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Louisville Bounces Back with Victory at North Canton – Boys Basketball

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Louisville 44, North Canton Hoover 39

Louisville Leopards Basketball White Shirt - Beatty's Sports Christmas 2017The Louisville Leopards downed the host North Canton Hoover Vikings 44-39 Wednesday Night at Hoover High School. With the victory, Louisville improves to 4-2 on the season.

Brandon Wahl hit 3 of the Leopards 5 three-pointers and poured in a game-high 15 points to lead the Louisville offense. Cameron King also scored 8 and both Colton Jones and Derek Zeller notched 5 points a piece for LHS.

Grove Appliance Alliance Ohio AdThe slower paced game coped with a quieter than usual crowd gave way to a seemingly lethargic atmosphere inside the Hoover High School Gym. This was despite a back and forth affair between the two rivals on the court. The Leopards went ahead 9-3 in the opening period but the Vikings cut the deficit to 9-8 heading in to the second quarter. The two squads played even in scoring 10 each in the second frame to put Louisville ahead 19-18 at the break.

The Leopards brought the energy back into the building by taking command of the game in the third quarter. They opened the second half on a 5-0 run via lay-in by Spencer Hall and a three-pointer from the left corner by Wahl. North Canton would score, but Louisville continued in return as their lead bulged to 9 by the end of the third quarter 34-25. 

Bryce Zuppe split a pair of defenders for the first Leopard points of the final period and Jones stole a pass in the back court for another quick two to give Louisville a double digit advantage at 38-27. The Vikings Yianna Kantzos hit a pair of free throws on the other end, but Wahl hit from several feet beyond the arch a few possessions later for LHS. This gave the Leopards their largest lead of the night at 41-29 with 3:52 remaining in the contest.

North Canton slowly chipped away at the deficit with a 7-0 run to get within 41-36, but Wahl hit a pair of free throws with 51.1 seconds left to up the Louisville lead to 7. Jonah McCartney banged home a three-pointer in the right corner with less than 30 seconds to play to shrink the difference to 4, but that was as close as the Vikings would get.

Nick Bunnenberg scored a game-high 15 points to lead Hoover. Kantzos also scored 6 and both McCartney and Alex Porter added 5 a piece for North Canton.

The Leopards have defeated the Vikings in their past 4 regular season contents including the last two played in North Canton. Louisville still trails the all-time series 58-66 dating back to 1926. This is the first time the Leopards have won 2 straight games at Hoover since 1977, which was during a string of 6 straight road victories against North Canton. 

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UP NEXT: The Leopards will next host the Salem Quakers on Friday, December 29. JV will begin at 5:00 PM and Varsity will follow at 6:30 PM. These games were moved an hour up for the Buckeyes Bowl game.


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Varsity Statistics


Team 1-2-3-4–TOTAL

Louisville 9-10-15-10—44

North Canton 8-10-7-14—39

LEOPARDS: Wahl 5 2-2 15, King 3 2-2 8, C. Jones 2 0-1 5, Zeller 2 0-1 5, Hall 2 0-0 4, Zuppe 2 0-0 4, T. Jones 1 0-0 2, Gronow 0 1-2 1. TOTAL 17 5-8 44.

3-Pointers (5): Wahl 3, C. Jones, Zeller

Team FT: 5-8 63%

VIKINGS: Bunnenberg 5 2-2 15, Kantzos 2 2-2 6, McCartney 2 0-0 5, Porter 2 0-0 5, Barker 1 2-4 4, Ashby 1 0-0 2, Robinson 1 0-2 2. TOTAL 14 6-10 39.

3-Pointers (5): Bunnenberg 3, McCartney, Porter

Team FT: 6-10 60%


Fouls: 12-10 North Canton

Turnovers: 17-12 Louisville

Records: Louisville 4-2

JV: Louisville 54, North Canton Hoover 52

Ryan Pukys Game-Winning 3-Pointer with Just Seconds Left

At the top of the key, Jimmy Wright delivered a pass to Ryan Pukys on the right wing in the waning seconds of the contest. With a defender closing in, Pukys buried the game-winning three-pointer with 1.7 seconds remaining to lift the Leopards JV past the Vikings 54-52. With the victory, Louisville improved to 3-2 on the season.

Pukys poured in a game-high 15 points and Wright scored half of his 12 points in the final period to lead the Leopards. Both players accounted for 3 triples each as Louisville dropped in 7 from beyond the arch as a team. Cory Noble also led LHS with 13 points through the first three quarters of play.

The Vikings were led by Jonah McCartney who dropped in a team-leading 14. Landon Rose also scored 12 and Brock Henne added 9 for Hoover.

JV Statistics


Team 1-2-3-4–TOTAL

Louisville 18-8-12-16–54

North Canton 14-16-10-12—52

LEOPARDS: Pukys 6 0-0 15, Noble 5 3-4 13, Wright 4 1-2 12, Gronow 2 0-0 4, Hoffman 0 4-4 4, Chambers 1 1-2 3, Pickens 1 0-0 3. TOTAL 19 9-12 54.

3-Pointers (7): Pukys 3, Wright 3, Pickens

Team FT: 9-12 75%

VIKINGS: McCartney 5 0-0 14, Rose 5 2-3 12, Henne 4 1-3 9, Ashby 2 2-2 6, Earwin 2 0-0 5, Mayle 2 0-0 4, Gotter 1 0-0 2. TOTAL 21 5-8 52.

3-Pointers (5): McCartney 4, Earwin

Team FT: 5-8 63%


Fouls: 11-10 North Canton Hoover

Turnovers: 7-6 Louisville

Records: Louisville 3-2

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