Monday, February 27, 2012

Nike All-Ohio Winter League-Look In

I had a chance to take in some of the action at the All-Ohio Nike Winter League on Saturday, and a couple of players caught my eye. The most productive player of the day was DJ Tyree, a 5’9 8th grader from Columbus. It was clear from Tyree’s play on Saturday  that the extra work he is getting in with his trainer, Anthony Rhodman, is paying off big. Not only has Tyree stretched out a bit since we saw him last, he is clearly stronger and more aggressive to the cup. Tyree not only shot the ball well, he did a good job with finding guys for jump shots and layups.

DJ Tyree-5'9 Guard

In the last showcase game against a pickup team from Springfield, Tyree teamed up with Jalani Rogers, 5’4 PG from Westerville.  It should be noted that both Tyree and Rogers are listed among Buckeye Prep’s top 30 8th graders in the state. The best thing Rogers did on Saturday was create for his teammates with penetration and precision passing. Although he did not finish at a high rate, Roger’s superior handle allowed him to create space for a shot, or beat his man of the bounce for a drive and dish. I also liked Kalib Younger, a 6’2 PF from Columbus. Although Younger is still a little raw, he is strong, aggressive and handles the ball pretty good for his size. Younger attacked the basket with a vengeance all day long.

Jalani Rogers-5'4 PG Westerville

Despite the backcourt power of the Nike Winter League team, they proved to be no match for the Springfield squad, who would headed south with a convincing 69-36 win over the Columbus based team. The standouts for Springfield included David Barnett, a tough as nails PF who finished everything he shot around the bucket; Jeremiah Ward, a 6’1 WF and Jordan Bailey, a super quick PG from Northridge Middle School in Springfield. A couple other kids caught my eye, but I will have to make a return trip to catch their names. 


Sunday, February 19, 2012

State Tournament Predictions-Part 3

This year is very balanced. There is a clear cut favorite in D1, D3 and D4. In D2 there is a definite top 2 - Dunbar and Taft (unfortunately they are in the same region). Trying to pick a top anything this year is a crap shoot but here is my best guesstimate going into the tournament.

Division 1

1. Columbus Northland - clearly the best this year.
2. Mentor - despite loss to Garfield. Very, very slight edge.
3. Cincinnati LaSalle - surprise of the year to me. Heart of a champion.
4. Columbus Walnut Ridge - size and depth
5. Garfield Heights - has the talent, must be consistent.
6. Toledo Whitmer - best in Toledo....barely
7. Shaker Heights - very talented. Must defend.
8. Pickerington Central - another talented team but young
9. Cincinnati Moeller - always watchout for them come tournament time.
10.Warren Harding - talented but can be Jekyll or Hyde.

5 Others (alphabetical)

Cincinnati Withrow - they have the pieces.
Lakewood St. Edward - tough. They have the secret weapon. Myles Hamilton
Olentangy Liberty - solid team. Has had a great year.
Toledo Central Catholic - starting to put it together under Coach Welling.
Toledo St. John - Loving is great. Loss of Gardner really hurts


Cleveland St. Ignatius - disciplined defenders always tough come tourney time

Division 2

1. Dayton Dunbar - best team on paper. Starts 5 future D1 college players
2. Cincinnati Taft - the toughest team in the state period. Tough to have them #2.
3. Akron St. Vincent - St. Mary - look for another tourney run from the Irish.
4. Cleveland Benedictine - too much talent for me to count them out.
5. Franklin - have a great guard (Kennard) and good bigs (Rossi's)
6. Dayton Thurgood Marshall - have had a tough year but have great pieces.
7. Plain City Jonathan Alder - solid bunch. The R&R boys (Roby and Randall)
8. Akron East - tough squad. 2 very good guards
9. Mentor Lake Catholic - tough and talented. Have some kids that can score.
10. Alliance - undefeated but I question the schedule.

6 Others

Bowling Green - sleeper team that played a D1 schedule.
Columbus Brookhaven - good guards and toughness.
Defiance - another team with a great record but......
East Liverpool - Thompkin is good. Nice squad
Lexington - another solid dquad. Brooks is a keeper.
Dayton Meadowdale - tough team in a bad regional.
Trotwood Madison - Starting to put it together. Probably not enough to get out of their region though.
Vincent Warren - great record but who have they played?

Division 3

1. Cincinnati Summit Country Day - best team on paper in D3.
2. Bloom Carroll - solid squad with guards, coaching and shooters.
3. Chesapeake - how far can McMaster take them.
4. Ironton - the duo of Carter and Fletcher are hard to stop.
5. Bedford Chanel - tough and scrappy bunch will make some noise.
6. Leavittsburg LaBrae - Aldridge is a load in D3.
7. Lima Central Catholic - historically tough team.
8. Portsmouth - has some talent and starting to put it together. McKinley is go to guy.
9. Versailles - another historically tough squad. Always has shooters.
10. Creston Norwayne - solid squad with a great record. Not spectacular but effective.

5 Others

Cincinnati Roger Bacon - good team with young talent. Future greatness.
Columbus Academy - solid team with a couple of go to players.
Jamestown Greenview - Bradds is the man.
Lucasville Valley - Yates is the man here.
Newton Falls - and Dillon is the man here!

Dayton Stivers - solid athletes and a real good guard (Caldwell) can do damage in the tournament

Division 4

1. Berlin Hiland - hands down, best team on paper in D4. Has 3 scholarship players.
2. Columbus Africentric - tough and scrappy bunch with some talent and coaching.
3. Cleveland VASJ - very talented team. Young though.
4. Newark Catholic - Another young and talented bunch
5. Richmond Heights - Athletic squad that has very good pieces. Could surprise.
6. Fort Recovery - nice team with shooters and solid athletes.
7. Zanesville Rosecrans - Kilbride is very tough in D4. Perry works inside.
8. Cincinnati Lockland - athletes and Wingfield could spell trouble.
9. Dayton Jefferson - always hard to beat in D4. Foster leads them.
10.Malvern - Tucci's and Kapron.

5 Others

Dalton - tough squad has had a good year.
Edgerton - great record. tough region.
Jackson Center - another tough squad with a good record
Toledo Maumee Valley Country Day - Talented team
Vanlue - nice squad. Garber is a stud.
Kalida - simple...Kortokrax

By John Stovall

State Tournament Predictions-Part 2

Division 3

Canton Regional Winner - Bedford Chanel
Top 4 Contenders
1. Leavittsburg LaBrae
2. Newton Falls
3. Orrville
4. Creston Norwayne

Bowling Green Regional Winner - Bloom Carroll
Top 4 Contenders
1. Lima Central Catholic
2. Archbold
3. Ottawa Glandorf
4. Findlay Liberty-Benton

Athens Regional Winner - Ironton
Top 4 Contenders
1. Chesapeake
2. Portsmouth
3. Lucasville Valley
4. Coshocton

Kettering Regional Winner - Cincinnati Summit Country Day (State Champion)
Top 4 Contenders
1. Jamestown Greenview
2. Versailles
3. Cincinnati Roger Bacon
4. Columbus Horizon Science

Division 4

Canton Regional Winner - Berlin Hiland (State Champion)
Top 4 Contenders
1. Cleveland VASJ
2. Richmond Heights
3. Zanesville Rosecrans
4. Malvern

Bowling Green Regional Winner - Toledo Maumee Valley Country Day
Top 4 Contenders
1. Vanlue
2. Toledo Ottawa Hills
3. Edgerton
4. Kalida

Athens Regional Winner - Columbus Africentric
Top 4 Contenders
1. Newark Catholic
2. Lancaster Fairfield Christian
3. Columbus Tree of Life
4. Columbus Shekinah Christian

Kettering Regional Winner - Fort Recovery
Top 4 Contenders
1. Cincinnati Lockland
2. Dayton Jefferson
3. Jackson Center
4. Russia

By John Stovall

State Tournament Predictions-Part 1

Division 1

Akron Regional Winner - Toledo Whitmer
Top 4 Contenders
1. Toledo St. John
2. Toledo Central Catholic
3. Findlay
4. Brunswick

Cleveland Regional Winner - Mentor
Top 4 Contenders
1. Garfield Heights
2. Shaker Heights
3. Warren Harding
4. Lakewood St. Edward

Columbus Regional Winner - Columbus Northland (State Champion)
Top 4 Contenders
1. Columbus Walnut Ridge
2. Pickerington Central
3. Canton McKinley
4. Olentangy Liberty

Cincinnati Regional Winner - Cincinnati Moeller
Top 4 Contenders
1. Cincinnati LaSalle
2. Cincinnati Withrow
3. Middletown
4. Springboro

Division 2

Canton Regional Winner - Akron SVSM
Top 4 Contenders
1. Mentor Lake Catholic
2. Akron East
3. Cleveland John Hay
4. Struthers

Toledo Regional Winner - Cleveland Benedictine
Top 4 Contenders
1. Columbus Brookhaven
2. Lexington
3. Napolean
4. Elida (tie)
4. Toledo Scott (tie)

Athen Regional Winner - Chillicothe
Top 4 Contenders
1. St. Clairsville
2. East Liverpool
3. New Concord John Glenn
4. Vincent Warren

Kettering Regional Winner - Dayton Dunbar (State Champion)
Top 4 Contenders
1. Cincinnati Taft
2. Dayton Thurgood Marshall
3. Plain City Jonathan Alder
4. Columbus Centennial

By John Stovall

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Middle School Basketball Shout Outs

Hughes Jr High School Won Multiple Championships 

Congratulations to Coach Roberto Allen and his Hughes Junior High School team for a strong 14-1 finish in the school’s first ever season. In addition to a great regular season record, Allen’s squad won Lakota West Junior High League regular season and tournament titles as well. Oh that’s not all; Allen’s team also played in the fall and finished 18-0 on their way to City of Cincinnati Junior High Public School League championships. The roster includes: Elijah Allen (7th), Corry Long (7th), Frank Royals (8th), Israel Griffin (8th), Jordan Johnson (8th), Elizjah Walker (8th) and Darius Miller (8th).

Kings Jr. High-7th Grade FAVC Champions

As a follow-up to our earlier story, Kings Jr. High’s 7th grade team, since our last report, the Knights went on to claim the FAVC championship by defeating Loveland 55-37. According to Coach Kenny Anderson, his team was down by 1 point at halftime (21-22), but, “exploded in the second period and controlled the rest of the game.” The Knights finished the season a perfect 19-0, scoring an average of 60 points per game with an average margin of victory of 39 points. Standout players included: Tyler Knecht, Tyler Mitchell, Matt Sichterman and Foster Martin. Below are videos of the Knight’s tournament games:

Tournament Finals
Tournament Semi's
Tournament Quarterfinal's

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

R.I.P. Eddie Guice

Buckeye Prep would like to send out condolences to the family of Eddie Guice, who passed away this morning  after a long battle with cancer. Many central Ohio basketball fans knew Eddie from his tireless dedication to youth basketball for many years. His passing will be felt by many in this community! R.I.P. Eddie!!!!

Celtics Finish Two Year Run With Championship

Dublin Grizzell Finish 34-0!

Not only did the Dublin Grizzell Celtics go undefeated on their trek to the championship of the 2012 Martin Memorial Basketball Tournament in Hilliard last week; the Celtics pulled off an even bigger feat by going a perfect 34-0 over the course two seasons! Last year, as 7th graders, the Celtics finished 16-0, and as champions of the 2011 Dublin Invitational Tournament. That summer, the same group of kids added an Irish Summer League Championship to their resume, before racking up another 18 wins this past season. The Celtics did more than just win; their average margin of victory was an impressive 23 points.

Seve Stavroff-Buckeye Prep All-Star

In terms of their most recent championship in Hilliard, the Celtics defeated teams from Delaware, Marysville and Groveport before finishing off cross town rival and Dublin Sells in the championship game. The All-Tournament team for Grizzell included Mason Baich, Seve Stavoff and Blake Bickett, all three of whom have either participated in our Buckeye Prep Elite Showcases in the past, or are listed among the top players in their class. I’m not sure which of the 3 high schools these players will be attending, but you can expect the Dublin teams to remain contenders in central Ohio in the upcoming years. Congratulations to the Celtics for an outstanding two-year run!

Stars Win CYO Title

On Sunday, Mary Queen of Peace’s 8th grade squad outlasted St. Brigits to claim 53-41 victory and the Dayton area CYO league championship. Although the game was close for most of the first half, the Stars began to make adjustments which limited St. Brigit’s perimeter shooting, and the team started to pull away about midway through the second quarter. “We adjusted to them [St Brigits]. We took away the short corner shots. We made them uncomfortable and made them shoot threes,” said head coach Byron Priest.

The Stars and were led in scoring by Terrence Landers who finished a game-high 18 points, including 7 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 assists. Right behind him was Derek Daniels who added 17 points, 10 rebounds and 4 blocked shots, followed by Daryl McClusky who dropped 8 dimes and finished with 4 points. Mary Queen of Peace finished the season with an overall record of 20-3. Congratulations to coach Priest, his players and the Stars’ fans for a great season!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Lions Win Senior Night Thriller

Austin Rutherford & Arron Jackson Led Gahanna With 14 pts Each

On Senior Night, and in front of a near capacity crowd, the Gahanna Lincoln Golden Lions boys basketball squad sent their seniors out with a bang, as they held off Reynoldsburg on their way to a 38-39 victory. Early in the contest it appeared the Raiders would spoil the Senior Night festivities, as they scored in the game’s opening possession on a pull up jumper by Spencer Kirksey, then used a 6-0 run early in the first quarter to claim an early 8-2 lead. A mid range jumper by senior guard Isaiah Israel stopped the Raider run with about 3:30 left in the period.

After Spencer Kirksey sparked a 5-0 run with a deep a trey, Reynoldsburg found themselves up 13-4 by the 1:40 mark. Aaron Jackson’s 2 free throws curbed the Raiders’ run and cut the lead to 13-6. Manny Powell found Jackson for a lay-up, and Gahanna’s 4-0 run trimmed the Raiders lead to 18-8 with 1:07 remaining in the opening quarter. Austin Rutherford would later finish an old fashion 3-point play as the Golden Lions finished the first quarter with a 7-0 run, and finished the period down by 2 points (13-11).

Gahanna started the second quarter on a 5-0 run, as Ronnie Stokes struck first with a lay-up to tie the contest at 13-13; Austin Rutherford scored on a lay-up to give Gahanna their first lead of the game (15-13), and Stokes later finished 1 of 2 free throws to extend the Gahanna lead to 16-13 at the 5:42 mark. Although senior guard Christian Lee got the Raiders on the board on a lay-up to cut the lead to 1 point (15-16), a 3-ball by Rutherford extended the Gahanna lead to 19-15 with 4:16 remaining in the period. After an Aaron Jackson put-back, a Spencer Kirksey trey and 1 of 2 free throws by Jackson, Gahanna was still up 22-21 to finish the first half. Gahanna’s Austin Rutherford led with 10 halftime points, while Spencer Kirksey paced the Raiders with 10 points.

Although he was held scoreless in the first period, junior Wendell Davis went to work early in the 3rd quarter with back-to-back buckets that gave Reynoldsburg the 25-22 lead. After losing the lead on a Grant Patch trey (27-27), Davis scored his 6th point of the half with an old school baby hook to retake 29-27 lead. Both teams took turns with the lead after that, but the Raiders entered the final period up 33-30.

Ryan Carter Finished With 14 Points

As was the case in the third quarter, the final period featured multiple ties and lead changes. With senior wing Spencer Kirksey relegated to the bench for an extended period of time, Reynoldsburg’s Ryan Carter in came up big for the Raiders in the 4th, hitting a couple of big buckets to keep his team in the hunt. The final outcome of the game would come down to free throws, both made and missed. Although Carter would sink to freebies to give the Raiders a 1 point lead with 2:30 remaining, Davis’ 2 missed free throws late left Reynoldsburg with only a 1 point lead with less than a minute left.

Gahanna would take advantage of the missed opportunity as Isaiah Israel scored on a layup with only 25 seconds left. The Raiders still had a chance to tie or take the lead in the contest when RJ Raglin stepped to the line for a one-and-one, however, he failed to convert, and the missed opportunity led to a Gahanna rebound.  After Gahanna’s Ronnie Stokes was whistled for a 5 second violation on an inbound attempt, Reynoldsburg had another chance for the win.  However, Isaiah Israel blocked a Spencer Kirksey 3-point attempt with only 9’8 ticks left in the game. Coach Tony Stiab's squad would eventually hold off the Raiders to claim a 39-38 victory, and run their overall record to 13-6. Both Austin Rutherford and Aaron Jackson paced Gahanna with 14 points apiece. Ryan Carter led the Raiders with 14 points, while Spencer Kirksey finished with 10 points.

Game Pictures

Middle School Ohio vs Indiana All-Star Showdown

In collaboration with the Baylor Basketball Report(BBR) out of Indiana, the Buckeye Prep Report (BPR) will be hosting the Inaugural Middle School Ohio vs Indiana All-Star Showdown in September.  Modeled after the high school game baring the same name; the middle school version of the event will pit the top 6th, 7th and 8th graders from the Buckeye State, against the top middle school players from the Hoosier State.

The game will be held the Saturday before the fall Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase in September.  There will be 3 games (6-8th), followed by the brand new skills and drills component of the traditional Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase. This event will become an annual event, with the host site alternating between Indiana and Ohio every other year.

In the fall of 2013, Buckeye Prep will be taking teams over to Indiana to participate in the annual showdown. There is no additional cost to participate in the game, but the participants will be chosen primarily from the standout players at Buckeye Prep Showcases, other BPR events, as well as BBR's East vs. West All-Star game and other BBR sponsored events. Some invitations will be extended to up to 12 players at the conclusion of March 4th Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase.  

Participation in this first year event will offer significant exposure opportunities, including special team and individual player features on this website, other statewide media, and BBR's website that reaches numerous Indiana-based media outlets. In addition to the enhanced media exposure, players will receive special awards as well as a chance to represent their state.  More detailed information will be forthcoming.