Trumbull boys and girls all-star teams pick up a sweep at the Frank Bubba Classic
By John Bassetti
It had a lot of points, a lot of missed dunks (in the slam-dunk contest) and a lot of laughs.
That sums up the Frank Bubba Memorial Classic basketball all-star game, which was a boy-girl sweep by Trumbull County talent at Harding High’s gym Friday night.
After Trumbull’s girls squad beat Mahoning, 65-54, the Trumbull boys took it to Mahoning, 113-78.
Liberty’s Jaylen Mann was chosen boys MVP after scoring 22 points.
“I couldn’t win the dunking contest, so I had to win something to take back to Liberty,” Mann said of the recognition after trying his hand in the specialty event at halftime.
“It’s fun playing with good players because you don’t have to worry about anyone doing anything wrong because they’re all stars for their schools,” Mann said of Friday’s competition.
Harding’s Rashid Gaston had 19 points and Rasaun Smith 18 for the winners.
Mann also played in the Al Beach Classic at Boardman on Wednesday, when he scored 23 points.
Poland’s Colin Reardon had 19 points to earn MVP honors for Mahoning. Although Reardon passed up dunk opportunities in the fourth quarter, he was quick to follow up one of his long-range misses by quickly dashing to retrieve the ball en route to the basket for a layup.
Fitch’s Wil Mahone was in a playful mood, but he managed a lights-out 3-pointer in the first half, while Warren JFK’s Raitwann Gaston made a super stuff on an opponent in the third quarter.
Newton Falls’ Cody Dillon also had “one from the parking lot,” as the PA announcer said.
Harding’s Orlando Ervin was the dunk contest winner.
“I got the unlimited bounce [jumping ability] and took the talent and went and dunked it,” Ervin said.
Badger’s Kenny Bolyard scored 11 points in the game, while Ervin had 10.
McDonald junior Stephan Politano was lights-out in the second round of the boys’ 3-point shooting competition when he made 18 baskets.
“Yesterday, I had one and got tired too quickly,” he said of a similar contest at Western Reserve on Thursday. “So I was hoping to shoot better today [Friday].”
In the girls game, Harding’s Anita Brown was Trumbull MVP, while Poland’s Abbie Frank took Mahoning MVP honors.
The Trumbull girls had big middle quarters of 20 and 24 points in second and third, respectively.
“I wanted to play hard and have fun at the same time,” said Brown, who finished with 17 points. She said she enjoyed playing alongside Harding teammate Briana McCurdy, who had 13 points.
“She’s so quick and athletic, I enjoy watching her,” said Brown, who averaged 26 points per game during the regular season.
Frank had 15 points and seven rebounds in Friday’s game — her only postseason all-star game, although she placed third in the Al Beach 3-point shooting contest earlier in the week.
Newton Falls’ Marisa Toensing was the girls’ 3-point contest winner.
“It was a really great experience because I never did anything like this before,” Toensing said. “I was just hoping I was going to make it because it’s my last fling in basketball.”