Sutton begins year #2 at East Palestine

The Bulldogs begin play at home against Columbiana.

East Palestine Bulldogs high school basketball

2017-18 East Palestine Boys’ Basketball Preview
Head Coach: L.J. Sutton
Record: 7-15 (1-7), 5th place in ITCL Red

More:High School Basketball previews from other teams

The Good News
The Bulldogs return five letter winners in seniors Branden Kemp (6’4), Clayton Murray (6’6), and Jeremy Reynolds (6’0) as well as juniors Dominic Posey (6’3) and Steve Darlington (6’3). Kemp led last year’s group by scoring 13 points per game. Posey snagged a team-high 6 boards per outing. East Palestine also will have a quartet of seniors on the varsity roster: Nate Beatty (6’1), Joey Montelone (6’2), Chandler Davis (6’3) and Brian Taylor (5’8). Coach L.J. Sutton points to his team’s length and athleticism as two of their strengths entering the 2017-18 season. “We’ve added size and depth to our bench,” says Sutton. “We’re looking to play a fast-paced, physical brand (of basketball) – attempting to score point in transition and half-court sets.”

2017-18 Schedule
Dec. 5 – Columbiana, 7:30
Dec. 8 – at Lisbon, 7:30
Dec. 12 – Toronto, 7:30
Dec. 15 – at Leetonia, 7:30
Dec. 16 – Heartland Christian, 7:30
Dec. 19 – Southern, 7:30
Dec. 22 – at Wellsville, 7:30
Dec. 28 – at Potter Holiday Tournament
Dec. 29 – at Potter Holiday Tournament
Dec. 30 – at Beaver Local, 7:30
Jan. 5 – United, 7:30
Jan. 9 – at Columbiana, 7:30
Jan. 12 – Lisbon, 7:30
Jan. 13 – at Heartland Christian, 7:30
Jan. 19 – at Toronto, 7:30
Jan. 23 – Leetonia, 7:30
Jan. 26 – at Southern, 7:30
Jan. 30 – Wellsville, 7:30
Feb. 2 – at United, 7:30
Feb. 10 – Beaver Local, 7:30
Feb. 13 – Lowellville, 7
Feb. 16 – at Lordstown, 7

Challenges
The Bulldogs experienced a slow rise in wins from the year prior (2015-16: 4) to last year (7). East Palestine has not enjoyed a winning season in six years (2011-12: 12-10). Without the likes of Marshall Huddleston and Parker Sherry – the team will need to find more leadership from their returning seniors.

Last 10 Years
Overall Winning Percentage: 50.7% (111-108)
League Championships: 3 (2009, 2010, 2011)
Playoff Record: 5-10
Sectional Championships: 3 (2008, 2009, 2010)
District Championships: None

2016-17 Results
#6 South Range 44 Bulldogs 29*
Wellsville 96 Bulldogs 65
Lordstown 65 Bulldogs 62
Bulldogs 100 Heartland Christian 40
#9 South Range 88 Bulldogs 35
Crestview 60 Bulldogs 57
United 91 Bulldogs 62
Springfield 58 Bulldogs 50
#3 McDonald 91 Bulldogs 69
Bulldogs 72 Jackson-Milton 62
Salem 62 Bulldogs 56
South Range 84 Bulldogs 43
Southern 68 Bulldogs 57
Bulldogs 62 Crestview 48
Sebring 77 Bulldogs 63
Bulldogs 74 Columbiana 71
Bulldogs 85 Keystone Oaks 69
United 63 Bulldogs 58
Western Reserve 94 Bulldogs 48
Springfield 74 Bulldogs 46
Lisbon 65 Bulldogs 59
Bulldogs 93 Mineral Ridge 86
Bulldogs 59 Leetonia 47
*-Playoff

AP Rankings (Last 10 years)
Last game vs. Top 10 team: vs. #6 South Range, 44-29, loss on February 28, 2017
Record vs. Top 10 teams since Jan. 2015: 0-4

Key Number
The last time the Bulldogs won a playoff game was on February 25, 2014 (defeated Jackson-Milton, 62-51, in overtime)

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