SALEM - Rivalry games have a unique way exposing remarkable performances from players who have a knack for elevating their game to another level.
Of all of the story lines that played out on Friday night at the John A. Cabas Gymnasium during Salem's 70-56 victory over West Branch, none stood taller than the Quaker Crazies.
"I'll tell you what, our student section was our MVP tonight," Salem head coach Rich Hart said. "Our guys got energy from them. They have got to be our MVP for the game. They were unbelievable tonight."
Over 200 students, clad in white with Star Wars theme masks, took in the first sweep of the Warriors by the Quakers as a member of the Northeastern Buckeye Conference.
"They did a great job, and I love coming here," West Branch head coach Lou Sellaroli said. "I don't know if their fans do more for any other team than ours, but i love it. I love what both of our fans do. To me, it's kind of that old time, lots of fans around atmosphere. Their kids do a great job, and our kids do a great job and I just think it's a great atmosphere for both teams to be a part of."
In front of a rabid home crowd, the Quakers came out swinging, looking to establish an early lead and put the pressure on the Warriors.
WEST BRANCH: 16 13 10 17 - 56
SALEM: 21 20 13 16 - 70
WEST BRANCH SCORING: Jacob Griffith 3-2-8, Jarian Thomas 5-4-15, Beau Taylor 3-1-8, Jake Evanoff 0-1-1, Drake Lohnes 4-2-13, Dustin Greenawalt 0-5-5, Kip DeShields 1-0-3, Zach Mucklo 1-0-2, Matt Edie 0-1-1.
TEAM TOTALS: 17, 16-24, 56.
SALEM SCORING: Ryan Bush 10-1-22, Austin Frank 2-1-5, Mike Madison 1-0-2, Brendan Webb 0-2-2, Zach Economous 0-2-2, Max Wolfgang 4-3-11, Anthony Shivers 12-2-26.
TEAM TOTALS: 29, 11-19, 70.
THREE POINTERS: West Branch 6 (Lohnes 3, Taylor, Thomas, DeShields), Salem 1 (Bush).
"It was a nice flow to the game, and i was glad that we were able to answer with them," Sellaroli said. "I think the first time we played them we couldn't answer but we were able to stay calm and maintain our composure."
Anthony Shivers was virtually unstoppable for the Quakers in the opening frame, putting up 10n of his 26 on the night. The 6-6 senior made a living in transition and on offensive rebounds, keying a strong opening quarter for the Quakers.
"Tony had a great start, we played pretty solid defense and we moved the ball pretty well," Hart said. "I was pretty pleased with the whole game and even happier when you find out at the end of the night that you're in first place."
Shivers also was responsible for defending West Branch's Kip DeShields. Shivers, coupled with Zach Economous limited DeShields to just three points on the night, which came on a 3-pointer with just over four minutes to play in the first quarter.
"That was the plan with Tony, and Econ (Economous) did a nice job on DeShields, too," Hart said.
With DeShields accounted for, Max Wolfgang was tasked with Jacob Griffith. Griffith was held to eight points and also collected nine rebounds.
"Max does a good job on the big kid," Hart said. "He had eight tonight, so he's only scored 10 points in two games against Max."
Wolfgang, complementing Shivers by creating match-up problems for the Warriors, finished with 11 points.
"You have to hand it to Shivers and Wolfgang, We knew they were going to be able to score inside but it was the perimeter shooting but we had to give up something," Sellaroli said. "That got them away from the hoop if they would miss it, we have a better chance to get a rebound."
Both teams turned the game into a track meet, combining for nearly 40 first quarter points. Coming into their second match-up with the Warriors, Salem planned to continue to use their high-octane attack that has proved successful thus far, and proved advantageous in their previous match-up.
We're not very good slow, so we need to get the tempo up. But we were able to slow it down and get some buckets inside later," Hart said."We had some nice execution, so I was pleased with that. It was a good job by everyone, bench played well too."
West Branch weathered every blow and managed to stay within striking distance after one. Drake Lohnes connected on a pull-up jump shot just as the buzzer to make the score 21-16.
"We just couldn't quite get over the hump, they're a tough team to do that against. But I'm pleased with our effort and how we handled things throughout the game. Those are all positive things for us."
Heading into the second, was a question as to which team would be able to keep up the torrid pace set in the first. Salem responded with another 20 quarter, the Warriors struggled to keep up and saw their deficit increase to 12 points, trailing 41-26 at the half
As the second half opened, the Quakers kept the hammer down and never let West Branch have a thought at getting back into the game.
At the end of the night, Wolfgang, Shivers and Bush with 22, all finished with double figures.
"Now that we've played them twice, I'd say one of their keys, other than Bush, is Shivers ability to score the ball and of course Wolfgang can do the same," Sellaroli said. "The point guard (Webb) can handle the basketball and he can also hit you with some daggers. They are a tough match-up, I thought we played well in spurts, we would kind of get close. I think sometimes our youth shows up a little bit."
Jarian Thomas paced West Branch with 15 points, while fellow guard Drake Lohnes added 13 points.
"I thought Jerian Thomas played well and it's starting to come with more varsity experience," Sellaroli added. "He's another extra guard to help Drake out. So he's done nice job."
After the game, Hart learned that Canton South had fallen victim to Marlington 70-58, leaving the Quakers with sole possession of first place in the NBC.
"We are enjoying it while we can," Hart said. "We have to go to Marlington, we have to go to Carrollton, we have to go to South. The road doesn't get any easier."
West Branch won the jayvee game 58-46. Kyle Zigler led the Warriors with 16 points followed by Lucas Austin with 11 points.
Salem was led by Mike Popa with 18 points and Ryan Hoover with 12.
East Palestine 50
EAST PALESTINE- East Palestine held on to an early first half lead to defeat United 60-50 Friday night.
Billy Bibby hit four three-pointers en route to 19 points to lead the Bulldogs. Austen Reiser also chipped in 19 points and 14 rebounds and Zach May-Robb added five assists with eight points. Cody Dickens lead the Eagles with 16 points, including four three-pointers, and Andrew Martin added 14 points and seven rebounds.
United won the junior varsity contest 44-30 led by Ben Sell's six points.
East Palestine (5-6, 5-4 ITCL) hosts Beaver Local today while United (2-11, 2-7 ITCL) plays at Springfield next Friday.
UNITED: 7 18 12 13- 50
EAST PALESTINE: 17 13 15 15- 60
UNITED SCORING: Caleb Berdine 3-0-9, Caleb Conser 0-1-1, Braden Davison 1-3-5, Garrett Beech 0-0-0, Cody Dickens 5-2-16, Andrew Martin 6-2-14, Brandon Miller 1-1-3, Jared Powell 1-0-2. TEAM TOTALS: 17, 9-16, 50.
EAST PALESTINE SCORING: Nick Monteleone 4-1-9, Nate Keylor 1-1-3, Austen Reiser 8-3-19, Billy Bibby 7-1-19, Steve Parker 0-2-2, Zach May-Robb 3-2-8, Alec Dumbauld 0-0-0. TEAM TOTALS: 23, 10-20, 60.
THREE POINTERS: United 7 (Dickens 4, Berdine 3), East Palestine 4 (Bibby 4).
Mineral Ridge 54,
MINERAL RIDGE- Lisbon fell to Mineral Ridge Friday night 54-49.
Austin Rutecki led the Blue Devils with 25 points, including five three pointers, to go with nine rebounds. Josh Craig grabbed 10 boards to go with four points while Josh Liberati added nine points and five assists. Corey Phillips hit five three pointers en route to 20 points to lead the Mineral Ridge attack.
Mineral Ridge also won the junior varsity game, 53-25. Mike Evans led Lisbon in scoring with 12.
Lisbon (5-8, 36 ITCL) plays at Jackson Milton next Friday.
LISBON: 7 14 14 14- 49
MINERAL RIDGE: 5 13 16 20- 54
LISBON SCORING: Austin Rutecki 9-2-25, Matt Spencer 1-0-2, Avery Andric 1-0-3, Josh Craig 2-0-4, Josh Liberati 4-0-9, Corey Brammer 2-1-6. TEAM TOTALS: 19, 3-7, 49.
MINERAL RIDGE SCORING: Corey Phillips 7-1-20, Zac Hagy 2-5-11, Nate Palmer 4-3-13, Ryan Nutter 2-2-6, Brandon Perkins 0-0-0, Nick Ferguson 0-0-0, Pierce Rassega 1-2-4. TEAM TOTALS: 16, 12-22, 54.
THREE POINTERS: Lisbon 9 (Rutecki 5, Brammer, Liberati, Andric), Mineral Ridge 9 (Phillips 5, Hagy 2, Palmer 2).
Jackson Milton 37
JACKSON MILTON- Crestview used a dominant second half to rout Jackson Milton 72-37 Friday night.
Robert Logan led the Rebels with 22 points and eight rebounds. Derek Bable chipped in 15 points and nine boards and Austin Eskra added five assists and three steals. Chris Dolin led Jackson Milton with 12 points.
Crestview also won the junior varsity contest, 64-39, behind Eric Lloyd's 13 points.
Crestview (9-5, 5-4 ITCL) hosts Lowellville on Tuesday. Jackson Milton falls to 1-12.
CRESTVIEW: 17 16 17 22- 72
JACKSON MILTON: 12 9 5 11- 37
CRESTVIEW SCORING: Evan Nentwick 2-0-4, Drew Batchelor 4-0-10, Josh McDade 4-4-8, Robert Logan 10-2-22, Derek Bable 6-3-15, Austin Eskra 0-1-1, Enzo Lucci 2-0-6, Greg Bable 3-0-6. TEAM TOTALS: 31, 6-13, 72.
JACKSON MILTON SCORING: Jeff Voland 3-0-7, Chuckie Anderson 2-0-4, Chris Dolin 5-2-12, Jeremy Fitzpatrick 2-1-5, Jake McAdams 0-2-2, Brandon Mitchell 3-1-7. TEAM TOTALS: 15, 6-11, 37.
THREE POINTERS: Crestview 4 (Batchelor 2, Lucci 2), Jackson Milton 1 (Voland).
South Range 41
NEW MIDDLETOWN- South Range fell to Springfield 52-41 Friday night.
Cole Krumpak and Robby Seman led the Raiders with 10 points each. Brandon Chamberlain led Springfield with 13 while Eoghan Bees chipped in 12.
South Range won the junior varsity contest 40-39 behind Josh Fromel's 12 points. Graham Mincher led Springfield with 19 points.
The Raiders (5-8, 4-5 ITCL) host McDonald on Tuesday. Springfield (10-2, 9-0 ITCL) plays Deer Lake at the Covelli Center on Monday.
SOUTH RANGE: 14 7 11 9- 41
SPRINGFIELD: 9 14 16 13- 52
SOUTH RANGE SCORING: Andrew Cullar 1-0-2, Cole Krumpak 4-1-10, Mason Miller 2-1-5, Jake Arsuffi 2-0-4, Tyler Beverly 4-1-9, Robby Seman 4-0-10, Jonah Wilson 0-1-1, Cole Berry 0-0-0. TEAM TOTALS: 17, 4-12, 41.
SPRINGFIELD SCORING: Eoghan Bees 2-7-12, Alex Wharry 1-6-9, Jared McTigue 4-0-8, Joe Wrask 0-1-1, Mark Schuler 4-1-9, Brandon Chamberlain 5-0-13. TEAM TOTALS: 16, 15-22, 52.
THREE POINTERS: South Range 3 (Seman 2, Krumpak), Springfield 5 (Chamberlain 3, Bees, Wharry)
Heartland Christian 63,
Canton Heritage 33
COLUMBIANA - Five Heartland Christian players scored in double figures in a 63-33 win over Canton Heritage Christian on Friday.
Kyle Burgess had 12 points, seven rebounds and six assists and Glen Hoffman had 12 points and six rebounds for the Lions.
Caleb House contributed 11 points, five steals and four assists, Jared Robinson 11 points and six rebounds and Brandon Crawford 10 points.
The Lions opened up a 34-12 halftime lead, quite a different from last Saturday when Heartland and Canton Heritage were tied 24-24 at the half before the Lions pulled out a 50-36 win.
HERITAGE: 9 3 912-33
HEARTLAND: 19 15 14 15-63
CANTON HERITAGE SCORING: Sawyer Collins 0-0-0, Austin Caldwell 1-4-6, Derek McNutt 2-5-9, Jake Moody 1-1-3, Nathan Martin 4-0-8, Josh Berston 1-5-7. TEAM TOTALS: 9, 15-22, 33.
HEARTLAND SCORING: Matt Baker 0-0-0, Durand Winnale 1-1-3, Kyle Burgess 6-0-12, Brandon Crawford 5-0-10, Jared Robinson 5-1-11, Joel Sirota 1-0-2, Caleb House 5-1-11, Nathan Sommers 0-1-1, Glen Hoffman 5-2-12, Vincce Trevino 0-1-1. TEAM TOTALS: 28, 7-14, 63.
Three-point goals: None.
Beaver Local 60
LISBON- The Canfield boys' basketball team raced out to a 25-point halftime lead en route to a 79-60 victory over AAC rival Beaver Local Friday night at the Beaver Dome.
Three players scored in double digits to lead the way for the Cardinals. Cole Pryjma produced a game-high 19 points to lead the way, while Andrew Midgley delivered 14 points and Mike Yourstowsky collected 10 points. Senior sharpshooter Troy Hudson netted a team-high 18 points to lead the Beavers, while Jared Lyder recorded 15.
The Cardinals won the junior varsity game, 56-23. Mason Mangapora netted a game-high 17 points to lead the way for Canfield. Conner Hall tallied six points to lead the way for the Beavers.
With the loss, the Beavers drop to 9-5 on the season. They play tonight at East Palestine. Canfield travels to Youngstown East on Tuesday.
CANFIELD 19 27 9 24 - 79
BEAVER LOCAL 12 9 22 17 - 60
CANFIELD SCORING: Cole Pryjma 3-13-19, Matt Hutchison 0-0-0, Ryan Kaleel 0 0-0 0, Brady Clark 2-3-7, Kaymaun Alexander 1-1-3, Andrew Midgley 6-2-14, Conner Kesner 0 0-0 0, Mike Yourstowsky 5-0-10, Cristian Labra 0-2-2, Alec Hammond 0 0-0 0, John Schiraldi 3-0-7, Marco DeLorenzo 3-2-9. TEAM TOTALS: 26, 25-31, 79.
BEAVER LOCAL SCORING: Chase Hilliard 4-0-9, Jared Lyder 5-5-15, Brandon Fetty 3-2-9, Ethan Campbell 1-0-3, Troy Hudson 7-3-18, Zack Mick 1-1-3, Chandler Cornell 0-0-0, Josh Underwood 1-0-2, Matt Chamberlain 0-1-1. TEAM TOTALS: 22, 12-21, 60.
THREE POINTERS: Canfield 2 (Schiraldi, DeLorenzo), Beaver Local 4 (Hilliard, Fetty, Campbell, Hudson).
Southern Local 44,
SALINEVILLE- Southern Local rallied from a 13-point first quarter deficit for a 44-37 victory over visiting Wellsville Friday night.
J.J. Napierkowski led the Indians offense with 17 points. He also had eight rebounds and six steals. Nate Scott led the Tigers with 16 points and seven rebounds.
Southern also won the junior varsity game, 48-34. Aron Sevek had 14 points for the winners. Antonio Fultz had eight for the Tigers.
The Indians (9-5, 5-4 ITCL) hosts Toronto on Tuesday. Wellsville hosts Beaver Local on Tuesday.
WELLSVILLE: 16 4 13 4-37
SOUTHERN: 5 12 11 16-44
WELLSVILLE SCORING: Camden Douglas 5-0-12, Nate Scott 7-0-16, Seth Bradford 2-0-4, Brendon Carr 0-0-0, Jordan Sloan 2-1-5, Sam McIntosh 0-0-0. TEAM TOTALS: 16-50, 1-2, 37.
SOUTHERN SCORING: M.J. Williams 1-0-2, J.J. Napierkowski 8-1-17, Dylan Ketchum 2-2-6, Jared Shilot 1-3-5, Luke Griffith 1-1-4, Kyler Woodward 4-2-10. TEAM TOTALS: 17-40, 9-23, 44.
THREE POINTERS: Wellsville 4 (Douglas 2, Scott 2), Southern 1 (Griffith).
COLUMBIANA - Columbiana won its third straight game with a 46-35 victory over Sebring on Friday.
The Clippers, led by Jake DeJong's 33 points, are 3-10 and 3-6 in the ITCL lower tier.
Columbiana trailed 22-19 at the half before rallying in the second half.
Sebring, led by Josh Hurfords 18 points, falls to 4-8, 3-6.
A jayvee score was not reported.
SEBRING: 9 13 11 3-35
COLUMBIANA: 10 9 13 14-46
SEBRING SCORING: Josh Hurford 6-0-18, Joe Davis 1-0-2, Dylan Mick 5-3-13, Andrew Weingart 1-0-2. TEAM TOTALS: 13, 3-6, 35.
COLUMBIANA SCORING: Kyle Bryan 2-2-7, Devin Rice 1-2-4, Joe Munyon 0-1-1, Jake DeJong 12-8-33, Austin Miner 0-1-1. TEAM TOTALS: 15, 14-18, 46.
THREE POINTERS: Sebring 6 (Hurford), Columbiana 2 (Bryan, DeJong).
Western Reserve 58
LEETONIA - Leetonia hit 11 of 12 free throws in the fourth quarter to rally past Western Reserve, 60-58, Friday.
Trent Ferry tied the game with a pair of free throws with 32 seconds left and Cody Valentine's driving layup down the lane with 3 seconds to play was the game winner.
Leetonia improves to 7-7 overall and 4-5 in the ITCL lower tier.
Ferry topped all scorers with 18 points. Ian Sevenich added 13 points, seven steals and four assists and Valentine had 12 points, eight rebounds and three steals.
The Bears trailed 52-39 through three quarters and outscored the Blue Devils 21-6 in the final period.
The Bears also won the reserve game, 46-37, as James Shea scored 20 points.
Leetonia (7-7) will play at Heartland on Tuesday.
WESTERN RESERVE: 15 19 18 6-58
LEETONIA: 15 14 10 21-60
WESTERN RESERVE SCORING: Payton Snyder 4-2-12, Cooper 1-0-2, Smith 3-0-9, Wisnienski 2-0-5, Tobin 1-0-2, Nolan Snyder 4-4-12, Falasca 8-0-16. TEAM TOTALS: 23, 6-9, 58.
LEETONIA SCORING: Luke Janci 1-2-4, Cody Valentine 4-3-12, Brandon Dattilio 2-0-5, Trent Ferry 7-2-18, Ian Sevenich 3-6-13, Zack Van Giesen 2-2-6, Ian Stecker 1-0-2. TEAM TOTALS: 20, 15-18, 60.
THREE POINTERS: Western Reserve 6 (Smith 3, P. Snyder 2, Wisnienski), Leetonia 5 (Ferry 2, Valentine, Dattilio, Sevenich).