2016-17 Columbiana Boys’ Basketball Preview

Burdette Baker returns after nearly averaging a double-double as a junior.

Columbiana basketball

2016-17 Columbiana Boys’ Basketball Preview
Head Coach: Todd Johnson, 1st season
2015-16 Record: 8-15 (3-5), 4th place ITCL White

More:High School Basketball previews from other teams

Revisiting ITCL History
League Championships: 1 (2007-08)
Total League Record: 67-65 (50.8%)
Winning Seasons in League Play: 5 (2006-07, 2007-08, 2008-09, 2009-10 & 2014-15)
Best League Record: 14-0 (2007-08)
Worst League Record: 1-13 (2011-12)
First-Team All-League Selections: 4 (2006-07: Joe Blinsky; 2007-08: Joe Blinsky; 2008-09: Kevin Blinsky; 2009-10: Tyler Denmeade; 2014-15: Devin Rice)
**Joe Blinsky was selected to the First-Team All-League twice.

2015-16 Team Stats
Scoring Offense: 58.0
Scoring Defense: 54.7
Rebounding: 26.2
Field Goal Percentage: 42.4%
Three-Point Percentage: 25.4%
Free Throw Percentage: 68.3%

2015-16 Results
South Range 50 Clippers 32*
Clippers 83 Leetonia 45
Lowellville 57 Clippers 52
Lisbon 77 Clippers 45
Wellsville 83 Clippers 70
Southern 79 Clippers 69
Clippers 68 Heartland Christian 48
West Branch 56 Clippers 45
Clippers 72 Leetonia 39
Lisbon 54 Clippers 52
Clippers 81 Jackson-Milton 33
Wellsville 37 Clippers 32
United 56 Clippers 48
Springfield 61 Clippers 47
Clippers 64 East Palestine 41
Clippers 58 Southern 49
South Range 62 Clippers 40
Western Reserve 69 Clippers 53
Clippers 95 Crestview 35
Clippers 79 Heartland Christian 35
Mineral Ridge 68 Clippers 52
McDonald 68 Clippers 49
Sebring 52 Clippers 48
*-Post-Season

Returning Statistical Leaders
Scoring: Burdette Baker – 16.5
Rebounding: Burdette Baker – 8.4
Assists: Jared Wilson – 2.6
Field Goal Percentage: Burdette Baker – 62.8%
Three-Point Percentage: Jared Wilson – 37.9%
Free Throw Percentage: Burdette Baker – 75.2%

2016-17 Schedule
Dec. 2 – Western Reserve, 7:30
Dec. 6 – Sebring, 7:30
Dec. 9 – at McDonald, 7:30
Dec. 16 – Crestview, 7:30
Dec. 17 – Mineral Ridge, 7:30
Dec. 20 – at South Range, 7:30
Dec. 23 – at Southern, 7:30
Dec. 30 – East Palestine, 7:30
Jan. 3 – at Springfield, 7:30
Jan. 6 – Wellsville, 7:30
Jan. 10 – at United, 7:30
Jan. 13 – at Lisbon, 7:30
Jan. 17 – at West Branch, 7:30
Jan. 20 – Leetonia, 7:30
Jan. 24 – at Jackson-Milton, 7:30
Jan. 27 – at Heartland Christian, 7:30
Jan. 31 – Lowellville, 7:30
Feb. 3 – Southern, 7:30
Feb. 7 – at Wellsville, 7:30
Feb. 10 – Lisbon, 7:30
Feb. 14 – Heartland Christian, 7:30
Feb. 17 – at Leetonia, 7:30

Key Returnees
The Clippers will be led by their big man, 6’5 senior Burdette Baker. Last year, he averaged nearly a double-double (16.5 ppg, 8.4 rpg) while shooting 62.8% (145-231) from the floor while making 75.2% of his free throws (88-117). Baker has scored 593 points over the last two seasons. He’ll be joined by Jared Wilson. Number 4 scored 6.7 points and dished out 2.6 assists as a sophomore. He also shot 37.9% from beyond the three-point arc (25-66) and connected on 15 of 21 attempts from the charity stripe (71.4%).

“Playing in the Steubenville shootout allowed for us to play against some bigger schools,” says coach Johnson. “Playing in the local summer league allowed for us to play against the teams we will matchup against this winter. With some kids coming back into the program and also (for us) to have a nice mix of youth and returning varsity lettermen – the Clippers should be ready to compete every night.”

Outlook
On June 14, coach Todd Johnson was hired to take over the Columbiana boys’ basketball program. He spent the last three seasons assisting Chris Huckshold at Lisbon. The Blue Devils won 83% (63-13) of their games during that span. Johnson is a 2001 graduate of Columbiana High School. One aspect of the Clippers’ game which must improve is the turnover ratio. Last season, they turned the ball over an average of 15 times per game. Six of their fifteen losses a year ago were by 10-points or less.

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