July 28th, 2014  / Author: dipasqua



By Dom DiPasqua/Staff Writer

Monday night, July 28, 2014

BRECKSVILLE – Demetrius Maddox has been spending a lot of quality time in Indiana this summer. If you are a basketball player there is no place like applying your trade in the Hoosier State.

An old saying was,  “What happens in Sherrodsville, stays in Sherrodsville.” In this case Maddox’ performance at the Eastern Ohio Team Camp in mid-June caught the attention of the top coaches in the state of Ohio, those guys in charge of putting together Team Ohio.

So what really happened in Sherrodsville was that Maddox earned the opportunity to showcase his skills in front of around 20 college coaches against outstanding competition.

They liked the slender 6-4 senior forwards game enough to invite him to join the Team Ohio squad, which participated in the Elite Senior Showcase that was held earlier this month in Indianapolis. Team Ohio played against similar teams from most of the states around the Midwest.

Team Ohio went 2-2 in the annual event. But what Maddox took away from being part of this elite team of Buckeye State baller’s went far beyond basketball.

“It was a really good experience. It was fun. And I played with and against some really good players. I think I did pretty good; crashing, going inside and out and helping the team out,” Maddox said. “Our team did all right for the first time being together. We only had two practices before going to Indy. They were in Columbus.”

When we finally caught up with the well-traveled Maddox he was on his way west to yet another event in Indiana. Fort Wayne is where he spent this past weekend at the Fort Wayne Exposure Event. He was joined there by fellow Brecksville-Broadview Heights senior, Luke Cipolla.

“In Columbus we had a few walk through’s and we hung out. The environment was great over in Indy. We played at Van Haven High School. They have four gyms in the main area of their campus. We also went to the biggest high school gym in the country at New Castle High School, which seats 10,000 people. That’s crazy! And we got to go to the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame.”

Talk about being on sacred ground. Larry Bird played his high school ball in the Hoosier State. So did Steve Alford, Damon Bailey and Oscar Robertson. Heck, old Jimmy Chitwood hit the state title winning shot for tiny Milan against powerful South Bend Central. And those are just naming a very few of the many legends that helped hone the state next door as the worlds undisputed capital of high school basketball.

“Having that opportunity made me realize that you have to work hard and bust your tail. I think its helps me be accountable and responsible for this year,” Maddox said. “I think we are going to have a really good season. I’m very excited.”

When the Team Ohio coaches approached veteran BBHHS head coach Steve Mehalik about extending an invitation to Maddox to join the squad the Bees coach was immediately all in. That conversation took place in a stuffy corner at Tuscarawas Valley Middle School early on day two of camp. Mehalik knew instantly the value of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

“We are very happy for and proud of Demetrius. He is always in the gym and loves the game more than anyone I have ever coached. He has had a great summer and he is playing with a lot more confidence and aggressiveness,” Mehalik said last week. “Hopefully this experience just adds to that for him and helps him continue to grow into one of the better players in the Southwestern Conference. Good days are ahead for Demetrius. And we are looking forward to coaching him this season.”

In addition to bonding with his new teammates from across Ohio, Maddox and the Team Ohio unit attended seminars and workshops on what to expect should they be presented with the opportunity to lace up the sneakers at the next level. The Team Ohio coaching staff earned high marks from Dianne Maddox, Demetrius’ mom. “They are a class act,” she wrote in an email.

Maddox and Cipolla have both been busy this summer. They teamed up at two Adidas Showcase events in the past month. They will be the linchpins as the Bees head into the fall and begin serious preparation for the 2014-’15 campaign.

Demetrius and his mother may have put on the miles this summer. But when you are a gym rat at heart; all courts, whether they be the hardscrabble outdoor ones in Sherrodsville or the inside ones at the hoops hotbeds of the Hoosier State, they all feel like home.


See You At The Bee Hive!

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