Portsmouth Trojans Summer Basketball 2019

The Portsmouth Trojans had a very good start to their summer basketball program. In the mega shootout at PHS on June 8th, the Trojans went 4-0 even though they had to split the varsity squad into 3 teams due to a couple of other teams not showing up. PHS defeated Northwest, South Webster, West Union, and Fleming Co. (KY). I did not attend so I don't know the exact rosters for all 3 teams, but I talked with Coach Eugene Collins and he told me that Portsmouth had more players that showed up than any other school. The shootout also made a good amount of money for the basketball team which will be used to help fund the trip to Florida over the Christmas Holiday.

Portsmouth continues its summer tour on Monday, June 17th at Rio Grande, starting at 11:20 AM. They will play 4 games varsity and JV. UPDATE 6/17: The Trojans split 4 games at Rio, winning the first two vs. Northwest by 15 and Tolsia (WV) by 6, then they lost to Boyd County 57-50, and finished the day with a 44-35 loss to Eastern Brown. The JV squad went 3-1. Overall, the Portsmouth varsity looks to be a quicker team than last season, and showed more offensive ability. Rebounding at times was a challenge. Portsmouth was down to Tolsia by 10 at the half but rallied to win, and closed to within 1 point of both Boyd County and Eastern Brown late. The starting 5 for most of the day was 6-2 SR Matthew Fraulini,6-2 JR Miles Shipp, 5-7 SO Amare Johnson, 5-8 SO Drew Roe, and 6-2 SO Daryionne Bryant.

Portsmouth went 2-1 at the North Adams Shootout (not Peebles). The Trojans defeated Leesburg Fairfield and Western Pike by about 20, and in between those two games got hammered by North Adams 73-40. NA made a flurry of three pointers and also controlled the boards. The Trojans did show some good things overall, as it seems like this group has a little more offense than last year's Trojans. Coach Collins had about 12 players to work with, and all played.

Portsmouth went 1-2 at the Marshall Univ. Shootout, losing to Wyoming East (WV) 52-51, losing to Mingo Central (WV) 57-50, then beating Beth Haven (WV) 57-46. Overall for the summer, the Trojans went 8-5 and lost 4 of the 5 games by single digits, with only North Adams beating PHS soundly. Going forward, the Trojans will have to improve their ballhandling, as they still have issues with turnovers. Offensively, they seem to be somewhat better as both Miles Shipp and Amare Johnson have contributed more scoring support to help out Matthew Fraulini. Lack of size will be a problem that PHS will have to overcome, something that seems to plague the Trojans on a yearly basis. But there's no doubt after watching this team that they are athletic, quick, and play very hard. Their ball skills need to improve, but they will be a pesky underdog to any favored teams on their schedule.

Portsmouth does open the 2019-2020 season at South Point. Tough game to start out with, as I have the Pointers as the main challengers to Fairland in the OVC title hunt. Because of a possible scheduling snafu, with Western Pike not coming to Portsmouth as was anticipated, the Trojans may end up playing 4 games in Florida instead of 3.

Also, it looks like because of the low numbers, there probably won't be a freshmen team this year. Instead, the 4-5 freshmen will be elevated to the JV team, which actually could do them more good. Several of those freshmen are good ballhandlers, but there is no size to speak of.