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Football standouts busy with basketball

His name is on a lot of people’s tongues these days, and not because of his basketball prowess.

But Lakota West standout linebacker Jordan Hicks is also a standout on the court. A senior, Hicks scored 16 points to lead the Firebirds to a 46-45 upset last week of Cincinnati Princeton, which was the big-school state runner-up in March. Hicks also had five rebounds.

Hicks has narrowed his football choices to Florida, Ohio State and Texas, and says he has no clear-cut favorite at the moment.

A similar story is unfolding at Cincinnati St. Xavier where forward Luke Massa scored 17 points in a 51-47 win over Cincinnati La Salle.

Massa verbally committed to play quarterback at the University of Cincinnati, but also has an offer from former UC coach Brian Kelly — since moved to Notre Dame.

Along the same lines, Aaron Craft was an all-state quarterback at Findlay Liberty-Benton just a couple years back but he gave that up to concentrate on basketball. That appears to have been a shrewd decision.

Liberty-Benton has won a record 38 straight Blanchard Valley Conference as Craft, a 6-2 senior guard, has averaged 25.5 points, 8.3 rebounds and 6.7 assists. Craft, who originally committed to Tennessee but then changed his mind and plans to join a star-studded recruiting class for Ohio State coach Thad Matta, has led the Eagles to a 13-0 mark. (Not to be outdone, the L-B girls are also unbeaten at 12-0 and ranked No. 2.)

POINTS PIRACY: First-half defense helped Continental’s boys stay unbeaten in wins over the weekend. On Friday, Fort Jennings scored just three points in the first quarter of a 48-31 Continental win. On Saturday, Waynesfield-Goshen was limited to five first-half points, two in the second quarter, of a 72-34 victory by the Pirates. Along the same lines, Lexington limited Bellville Clear Fork to eight first-half points in a 71-41 win. With nine points in the first two quarters, Lexington’s Collin Michael outscored Clear Fork all by himself.