Walsh Jesuit boys basketball splits with Akron-based foes

by Matt Deutsch | Correspondent Published:

The bad news is that the Walsh Jesuit boys basketball team lost its first game of the season recently.

The good news is that the Warriors bounced back from that loss to post a double-digit victory.

Walsh fell to non-conference opponent Akron East by the score of 83-72 on the road Dec. 22.

The Warriors built an early 17-10 lead, but the Dragons tallied 25 points in the second period to seize a 35-27 advantage at intermission.

The Warriors scored 24 points in the third stanza to draw to within two points at the outset of the fourth frame, but East exploded for 30 points in the final quarter to pull away and eventually seal the victory.

Senior Mark Mittiga led the way for Walsh Jesuit offensively, racking up a team-high 24 points, while senior David Croft was also in double figures with 17 points.

In addition, senior Jordan Kay scored nine points, senior Doug Lewis produced six points and junior Bryan DiCillo accounted for five markers.

Contributing four points apiece were sophomore Anthony Rozum and senior Bennet Stuffel, while junior Max Siwik added three points to the Warriors' cause.

Derik Lewis paced the Dragons with 30 points. With the win, East improved its record to 4-2.

On Dec. 28, the Warriors got back into the win column with a 65-50 home victory over another non-conference foe Akron Garfield.

The Rams entered the contest winless, but you wouldn't have known that by their play in the first half.

That's because Garfield led 17-13 at the end of the opening quarter and 37-30 at intermission.

However, Walsh Jesuit put the clamps on the Rams in the second half, only allowing Garfield to score four points in the third stanza and nine more points during the fourth period.

The Warriors, on the other hand, found their offensive rhythm. They tallied a combined 35 points during those two quarters to account for their final double-digit margin of victory.

Mittiga and Croft once again led the way for Walsh.

Mittiga poured in a game-high 22 points and also pulled down seven rebounds. Croft nearly posted a double-double, accounting for 18 points and nine boards.

Freshman Mitch Peterson was next with six points, Kay had five points and sophomore Dom Mittiga and senior Kinosha Spencer both recorded three points.

For Walsh players rounded out the team's scoring with two points each -- Rozum, Siwik, Lewis and junior Gaven Cona.

DaiQuinn Clay scored 15 points for Akron Garfield, while Shai Wilson contributed 10 points and Chris Trammell recorded seven points, nine rebounds and five assists.

With the defeat, the Rams' record slid to 0-8.

Walsh also scored a 48-34 win at Rocky River Dec. 29.

Walsh Jesuit sported an overall mark of 7-1. The Warriors were also 2-0 in the North Coast League.

On Jan. 4, Walsh was set to travel to North Coast League rival Lake Catholic, but results were not available at press time.

The Warriors will return to action Jan. 11 at home vs. Benedictine. Varsity tip time is set for 7:30 p.m.

Email: mleonard@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9442

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