Braves outlast Warriors in opener


By Ben Stroup - bstroup@aimmediamidwest.com



Sean Marks made 10 of his 11 free throws on the way to a team-best 23 points, Noah Gossett added 15 points on the strength of five three-pointers and sophomore Tavian James added 10 as the Olentangy boys basketball team held on for a season-opening 65-63 win over host Westerville North Friday night.

Josiah Seymour scored a put-back bucket to put the Braves up five in the final seconds. The Warriors hit a three to inch closer, but it was the last shoot either team got off.

“We took a school-record five charges,” Olentangy coach John Feasel said. “That was the big thing … we really bottled up a good offensive team on the defensive end.

“This is a good way to start the season. Anytime you can get a win in Westerville, you’ll take it.”

The game was close throughout. The Braves held a slim 18-16 edge after one and led by an even slimmer 32-31 margin at the break. Both teams scored 16 in the third before Olentangy smoothed out the scoring summary with a 17-16 fourth.

Olentangy Orange 69, New Albany 59

Luke Ballinger set the tone with 11 of his career-high 19 points in the first quarter and the Pioneers rolled from there, outscoring the visiting Eagles in each of the final three frames to notch a solid season-opening win Friday night in Lewis Center.

Orange’s Andre Irvin added 16 points and Bryson Lane chipped in 15 in the win.

Dillon Masters and Jayden Lewis paced New Albany with 17 points apiece.

Big Walnut 67, Hamilton Township 35

The Golden Eagles put together a solid defensive showing in their first outing of the season, allowing no more than 12 points in any single quarter en route to a non-league win over the host Rangers Friday night.

Big Walnut led by just three, 9-6 after one, but used a 17-7 second quarter to pull away. The Eagles ballooned their advantage with a 19-12 third before closing things out with a 22-10 fourth.

Brody Lawhun and Kegan Hienton led BW with 16 points apiece while Carson Becker added 12 in the win.

GIRLS BASKETBALL

Alyssa Griner had a game-high 18 points and four other Pacers scored in double figures as Delaware Hayes rolled to an 80-29 non-league win over visiting Hamilton Township Friday night.

The Pacers jumped out to a big lead early and never looked back, outscoring the Rangers 21-5 in the first quarter and 22-6 in the second.

Chloe Jeffers and Alexis Amabile had 11 points apiece in the win while Karli Theis and Piper Adkins added 10 each.

Dublin Jerome 45, Olentangy Berlin 34

The Bears used a 12-5 third-quarter run to even things at 24 heading into the fourth, but the visiting Celtics won the final period 21-10 to seal the deal in Friday’s OCC opener in Delaware.

Jessica Nation led Berlin with 11 points while Courtney Suchan and Haley Cera finished with nine and five, respectively.

Jerome’s Jamie Cline led all scorers with 20 points in the win.

Buckeye Valley 39, River Valley 36

The Barons picked up a win in their first league game of the season, holding off a hard-charging Viking squad on the road Friday night.

Buckeye Valley made its push early, jumping out to a 25-17 halftime edge before taking a 31-22 lead into the final eight minutes of action.

Dani Grether led the Barons with 16 points while Hannah Cowan and Anika Craft finished with eight apiece.

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By Ben Stroup

bstroup@aimmediamidwest.com