Top senior basketball players to compete
By Greg Gulas
To Tony Matisi, the beauty of Wednesday’s 44th annual Al Beach High School Basketball Classic is putting former opponents on the same side.
“The game is one last chance for area all-stars to display their talents,” said Matisi, the South Range High School girls coach and classic co-director. “The fun part is that they get to play with players that they’ve played against the past several seasons.”
Wednesday’s games at Boardman High School features players from Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties.
Three-point shooting contests will be held at halftime of each game. A slam dunk contest is set for the boys.
Salem High School head coach Rich Hart and his Quakers’ staff will coach the Mahoning team while Bristol head coach Craig Giesy and Maplewood head coach Nathan Kish will direct the Trumbull team.
“Both games will be great to watch because each team has plenty of offensive firepower,” South Range boys coach John Cullen said.
Ursuline, (Paul Jackson and Giovanni Naples), Canfield (Andrew Midgley and Jarret Vrabel), Poland Bulldogs (Jacob Wolfe and George Chammas) and Lowellville (Nick Ballone and Pat Mangine) will be represented with two players.
McDonald (Matt Seitz and Ken Greaver) is the only Trumbull school with two players.
Ballone (19 points), Austintown Fitch’s Jesse Driver (18.3 points), Salem’s Max Wolfgang (16.1 points) and Vrabel (15 points) are Mahoning’s top scoring threats.
Seitz (25 points) and Liberty’s Asim Pleas (23 points) will be Trumbull’s top threats.
Boardman (Kelly Tomcsanyi and Jenna Kuczek), Austintown Fitch (Megan Sefcik and Cassie Custer) and Struthers (McKenna Shives and Ashleigh Ryan) have two players on the Mahoning team.
Trumbull has two Jackson-Milton players (Becca Jones and Maddie Tomaino).
Sefcik (19.6 points), Shives (18.7 points) and United’s McKenzie Gatchel (16 points) are Mahoning’s top scorers.
Liberty’s Leah Leshnak (21 points), Lordstown’s Sarah Cash (18.3 points) and Southington’s Rachel Wilson (16.7 points) are Trumbull’s offensive leaders.