It was a busy week before Christmas across central Ohio as the
Northland boys basketball team took lead headline with its impressive
53-52 win over Findley Prep from Nevada that shows the Vikings are a
strong contender to repeat state champions. In addition to that, here’s what else happened…
It was a busy week before Christmas across central Ohio as the Northland boys basketball team took lead headline with its impressive 53-52 win over Findley Prep from Nevada that shows the Vikings are a strong contender to repeat state champions.
There was also coaching news across the region as long-time Washington Court House coach Gary Shaffer wrapped up career win No. 600 as the Blue Lions knocked off Clinton-Massie. The victory puts Shaffer No. 8 on the state boys basketball all-time wins list. East Knox also hired a new head football coach.
And then there were the always exciting buzzer beaters sending Olentangy and Logan Elm to victory.
For more, read on.
TEAM OF THE WEEK
Northland, boys basketball: Beating a defending national champion is impressive.
Beating a defending national champion without one of your better players is better yet.
Despite being without the services of J.D. Weatherspoon, who sat out with an injured ankle, the Northland boys basketball team knocked off defending national champ Findlay Prep from Nevada 53-52 at Otterbein College.
Northland was led by J.J. Sullinger’s double-double of 32 points and 17 rebounds. Sullinger drained two free throws after being fouled by Prep with four seconds left to put the Vikings ahead to stay.
The Northland win snapped Prep’s 44-game winning streak that stretched back to the 2007-08 season.
And the Vikings made sure their wouldn’t be a letdown on Friday in a 95-49 win over Centennial, led by 31 points by Sullinger and Trey Burke adding 20.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Adam Blake, Logan Elm boys basketball: Blake scored 19 points and hit a three-pointer before the buzzer to keep Logan Elm undefeated with a 53-50 road win over previously unbeaten Bloom-Carroll. Logan Elm improved to 4-0 overall and 2-0 in Mid-State League Buckeye play.
NEWS, NOTES & NUGGETS
East Knox has new gridiron boss: Calvin Hatfield was selected by the East Knox’s Board of Education as the school’s new head football coach. Hatfield, who has coached high school football in North Carolina and also coached at the college level, takes over a program that went 2-8 last season.
Westerville off to hot start: The three high schools in Westerville – South (5-0), North (4-0) and Central (3-2) are off to combined 12-2 start to the boys basketball season.
South’s most recent win by a 79-67 decision over Dublin Jerome that was led by Vincent Calo scoring 20 points and Traevon Jackson adding 18. North upended Dublin Scioto 63-50 behind Ralph Hill making six three-pointers to finish with 30 points, and Central routed Marysville 83-38 with Jourdan DeVoll contributing 22 points and 10 assists and Max VanMeter added 19 points and 12 rebounds.
Exciting finish for Olentangy: The Braves boys basketball team needed overtime to defeat rival Olentangy Liberty 59-58 to improve to 3-3 on the season.
Ben Michael Welch hit a 12-foot jumper with 1.2 seconds left to give the Braves the win. Jonny Smith led Olentangy with 18 points.
Wave stay unbeaten in league: The Newark Catholic girls basketball team picked up its fifth straight Mid-State League Ohio Division win with a 47-39 win over Granville. Kendra Blair and Amanda Spencer each poured in 15 points for the Green Wave, which used a 10-0 run in the third quarter to help take control of the contest. NC is 5-1 overall.
Johnstown beats rival: Using a double-double of 19 points and 12 rebounds by Sarah Thomas, the Johnstown girls basketball team defeated Northridge 56-34 in a Mid-Buckeye Conference game to even its record at 3-3 on the season. Sarah Scovell added 16 points and six rebounds.
Elgin still undefeated: The Marion Elgin boys basketball team left nothing to chance, outscoring Ridgedale 60-28 over the final three periods to take a 73-39 Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference victory to improve to 5-0 overall and 3-0 in league play. Darren Patrick posted 28 points and 11 rebounds for the Comets, while Doug Ute tallied 22 points and R.J. Creamer added 11.
More MOAC: Troy Clark and Erik Wall teamed up for an impressive performance for the Buckeye Valley boys basketball team, combining for 43 points to send the Barons past Marion Pleasant 69-55. Clark had 22 points and Wall contributed 21 points to go with 11 rebounds. Bryan Crawford chipped in 12 markers for the 4-1 Barons.
North Union also improved to 4-1 on the season with an 83-50 rout of Mount Gilead, led by Evan Jamison with 16 points. Also joining Jamison in double figures was Klarke Ransome with 14 points, Isaiah Blevins scoring 12 points and Warren Shields adding 11.
Napoleon’s Waterloo: Napoleon found the track to a victory blocked by the Presidents as the Marion Harding boys basketball team rolled to a 68-46 win in Greater Buckeye Conference action to improve to 4-0 on the season. Napoleon turned the ball over 17 times and shot a paltry 17 of 45 against the Harding defense.
Leading the way for the Presidents was Shawn Dyer with 22 points and seven assists, Marvin Owens scoring 19 points and Jake White adding 14 points.
Gahanna Cage Classic boys basketball, Monday at 7 and 9 p.m.: Harvest Prep takes on Huber Heights at 7 p.m., followed by the host Lions challenging Cleveland Heights at 9 p.m. Action then continues on Dec. 31.
Teays Valley Holiday Classic girls basketball, Monday and Tuesday: Lancaster, Grove City, Jonathan Alder and the host Vikings participate in the annual classic, which will have games at 6 and 7:30 p.m. each night.
Bishop Watterson at Westerville South boys basketball, Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.: A good non-league test for two undefeated schools. Watterson is 4-0 and South is 5-0.
Bloom-Carroll at Granville boys basketball, Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.: A good interdivision Mid-State League matchup.
Dublin Coffman girls basketball at Massillon Jackson, Dec. 29 and 30: The Shamrocks take on Maple Heights and Twinsburg at Jackson’s tournament.