July 4, 2008
By Morgan Wenger
Dawg Days Basketball 2008 tipped off on Friday night at Village Green Park. The division champions were Smithville, The Smithville Bulldogs, and The Wooster Crush. All of the teams played hard until the finish to provide spectators with an exciting brand of basketball.
The Wooster Crush were the class of the Junior division from the beginning. They defeated Orrville in the championship game to win the division crown. The team was made up of Jason Sanders, Corey Beckett, Connor Kubiak, and Nolan Bricker. They marched through the tournament with their only near blemish (30-24) against a tough Orrville team. They even won their Open Challenge game against Triway in impressive fashion by the score of 30-25. The Orrville squad claiming second place was made up of Colin Cottrell, Luke Smith, Xavier Simpson, and Josh Neer.
The Smithville Bulldogs are the 2008 Biddy Ball division champions. The team, comprised of Alex Bates, Chase Moyer, and Seth Troyer, won the division for the second straight year. The Bulldogs defeated the Red Riders in the championship game to claim the trophy. Similiar to the Wooster Crush in the Junior division, the Bulldogs defeated the eventual High School division champion Smithville in an Open Challenge game by the score of 30-27. The Red Riders team coming in second was made up of Alexander Smith, Jonathan Landis, Kyle Lichti, and Nick Graber.
The most intense action of the night took place in the high school division where Smithville defeated The Avon Dudleys 3-1 in their five game championship series. Both teams entered the championship series with records of 2-1. The series featured some physical play, heated trash talk, a technical foul, an ejection, and some clutch shooting. Avon took the first game of the series aided by some clutch three point shooting 30-25. Smithville bounced back behind a solid effort inside by Kenny Kornowski to win the second game 30-26. The game featured a fierce comeback by Avon, but Smithville was able to hold them off and switch the momentum back to their side. Derek Orr paced the Smithies during game three with his timely shooting as Smithville won 30-25. In the series clinching game Tyler Bates finished numerous strong drives to the hoop as Bates, Kornowski, and David Rehm finished off the defending champions with Orr sidelined due to an earlier ejection. Both teams played solid, hard basketball which made for a very entertaining series. The Avon Dudleys were made up of Alex Isaac, Antron Wimmer, Brandon Mahaffey, and Matt Joseph.
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