COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The season has arrived. High school basketball is OFFICIALLY here. With real game action tipping off on Thursday, let's keep tradition rolling and look at our predictions for the opening night of the season.
A crosstown showdown between two schools separated by three miles, Central Crossing and Franklin Heights do battle on Thursday. Somewhat of a rivalry game, Central Crossing is looking to get off to a fast start in a season that has as high of expectations as any before it for the Comets. For Franklin Heights, the Falcons are looking to improve on a two win campaign last season with a home win. Central Crossing has more talent in this matchup, as we see the junior trio of Antwon Hampton, Keason Lowe and Mike Woods leading the Comets to a resounding win on the road.
No. 11 Dublin Jerome hosts City League South foe Marion-Franklin to open the season on Friday. The Celtics looked very good last Tuesday in a foundation game win over Lancaster, as senior guard Zach Watson led Jerome with 19 points. Hosting a Marion-Franklin team that is looking for an identity, we see the Celtics' shooting and defense leading Jerome to a big win at home.
A big-time matchup in Division II, the district title winners from last year square off at Johnstown. These two programs have a lot of history, as DeSales held off Johnstown in a thriller last season, while the Johnnies ended the Stallions' season in the 2015 district tournament. With DeSales returning a ton of talent, and Johnstown losing its best all-time player in Jason Carter, we see the Stallions winning big on the road. Look for a big showing out of Caden Sanchez.
A game with some Southern Ohio flavor, Chillicothe makes the trip to Bloom-Carroll to take on one of the area's best Division II teams. The Bulldogs have high expectations for this winter, as seniors Gavin Brown and Matt Smith, both Shawnee State commits, look to lead Bloom-Carroll. We see that duo coming up big as Bloom-Carroll takes down Chillicothe.
An intriguing Division I matchup takes place at Marion-Harding, as the Presidents are looking to start off the season unblemished against an Olentangy team under new leadership with first year coach John Feasel. Olentangy, after making a run to the district semifinals, has a lot of talent to replace, while Marion-Harding is looking to improve on a 16-win campaign last season. We look for the Presidents to hold court at home in a tight win over Olentangy.
Tag(s): Home Boys Leagues Central Catholic League Columbus City League Licking County League Mid State League Ohio Capital Conference South Buckeye Buckeye Capital Cardinal Central Central Crossing Olentangy Dublin Jerome Franklin Heights Marion Franklin Bloom Carroll Johnstown DeSales MOAC MOAC Marion Harding Others Chillicothe