• Jump25.com all-star games set for April 13 at Otterbein

    Another opportunity for central Ohio basketball players to show their talent will be on display when the sixth-annual Jump25.com Ohio College All-Star Classic is held April 13 at Otterbein University.

    Nine hours of basketball will begin at 10 a.m. with the boys seventh-grade game, followed by the girls sixth-grade game. The girls high school game will be held at noon, the boys high school game will follow at 1:30 p.m. and the women's college (3:15 p.m.) and the men's college (5:15 p.m.) games will conclude the event which costs $5.

    Among the players expected to compete in the girls high school game is Chelsea Mitchell, an Ohio State-signee who played for Division I state champion Cincinnati Princeton.

    Others on the roster are:

    Morgan Bassett-Smith, Pickerington North; Bri Bell, Dublin Scioto; Margie Berkemeyer, Ready; Tanesha Dixon, Westland; Aajah Hawkins, Pickerington Central; Amari Hawkins, Pickerington Central; Brittany Johnson, Pickerington North; Shanice Johnson, Reynoldsburg; Tori Minton, Utica; Maggie Mitchell, Newark; Nicole Orr, Reynoldsburg; Kayla Pack, Worthington Kilbourne; Alexis Parks, Africentric; Darianne Seward, Africentric; Christina Simpson, Westland; Cierra Thomas, Franklin Heights; DeShay Thomas, Reynoldsburg; Jordan Toohey, Pickerington North; Griffin Tullis, Dublin Coffman

    Danny Hummer and Logan Richter from Division I state boys runner-up Upper Arlington are among those who will compete in the boys high school game.

    Also on that roster are:

    Nate Axelrod, Dublin Coffman; Akiean Frederick, Franklin Heights; Josh Gantz, Ready; Jimmy Hanley, Ready; Matt Hughes, Watterson; R.J. Hutcherson, Westerville North; Nate Jameson, Eastmoor; Jonathan Kornberg, Columbus Academy; Matt Lehmann, Watterson; Derek McKeithen, Northland; Darrell Miller, New Albany; Brandon Paschal, Walnut Ridge; Manny Powell, Gahanna; Joey Schmitz, Bloom-Carroll; Kwamel Wade, Westerville Central; Shemar Waugh, Northland

    Ashley Adams, Martina Ellerbe, Darryce Moore and Sasha Dobranic from Ohio State are among those in the women's college game.

    Others expected to play include Asia Taylor, a Whetstone graduate who helped Louisville reach the final 8 this season, Reynoldsburg graduate Kenyell Goodson, New Albany graduates Hannah Robertson and Haley Robertson and Dublin Jerome graduate Julie Mooney.

    In the men's college game are expected to be Ohio State's Lenzelle Smith as well as Nick Kellogg, a DeSales graduate who plays for Ohio University. Others in the game include Eastmoor graduate Doug Thorpe, Westerville North graduate Kenny DeBoer, Reynoldsburg graduate Kevin Gray, Upper Arlington graduate Oliver McGlade, Pickerington Central graudate Dominique Royal, Reynoldsburg graduate Brandon Rushton and Ready graduate Joe Graessle.

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    By: Jarrod Ulrey

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    4 / 11 / 14

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  • Northland's McKeithen stands out in City all-star win over OCC

    The Northland boys basketball team had a seven-year run of City League championships snapped during the regular season by Brookhaven, but there's no questioning the amount of the talent that resided in the program this season.

    During the District 10's City League vs. OCC all-star game April 6 at New Albany, Northland's Derek McKeithen finished with 24 points to lead his team to a 94-79 win over the OCC.

    Walnut Ridge's Dymiere Finch had 15 points, West's Charles Holland, finished with 13 points, Marion-Franklin's Dametrius Walker had 10 points and Eastmoor's Nate Jameson added eight for the City.

    The OCC, playing without players such as Upper Arlington's Kevin Vannatta and Gahanna's Javon Bess, got 18 points from Gahanna's Manny Powell, 17 from Westerville Central's Eric James and 14 from Franklin Heights' Akiean Frederick.

    Bess and Vannatta, along with Olentangy Liberty's Mike Deleon and Newark's Teddy Metzen, are playing in the Ohio vs. Kentucky all-star game April 12 at Thomas More College in Kentucky.

    *In the Division II-III-IV boys all-star game, Columbus Academy's Jonathan Kornberg had 20 points and Hartley's Chris Moxley and Worthington Christian's Sam Condon each scored 13 points to lead the East squad past the West 85-84. Centennial's Octavius Luke added 12 points for the East.

    Ready's Shane Lee (21 points) and Josh Gantz (13 points) and Watterson's Matt Lehmann (13 points) paced the West all-stars.

    *In the girls District 10 game, the City League/MSL/CCL team beat the OCC 80-66.

    Walnut Ridge's Taylor Kilgore-Barr scored 17 points and Northland's Brooklynn Peterson and Africentric's Alexa Hart both had 15 points from the CL/MSL/CCL team.

    The OCC team, playing without players such as Reynoldsburg's Alyssa Rice and Upper Arlington's Andi Norman, got 13 points from Dublin Scioto's Bri Bell and 12 apiece from Reynoldsburg's Nicole Orr and Worthington Kilbourne's Kayla Pack.

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    By: Jarrod Ulrey

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    4 / 7 / 14

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  • Reynoldsburg's Rice savors McDonald's All-America experience

    Over the past few years, the most sought-after recruit to come through central Ohio in girls basketball unquestionably was Reynoldsburg senior Alyssa Rice.

    The 6-3 post player lived up to the hype this season, becoming the first girl from the program to earn ThisWeek Super 12 honors as she averaged 17.3 points. She closed her prep career as the school's all-time leader in points with more than 1,400.

    In her biggest chance to showcase her abilities, she showed her defensive skills while helping the West all-stars beat the East 80-78 in the McDonald's All-American game April 2 in Chicago's United Center. 

    The University of Kentucky-signee started and got a blocked shot within the game's first five minutes. She finished with six points, two rebounds and four blocks in 20 minutes.

    "It was ... great to meet all the players and get to know each other on a personal level," Rice said. "A win (April 2) was definitely a perfect way to end an amazing weekend and my high school basketball career."

    Rice, who helped the Raiders go 96-11 over the past four seasons, was one of three players from Ohio competing in the game. Cincinnati Princeton's Kelsey Mitchell had seven points and Kettering Fairmont's Kathryn Westbeld scored two points for the East squad. Mitchell will play for Ohio State and Westbeld will play for Notre Dame.

    While Rice enjoyed playing in the game, she said the highlight of the experience was going to a local Ronald McDonald House.

    "This weekend has been one of the most memorable moments of my life," Rice said. "I am truly blessed to have been able to have had the opportunity to play in this prestigious event with the best players in the country. My favorite part of the whole weekend was going to the Ronald McDonald house and coloring, decorating cookies and just interacting with the kids. It was truly amazing to see how much joy us players brought to them despite their challenging situations."

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    By: Jarrod Ulrey

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    4 / 3 / 14

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  • Scioto's Conner, Scots' McKee among top '15 football recruits

    Considering the spring can be a quiet time for high school football fans, it seems like a good time to take a look at what some of central Ohio's hottest 2015 prospects will be up to over the coming months.

    The two that lead the class according to recruiting sites like Scout.com are Dublin Scioto's Nick Conner and Walnut Ridge's Anthony McKee, who are both projected to be outside linebackers in college.

    Conner is particularly intriguing because of his size: 6-3, 215.

    Considered a four-star recruit by Scout, Conner has offers from various major-conference schools like West Virginia, Cincinnati, Kentucky and a few from the Big Ten. Missing currently is an offer from Ohio State, but it wouldn't be a surprise to see that change considering he has interest from Michigan State. He's expected to unofficially visit OSU for its spring game April 12 according to 247Sports.

    McKee also is a four-star recruit by Scout, and at 6-1, 195, he, too, has numerous Division I offers from many of the same schools as Conner. He also doesn't have an offer from Ohio State but does have one from Michigan State.

    Some others to watch over the next few months are Hilliard Davidson OLB Markus Bailey, Westerville South OT Rob Dowdy, Olentangy Liberty OG Hunter Littlejohn and Worthington Kilbourne long-snapper Liam McCullough.

    In recent years, the biggest time for football players to make their verbals has been during the summer, so expect things to start picking up -- especially with the weather in central Ohio hopefully improving soon ...

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    By: Jarrod Ulrey

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    3 / 25 / 14

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