When Marietta High plays at Zanesville High in an East Central Ohio League boys' basketball capper at 7:30 p.m. Friday, it could be another close, down-to-the-wire contest.
During the first meeting between When two schools at Sutton Gym on Dec. 9, 2011, there were 11 lead changes and three ties before the J.D. Secrest-coached Tigers dropped a 52-47 decision.
MHS got outpointed 15-9 in the final period after leading at the end of the third. Eli Lenington finished with 18 points to lead the Tigers. Justin Futrell and Tim Grosel added 12 abd 10 markers, respectively.
In that contest, MHS committed 15 turnovers to Zanesville's five - and that probably was the difference. The Tigers will need to take care of the basketball better in the return engagement.
The Tigers (10-9) are coming off a 76-56 loss to Warren Tuesday night.
Marietta is expected to start Nathan Williams, Braden Riley, Futrell, Grosel, and Lenington, . Jason Satterfield and Matt Thompson will be the first orange and black cagers off the pine.
Scott Aronhalt-coached ZHS (14-5) will probably counter with Jake Phyllis, Dar Stanford, Christian Myers, Granger Long, and Marcus Johnson.
Last Friday night, Phyllis had a 31-point game in a Blue Devil loss to Dover. The following evening, he had 22 in a win over Columbus DeSales.
Against Marietta in December, Phyllis tallied just 13 counters. Myers chipped in with 11, and Long netted 10.
Warren (17-2) is hoping to get out of a rut against Chillicothe, and what better way to do so than on its home floor in a Southeastern Ohio Athletic League regular-season finale at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
Dating back to last season, the Blane Maddox-coached Warriors have dropped four straight to the Gary Kellough-led Cavaliers, including Jan. 6's 65-56 setback at Hatton Memorial Gym.
In that game, Warren's Evan French torched the Cavs for 40 points. No other Warrior scored in double figures.
Look for Tyler Ward, Jace Knost, Jeremy Hastie, and Josh Windland to also get the starting nod vs. Chilli. Austin Henthorn and Reece Patton are expected to be the first Warriors off the bench.
Warren is coming off a 76-56 triumph at Marietta Tuesday night.
Chillicothe's marquee player is 6-foor-7 pivot player Malik London, who is planning to play at the next level at Cleveland State University. London only had nine points against Warren in last month's game.
Hurting the Warriors, though, were Aaron Elliott and Adam Bixler, who tallied 22 and 21 markers, respectively.
Waterford (10-7) has righted the ship somewhat since falling to Belpre 59-46 in the first meeting at Waterford Elementary School in December. Now, the Tom Simms-coached Wildcats are hoping to exact some payback when the two small Washington County schools tip off again at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Eagles Nest.
After dropping its first five decisions of the season, Waterford has been playing good ball of late. But then so has Jordan Thornhill-led Belpre (14-5), which claimed the TVC-Hocking Division title with a 51-31 win over Eastern Tuesday night..
During the first game, Belpre enjoyed good balance with five near-double digit scorers. Dakota Hoffman led the way with 16. Nick Therriault chipped in with 11, Drew Nestor and Bruce Pittenger each netted nine, and Jake Ullman had eight.
Waterford's big gun was Austin Hilverding with a game-high 23. No other Wildcat had double figures, including 6-7 post Tate Lang. Look for Lang to be more of a factor in the return engagement.
The other Cat starters could be Matt West, Brian Moore, Austin Shriver or Braden Burer.
Waterford is coming off a 58-41 win at Trimble Tuesday night.