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Basketball: Portage Sports All-Star Games feature thrilling finishes

Basketball: Portage Sports All-Star Games feature thrilling finishes


Rootstown’s Brooklynn McIntyre goes up for a shot against Windham’s Mariah Woods.
Paisley Nader/Portage Sports

By Tom Nader

Publisher and Editor


The Portage Sports High School Basketball All-Star Games filled Ravenna High School’s James Coll Gymnasium with energy on Wednesday night.

Ravenna’s Shamyah Henderson drives into the lane against Windham’s Briah Daniel.
Paisley Nader/Portage Sports

In the inaugural edition of the games, both the boys and girls contests came down to the final seconds.

For the girls, it was Team South that defeated Team North 56-53.

With the score tied, 52-52, with less than 30 seconds on the clock, Ravenna senior Shamyah Henderson went the length of the court to scoop in a right-handed layup that put Team South up 54-52. As Team North advanced the ball up the court on the ensuing possession, Mogadore’s Brook McIntyre used her quick feet, quick hands and instincts to swipe a steal near midcourt. She raced down the right side, used an electric crossover to break free from defensive pressure and put in a short jumper off the glass to give the South a 56-52 lead.

Team North’s Naomi Benson made a free throw with just under 2 seconds left in the game to make it 56-53. She attempted to miss the second free throw on purpose, but the shot failed to hit rim, awarding the ball out of bounds to the South team. However, the South team’s attempt to inbound the ball was stolen just inside half court and the shot that could have tied the game did not connect.

Southeast freshman Jenna Canale goes up for a left-handed layup.
Paisley Nader/Portage Sports

Rootstown’s Nadia Lough was named the MVP for Team South. In victory, Lough scored a game-high 20 points. McIntyre finished with nine points for the South.

For Team North, it was Benson that led the team in scoring with 17 points. She was joined in double figures by Becca Brady, who had 11 points.

In the boys game, Team South held a double-digit lead throughout different parts of the fourth quarter, but Team North scorched the nets for 30 points in the fourth quarter to stage a furious comeback.

Team North hit six 3-pointers in the fourth quarter alone and went on to bury 17 for the game.

With less than 10 seconds on the clock, Team South took a quick shot instead of working down the clock. The shot was rebounded by Team North, which began working up the length of the court to get into position for the potential go-ahead basket, but by the time the ball found Aurora’s Cooper Carnahan on the right wing, time expired before he could release his shot.

Southeast’s Garrett Sprutte (right) hangs in the air against Kent Roosevelt’s Grant Leslie.
Paisley Nader/Portage Sports

Southeast’s Garrett Sprutte scored 28 points and was awarded the MVP. Three additional players reached double figures for Team South, including Ravenna’s Curtis Ross (11 points), Mogadore’s Layne Miller  (10) and Rootstown’s Cameron Mahone (10).

Team North was led in scoring by a balanced attack that featured six players in double figures.

Carnahan, Crestwood’s Dekota Johnson and Kent Roosevelt’s Jaden Dennison both scored 12 points, while the Rough Riders’ Grant Leslie had 11 points and Charlie Schweickert had 10.

Coaches in the two games included Rootstown’s Joe Leonard for Team South and Streetsboro’s Carl Singer for Team North in the girls game.

In the boys game, Mogadore’s Russ Swartz and Streetsboro’s Nick Marcini were the coaches.



Aurora’s Cooper Carnahan goes up for a two-handed dunk.
Paisley Nader/Portage Sports



(James Coll Gymnasium, Ravenna)

TEAM SOUTH (85) — Jackson Eichler 2 0-0 4; Corey Lehner 4 0-0 9; Garrett Sprutte 12 3-4 28; Cameron Mahone 4 2-2 10; Layne Miller 4 0-0 10; Manny Smith 2 0-0 4; Nick Papiska 1 1-2 3; Curtis Ross 5 0-2 11; Drew Flarida 3 0-0 6. Totals 37 6-10 85.

TEAM NORTH (84) — Charles Ivory 2 0-0 4; Preston Gedeon 3 3-4 12; Dekota Johnson 4 0-0 12; Jackson Guła 0 0-0 0; Charlie Schweickert 4 0-0 10; Brock Habbyshaw 2 0-0 6; Carlos Burton 0 0-2 0; Aidan Hill 2 0-0 5; Jaden Dennison 5 0-0 12; Grant Leslie 4 1-2 11; Cooper Carnahan 5 1-2 12. Totals 31 5-10 84.

SOUTH 17-27-23-18—85

NORTH 16-24-14-30—84

Three-Point Goals — South (5): Miller 2, Sprutte 1, Lehner 1, Ross 1. North (17): Johnson 4, Gedeon 3, Schweickert 2, Habbyshaw 2, Leslie 2, Dennison 2, Carnahan 1, Hill 1.

Rootstown’s Cameron Mahone (back) goes up for a shot.
Paisley Nader/Portage Sports






(James Coll Gymnasium, Ravenna)

TEAM SOUTH (56) — Colbie Curall 2 0-0 5; Shamyah Henderson 2 0-0 4; Lexi Morris 0 0-0 0; Amelia Morris 2 2-2 6; Brook McIntyre 4 0-0 9; Brooklynn McIntyre 2 0-0 4; Ally Harlin 1 0-0 2; Nadia Lough 7 5-6 20; Jenna Canale 3 0-0 6. Totals 24 7-8 56.

TEAM NORTH (53) — Hannah Ward 2 0-0 5; Sam Stask 1 0-0 3; Mariah Woods 2 1-2 5; Becca Brady 4 0-0 11; Briah Daniel 0 0-0 0; Zoey May 1 0-0 3; Naomi Benson 7 2-3 17; Ella Kassan 1 0-0 3; Arie Wilson 0 0-0 0; Zariyah  Taylor 3 0-2 6. Totals 21 3-7 56.

SOUTH 15-13-14-14—56

NORTH 9-12-17-15—53

Three-Point Goals — South (3): Curall 1, Brook McIntyre 1, Lough 1. North (8): Brady 3, Benson 1, May 1, Stask 1, Ward 1.

Aurora’s Sam Stask (right) dribbles against the defense of Mogadore’s Brook McIntyre.
Paisley Nader/Portage Sports

Garfield’s Preston Gedeon takes on a double team by Ravenna’s CJ Ross and Southeast’s Garrett Sprutte.
Paisley Nader/Portage Sports

Kent Roosevelt’s Grant Leslie hangs in the air for a left-handed layup.
Paisley Nader/Portage Sports


  1. Carla McIntyre April 11, 2024

    What an amazing evening! To bring together all this talent was nothing short than brilliant! The competition, the talent, the pride, the energy, the love of the sport, that all of these athletes represent— Was so inspiring! Thank you for this event! Truly, an amazing evening and perfect way to end the basketball season!

    1. Tom Nader April 11, 2024

      Thank you, Carla! I appreciate all of the kind words, and it is exciting to know that the game and the night was enjoyed by so many! Have a great day!


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