The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio


January 19, 2013

Lakers get past Redskins

PV works its way into win vs. Ledgemont

ANDOVER TOWNSHIP — The Pymatuning Valley Lakers fought through a flat atmosphere and hot start by the Ledgemont Redskins to capture an all-important Northeastern Athletic Conference win, 65-51, at home Friday night.

Austin Nowakowski hit five first-half 3-pointers to spark a sluggish Laker offense early on while Quintin Ratliff poured in 15 of his game-high 25 points in the first 16 minutes to lead PV.

“There wasn’t much flow early in the game,” Lakers coach Ryan Fitch said. “We made a couple adjustments getting to the rim and the kids did a good job of creating some enthusiasm when there wasn’t much out there.”

Ledgemont’s Anthony Jennings seemed determined to take on PV himself, scoring the first six Redskin points, totaling 12 of the team’s 17 in the first period.

But after that, the Lakers (10-3, 5-2) adjusted and Jennings scored just seven over the next three periods for his team-high 19.

“Anthony’s a good player, he makes everyone else around him better,” Fitch said. “He does a good job seeing the floor, distributing the ball. We just tried to make an adjustment to get him to shoot more jump shots.

“He was getting too deep into the lane, shooting too many shots from 6 to 7 feet. So we tried to contain him a little better and make him hit some contested shots.”

Thanks in large part to the efforts of Nowakowski and Ratliff, the Lakers turned a 17-16 lead at the end of the first quarter to a 36-26 lead that half.

That second period was capped by an impressive crossover and midrange jumper in transition by Ratliff in the final seconds.

“He’s a tremendous athlete,” Fitch said. “Teams pressure us like they did and he has the ability to just go around people and just get to the rim. He’s also got a good mid-range game, he can stop and hit those little 10-12 footers. When he’s playing like that he’s tough to stop.”

A Ratliff layup stretched the Laker lead to 15 at 46-31 midway through the third.

The Redskins (6-6, 4-2) would chip away at that lead with six straight points from Jennings to close out the third and cut the deficit to 12, but they would get no closer.

Turnovers by the Redskins, thanks to PV’s swarming defense, limited any comeback possibilities.

Nowakowski (16 points) and Tim Cross (10 points, 7 assists) tied for a game-high five steals as the Lakers forced 23 turnovers.

For Ledgemont coach George Fronk, that was the difference in the game.

“I look at that final score and that’s because we had to come out of our element,” he said. “We had the opportunities, it was just the turnovers. We’d come down and get a steal or a board and we’d get a turnover. We didn’t capitalize on their turnovers, where as they capitalized on ours.”

Fitch was pleased with how his team not only forced turnovers, but also limited them on the offensive end, committing just 13, six of which came in the fourth quarter with the outcome largely decided.

“We did a nice job early in the game forcing some turnovers and getting into the passing lanes a little bit,” Fitch said. “We went to our zone press and caused some problems.

“(Offensively) this is probably, in my four years here, this is our best we’ve been with turnovers. We’re only averaging 10 or 11 a game. For high school basketball, that’s pretty good.”

The win keeps the Lakers tied with Maplewood for the lead in their half of the NAC.

Fitch said winning the league is always his team’s first priority.

“It (the win) is (important) because our first goal as a team is always to win the league and we stepped into the right direction with that win tonight,” he said. “Every year it seems like when the NAC might be down a little bit, there’s great parity. This team we played tonight, they’re good. They’re huge. They’re strong.

“We gotta play hard every day in this league.”

Text Only
  • Norm He’s the Norm

    In the early part of the 20th century, as golf was taking off in popularity, it was not uncommon for boys to take up the game after becoming caddies.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Don A Don McCormack column: The journey is what’s most important

    Unless you’ve been living under a rock the past couple of weeks, you’ve heard over and over and over how it’s been a half-century since one of Cleveland’s big three professional sports teams have won a championship.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Murdick wins as Big Block Modifieds return

    The BRP Big Block Modifed Tour returned to Raceway 7 with 21 of the region’s fastest Modifieds turning out for the scheduled 35-lap event, the first for the Modifieds at the northeast Ohio speedplant since 2005, an event won by Todd Burley.

    July 21, 2014

  • Dale Outdoors Insider, with Dale Sunderlin: Chances for controlled waterfowl hunting

    Waterfowl hunters are invited to participate in special drawings for controlled hunting opportunities, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Wildlife. The drawing dates and times are as follows:

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Kingsville gets it done

    In a rematch of a previous softball clash between the Kingsville 9-10-year-olds and those from Conneaut, Kingsville had settled thing quickly and decisively in a mercy-rule triumph.

    July 20, 2014

  • TD Club golf A Chris Larick column: TD Club hopes to score

    Though its life was never seriously threatened, the Ashtabula County Touchdown Club has suffered in recent years.

    July 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • Don A Don McCormack column: A heartfelt plea to curb violence

    Like everyone who loves soccer — and the rest of us whose interest level rises dramatically every four years when the World Cup comes around — Kevin Meier was appalled at the recent attack of soccer referee John Bieniewicz in Michigan by a player that resulted in Bieniewicz tragically dying.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • valor A valiant effort

    Paralympians from all over the United States experienced three days of competition, education and fun during the Valor Games Gold Medal Camp at Spire this weekend.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • swim SUMMER SWIM

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Anthony From player to coach

    When former Lakeside offensive lineman Anthony Colucci went down with a broken leg in Week 6 of his senior year at Capital University, he got a peak into what his future in football looks like.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

Little League All-Stars July 1 to 12
AP NASCAR Lastest News
AP NASCAR Sprint Cup Schedule
AP NASCAR Sprint Cup Standings
AP Auto Racing Photos
West Side Shootout 2014
Ashtabula County at State Track Meet
Jefferson vs Akron St. Vincent St. Mary Regional Softball
District Track 2014
Jefferson District Softball Tournament
Bob Walters 50 Years
Geneva vs Perry Division II District Semifinal
Sports Week in Review May 12 to May 17
Sports Week in Review May 5 to May 10 2014
Sports Week in Review April 28 to May 3
Sports Video Archive
House Ads
AP Video