This week in MOV athletics
There is a lot of action slated for this week on the Mid-Ohio Valley High School sports scene. If we are going to get to all of the big matchups, we had better jump right in.
Local businesses should prepare for a quiet night Tuesday as the PHS Memorial Fieldhouse is the place to be for the second matchup between the Parkersburg South and Parkersburg High’s boys basketball teams at 7:30 p.m.
Mike Fallon’s Patriots (5-1) lead the season series 1-0 after a close 51-46 win over Jeff Mennillo’s Big Reds (3-4) back on Dec. 22. Neither team shot the ball well, with the final outcome in doubt until Seth Fallon sank two free throws with 7.9 seconds left on the clock.
Something to remember is the last time these teams faced off in the fieldhouse PHS triumped 93-58.
While few contests can compare competition-wise to South’s rivalry against PHS, the Patriots have another huge game on Saturday. Wheeling Park makes the trip to the Rod Oldham Athletic Center for a 7:30 p.m. start in the Anna’s Army game.
Fans of both teams will be clad in purple in support of Anna Gordon and her fight against Friedreich’s ataxia, a disease which causes progressive damage to the nervous system.
Stay tuned to the column section later in the week as I talked to Ms. Gordon Sunday for a feature piece.
Sticking with the rivalry theme, Parkersburg Catholic (4-3) and Williamstown boys (6-1) teams meet for the first time this season at 7:30 p.m. Friday on the Yellowjackets home court.
This game is one of several learning contests for both this week.
Presumptive Class A state championship favorite Wheeling Central awaits Rob Strcula’s Crusaders for a 7:30 p.m. start Saturday.
Fun doesn’t begin to describe the atmosphere inside the Maroon Knights’ home as two seasoned scorers in Catholic’s Cade Ullman and Central’s Brent Price go head-to-head for possibly the only time this season.
Scott Sauro’s squad receives no quarter in its other big game of the week either. Mick Price’s undefeated Ravenswood team (8-0) presents the first big challenge for the young Yellowjackets at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday night.
Shutting down a Red Devils’ offense with scorers everywhere on the court is the puzzle Sauro and company must solve if they want a gigantic LKC victory.
I can hear murmurs about action on the girls hardwood this week as well … Don’t worry I heard them.
As impressive a slate as the boys have this week … The girls’ ranks up there right beside them.
Ed Davis’ Parkersburg South girls welcome in defending state champion Huntington for a 7:30 p.m. start tonight. Thirty points was the margin of victory for the Patriots when the two teams met earlier this season in Huntington.
South’s defense caused 32 turnovers and Devin Hefner and Makenna Winans combined for 35 points back on Dec. 8.
A few days later, the Patriots host Boyd County, Kent. and Marshall committ Savannah Wheeler along with her 27.3 points per game. Boyd advanced to the Sweet Sixteen of the Kentucky girls basketball tournament last season where they fell to eventual state champion Mercer in the first round.
Gametime is 1:45 p.m. Saturday. Keep an eye out for Jay W. Bennett’s preview later in the week.
Parkersburg High and Wyoming East round out a marvelous slate of games this week at 7:30 p.m Saturday night. Angie Boninsegna’s Warriors play like a Class AAA team though they are a Class AA school. Two past first-team all-staters lead the way for the Big Reds’ visitors in guard Gabby Lupardus and 6-foot-5 center Emily Saunders.
This is a matchup I have had marked on my calendar since last summer and really can’t wait to take in the game. There is little doubt in my mind these two teams are state title contenders in their classes.
A good test awaits the Big Reds, who have struggled with guards who can push the ball up the floor this season. Lupardus easily stands as the best pace-pusher they play this campaign with her excellent court vision.
Not to mention Saunders size on the block provides a pretty big obstacle (pun intended) as well. PHS likes to get the ball inside, whether Shay-Lee Kibry, Bre Wilson, Maddi Leggett or Tavien Clark are driving the basketball into the lane or giving it to Maggie Richards, Aleea Crites or Madi Mace down low on and letting them go to work.
Foul trouble definitely could come in to play in a matchup like this one. Watch for my preview later in the week.
On the mat, PHS and South are both in action as well. The Big Reds travel to the Winner’s Choice Tournament Friday and Saturday, while Shaun Smith’s team has a rare home quadrangular at 6 p.m. Wednesday.
Finally, the PHS Penguin Invite is Saturday at the YMCA.
Contact Joe Albright at firstname.lastname@example.org.