Fourth quarter surge leads Kirtland past Cardinal

Kirtland Basketball

Matt Krulc drained three 3-pointers and Brandon Samsa scored 10 of his team-high 14 points in the fourth quarter as Kirtland came from behind to defeat visiting Cardinal on Friday.

The Chagrin Valley Conference Valley Division rivals battled to a 14-14 draw in the first quarter but the visiting Huskies outscored the Hornets, 32-24, in the next two quarters to build a 46-38 lead heading into the final eight minutes of play.

“Matt Krulc’s energy defensively was superb and he hit three big 3s down the stretch to help us win,” said Kirtland coach Nick Gallo. “He is really doing a great job giving us a lift off the bench.”

Samsa scored four first quarter points then went quiet until the fourth. He started his run with a 3-pointer then converted on 7-of-8 free throw tries.

“Brandon Samsa was much more in attack mode tonight,” Gallo said. “The more he continues to be that way, the better we will be.”

Krulc finished with 12 points and Seann McGill also finished in double figures with 11. Dominic Capretta and Dawson Cosgrove pitched in with nine and eight, respectively.

Robbie Bruncak and Robbie Mulh both scored a game-high 16 points for the Huskies while Parker Kosh added 10.

Kirtland 62, Cardinals 56

Cardinal: Bruncak 16, Mulh 16, Kosh 10, Cummins 5

Kirtland (9-5, 7-4): Mueller 2, Samsa 14, Fulco 6, Krulc 12, McGill 11, Capretta 9, Cosgrove 8

Cardinal 14 15 17 10 — 56
Kirtland 14 10 14 24 — 62

Free throws: Cardinal 5 of 9, Kirtland 12 of 16; 3-pointers: Cardinal 5 (Bruncak 3, Kosh 2), Kirtland 8 (Samsa 2, Capretta 2, McGill 2, Cosgrove 2, Krulc 3);

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The creator and publisher of, Hare has covered high school sports in Northeast Ohio since 1997. He began as a correspondent for the Lake County News Herald, where he contributed until 2011, primarily covering high school football and wrestling. In 1999, Hare began writing for, a member of the network of high school and college sports web sites. He focuses on covering Notre Dame football recruiting. was created in 2004 and was a member of the network until 2012. The site's original purpose was to cover Ohio high school football and recruiting news but since has grown to cover all sports and to provide sports information services to high school athletic programs and individual teams. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.