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  #1  
Old 11-27-17, 05:49 PM
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Mentor Basketball 2017-18

The Cardinals (21-6, 11-3 in GCC last season) snapped a three season drought and are coming off a district championship for the first time since their 2013 state championship. The Cardinals graduate leading scorer and All-State performer Jack Korsok along with fellow starting guard Mason Trubisky. Those two were the lifeblood of Mentor's offense. Also graduated from that team were key reserves Xavier Cheek (the biggest player on the roster) and Alan Sims.

Returning starters include seniors Caden Kryz, Matt Koski, and Tadas Tatarunas. Kryz first got varsity action as a freshman and has been a part of the rotation since his sophomore season. Koski had a big breakout season in his junior year and I look for him to take on some of the scoring load left behind by Korsok. The other player I expect to step up in terms of scoring in the back court is new PG Shane Zalba. Now a senior, Zalba has been playing backup PG on varsity since he was a sophomore. I expect him to have a really nice season.

When Tatarunas returns from football, he will be an impact player. Not a typically skilled Mentor player, Tatarunas makes up for it with size, strength, hustle, athleticism, and smarts. Most of the other key reserves listed on Cleveland.com are seniors. Sophomore Luke Floriea and junior Manning Trubiksy (both playing football) will be a part of the varsity rotation when they return. Floriea is a speedster and a potential Aaron Craft like player for Mentor. Not the best shooter, but potential to be a super tough defender and solid point guard. Trubisky is the tallest of the three brothers.

Freshman Luke Chicone (son of long-time varsity coach Mark, grandson of longtime VASJ/JCU coach Mike Moran, and nephew of a few Moran coaches) has basketball in his blood. He is undersized for a freshman, let alone varsity. But he is incredibly skilled. He has the chance to be a special player. I expect him to earn some varsity minutes this year before being given a lot more opportunities as sophomore once this deep senior class graduates.

My expectations are Mentor will be in the thick of it for the GCC race and will challenge a very deep group at the Euclid District.
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  #2  
Old 11-27-17, 06:29 PM
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Mentor Basketball 2017-18

Cleveland.com preview: http://highschoolsports.cleveland.co...ketball-visit/

Mentor is ranked No. 11 in the initial Cleveland.com poll. Not bad considering they graduated their two best players from last season.

2017-18 Schedule

12/2 Olentangy (neutral site)
12/9 Boardman (neutral site)
12/12 Bay
12/15 SHAKER HEIGHTS**
12/19 Strongsville**
12/22 Solon **
12/29 Willougbhy South
1/5 BRUNSWICK**
1/9 Euclid**
1/12 Medina**
1/16 Eastlake North
1/19 ELYRIA**
1/26 STRONGSVILLE**
1/30 Shaker Heights**
2/2 SOLON**
2/3 VASJ
2/9 Brunswick**
2/10 CORNERSTONE
2/13 EUCLID**
2/16 MEDINA**
2/23 Elyria**
2/24 JACKSON

**denotes lead game

Last edited by cardzfan1234; 12-02-17 at 10:18 AM.
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  #3  
Old 12-01-17, 03:53 PM
SteelValley SteelValley is offline
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Looking forward to Boardman's game next weekend vs Mentor. It should be a good early test for both teams.

Boardman has a solid core of 3 starters returning from last year's district semifinalist team that went 20-5. They have some good depth, but it's a very young group off the bench. The freshman team was very good last year, only losing the opener to Warren Harding by 1 and then handling everyone else. So, that soph class is a good group.

A definite weakness, other than youth off the bench, will be size. Most of the team is in the 6'0" -6'2" range.

Last year Boardman's record was a little inflated w/ a somewhat weak schedule, but they've upgraded the schedule a little this year by adding Jackson and Mentor, who both seem like they could compete for District titles this year.
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Old 12-02-17, 10:01 PM
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Mentor starts off the season with a short-handed win (minus three football players) against Olentangy Liberty. The score was 89-82...a pace that Mentor very much enjoys. Seniors Matt Koski (21), Shane Zalba (15), and Caden Kryz (11) were the leading scorers. This game was at a showcase event in Central Ohio. I doubt anyone on Yappi saw the game.

Next game is against Boardman. I believe the game will be played at Poland High School.
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  #5  
Old 12-03-17, 08:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cardzfan1234 View Post
Mentor starts off the season with a short-handed win (minus three football players) against Olentangy Liberty. The score was 89-82...a pace that Mentor very much enjoys. Seniors Matt Koski (21), Shane Zalba (15), and Caden Kryz (11) were the leading scorers. This game was at a showcase event in Central Ohio. I doubt anyone on Yappi saw the game.

Next game is against Boardman. I believe the game will be played at Poland High School.
I was at the game last night. Mentor was very impressive. They penetrate hard and kick exceptionally well ... then they shot lights out. A well coached team.

The freshman is going to be special! He was named the game MVP. The smile on his face when they announced his name was something to behold.
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  #6  
Old 12-03-17, 10:02 AM
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Box score: http://www.dispatch.com/section/sear...archType=Teams

Ben Roderick (the big receiver for Liberty) scored 37 points a week after his team was defeated by Mentor in the state semifinal.

Mentor hit 14 3FG's, led by Koski (4), Kryz (3) and freshman Luke Chicone (3). Chicone had 13 points for the game, a very strong debut. He might end up being the best freshman at Mentor since Cole Krizancic. Cole was very undersized like Chicone. He was given the opportunity to start all year, something that won't happen with Chicone. But he will be a spark off the bench before I anticipate him being a three-year starter starting next year.

Roderick is certainly a nice player (he's a junior), but not sure about how strong Liberty is. Either way, I think that was a nice start for a team that graduated their top two scorers/leaders as well as not even having three of their rotation players available due to football. Once Tatarunas, Trubisky, and Floriea get in basketball mode, this team will be pretty deep. I'm excited to see this team in person. With the next two being road games, I will wait for the home game against Shaker...a team with a lot of expectations.
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  #7  
Old 12-09-17, 08:07 AM
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http://www.news-herald.com/sports/20...ck-into-lineup

Mentor should have all of their football players available for today's game against Boardman. This is a deep team.
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  #8  
Old 12-09-17, 03:28 PM
itzme itzme is offline
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For those who couldn't make it...

http://wkbn.com/live-stream-news/
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  #9  
Old 12-09-17, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by itzme View Post
For those who couldn't make it...

http://wkbn.com/live-stream-news/
That stream is not working for me for some reason. Mentor is up 26-17 after the 1st quarter according to Twitter.
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  #10  
Old 12-09-17, 03:52 PM
afwpatfire afwpatfire is offline
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Just checked, works for me.

Half

Mentor 43
Boardman 31
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  #11  
Old 12-09-17, 03:52 PM
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43-31 at the Half.

Maybe this link will work?

https://livestream.com/accounts/5299...rue&mute=false
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  #12  
Old 12-09-17, 03:57 PM
BHSspartans13 BHSspartans13 is offline
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On a PC, just go to WKBN.com, a link will pop up in the bottom right to go to the livestream, works for me. Also works for me on my Android phone. Game going about how I thought it would. In fact, based on how Boardman played against Niles, I'm surprised it isn't worse. Probably would've been if not for some careless basketball at the end of the 2nd. Lacking size and experience on the bench.

Will be good for us long term, though. This and Jackson right after Christmas are good measuring stick games for us.
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  #13  
Old 12-09-17, 03:59 PM
afwpatfire afwpatfire is offline
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Works for me on iPhone
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  #14  
Old 12-09-17, 04:49 PM
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Final

Mentor 92
Boardman 75
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  #15  
Old 12-09-17, 11:35 PM
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http://www.news-herald.com/sports/20...-past-spartans

Good solid win on the road over a team that won 20 games last year. 92 points scored with 11 different players scoring. Four were in double figures (Kryz, Koski, Zalba, Floreia).
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  #16  
Old 12-13-17, 10:37 AM
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Last night, Mentor (3-0) defeated Bay 97-63. The Rockets (1-3) are not off to a great start after beginning the season in Cleveland.com's initial Top 25. They do have one of the top players in NEO - RJ Sunahara (6'6 SF, committed to Farimont State).

Mentor had 14 players score last night. The team hit a combined 17 three pointers. Leading scorers were Koski (20), Zalba (17), Kryz (15), and Trubisky (10). Through three games, Mentor is averaging 92.7 points per game.

Big game on Friday as Mentor has their home opener against one of their main threats to win the league - Shaker Heights. The Raiders are ranked No. 5 on Cleveland.com. They have wins over Warrensville and Brunswick. Mentor beat Shaker both times last season, but the Raiders are pretty talented. I look forward to finally seeing this Mentor team in person. Should be a good one.
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Old 12-14-17, 06:01 PM
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I was impressed with Mentor vs Boardman. They had good depth and size. Also it seemed like just about everyone out there could shoot it. Good ball movement as well.

Mentor just had way too much size for Boardman and I think that will be Boardman's biggest thing to overcome when they play the better teams on their schedule and get into the playoffs.

I definitely could see Mentor making a deep run in D-1. The only thing they really are lacking is an elite, go-to guy. But that is the case for many teams. But sometimes that makes the difference between a district title or state title.

Boardman's in an odd spot where the program is actually in pretty good shape top to bottom with depth, but there isn't a lot of top-end talent or height. So you have players #3-20 who may not vary much. The JV's have hammered the first few opponents and probably aren't a whole lot behind the varsity guys in talent after the top few players.
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  #18  
Old 12-16-17, 03:18 PM
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Mentor faced their toughest opponent of the season and they really got it handed to them last night. Final score was 108-95, but it was 20-22 diff when the starters came out. It is hard to give up that many points in a 32 minute high school game to a team the talent of Shaker. Mentor gave them the perfect formula to run up the score: many turnovers (my guess is Mentor had 25+) and sticking with the full court press for so long. I have watched a lot of Mentor basketball games over the last 15 years. I have never seen so many turnovers. Does Shaker deserve credit for that? Sure. But Mentor's guards were incredibly sloppy.

Shaker had trouble with Mentor's press in the 1st quarter, which allowed Mentor to get out to an early double digit lead. By the 2nd quarter, the Raiders routinely beat the press and it lead to a 2 on 1 layup situation over, and over, and over again. Christian Guess (6'6 talented wing with multiple DI offers) was always waiting on the back end of the press. Every time Shaker beat the press, they passed to Guess at the wing and he would take it to the hoop for layup after layup. This was how he got the majority of his Shaker-record 57 points.

The game got very chippy at times. Tatarunas got under the skin of some Shaker players. There were multiple intentional/technical fouls against Shaker. Mentor didn't do a great job at the free throw line.

Guess is a great athlete with the kind of length that can disrupt most teams. I have some thoughts about him, his attitude on the court, and the manner in which he got his 57 points. But I will keep those to myself. Shaker as a whole was not as good as Mentor made them look. Mentor's refusal to adjust to the game really played right into Shaker's hand.

No time to beat themselves up. Mentor has two GCC games next week. The first is Strongsville, a team without a win. The second is against Solon, the GCC favorite. Mentor will matchup much better with Solon since they don't have anyone with the kind of length and athleticism that Shaker has in Guess.
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Old 12-16-17, 07:29 PM
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I was at the Shaker vs Mentor game as well and since I had no dog in the fight per say I will give my unfiltered take - like normal. I have been hearing Shaker was loaded and could challenge Garfield for NE Ohio supremacy. VASJ plays Mentor so I wanted to check them out as well.

Early on it was obvious Shaker had some athletes but Mentor in their typical fashion made up for it with hustle and took advantage of several Shaker mistakes and turnovers in QT1. Mentor was up by double digits but Shaker seemed to wear them down and the Cards always seemed to be a step behind on defense. I was REALLY surprised by the lack of change and time outs by Coach K. If I did not know better it was almost like he wanted the Cards to get their butts kicked to teach them a lesson of some kind. He normally always calls a time out to stop a teams momentum - last night he didn't. I was also surprised by the poor foul shooting and turnovers. Very un-Mentor like. Luke Chicone has been a very good player coming up from the junior ranks and he is obviously special because he is on varsity as a 9th grader and that is not something Coach K does often. With that being said last night showed his limitations against a big athletic team like Shaker. He is just so small that these kids just tower over him and over power him. He really has to work hard to hang with many of the teams on Mentors schedule.

The game was chippy. I was in the front row with my son and daughter and there was a ton of trash talking - from both sides. Tatarunas is no angel. He initiated and started much of the chippy situations. He is Mentors enforcer and does much of the dirty work. Every team has that player that gets under your skin with his cockiness and attitude - he is that person for the Cards. Shaker has several of those kind of players. They are borderline dirty IMO. I knew two of the refs and they bit the whistle several times on interactions that should have been technical fouls. Shaker did not beat Mentor - they beat them up.

As for Mr. Guess and his 57. Is this kid talented - obviously yes. However he is not my idea of a TEAM player - he is a ME player. He lags back of defense which allows him to break out for easy buckets and he always calls for the ball but seldom passes it. He was just bigger and stronger than the guys Mentor had on him. He scored 57 and he missed several wide open 3s and easily 4 or 5 lay ups. He has a horrible mouth on him and like to taunt opposing players. His body language when he does not have the ball is poor at best. As for how he got 57 - I will say it, bush. Shaker left the starters in being up by 20 with 5mins or less to go for one. That is not horrible but I did not like what I saw late in the game. Guess left with 53 points with about 3:30 to go in the game - so both teams emptied the bench. Somebody must have told him or the coach he was close to the record so they re-entered the best player in the gym with a few minutes left to play against the Mentor bench. He scored twice including a dunk to hit 57. Knowing Coach K that did not sit well. I'm sure he said something in the handshake line and I know damn well he lit his team up post game lockeroom speech about how wrong that was and that it will never happen again. I expect a war in the rematch. Shaker is good but they don't have the depth, composure, IQ, teamwork and intangibles to be elite. I expect Garfield to handle them rather easily. Guess won't overpower Garfield like he did Mentor. Mentor will get better. They don't have the depth or size to play that sloppy - they will clean that up.
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Old 12-16-17, 07:50 PM
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Under cover haters,quit crying
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Old 12-17-17, 01:08 PM
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Was also at game & mentor did change defense from full court trap to a 2-2-1 press & neither worked as in past games. I spoke to someone close to the coaches & was told Coach K was so disgusted with the turnovers & missed fouls & sloppy play, he wanted to make the team try to work through it & learn what it’s like to not play up to their potential. Still, they scored 95 points & are averaging 93 ppg, which is a good sign of things to come.
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Old 12-17-17, 01:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cardzfan1234 View Post
Mentor faced their toughest opponent of the season and they really got it handed to them last night. Final score was 108-95, but it was 20-22 diff when the starters came out. It is hard to give up that many points in a 32 minute high school game to a team the talent of Shaker. Mentor gave them the perfect formula to run up the score: many turnovers (my guess is Mentor had 25+) and sticking with the full court press for so long. I have watched a lot of Mentor basketball games over the last 15 years. I have never seen so many turnovers. Does Shaker deserve credit for that? Sure. But Mentor's guards were incredibly sloppy.

Shaker had trouble with Mentor's press in the 1st quarter, which allowed Mentor to get out to an early double digit lead. By the 2nd quarter, the Raiders routinely beat the press and it lead to a 2 on 1 layup situation over, and over, and over again. Christian Guess (6'6 talented wing with multiple DI offers) was always waiting on the back end of the press. Every time Shaker beat the press, they passed to Guess at the wing and he would take it to the hoop for layup after layup. This was how he got the majority of his Shaker-record 57 points.

The game got very chippy at times. Tatarunas got under the skin of some Shaker players. There were multiple intentional/technical fouls against Shaker. Mentor didn't do a great job at the free throw line.

Guess is a great athlete with the kind of length that can disrupt most teams. I have some thoughts about him, his attitude on the court, and the manner in which he got his 57 points. But I will keep those to myself. Shaker as a whole was not as good as Mentor made them look. Mentor's refusal to adjust to the game really played right into Shaker's hand.

No time to beat themselves up. Mentor has two GCC games next week. The first is Strongsville, a team without a win. The second is against Solon, the GCC favorite. Mentor will matchup much better with Solon since they don't have anyone with the kind of length and athleticism that Shaker has in Guess.
I started the season worrying about Mentor. Now I'm worried about Shaker, too. Last year, it was easy to see that Shaker had some good, young talent. But I wouldn't have guessed they'd be this good, this soon.
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Old 12-17-17, 10:12 PM
Bball216 Bball216 is offline
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Mentor will fix their turnover issue and they like always will be well conditioned to press you for the whole game - they just can't get taller. They don't have size and that really hurts them in the paint on offense and defense. Shaker and Solon will be a good game. Garfield appears to be the favorite and you have a few teams right behind them that will beat each other up. Pretty good conference this year.
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Old 12-18-17, 09:56 AM
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Mentor will fix their turnover issue and they like always will be well conditioned to press you for the whole game - they just can't get taller. They don't have size and that really hurts them in the paint on offense and defense. Shaker and Solon will be a good game. Garfield appears to be the favorite and you have a few teams right behind them that will beat each other up. Pretty good conference this year.
It isn't a huge team, but this isn't a small team either. Tatarunas (6'5), Koski (6'5), Blessing (6'3) and Kryz (6'3) are all in the starting lineup. Mason Trubisky is one of the first off the bench and is 6'4 or 6'5. Mentor has had much smaller teams and been successful. Those smaller teams took care of the ball, something this team didn't do on Friday.

Turnovers are more of a concern to me than rebounding and size. I'm concerned about that and I'm not convinced that it will get a lot better against a similar team of length, athleticism, and aggressive defense. Floriea and Chicone are young. Zalba is in his first year handling the pressure of being the point guard after watching Trubisky/Korsok handle the ball most of the time last year.
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Old 12-18-17, 10:31 AM
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Garfield appears to be the favorite and you have a few teams right behind them that will beat each other up. Pretty good conference this year.
Garfield isn't in the conference.
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Old 12-18-17, 02:40 PM
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Mentor was averaging about 8-9 TOS per game until Shaker game & were scoring lots of points off of the other teams TOS. According to the game stats of Shaker game, they scored 42 points off of Mentor TOS, not a good stat for Mentor. I cannot remember any past Mentor team that allowed that to happen. However, the good sign is Mentor is scoring 93 ppg, so I,m sure Coach K & staff will be working very hard to correct the TO problem quickly & effectively. Also, I think Coach K needs 3 more wins to reach 600 wins, quite an achievnent.
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Old 12-18-17, 06:09 PM
Bball216 Bball216 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Metacomet View Post
Garfield isn't in the conference.
Thank You. I assumed without looking Shaker and Garfield were in the same conference. My bad.
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  #28  
Old 12-19-17, 06:38 PM
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cardz and MentorGrad,

You guys coming to Solon Friday?
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  #29  
Old 12-20-17, 06:25 AM
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cardz and MentorGrad,



You guys coming to Solon Friday?

I will be there. See you Friday!
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  #30  
Old 12-20-17, 11:31 AM
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I wasn't in Strongsville last night, but Mentor sounds like they squeezed out an ugly win against the win-less Mustangs. The final was 62-60. I heard Matt Koski scored the final basket on an inbounds play as time was expiring. After routinely scoring in the high 80's and 90's, I'm surprised Strongsville found a way to slow the game down that much. Koski (16), Zalba (15), and Kryz (15) led the team in scoring.

Big one at Solon on Friday. If Mentor wants to have a shot at winning the league, this would be a good one to get.
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