Mike Rounsavall had 20 points and eight rebounds for the Cards.
By JOHN BUTERA
CANFIELD -- In getting ready for a long road trip, the Canfield High basketball team took care of business at home Tuesday night, using a late charge to turn back pesky East Liverpool, 62-51.
The Cards (2-1) head to Anderson, Ind., on Friday where they will play Lakeland High in a Saturday game.
"That's going to be a great opportunity for our kids," said Canfield coach John Cullen. "To a play a team from a state that rich in basketball tradition will be a good measuring stick to see how good we are."
With Canfield on top by 16 twice in the fourth quarter, East Liverpool used the 3-point shot to storm back.
Back-to-back treys by Joe Wines and three foul shots from Andrew Bobalik cut the margin to six, 50-44, with 4:26 to go, but the Potters came no closer.
The Cardinals (2-1) answered the run with a 10-2 uprising, including a backbreaking third chance basket by Frank Ross for a 54-44 score.
Ross also fueled a run in the second quarter as the Cardinals ran off 10 straight points for a 29-15 lead. Ross capped the run with a score off a steal as Canfield scored off an offensive rebound. Three other baskets came from driving inside.
Mike Rounsvall scored 20 points and pulled down eight of Canfield's 32 rebounds.
Bobalik, considered by many as the top player in Columbiana County, finished with 20 points to lead the Potters, but 12 of those came on 19 trips to the foul line.
"He's the closest thing you'll see to Chad Fender," Cullen said, comparing him to the former Poland standout. "We chased him all night and he still kept his head in the game."
After six lead changes in the first session, Canfield went out for good, 9-8, on a free throw from Sean Baker.
East Liverpool used nine 3-pointers to stay close.
"They are a 3-point shooting team," Cullen said, "But we had a big size advantage. They kept hanging in there and fighting back but our kids came through as well, especially coming up with some key passes."
Joe Carbone scored 15.
For the Potters (1-4), Wines scored 14 with a team-high four 3-point buckets while Jon Montgomery added 11.