Cuyahoga Heights junior Trey Combs, South senior Spencer Dusi and Kirtland senior Taylor Somodji all turned in strong performances during the week ending Sunday, Dec. 13 to be named Ward’s Lawn Care & Landscape Co. Players of the Week.
Combs went 5-0 to win the Cuyahoga Heights Invitational despite spending the previous night in the emergency room.
He recorded two pins and a technical fall in collecting his second CHI title.
“If you would have heard the conversation from the emergency room, that would have been enough (to earn Player of the Week honors),” said Cuyahoga Heights coach Sean Pellerite. “Trey works harder than any other guy around. He balances three sports, school, with a 3.5+ GPA, work and comes into the room with a great attitude every day.”
Combs always pushes himself to achieve more.
“The first time I ever saw Trey, he was in the wrestling room his freshman year with a cast on his foot shadow wrestling on the mat,” Pellerite said. “I asked him what he was doing and he said, ‘I'm using my good leg. I don't want to miss anything.’ Trey is the type of person that if I ask him to give me 100-percent effort he would respond with, ‘Is 150-percent OK?’”
Combs’ efforts didn’t go unnoticed by his teammates. He was named a team captain as a sophomore and has lived up to the expectations.
As a sophomore, Combs finished 33-12 with an appearance in the Division III state tournament.
Dusi finished 6-0 with five pins and a major decision to win the 113-pound championship.
Only two of his matches made it past the first period.
“He won the championship of the North Coast Classic tournament by dominating every opponent he faced,” said South coach Guy Trinetti. “Spencer had a great weekend. He was able to wrestle with a high pace and an intense style that allowed him to be very successful.”
Dusi improved to 15-1 on the year.
As a junior, Dusi finished 40-12 with an appearance in the Division I state tournament. He lost his first round bout, 7-2 in sudden victory, to eventual 106-pound champion Caleb Yates.
“Spencer has emerged as a leader of the team this year,” Trinetti said. “He leads by example through hard work on the wrestling mat and in the classroom.”
Somodji, a two-year starter, has led Kirtland to a 7-0 start.
Last week she averaged 22 points, 6.5 rebounds and 4.5 steals in wins over Cardinal and Cuyahoga Heights.
She scored 24 points with five rebounds and five steals against the Huskies and led all scorers with 20 points in the key win over the Redskins, which left the Hornets in sole possession of first place in the Chagrin Valley Conference Valley Division. She also had eight rebounds and four steals in that contest.
“What really impressed me during the week was she shot 18-of-33 from the floor for 55-percent in both those games,” said Kirtland coach Bob Bell. “She’s just shooting a phenomenal percentage right now. She’s shooting 59-percent from the floor in six games and 85 from the line.”
Somodji barely cracked the varsity lineup as a sophomore but her hard work the past two seasons has helped her to develop into one of the top players in the CVC.
“I attribute that to her desire to be very aggressive on offense,” Bell said. “She practices her shot a lot. She’s just one of those kids that won’t be denied. She finds way to score. She’s very creative offensively.”
At a generous 5-foot-7, Somodji is Kirtland’s top scorer and rebounder with 22.5 points and 8.8 rebounds per contest.
She’s also a positive role model for her teammates.
“Taylor is a very good leader,” Bell said. “She leads by example. She plays hard. The thing I was most impressed with in Taylor and the whole team on Saturday is they just made their minds up to find a way to score points. We knew that was the only way to beat Cuyahoga Heights. We couldn’t sit back and play their game and be selective and keep the game down in the high 20s or low 30s. We had to score points and Taylor was the leader in that, no question.”
COACHES, NOMINATE YOUR PLAYERS
Coaches, click HERE to nominate your athletes for Ward’s Lawn Care & Landscape Co. Players of the Week. Athletes from all Northeast Ohio schools are eligible for the award and nominations are due by 10:00 p.m. every Tuesday.