The opening game of the KeyBank Holiday Classic will include a Cuyahoga Falls Walsh Jesuit girls basketball team which has averaged more than 20 wins over the past six seasons as one of northeast Ohio's best Division II programs.

The opening game of the KeyBank Holiday Classic will include a Cuyahoga Falls Walsh Jesuit girls basketball team which has averaged more than 20 wins over the past six seasons as one of northeast Ohio's best Division II programs.

The Warriors, however, haven't resembled that squad thus far this season.

After getting routed by an average of 28 points in back-to-back losses to begin the season, Walsh Jesuit lost a pair of close games to Akron Hoban (41-39 on Dec. 8) and Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary (52-47 on Dec. 11).

The Warriors got their first win last Friday, beating Cleveland St. Joseph Academy 57-51. They played Mentor Lake Catholic last Tuesday before beginning preparations for the KeyBank Holiday Classic.

"We are struggling right now," coach Pete Zaccari said. "(We started) 0-4, but we've played some tough competition. We've had some close games, but we're very young. We don't really have anybody with much experience."

Zaccari was an assistant when Walsh Jesuit won the 2005 state title and finished 25-3. He took over as coach before the 2007-08 season and led the Warriors to a 19-5 record and district runner-up finish.

Walsh Jesuit then went 19-7 in 2008-09 and was regional runner-up before finishing with a 23-3 record last season when it was a state semifinalist. The Warriors fell to eventual champion Shaker Heights Hathaway Brown 53-48 at state.

The only key player back from that team is 6-foot-1 junior forward Liz Reeves, who averaged 6.1 points and 4.2 rebounds last season. Junior guard Courtney Iacobacci, who helped the school's junior varsity go 19-1 last year, and 5-8 senior guard/forward Kaela Segerson are other leaders on the team, according to Zaccari.

Also seeing regular action are junior guards Nina Napolitano and Maddie Sheppard and sophomore guard Jessa Gilberto.

Walsh Jesuit opens the KeyBank Holiday Classic at 3 p.m. Tuesday against Lebanon (Ky.) Marion County.

"We're very excited about the opportunity to come down there and play," Zaccari said. "I know there's going to be very strong competition and that it will make us better.

"(Reeves has) good offensive skills and is learning to use her physicalness. Iacobacci is very quick and physical and a great natural athlete. Segerson is a captain and a great role player. She's a very hard worker and leads by example."

The Warriors opened with a 76-40 loss to Twinsburg on Dec. 1 and were defeated 53-31 by Middleburg Heights Midpark on Dec. 4.

"(We're a) very inexperienced squad, but (we) expect to improve as the season develops," Zaccari said. "(It's a) hard-working team. They possess great chemistry and a desire to succeed."