FULL VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS
Louisville 49, Minerva 35
The Louisville defense held a baffled Minerva offense to a 23% shooting performance from the field en rout to a 49-35 victory over the Lions at Louisville High School Friday Night. Jake O’brien finished with a team-high 15 points, Cody Cheezan dropped in 11, and Mike Kelly also scored 10 to lead the Leopards to their most complete victory of the season.
While it may have been an abnormally warm February day outside in Stark County, it sure felt like winter for the Minerva Lions offense inside the new Louisville Gymnasium. The Lions made just 1 of 12 shots from the field in the first quarter as Louisville galloped to a 14-2 advantage at the end of one. Meanwhile, O’brien poured in 10 points in the opening period, which included two three-pointers to get Louisville off to a hot start.
A short jumper by Kelly extended the Leopard lead to 16-2 before the Lions reeled off 7 straight points to make it 16-9. But just as Minerva felt a rally coming on, O’brien quenched their fire with his third three-pointer of the half to increase the Leopards lead back to double figures.
After being shutout in the first quarter, Minerva’s Eli Maurer scored 7 of his game-high 18 points in the second quarter to get the Lions within 25-17. Maurer was limited in the opening period because of two early fouls. This helped the Leopards defense tie-down the Lions even more with his presence missing.
Alex Hollifield banged home a three-ball just before the break to up the Leopard lead back to double digits. Despite being out-rebounded 19-13 through the first 16 minutes, Louisville still led 28-17 at halftime.
The Lions clawed their way back into the game in the third quarter and got as close as 36-33 in the opening minute of the fourth quarter. Maurer poured in 11 second half points for Minerva, but could not do enough to give the Lions their first lead of the game.
Trevor Meredith received an inbound pass and banged a shot home off the glass to start the Leopards response. Then Cheezan scored on a lay-up and was fouled before converting the bonus free throw to make it 41-33 Leps. The Leopards hit 7 of 14 free throws in the fourth quarter, which was enough to nail the coffin down on their first NBC sweep of the year. Louisville won at Minerva 59-50 on December 30.
Enough cannot be said about the Leopards defense that shutdown the Lions perimeter shooting all night long. Minerva shot just 2-of-30 from beyond the arch for the evening and could never really get into a rhythm offensively.
On offense, the Leopards shot 43% from the floor which helped propel them to their fourth conference win and their third straight sweep of Minerva.
LIONS: Maurer 6 5-5 18, K. Locke 2 2-3 7, Eberling 1 1-4 3, Wade 1 1-2 3, Anderson 1 0-0 2, J. Locke 1 0-0 2, Klimko 0 0-2 0. TOTALS 12 9-16 35.
TEAM FG: 12-53 23%
TEAM 3PT: 2-30 7% | K. Locke (1), Maurer (1)
TEAM FT: 9-16 56%
LEOPARDS: O’brien 6 0-0 15, Cheezan 4 3-4 11, Kelly 2 6-8 10, Meredith 3 0-4 6, Hollifield 1 0-0 3, Hostetler 1 0-0 2, Schooley 1 0-0 2, Crank 0 0-1 0. TOTALS 18 9-17 49.
TEAM FG: 18-42 43%
TEAM 3PT: 4-14 29% | O’brien (3), Hollifield (1)
TEAM FT: 9-17 53%
Rebounds: Louisville 34-29
Fouls: Minerva 21-15
Records: Louisville 5-10, 4-7; Minerva 5-8, 4-6
NEXT UP: The Lady Leps will next travel to Marlington to take on the Dukes on Tuesday, February 7. JV will tip at 6:00 and Varsity will follow at approximately 7:30.
Louisville 56, Minerva 34
Nine different Leopards scored during the JV squad’s rout of Minerva 56-34. Alex Hollifield had a team-high 10 points for the Leps and AJ Minster also scored 9. Andy Minster also hit 2 three-pointers and tallied home 8 points. The Leopards took a 17-7 lead after the end of one then scored 13 in each of the final three quarters to seal the victory. The Lions were led by Cody Parrish’s game-high 12 points and also got 10 points from Nick Clapper. Joey Duckworth also scored 7, while Riley Greybeal and Clay Hahn each added 6 to help the JV squad improve to 9-6 overall and 7-4 in the NBC.
LIONS: Parrish 4 4-5 12, Clapper 2 0-0 10, Rogers 2 0-0 4, Brown 1 0-0 2, Cappelli 1 0-2 2, Stryffeler 1 0-0 2, Whiteleather 1 0-0 2. TOTALS 14 4-7 34.
3PT: 2 | Clapper (2)
TEAM FT: 4-7 57%
3PT: 2 | Andy Minster (2)
TEAM FT: 14-22 64%
Fouls: Minerva 17-7