Southeast Ohio Huddle: Portsmouth center drops 30; Cambridge hosts first wrestling invite


Southeast Ohio Huddle

Winter sports are in full go after this past weekend, as boys hit
the hardwood and the mat. Some of the top southeast wrestlers were in
action at Cambridge while basketball action was spread all over the

Winter sports are in full go after this past weekend, as boys hit
the hardwood and the mat. Some of the top southeast wrestlers were in
action at Cambridge while basketball action was spread all over the

Basketball is where we find our top team and
individual this week as one Final Four team from last year appeared in
mid-season form in their opener and a post player from the Portsmouth
area was completely dominate in the season’s first game.

Trace High School hosted its annual tip-off classic and their schedule
produced a triple overtime game, a half court shot, an impressive
comeback, and more.

In other sports news, Bellaire
completed a new track this weekend has they prepare for the upcoming
spring. We take a look at these details as well as all the basketball
action in this week’s News, Notes, & Nuggets.

though it is early season, several leagues around the southeast have
key games this week. For example, in the Scioto Valley Conference, many
fans feel the boys and girls have top heavy leagues which makes certain
match-up extremely important. We take a look at these scenarios in this
week’s On Tap section.

So here we go! We are off to Pike County and then neighboring Scioto County to honor this week’s top team and individual.


Piketon Boys’ Basketball: Gone
from last year’s Final Four team is a pair of 1,000-point scorers, but
you wouldn’t have known that based on their opening performance.
Playing a D-II Hillsboro team that returned several pieces from a
district team a year ago, Piketon (a D-III squad) recorded a nice 68-50
statement win at the Zane Trace Tip-Off Classic.

In the win, Evan Legg and Jamie Helton both scored 17 points. Caleb Southworth scored 14 points and recorded 14 rebounds.


Hank Leslie, McDermott Northwest Boys’ Basketball: The
Mohawks rolled in their opener to a 75-44 win over nearby Portsmouth
Clay and center Hank Leslie was a big reason why. Leslie scored a
game-high 30 points while also producing team-highs in rebounding with
10 and assists with three. At 1-0, Leslie and the Mohawks now prepare
for a key, early-season SOC battle with Wheelersburg.


Collision Course: Two
solid basketball teams on the girls’ side of the Scioto Valley
Conference – the Unioto Lady Shermans and the Lady Pioneers – are off
and running this season. Zane Trace, a Division III school, recorded a
50-42 win over Chillicothe before defeating Alexander 52-36. Before
those two non-conference wins, ZT started the season with a 62-28 SVC
win over Southeastern.

Unioto, the defending conference
champ, started the season with a huge challenge as they hosted
Cincinnati Indian Hill. That game ended in a buzzer-beating win from
Janae Driggs, and since then, Unioto added wins this week against
Westfall (66-36) and Vinton County (67-39).

The two first meet this week, and the On Tap section below has all the details.

A First on the Mat:
This past weekend marked the inaugural Cambridge Invitational. The very
impressive field played out as followed: Beaver Local took first place
honors with a score of 297 points. Minerva came in second at 184. Next,
Canal Fulton Northwest and Canal Winchester tied at 175 with West
Holmes at 169.5, Indian Valley with 168, Barnesville with 120, host
Cambridge at 118.5, Morgan with 114, and Big Walnut at 75.5 rounded out
the field.

Southeast wrestlers including Cambridge’s Dillon
VanDyne in the 135-pound class and Barnesville’s Kurtis Jefferis and
Kody Crooks at 152 and 160, respectively all earned first-place

Quiet Perfection: The Lady Redstreaks of
Piketon are quietly off to a 4-0 start after their 45-38 win over
Manchester this past weekend. Piketon was led by Alex Southworth with
15 points while Holly Brabson added 12 points.

Chillicothe Passes Early Season Test…Well, Somewhat:
The Cavs got 23 points from guard Michael Turner as they rolled to a
67-53 win over Xenia Saturday night. Chillicothe accomplished the 1-0
start to the season despite turning the ball over 29 times and shooting
a dismal 6-17 from the charity stripe.

Second Half Surge:
The Valley Indians changed a 29-14 halftime deficit into a 44-40 win
Saturday at the Zane Trace Tip-Off Classic against Washington Court
House. Valley’s Blake Yates accounted for half of Valley’s offense
scoring 22 points. Robbie Dwyer chipped in 10 in the victory. Valley is
now 2-0 because they started their season the night before with a 58-56
win over South Point. In that win Zach Utley led the Indians with 26
points. Yates added 17 points and Dwyer scored 10 points.

Early ECOL Advantage: Cambridge
improved to 3-0 thanks to a quick start that lifted the Lady Bobcats to
an 18-9 lead after one quarter and eventually led to a 66-56 win over
Meadowbrook. Brandy Simpson finished with 16 points and seven rebounds
to lead Cambridge. Abby Wetherell scored 15 points and pulled down five
boards. Carly Kehn had 11 points, five assists, five steals and three
rebounds. For Meadowbrook, Kat Jirles scored18 points in the losing

Buzzer-Beater: Wheelersburg’s Erica Schmidt
scored the final two of her game-high 17 points with 1.1 showing on the
clock to lift her Lady Pirates of Wheelersburg to a 49-47 win over
rival Waverly. Schmidt, just a sophomore, also had seven rebounds while
teammate Molly Knapp added 16 points with four steals for Wheelersburg
and Katie Knapp scored 10 points. For Waverly, the Lady Tigers were led
by Hannah Brewster with 12 points and Darian Harris with 11 points.

Ready for Spring:
With basketball just getting started it will be awhile before track
season springs to the forefront, but when it does, Bellaire will be off
and running on a brand new track. The installation of a brand-new
polyurethane track was completed a few weeks ago when the lines were
painted on the surface. The cost for this project totaled $93,000 and
was funded by a combination of a capitol improvement fund, the Bellaire
Touchdown Club, and other various support groups.

Wild One:
An amazing game took place at Zane Trace Friday night as perennial
power Bloom Carroll visited the Pioneers for an opening night game that
took three overtimes to find a winner. Finally, Bloom outlasted Zane
Trace 73-69. After Zane Trace lost their top defender and
second-leading scorer Gabe Haynes in the first quarter (separated
shoulder), Kirk Maxwell posted 26 points including a half court shot at
the end of the second OT, but it wasn’t enough to lift the Pioneers.
Derek Cochenour added 14 points with four triples in the loss.

More Extra Sessions:
The Ironton-Chillicothe match-up on the girls’ side has become quite a
rivalry over the past couple of seasons, and this year the intensity
was no different. Ironton’s Lorna Ceasar hit a shot with 17 seconds
remaining to tie and force overtime, but Chillicothe outscored Ironton
11-7 in the extra session to record a 49-45 win in this SEOAL opener.
Whitney Harewood and Mariah Smith led the Lady Cavs with 13 points each
and Holly Casto-Lemay chipped in 11 points.


Zane Trace vs. Piketon, Boys’ Basketball, Tuesday, December 8th, Piketon High School, Freshman game tips at 4:45 p.m. First
league game or not…in a league that many feel is a two horse race, this
is a huge game in terms of gaining the early advantage in the Scioto
Valley Conference.

Athens vs. Jackson, Boys’ Basketball, Tuesday, December 8th, Jackson High School, JV tips at 6:00 p.m.
A very athletic Athens teams travels to Jackson County to take on Larry
Jordan’s Ironmen – a team that started the season with a 22-point
performance from Dylan Newsome in a 10-point win over Minford.

Meadowbrook vs. Claymont, Boys’ Basketball, Friday, December 11th, Meadowbrook High School, approximately 7:30 p.m.
Opening night in the East Central Ohio League as Meadowbrook looks to
build off of their big 52-28 win over Philo in last week’s opener.

Zane Trace vs. Unioto, Girls’ Basketball, Saturday, December 12th, Unioto High School, JV game tips at Noon. As stated in News, Notes, & Nuggets
this week, these two teams are not just the two favorites in the SVC,
but are also two of the premiere teams in all of southeast Ohio.

John Glenn vs. Vinton County, Boys’ Basketball, Saturday, December 12th, Convo at Ohio University’s Hoops Classic.
Great early-season battle between the three-time defending TVC champion
in Vinton County and a very talented John Glenn squad that many think
will challenge Tri Valley for the MVL crown.

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