightest on Friday night, pouring in 46 points to lead the Wolverines to a 64-52 win over the Black Knights and beat the Westfield Winter Classic Boys. I won basketball. tournament championship.
“It was unbelievable” Westfield head coach Nolan Swanson said of his son’s performance: “It’s a school record, his career high, actually Swanson’s career high, better than his mom and I.”
Swanson never got off to a career-night pace as only two free throws from Cortez lit up the scoreboard over the first three minutes. Swanson’s first point was his goal in the first field of the game, with 4:08 left in the first quarter, with both sides tying the score at his 2–2.
With Silver Creek (5-2) leading 6-4 and just over a minute left in the opening frame, Carson Swanson scored five points with two layups and contact-absorbing free throws in the final minute. , gave a glimpse of the splendor. his second in the pair. At the buzzer, Carson Swanson scored all of his nine points and the Wolverines took his 9-for-6 lead.
But he was just getting started.
After Chris Rotunda laid up to start the second quarter, Carson Swanson literally did the rest. By the time the buzzer sounded at the end of the first half, Swanson had scored 28 of Westfield’s 30 points in a 30–20 lead. Carson’s own father didn’t even realize how dominant his son was playing until he saw the statssheet walking into the locker room at halftime.
“I know he was a great half, but I didn’t think he was that good.” Nolan Swanson said.
But Silver Creek didn’t quietly go on like Carson Swanson’s impressive 28 points in the half. The Black Knights scored in the second half with back-to-back 3-point shots from Cortez and Wallyvenn to cut Westfield’s lead to his four in just 42 seconds of action. After another of Wolben’s 3-pointers and a Cortez layup, Silver his clique maintained his 31-30 lead with just under six minutes left in the third quarter.
“Silver Creek as a team knows how experienced they are. …We knew it was going to be a very difficult game.” Nolan Swanson said.
But Carson Swanson didn’t stop scoring. He hit a 3-pointer that put Westfield (5-3) up 35-33 with him 3:45 left in the third quarter and another 3-pointer widened the lead to 40-35. . After the emotions of the game started to spiral out of control after an altercation between Cortez and Westfield players, Swanson closed out the third quarter with two free throws after a technical foul at Silver Creek.
But even as tensions swirled on both sides and the game became unbalanced, Carson Swanson was determined to let nothing stand in his way of lifting the trophy at the end of the night.
He had to turn it up, earning Tournament Most Valuable Player honors on top of that.
“There were trophies – talk about trophies – and he wanted to play really bad today. He just wanted it.” Nolan Swanson said.
Carson Swanson had a pair of buckets to reach the 40-point mark in 25 minutes of action at the start of the fourth quarter. He went 6-for-8 from the free-throw line to interrupt the night for 46 points as the Wolverines led the entire fourth quarter.
“I think this is his career night, but unfortunately he had to go against us.” Silver Creek Head Coach Ralph Jackson said:
Rarely has Ray Cortez been overshadowed on the stat sheets, and it didn’t make it easy for him to do so on Friday night. Cortez tallied 28 points and 14 rebounds for the Black Knights and earned All-Tournament Team honors despite missing the first game of the tournament due to his family issues.
“Ray is a great player. He’s doing well every night and you’re used to it.” Jackson said. “He puts his heart into his work. He gets a lot of attention, but he still does his part.”
After scoring 32 points for the Black Knights in Thursday’s 64-34 win over Chautauqua Lake, Walliven also earned selection to the All-Tournament Team with 13 points on Friday night.
“The defensive effort with the players that Silver Creek has… was really good.” Nolan Swanson said.
The entire All-Tournament team is as follows: Matt Woven; Aaron Fuller, Westfield. Braden Hayes, Sherman. Lawson Ormsby, Lake Chautauqua. Tournament MVP: Carson Swanson.