As the Pioneer Valley Conference boys' basketball champion, Fort Frye should have little difficulty with visiting Frontier at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Note, the operative words are "should have."
Thing is, the Roger Kirkpatrick-coached Cougar cagers (2-14) were a real handful for the Dan Liedtke-led Cadets (13-3 overall, 10-1 PVC) when the two cross county rivals faced off in New Matamoras on Jan. 10.
The Fort ended up winning a close ballgame, 38-32, and it had to work pretty hard to get it.
Frontier played stall ball, and the deliberate style of play was very effective against the Cadets. The Cougars led after one (7-5) and only trailed by three (15-12) at halftime.
At the end of third quarter, it was 26-all, thanks to a 14-point stanza by the Cougars.
The Fort outpointed Frontier, 12-6, in final period to claim the victory.
Another low scoring affair could be in order this Friday, if Frontier has any say in the matter. The Fort on the otherhand will no doubt try to speed up the game.
Fort Frye is expected to start Shon Smith, Chander Lang, Zach Eddy, Kyle Schwendeman, and Derek Spindler.
Frontier will probably go with Jake Minder, Drew Schneider, Jordan Jefferson, Eddie Salazar, and Taylor Merckle.
The Cougars are then slated to visit Waterford (see Page D3) in a non-conference matchup at 7:30 p.m. Saturday
Marietta High's boys basketball team is headed to Warsaw Friday.
No, not the city in Poland overseas, but the town in Ohio, which is not too far from Coshocton.
It's still a long bus trip, though, but that's where River View High School, the Tigers' next East Central Ohio League opponent, is located.
Tip off is set for 7:30 p.m.
Looking at the won-loss records, Marietta (9-8 overall, 6-5 ECOL) and River View (2-13, 2-8) appear to be two hoops teams streaking in opposite directions.
The J.D. Secrest-coached Tigers are coming off a 55-37 at Athens in The Plains on Tuesday night. Previous to that game, the orange and black had one of its best shooting outings (60 percent from the floor) of the season in a 58-46 triumph over Dover last Friday night.
MHS is expected to start Tim Grosel, Eli Lenington, Nathan Williams, Justin Futrell, and Braden Riley. Look for Matt Thompson and Jason Satterfield to be the first Tigers off the bench.
The Jason Trout-coached Black Bears will probably counter with Jason Hammond, Michael Adams, Zack Hill, Javen Guilliams and Daniel Gwinn.
Against Rosecrans last Friday evening, Hammond, Adams, and Guilliams all scored in double figures in a 76-54 setback.
So, the Tigers will just need to play their game, and be careful in Warsaw.
Warren at Jackson
Even though Warren's boys defeated host Gallia Academy (3-15, 1-7) handily 86-44 on Tuesday night, Warrior head coach Blane Maddox will tell you as a general rule it's not easy playing against Southeastern Ohio Athletic League schools on the road.
While the Blue Devils of Gallipolis fell short of being competitive on the court, the Jackson Ironmen figure to be a lot tougher, especially on their floor, at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Warren, No. 9-ranked in Ohio Division II with 14-2 overall and 7-2 SEOAL records, will be favored to dispatch the Ironmen. But it could be a real battle on the hardwood.
The Warriors' probable starters will be Jeremy Hastie, Josh Windland, Jace Knost, Evan French, and Tyler Ward. Look for Austin Henthorn and Reece Patton to be the first Warriors off the pine.
Waterford is hoping to halt a two-game slide when it hosts the Eastern Eagles at 7:30 p.m. Friday night. Both of the losses were on the road, at Fort Frye and Federal Hocking, respectively.
The Tom Simms-coached Wildcats (8-7) are then scheduled to entertain Frontier in a non-conference game at 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Earlier in the season, the green and white dropped a 53-50 decision to the Cougars in New Matamoras. Waterford is expected to start leading scorer Tate Lang, Austin Hilverding, Austin Shriver, Brian Moore and Matt West.
Lang only had eight points with one field goal in the first meeting against Frontier.
Also on tap Friday are Wahama at Belpre, Grace at Wood County Christian, Ravenswood at Parkersburg Catholic, Williamstown at St. Marys, and New Lexington at Morgan.