Friday, February 21, 2014
The Ohio Basketball Club's 7th and 8th grade teams will hold tryouts this Sunday February 23rd from 5-7pm at Garfield Heights HS. located at 4900 Turney Rd Garfield Heights, Ohio. Registration begins at 4.30pm and tryouts will start at 5pm sharp. Players from all over the state as well as PA and Michigan will be in the house so bring your a game.
Tuesday, February 18, 2014
|West Coast All-Stars-6th Grade champions|
It took 3 days, but we finally got some very competitive games on the final day of the Gym Rats President’s Day Tournament in Portland. First up on Monday morning, the much anticipated showdown between the Oakland Soldiers and the San Diego Rebels; 2 of the best teams on the west coast. Both teams arrived in Portland with quality guard play and elite frontcourts. From the tip, the Soldiers drew first blood on a Fred Burton layup, but the Rebels responded with an old fashioned three point play by Jack Pugh to take a 3-2 lead. A 4-2 mini run put the Rebels up 7-4 at the 8:43 mark. Midway through the first half the game was tight, as both teams traded buckets. By the 6:15 mark, the Rebels had built a 15-10 lead. The Soldiers responded with a 4-0 run to trim the lead to 1 point (15-14) with 3:40 left in the half. Poor rebounding by the Soldiers allowed second chance opportunities for the Rebels, which they used to take a 22-18 lead into the half. Pugh led the Rebels with 7 halftime points while Shemar Morrow paced Oakland with 6 points.
|Jack Pugh & Shemar Morrow|
|Willis McClendon & Paris Dawson Paced the All-Stars|
Parris Dawson drove to the basket again to start the second half and to extend the lead to 24-17. The Soldiers mounted a run that would cut the deficit to 3 points (23-26) at the 7:58 mark. With Dawson in attack mode, and McClendon still hot from the perimeter, West Coast found themselves comfortably ahead 34-26 with 5:48 remaining in the game. However, multiple turnovers and empty possessions by West Coast led to a 7-0 Oakland run that got them back in the game and trimmed the lead to only 2 points (34-32) with only 2:10 left in the contest. Despite their offensive woes late, West Coast was able to hold on and claim the championship by a score of 35-32. Will McClendon was the man for the all-Stars, finishing with a team-high 12 points, followed by Paris Dawson who added 9 points. Harris was sluggish early and finished with only 6 points. Shemar Morrow led Oakland with 12 points, followed by Hightower with 10 points. In terms of the matchup, the edge clearly goes to Morrow who was more productive offensively and successfully blocked many of Harris’ shot attempts. Harris was more of a defensive factor late, but Morrow owned the boards and protected the rim.
|Celtic Family In Championship Game|
For the record, in the 8th grade championship game, the I10 Celtics Black defeated the Celtics Green team 62-50. Kiiwon Bradford (6’4 SG Sacramento) led the Black squad with 13 points. Although his team fell to the 7th grade Hoop Salem in the semi-finals, big Adam Campos (6'3 C Hercules, CA) was the leading scorer for the Hayward Tar Heels, finishing with a game-high 17 points.
|5th Grade I10 Celtics Take Gold|
|ARC 4th Grade Champions|
Final Day Photo Gallery
Monday, February 17, 2014
Day two of the Gym Rats Presidents Day Tournament offered a few more competitive games as pool play concluded and the first 2 rounds of bracket play tipped off. In the morning, I had the opportunity to catch the second half of the Oakland Soldiers vs Hoops Dreams Black game (6th Grade). Unfortunately, due to a schedule change, I arrived at the game at halftime. As you would expect in a pool game for an Oakland Soldiers team that had recently added the number 1 player in the country in Ohio’s Shamar Morrow, the game was already out of hand by the break (34-15). There was little intrigue in this game, as the Soldiers steamed rolled Hoops Dreams Black by a final score of 53-27. Morrow was as dominate as expected while scoring and rebounding with little resistance. In addition to Morrow, the Soldiers have picked up additional hired guns for the weekend. Devin Hightower (George Hill), Devin Askew (916) Jay Taylor (916) and Fred Burton (Inland Force) have all recently suited up for different teams.
In the first round of bracket play, the Soldiers fought though a slow start against Sugar Bush Hoops. Despite the significant talent gap between these two teams, a scrappy Sugar Bush squad went toe-to-toe with the Soldiers for much of the game. Although the Soldiers jumped to a 6-0 start, Sugar Bush fought their way back to cut the lead to 5-7. By the 7:22 mark, Sugar Bush was as close as 12-13, and was only down by 4 points (23-19) with only 3:10 left in the half. By halftime, the score was only 24-33 in favor of the Soldiers. Morrow again showed why he is so highly regarded, as he dropped an impressive 19 points by the break. For the record, with all of the talent on this team, Sugar Bush should not have kept this game as close as they did. A lack of chemistry and poor defense were evident in the game. Of course the Soldiers would later blow the game open, but it was a lot harder than it should have been. In fact, in the second half, Sugar Bush was as close as 9 points with 6:30 left, but very quickly, the lead ballooned to 20 points (60-40) before the Soldiers called off the dogs. Oakland would eventually cruise to a 72-41 victory before advancing to the second round. Morrow finished with a game-high 26 points followed by Jay Taylor who finished with 10 points. With their second round win over Seattle Future Black, the Oakland Soldiers are 5-0 and are headed to the semi-finals where they will match-up with a tough San Diego Rebels at 9:05am. This should be one of the best games of the tournament!
Although I have concentrated on the 6th & 7th grade divisions this weekend, I could not resist checking out the 8th grade Oakland Soldiers take on their Bay Area rivals Flight Elite. The game was close early in the first half, but the more talented Soldiers would take a 36-20 lead into halftime. The Flight would make a run in the second period and get the score as close 7 points before the Soldiers would step on the gas and go on to claim victory 66-45. I was really impressed with the play of Oakland’s Kyriee Brown (5’9 PG Berkley), who showed a lot of skill, toughness and a high basketball IQ as he lead his team to the win. Brown knows what he’s doing at the point and is an excellent floor general that handles the ball well, communicates effectively with his teammates and is a willing and able passer. LJ Anderson (5’8 SG Oakland) is a player to watch as is Christopher Wiedt (6’6 C Sacramento). Wiedt has great size at this age and was he gets more aggressive in the post he could be a good looking prospect going forward. Later in the day, the Soldiers lost in overtime 68-66 to a local Maeko team.
The I10 Celtics Green found themselves in a serious battle with the I10 Celtics Black. Although Green raced to a 6-0 lead, the score was as close as 7-8 by the 9:52 mark. Celtics Black was still hanging tough with 5:56 left in the half and was only down by 2 points (16-18). The more talented Black squad relied too heavily on deep jump shots and struggled to rebound consistently. Consequently, the Black squad, based mostly out of LA, was still in the game by halftime (34-27). An opening trey by Black cut the lead to 30-34. Thanks to the hot shooting from Celtics Green’s Jovon Blacksheer, the Arizona-based Green team would hold on to get a 10 point victory (47-57) to advance to the third round where they will face Lynden Tractor at 7:55pm on Sunday. Blackshear was big for Green with a game-high 19 points, Blacksheer had his full game on display as he drained deep jumpers, knocked down floaters, scored easily in transition and defended aggressively. Jalen House came off the bench and was hot from beyond the ark, converting on 3 treys. Keion Brooks and Dexter Shouse both had solid games, with each player finishing with 8 points. Brooks did an effective job defending the rim while Shouse was more of a facilitator from the high post.
Sunday, February 16, 2014
|Seattle Rotary Bench|
Tomorrow, I'm looking forward to watching the Oakland Soldiers (6th grade) lace it up. From what I understand, they've added some significant talent for this weekend's tournament. I’m also hoping to see more competitive games on day 2. Some other results: I10 Celtics (8th) defeated Washington Elite 59-57; Oakland Soldiers (7th) defeated Rainer 60-19; and Team Balance (6th) defeated Yellow Jackets 45-37.
Tuesday, February 11, 2014
Buckeye Prep will sponsor 2 travel teams in 2014. Ed Lyshe will be coaching our 8th grade team while Aaron Brown will head the 5th grade squad. In 2014, both Buckeye Prep teams will play very competitive schedules. Last season, both teams finished in the top ten of their respective D-II AAU Nationals. Below is information about both team’s tryout plans.
5th Grade Tryouts:
Date: February 16th & 23rd
Location: Rosemont Center
Address: 2440 Dawn Light Ave Columbus
8th Grade Tryouts:
Date: Sunday February 16th
Location: Grandview Heights HS
Address: 1587 W. Third Ave. Columbus
Monday, February 10, 2014
|Hillard Jaguars-8th Grade Champions|
On Saturday, the 8th Grade Hilliard Memorial basketball team completed its second consecutive undefeated basketball season with a dominant 46-25 victory over Dublin Sells in the Martin Memorial Tournament in Hilliard. The victory represented the Jaguars’ fourth consecutive blowout win in the tournament. Not only was Hilliard dominate in tournament play, but they also won all of their regular season games by 20 or more except for a double overtime game against this same Dublin Sells they beat in the championship by 21. Memorial finished their two year run with a record of 34-0 with only 3 games during that time period within single digits.
In the championship game, Isaiah Speelman led all scorers with with 22 points, followed by Braden Norris who finished with 9 and Kory Taylor who added 7. Trevor Grady led Dublin Sells with 8 points
The names of the players are as follows (from left to right):Jackson Beard (in sweater), Tyler Welch, Matt Hanson, Isaiah Speelman, Braden Norris, Kory Taylor, Jaret Lundy, Marlyn Hill, Ryan Kaylar, Isaiah Winters, Jacob Kirk, Clay Stausbaugh, Brad Cronin, Jack Rondy, Assistant Coach Tony Long and Head Coach Andrew Lavender.
Friday, February 7, 2014
On Thursday, I had the opportunity to catch the second semi-final game of the 2014 Gahanna Lion Invitational at Middle School East in Gahanna. The 8th grade game featured a matchup between a 4th seeded Reynoldsburg and an 8th seeded Gahanna Middle School West. Each team featured a player in Buckeye Prep’s Top 30 list, including Gahanna’s Cameron Carlisle and Reynoldsburg’s Jamil Goliday.
By the time I walked into the gym, the game was already knotted at 2-2. At about the 2:10 mark, the score was locked at 6-6. A 4-0 run by Gahanna put the Lions up 10-6 with 1:10 left in the opening quarter. Despite several attempts by both teams, the score remained at 10-6 to close the first quarter.
A Jamil Goliday corner trey to open the second quarter cut the lead to 10-8. Gahanna’s Randy Olverson answered with a 3 ball to extend Gahanna’s lead to 13-8 with 3:59 left in the first half. Multiple Gahanna turnovers midway through the second quarter opened the door for Reynoldsburg, and a Goliday layup trimmed the Gahanna lead to 1 point (12-13) at the 2:59 mark. The second quarter was marked by turnovers, missed free throws and field goals attempts. However, Gahanna West hit more shots and would later take a 20-15 lead into halftime.
Cameron Carlisle scored on a layup and a free throw to open the second half and put Gahanna up 23-15. Later in the third quarter, back-to-back buckets by Reynoldsburg cut the Gahanna lead to 20-26. Another layup by Carlisle stopped Reynoldsburg’s 4-0 run and extended the lead to 28-20 with 1:45 remaining in the quarter. By the end of the third quarter, Gahanna was still ahead 33-29.
Although he was forced to play out of position in the post, Gahanna’s Cameron Carlisle was the catalyst for Gahanna, finishing with a game-high 21 points. Right behind him in scoring for Gahanna was David Miller and Randy Olverson, who finished with 12 and 8 points, respectively.
For the record, Lakeview knocked out Gahanna Middle School East in the first semi-final game of the night. Also, Gahanna’s route to the championship included wins over a 9th seeded Worthington Way and number 1 seeded Westerville Heritage. Lakeview’s path included victories over Blendon (15th seed), Olentangy Shanahan (10th seed) and Gahanna South (3rd seed). Reynoldsburg knocked out 13th seeded New Albany and 3rd seeded Gahanna Middle School East to advance to the semi-finals. Gahanna South and Reynoldsburg will play for third place on Saturday. Congratulations to Gahanna West for earning a spot in the final game.
Saturday, February 1, 2014
You know a middle school basketball game is really big when the game is moved from the middle school to the community’s high school facility. Such was the case on Thursday when crosstown rivals Pickerington Lakeview and Ridgeview Middle Schools squared off at Pickerington Central High School for ultimate bragging rights. Entering the game with a perfect 16-0 record, Ridgeview appeared to be the slight favorite over an 11-1 Lakeview.
Lakeview controlled the opening tip and took early lead when Ely McNamara converted 2 free throws. Ridgeview answered on the next possession with 2 free throws of their own. Both teams suffered from turnovers early, but a 6-0 run by Lakeview put them up 8-2 with 3:37 left in the opening quarter. Ridgeview stopped the Lakeview run with a field goal at the 1:06 mark, and would actually cut the lead to 6-7 to close the first quarter.
Lakeview scored first to start the second period on a Tyler Potts free throw. The second quarter was marked with Ridgeview turnovers and limited scoring by both teams. However, Ridgeview would make a mini run and would take a 10-8 lead with 2:28 left in the half. Lakeview responded with consecutive layups by Jimmy Weirick to retake the lead and finish the opening period up 12-10.
A baby hook by Ridgeview’s Juan Elmore ignited a 6-0 run that resulted in a 16-12 lead to start the third quarter. Later, a Jimmy Weirick trey knotted the game at 16 at the 1:15 mark. Xavier Henderson’s layup put Ridgeview ahead 18-16, but a Tyler Potts floater tied the game at 18 to close the 3rd quarter.
A Jimmy Weirick layup put Lakeview up 20-18, but a Juan Elmore layup tied the game at 20. Lakeview got out to a fast start in the 4th quarter and was up 26-21 with 1:33 left in the contest. Despite Lakeview’s attempts to run time off the clock, Ridgeview would later cut the lead to 23-26. A Xavier Henderson layup cut the lead to 1 point (25-26) with only 25 seconds left in the game. After Henderson drove the length of the court and failed to convert a layup, and several missed opportunities by Ridegview to win the game, Lakeview got the victory by a score of 27-25.
The star of the game was Lakeview’s Jimmy Weirick who dropped a game-high 12 points. Xavier Henderson was the high man for Ridgeview, finishing with 6 points. Keep an eye on Lakeview’s Dondre Palmer, a 6’2 WF with good length and the ability to handle the ball. Palmer is more potential than production right now, but he’s the type of player who could come out of nowhere down the road and develop into a legitimate college prospect with continued development. Congratulations to both teams for a hard fought game.