The Marysville High School boys basketball team was plagued by turnovers early, averaging 23 per game in opening 2-6.

The Marysville High School boys basketball team was plagued by turnovers early, averaging 23 per game in opening 2-6.

But even though the Monarchs had lost four in a row entering a game last Friday against OCC-Cardinal Division-rival Olentangy, some progress was being made. In a four-game stretch from Jan. 6-16, they had cut the turnovers to 16 per game.

"In a 60-possession game, those extra (seven) possessions are enormous," coach Kenny Chaffin said.

"We're not a team that has a great deal of offensive firepower, so we need every opportunity to score we can get."

Chaffin credited Anthony Aquillo, a call-up from the junior varsity, as a key factor. Aquillo starts at point guard, and his ability to handle the ball, split full-court traps and keep his assist-to-turnover ratio respectable has been noticeable.

"He's really helped run our offense," Chaffin said. "Now we're starting to find more consistency in terms of people stepping up and scoring."

Juniors Trevor Morris (6-foot-2 guard) and Mike Romesburg (6-5 forward) and seniors Paul Devine (6-1 guard) and Michael Waite (6-0 guard) have taken turns reaching double figures in points.

"Trevor is a scorer and he can do it in a variety of ways," Chaffin said. "He can hit 3-pointers, post up and crash the offensive glass.

"Michael has become a lot more comfortable recently in the last few weeks, especially scoring the basketball now that he's understanding his game and his role a little more."

Beginning Jan. 13, the Monarchs had 11 regular-season games left, with seven on the road. They will play league games Tuesday at Olentangy and Friday at Westerville South. Marysville is 0-5 away from home.

Olentangy had lost three in a row before a game last Friday at Dublin Scioto and was 6-5 overall and 3-4 in the OCC-Cardinal. The Braves were held to a season-low output in a 52-42 loss to Westerville North on Jan. 16.

Guard Ben-Michael Welch made his debut for Olentangy against North after missing the first 10 games with foot and ankle injuries.

Central had won six in a row and was 8-3 overall and 4-3 in the OCC before playing Westerville South last Friday.

"We're playing better," Central coach Todd Minney said. "Defense has been the key to a lot of our success lately and we have to continue to get better on defense. We have made improvement and we're not fouling as much as we were in the beginning of the year. We're learning to move our feet and get better position and that's always a good thing."

Guard Jerrell Fernandez was averaging 19.3 points through 11 games for the Warhawks and post player Max VanMeter was averaging 14.7.