2015-16 Southern Boys’ Basketball Preview

2015-16 Southern Indians’ Boys Basketball Preview
Head Coach: Aaron Blatch, 1st season
Record: 12-12 (7-7), T-4th ITCL Lower Tier
5-Year Winning Percentage: 63.8%
5-Year League Record: 42-28*
*-Southern was a member of the Upper Tier of the ITCL in 2013-14

Season in Review
After serving 15 years on the sidelines for Southern basketball, the 2014-15 season would be George Whittaker’s final campaign. Whittaker also coached Beaver Local’s girls’ team for two years and Western Reserve’s boys’ team for a season. Coach Whittaker accumulated 184 wins (184-155) as the head coach of Southern. Last winter saw junior Troy Holden finish with a pair of double-double contests while #3 had a season best 24 points and 13 rebounds in their first encounter with Leetonia last season. Senior Aron Sevek scored in double-figures in 17 games last year including a streak of 12 contests in a row. The Indians were bounced from the Division III playoffs by Springfield (62-39) in the Sectional Final.

2014-15 Team Stats
Scoring Offense: 56.2
Free Throw Percentage: 63.2%
Rebounds: 26.5

Inter-Tri County League Basketball Champions
ITCL Upper Tier
2014-15: Springfield (14-0)
2013-14: Springfield (13-1)
2012-13: Springfield (14-0)
2011-12: Springfield (13-1)
2010-11: East Palestine (12-2)
2009-10: East Palestine (14-0)
2008-09: East Palestine (13-1)
2007-08: Columbiana (14-0)
2006-07: East Palestine (12-2)

ITCL Lower Tier
2014-15: McDonald & Lowellville (11-3)
2013-14: Wellsville (14-0)
2012-13: McDonald & Wellsville (12-2)
2011-12: Jackson-Milton & McDonald (10-4)
2010-11: McDonald (14-0)
2009-10: McDonald (14-0)
2008-09: McDonald (14-0)
2007-08: Wellsville (13-1)
2006-07: McDonald (14-0)

Key Losses
Aron Sevek (11.0 ppg)
Michael Shope (8.2 ppg)
Andrew Russell (5.9 ppg)
Josh Brown (3.3 ppg)

Key Returnees
…The Indians return three letter winners (Troy Holden, Christian Adkins and Domanick Michael). Holden (13.7 ppg, 5.3 rpg) was an All-ITCL selection in each of the past two seasons. Coach Blatch says his point guard “is an outstanding player who can score, pass and defend at a high level”. Adkins averaged 8.4 points a game (2.9 rpg) a year ago and Blatch thinks he could be one of their leading scorers (and rebounders) again. Michael scored 5.7 points per game. According to Blatch, the strength of the team is speed. “We’ll look to get out and score in transition. We have solid team depth. We’ve shown improvement defensively this summer. There (may) be an adjustment period while our players will be asked to learn a new offensive and defensive system. However, we have smart players who are off to a great start.”

Troy Holden (6’2/Sr)
Christian Adkins (6’2/Sr)
Jaret Dowling (6’3/Sr)
Drew Sevek (5’9/Sr)
Brandon Burns (5’10/Sr)
Domanick Michael (6’0/Jr)
Dakota Wetzel (5’9/Jr)
Jacob Joiner (5’10/So)

ITCL White Tier Outlook
Columbiana The Clippers have been making strides in their basketball program as of late. Columbiana suffered through a three-year stint where they won just 11 games and lost 54 (2010-13). Over the course of the last two seasons, they’ve tallied a 23-24 record overall and 14-14 in the league.

Leetonia Jeff Hammond took over the program in the off-season. He’ll look to Isaac Stecker and company to lead the Bears into the next era of Leetonia basketball.

Lisbon If fans got excited about seeing Lisbon roll up 40 wins over the last two seasons, many prognosticators all agree this could be the Blue Devils finest season in school history.

Southern Troy Holden will look to lead the Indians in Aaron Blatch’s first season at the helm. Last year, they finished with a 500 record (12-12, 7-7).

Wellsville Since the ITCL was formed in 2006, the Tigers had never finished with a losing record in league play. That was until last year when Wellsville came crashing down from their back-to-back Lower Tier titles to a team which finished 6-8.

2015-16 Schedule
Dec. 1 – at Western Reserve, 7:30
Dec. 4 – at Crestview, 7:30
Dec. 8 – McDonald, 7:30
Dec. 11 – Leetonia, 7:30
Dec. 15 – at Springfield, 7:30
Dec. 18 – at Columbiana, 7:30
Dec. 22 – United, 7:30
Dec. 29 – Oak Glen, 7:30
Jan. 2 – Beaver Local, 7:30
Jan. 5 – at East Palestine, 6
Jan. 8 – Wellsville, 7:30
Jan. 12 – at Lisbon, 7:15
Jan. 15 – at Carrollton, 7:30
Jan. 22 – at Leetonia, 6:30
Jan. 26 – Lowellville, 7:30
Jan. 29 – Columbiana, 7:30
Feb. 3 – at Oak Glen, 7:30
Feb. 5 – at Wellsville, 7:15
Feb. 9 – at Jackson-Milton, 7:30
Feb. 12 – at Heartland Christian, 7:30
Feb. 17 – Lisbon, 7:30

Post-Season History
State Championships: None
Regional Championships: None
…Since being bumped up to the Salem District of Division III in 2014, Southern has won a post-season game in each campaign. The Indians have reached the District Semifinals twice in the last ten years (2012, 2007).

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