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Latest from Rick Cassano

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Prep girls basketball: Mason blasts Hawks, sets up showdown with West
 With a highly anticipated Greater Miami Conference showdown looming, Mason High School’s girls basketball team did exactly what was expected Wednesday night. The Comets went on the road and whipped Lakota East 69-30, extending their winning streak to 13 as Sammie Puisis fired in five 3-pointers and 19 points. Next up is a championship...

Posted: 12 days ago

With a highly anticipated Greater Miami Conference showdown looming, Mason High School’s girls basketball team did exactly what was expected Wednesday night. The Comets went on the road and whipped Lakota East 69-30, extending their winning streak to 13 as Sammie Puisis fired in five 3-pointers and 19 points. Next up is a championship...
Prep football: Local players part of annual GMC Signing Day event
 Area prep football players took center stage Wednesday afternoon at the 17th Greater Miami Conference Signing Day event. Hamilton, Fairfield, Middletown, Lakota East and Lakota West athletes and coaches were part of the annual ceremony that’s hosted by Beacon Orthopaedics. It was moved to the Sharonville Convention Center because of...

Posted: 13 days ago

Area prep football players took center stage Wednesday afternoon at the 17th Greater Miami Conference Signing Day event. Hamilton, Fairfield, Middletown, Lakota East and Lakota West athletes and coaches were part of the annual ceremony that’s hosted by Beacon Orthopaedics. It was moved to the Sharonville Convention Center because of...
Prep basketball: CCS fights off New Miami, clinches share of MVC title
 The rise of New Miami High School’s boys basketball team is noticeable. But Miami Valley Conference championships are still going through Cincinnati Christian. CCS earned at least a share of its fourth straight MVC Gray Division title Tuesday night with a hard-fought 51-38 road win, getting double-digit scoring from Miguel Ringer (13)...

Posted: 13 days ago

The rise of New Miami High School’s boys basketball team is noticeable. But Miami Valley Conference championships are still going through Cincinnati Christian. CCS earned at least a share of its fourth straight MVC Gray Division title Tuesday night with a hard-fought 51-38 road win, getting double-digit scoring from Miguel Ringer (13)...
Prep football: GMC Signing Day event scheduled for Wednesday afternoon
 The Greater Miami Conference Signing Day event will be held at the Sharonville Convention Center on Wednesday at 1 p.m. It’s an annual happening for the GMC to honor its best football players as they sign national letters of intent and prepare to head off to the next level. Beacon Orthopaedics is the host, and the public is invited...

Posted: 14 days ago

The Greater Miami Conference Signing Day event will be held at the Sharonville Convention Center on Wednesday at 1 p.m. It’s an annual happening for the GMC to honor its best football players as they sign national letters of intent and prepare to head off to the next level. Beacon Orthopaedics is the host, and the public is invited...
Prep girls basketball: Badin’s defense key in conquest of Big Blue
 A season-best defensive performance was exactly what Badin High School’s girls basketball team needed Monday night. The Rams won for the 12th time in their last 14 games by defending Hamilton into 16.7-percent shooting and 20 turnovers in a 44-24 victory at the Hamilton Athletic Center. “We were on our toes all night,” Badin...

Posted: 14 days ago

A season-best defensive performance was exactly what Badin High School’s girls basketball team needed Monday night. The Rams won for the 12th time in their last 14 games by defending Hamilton into 16.7-percent shooting and 20 turnovers in a 44-24 victory at the Hamilton Athletic Center. “We were on our toes all night,” Badin...
College Insider: East’s Lowry brothers powering Hillsdale basketball
 The Lowry brothers are playing key roles for the Hillsdale (Mich.) College men’s basketball team, which ranks second in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference behind Findlay. Senior guard Stedman Lowry and sophomore guard Dylan Lowry are Lakota East High School graduates. They’re part of a Charger squad that’s 17-6 overall...

Posted: 15 days ago

The Lowry brothers are playing key roles for the Hillsdale (Mich.) College men’s basketball team, which ranks second in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference behind Findlay. Senior guard Stedman Lowry and sophomore guard Dylan Lowry are Lakota East High School graduates. They’re part of a Charger squad that’s 17-6 overall...
This head-turning 85-3 girls basketball game showed the challenges of blowouts
 The score likely caused some double-takes around Southwest Ohio. Lakota West High School’s girls basketball team went on the road and defeated Colerain 85-3 on Saturday afternoon. The Firebirds beat the Cardinals 91-18 last month. And now the Greater Miami Conference foes will almost certainly meet again in the Division I sectional...

Posted: 15 days ago

The score likely caused some double-takes around Southwest Ohio. Lakota West High School’s girls basketball team went on the road and defeated Colerain 85-3 on Saturday afternoon. The Firebirds beat the Cardinals 91-18 last month. And now the Greater Miami Conference foes will almost certainly meet again in the Division I sectional...
Prep girls basketball: No. 1 Firebirds headline D-I tournament draw
 It was no surprise that Lakota West High School’s girls basketball team secured the No. 1 seed in the Division I Cincinnati sectional tournament draw Sunday afternoon at West. It’s also no surprise that the Firebirds’ early trail is, well, not so difficult. West (19-1) is in the Cincinnati I sectional at Lakota East and...

Posted: 16 days ago

It was no surprise that Lakota West High School’s girls basketball team secured the No. 1 seed in the Division I Cincinnati sectional tournament draw Sunday afternoon at West. It’s also no surprise that the Firebirds’ early trail is, well, not so difficult. West (19-1) is in the Cincinnati I sectional at Lakota East and...
Prep girls basketball: 5 first-round sectional games to watch
 The prep girls basketball tournament is nearly upon us, and 18 Journal-News-area schools found out their first-round opponents Sunday. There are some impending blowouts for sure, but also some openers that could be very interesting. Here are five of them: • Badin (15-5, No. 3 seed) vs. Alter (5-14, No. 9 seed), Division II at Lebanon...

Posted: 16 days ago

The prep girls basketball tournament is nearly upon us, and 18 Journal-News-area schools found out their first-round opponents Sunday. There are some impending blowouts for sure, but also some openers that could be very interesting. Here are five of them: • Badin (15-5, No. 3 seed) vs. Alter (5-14, No. 9 seed), Division II at Lebanon...
Prep basketball: Maroon-and-gold rules the day in Ross-Badin revival
 The Ross-Badin prep boys basketball rivalry returned to the court Saturday night. Quite literally, it rocked. A standing-room-only crowd packed into Badin’s Mulcahey Gym and gave the players a thunderous, electric atmosphere to compete in, with Ross emerging as the 46-41 victor in the Butler County showdown. “It was nuts,&rdquo...

Posted: 16 days ago

The Ross-Badin prep boys basketball rivalry returned to the court Saturday night. Quite literally, it rocked. A standing-room-only crowd packed into Badin’s Mulcahey Gym and gave the players a thunderous, electric atmosphere to compete in, with Ross emerging as the 46-41 victor in the Butler County showdown. “It was nuts,&rdquo...
Prep girls basketball: Cougars join crowd at top of SWOC standings
 If it wasn’t the prettiest victory in Edgewood High School girls basketball history, then so be it. The Cougars had multiple reasons to win Saturday afternoon and did just that at Ron Kash Court, knocking off visiting Little Miami 33-31 to create a three-way tie for first place in the Southwest Ohio Conference. Edgewood nearly squandered...

Posted: 16 days ago

If it wasn’t the prettiest victory in Edgewood High School girls basketball history, then so be it. The Cougars had multiple reasons to win Saturday afternoon and did just that at Ron Kash Court, knocking off visiting Little Miami 33-31 to create a three-way tie for first place in the Southwest Ohio Conference. Edgewood nearly squandered...
Prep basketball: Blue’s Benson becomes a rejecter, seals win over East
 Hamilton High School’s boys basketball team managed only two blocked shots Friday night, but they came at the perfect time. Cameron Benson got a hand on two Lakota East field-goal attempts in the final five seconds as Big Blue survived a frantic finish to post a 47-45 Greater Miami Conference victory at the Hamilton Athletic Center...

Posted: 17 days ago

Hamilton High School’s boys basketball team managed only two blocked shots Friday night, but they came at the perfect time. Cameron Benson got a hand on two Lakota East field-goal attempts in the final five seconds as Big Blue survived a frantic finish to post a 47-45 Greater Miami Conference victory at the Hamilton Athletic Center...
Competitive balance: Badin baseball questions fairness of move to D-I
 The annual Badin-Hamilton prep baseball showdown will take place May 5 in a Saturday night game at Big Blue’s Stang Field. Two days later, the stakes could be a lot higher for the local rivals in a Division I sectional tournament opener. That’s right. Badin, Division III in 2015 and D-II the last two years, has been bumped up...

Posted: 18 days ago

The annual Badin-Hamilton prep baseball showdown will take place May 5 in a Saturday night game at Big Blue’s Stang Field. Two days later, the stakes could be a lot higher for the local rivals in a Division I sectional tournament opener. That’s right. Badin, Division III in 2015 and D-II the last two years, has been bumped up...
Prep girls basketball: CCS eyes tourney after another competitive loss
 It’s another season with a not-so-great record and a not-so-easy schedule for Cincinnati Christian School’s girls basketball team. Maybe — just maybe — the Cougars are gearing up for another Division IV tournament run. CCS put up an 8-14 regular-season mark last season and made it to the district finals for the first...

Posted: 19 days ago

It’s another season with a not-so-great record and a not-so-easy schedule for Cincinnati Christian School’s girls basketball team. Maybe — just maybe — the Cougars are gearing up for another Division IV tournament run. CCS put up an 8-14 regular-season mark last season and made it to the district finals for the first...
Prep basketball: MCS remains positive after decisive loss to Mohawks
 The Middletown Christian School boys basketball team took its fourth loss in five days Tuesday night. So why was first-year coach Jason Crider smiling? Because he liked his squad’s finish against visiting Madison in a 68-50 defeat. He likes the Eagles’ effort and attitude. And he feels confident that MCS is capable of making an...

Posted: 21 days ago

The Middletown Christian School boys basketball team took its fourth loss in five days Tuesday night. So why was first-year coach Jason Crider smiling? Because he liked his squad’s finish against visiting Madison in a 68-50 defeat. He likes the Eagles’ effort and attitude. And he feels confident that MCS is capable of making an...
Prep girls basketball: Lebanon tops Indians on Straw’s last-second trey
 The ball was in the right person’s hands. Lebanon High School senior Alexis Straw took an inbounds pass with 11.5 seconds remaining and banked in a 3-pointer with two seconds left Monday night, giving the Warriors a 52-49 victory over visiting Fairfield. “I didn’t think it was going to go in, so it was pretty awesome,&rdquo...

Posted: 21 days ago

The ball was in the right person’s hands. Lebanon High School senior Alexis Straw took an inbounds pass with 11.5 seconds remaining and banked in a 3-pointer with two seconds left Monday night, giving the Warriors a 52-49 victory over visiting Fairfield. “I didn’t think it was going to go in, so it was pretty awesome,&rdquo...
College Insider: Middletown’s Snow a first-year hoop leader at Lourdes
 Clifton Snow has made a strong transition to college basketball this winter. The 6-foot-5 freshman forward and Middletown High School graduate is the leading scorer (10.5) and rebounder (6.3) for the Lourdes University men’s squad in Sylvania. Snow is also averaging 2 assists and 1 steal per game for the Gray Wolves and scored a career-high...

Posted: 22 days ago

Clifton Snow has made a strong transition to college basketball this winter. The 6-foot-5 freshman forward and Middletown High School graduate is the leading scorer (10.5) and rebounder (6.3) for the Lourdes University men’s squad in Sylvania. Snow is also averaging 2 assists and 1 steal per game for the Gray Wolves and scored a career-high...
Prep basketball: Falcons rise up after blowout, handle Carroll 54-46
 Pat Kreke got the fight-back performance he was seeking from his Fenwick High School boys basketball team Saturday night. The Falcons took a 54-34 beating from McNicholas at home Friday night, but they roared back 24 hours later to sink visiting Carroll 54-46 and solidify their hold on first place in the Greater Catholic League Coed North...

Posted: 23 days ago

Pat Kreke got the fight-back performance he was seeking from his Fenwick High School boys basketball team Saturday night. The Falcons took a 54-34 beating from McNicholas at home Friday night, but they roared back 24 hours later to sink visiting Carroll 54-46 and solidify their hold on first place in the Greater Catholic League Coed North...
Prep basketball: Braves savor Hoosier Gym experience … and get a win
 Talawanda High School’s boys basketball team won’t forget its trip to the iconic hoop venue known as the Hoosier Gym on Saturday afternoon. Ending its eight-game losing streak was a nice bonus. The Braves trailed once all day and held on for a 43-40 victory over Franklin County (Ind.) at the home of the Hickory Huskers, the fictional...

Posted: 24 days ago

Talawanda High School’s boys basketball team won’t forget its trip to the iconic hoop venue known as the Hoosier Gym on Saturday afternoon. Ending its eight-game losing streak was a nice bonus. The Braves trailed once all day and held on for a 43-40 victory over Franklin County (Ind.) at the home of the Hickory Huskers, the fictional...
Prep basketball: Wildcats outlast Monroe, remain atop SWBL standings
 Franklin High School remains in the driver’s seat for its seventh straight Southwestern Buckeye League Southwestern Division boys basketball title, thanks to a home-court gut check. The Wildcats rallied from an 11-point deficit, scored the game’s last 5 points and fought off visiting Monroe 55-52 on Friday night to remain alone...

Posted: 25 days ago

Franklin High School remains in the driver’s seat for its seventh straight Southwestern Buckeye League Southwestern Division boys basketball title, thanks to a home-court gut check. The Wildcats rallied from an 11-point deficit, scored the game’s last 5 points and fought off visiting Monroe 55-52 on Friday night to remain alone...
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