SHELBY — St. Peter’s didn’t have an answer for Myles Bruno.
Sandusky St. Mary’s senior point guard scored all of his game-high 16 points in the second half as the fourth-seeded Panthers pulled away for a 41-21 win over No. 10 St. Peter’s in the Division IV sectional semifinals at Shelby High School.
SMCC (15-8) led 9-4 at the half before Bruno took over. He scored nine straight points to start the third, spotting the Panthers to an 18-4 lead with 3:39 to play in the period.
“He did a a nice job offensively of kind of probing from the perimeter, looking for driving lanes,” St. Mary coach Chris Ceccoli said. “He knew when to get to the rim and when to share the ball with his teammates.”
St. Peter’s (7-16) cut SMCC’s lead to 25-12 on a Shawn Perkins-Harris 3-pointer at the third-quarter horn, but the Spartans were forced to abandon their deliberate offensive philosophy in the fourth. Bruno and Nate Roesch took advantage, combining for 13 points in the final period as the Panthers pulled away.
“We just wanted to be patient and I thought we did a tremendous job in the first half,” St. Peter’s coach Joe Jakubick said. “We played hard and competed, but we just missed shots. We just don’t have the same margin for error that we did a few years ago.”
An offensive rebound and putback by Perkins-Harris cut the SMCC advantage to 33-21 with 4:59 remaining, but the Panthers closed the game on an 8-0 run to win going away.
“We expected them to hold the ball the way they did because we had seen them do it earlier in the year,” Ceccoli said. “They are very disciplined and very well-coached and they did a nice job of being patient and stretching us out.
“The longer they were taking with each possession, you could see our kids were getting a little tense. I’m really proud of the way our kids stayed the course.”
Perkins-Harris led St. Peter’s with nine points. Jonah Ramey added six, while Gavin Foltz had four.
Bruno led SMCC with 16 points. Roesch added 10.
St. Mary will play eighth-seeded Plymouth for a sectional title at 8 p.m. Friday at Shelby. The Big Red beat Monroeville 47-46 in Wednesday’s nightcap.