GOTW Preview: Harding at Poland, 2/6

High School Boys’ Basketball Game of the Week
Friday, February 6, 2015
Warren Harding (9-0, 14-2) at Poland (8-1, 14-2)

Last Meeting
January 2, 2015 – Harding 65 Poland 50
…The Raiders outscored Poland 39-23 over the game’s final 13 minutes to score a 65-50 win. Gabe Simpson led the Raiders with 14 points and 10 assists. Derek Culver added 11. Poland’s Dan Black scored 16 points and snagged 8 boards while Kyle Dixon tallied 13.

Noteworthy
Poland has been on a nine-game winning streak since they fell to Harding on January 2. The Bulldogs’ point guard Nick Gajdos had suffered from flu-like symptoms when they played Harding five weeks ago. The Raiders are one of only three teams this year to post 60 or more points against Poland.

In their last outing, the Bulldogs came away from Lakeside with an 84-79 victory on Tuesday. Poland, as a team, made 8 three-point baskets and forced 18 turnovers. Kyle Dixon and Matt Baker both registered 14 points apiece while Dan Black scored 13 and Nick Gajdos added 12.

Over the last three weeks, Harding has put together an impressive resume by notching wins over Cleveland Heights (55-52), Mentor (70-68) and Timken (80-66).

On Tuesday, the Raiders held Howland to just 36 points as they topped the Tigers (72-36). In the contest, Gabe Simpson led the Raiders with 18 points and sank 6 three-point buckets. Jerelle Johnson and Shakem Johnson both scored 13 while Marlin Richardson posted 11. Harding connected on 11 three-point shots as a team. Andrew Vlajkovich picked up his 40th win as the Raiders’ head coach in only 63 games (63.5%).

If Harding wins, the Raiders will clinch at least a share of the All-American Red Division title with two contests against East in the coming week.

All-American Conference, Red Division Standings
Warren Harding, 9-0 (14-2)
Poland, 8-1 (14-2)
Canfield, 5-5 (12-6)
Boardman, 5-5 (7-9)
Fitch, 4-5 (8-7)
Howland, 1-8 (4-11)
East, 1-8 (2-13)

February 6 Red Division Games
Warren Harding at Poland
Boardman at Howland
East at Canfield
Fitch at Struthers (non-conference)

Rankings
Points Scored: Harding, 70.8; Poland, 66.5
Points Allowed: Poland, 52.6; Harding, 56.4

Remaining Schedule
Warren Harding
Feb. 10 – at East* (2-13)
Feb. 13 – East* (2-13)
Feb. 17 – Ursuline (13-4)
Feb. 20 – at Canton McKinley (5-9)
Feb. 27 – Jackson

Poland
Feb. 10 – Hubbard (1-13)
Feb. 13 – at Lakeview (8-7)
Feb. 17 – at Howland *(4-11)
Feb. 20 – at Canfield *(12-6)
Feb. 27 – Edgewood (4-12)

All-American Conference Champions
—Poland, 4; LaBrae, 4; Campbell, 3; Struthers, 3; Canfield, 2; Girard, 1; Howland, 1; Jefferson, 1; Lakeview, 1; Newton Falls, 1
2014-15
Red: TBD
White: Jefferson (9-0)
Blue: TBD

2013-14
American: Poland
National: Campbell/Girard/LaBrae

2012-13
American: Poland/Canfield
National: LaBrae

2011-12
American: Struthers
National: LaBrae

2010-11
Red: Howland
White: Struthers
Blue: LaBrae

2009-10
Red: Poland/Canfield
White: Struthers
Blue: Campbell

2008-09
Red: Poland
White: Lakeview
Blue: Newton Falls/Campbell

Comments are closed.