I thought that…I thought this…Now, I think that again
Click here to see how
Carey James, Nick
, Garett Tyree,
Evan Legg all helped
their teams to a "W"
Friday night
Me Too!
By Shayne Combs, SVCsportszone.com
Entering the season, the SVC boys’ basketball league had many things that left many to wonder. I
think most people had Piketon as the pick, so that part seemed and still seems simple enough. I was one
that thought second place could go to someone with as many as four, maybe even five losses. Unioto
changed my mind early in the year, but now I still wonder if this isn’t going to be the way it plays out.
I understand that the level of basketball hasn’t always been great, but the parity, the various match-
ups, and all the other unknowns sure have made for an interesting year.

Think about this. Huntington swept Westfall. Unioto swept Westfall. Paint Valley swept Huntington, but
Westfall & SE split and both beat PV in their first meeting. Unioto won four instant-classic games in the
first round, but lost at Southeastern and at Huntington by one early in the second round. Speaking of
Southeastern, they beat Zane Trace bad, but lost to Adena. Adena seemed destined for last, but now all
of sudden seems as if they can play with anyone. Zane Trace seemed like they were ready to call it in for
the winter, and then they nearly did something REALLY silly against Piketon.

I know all that information looks chaotic, but there really is some sense in it all. Match-up wise
Huntington’s match-up zone and Unioto’s guard play and versatile bigs are tough things for
Westfall to play against. On the other hand, Westfall’s size and athleticism causes problems for Paint
Valley. Paint Valley is a tough match for Huntington because the Huntsmen do not apply a lot of pressure
in the full court, which allows the Bearcats to get their talented offensive players into some spots to be
successful. What we are seeing with Adena is just many of the younger pieces starting to grow into
legitimate varsity players, and ZT is experiencing some of the same issues with several first year players.

Want more chaotic numbers? One stat that shows the parity is the number of 18 which represents the
number of SVC games this season that have been decided by six points or less, and one of the games
that was decided by more went to triple overtime. In many cases, teams did the little things to win, but
often times this year, it has been a matter of who doesn’t mess up the most. Ball handling, decision-
making, and especially free throw shooting have not been big strengths for many this year, but through it
all, SVC fans have been given incredible finishes nearly on a nightly basis.

Overall, injuries have played a role in this mess of a league as well. Zane Trace has fallen on some tough
times. The Pioneers lost their top two returners off of last year’s title team, and they have – as any
team would do – struggled through a learning curve with a bunch of varsity rookies. Paint Valley rolled
early in the year, but since the Aaron Claytor injury has become much easier to guard. Other teams have
faced some disciplinary and/or academic issues that we do not need to get into on this website, but they
have definitely given the league a different look at times as well.

All said, you can’t argue with the excitement this year’s league has provided. Every night
contains multiple games that are a coin flip. It is fun to figure something out (or think you have) and then
have to refigure it. Attempting to organize your thoughts when it comes to this league is hard. I don’t
know if I should think this or that or a little of both, but after all, this and that both represent the fun part.