It didn’t take long for the basketball tourney to get interesting in the
southeast. There were near 30-footers that forced
overtime, an unbeaten that needed overtime and a couple of upsets that
will have some perennial powers at home a little earlier this year than
usual …and that was just in D-III.
Well it didn’t take long for tourney time to get interesting in the southeast part of the state. There were near 30-footers that forced overtime, an unbeaten that needed overtime, and a couple of upsets that will have some perennial powers at home a little earlier this year than usual …and that was just the Division III tournament.
Division II basketball had some intriguing match-ups that offered the possibilities for some new faces in this year’s districts, however, when the sectional nets had been cut wouldn’t you know it – Chillicothe, Logan Elm, Vinton County and Greenfield McClain are all returning to the Convo.
Don’t forget about Division IV! The southeast district’s small schools do not play for their sectional title until next week, however, Oak Hill of the Southern Ohio Conference is a team that many believe is primed for a Final Four run.
Bowling and wrestling are ready to crown state champions this week. A Unioto freshman will be one representative from the southeast thanks to his perfect habits.
The girls will be playing in the Convo this year as well. You love hoops? You love southeast hoops? This week’s On Tap section offers you all the basketball on the campus of Ohio University that you and your basketball junkie friends can handle.
TEAM OF THE WEEK
North Adams, Boys Basketball: Coach Dave Young’s Green Devils are still perfect! A 20-0 regular season is supposed to give a team a fairly easy road in the early rounds; however, in a Waverly sectional that had two-thirds of its field posting winning records, the top seeded North Adams team had to face an extremely talented Portsmouth team in Friday night’s final. The two teams needed overtime to settle this affair, but in the end, North Adams prevailed 77-75.
In the win, North Adams (21-0) was led by their District Player of the Year, Kraig Unger. Unger scored 40 in the win including the game-winner in overtime. The win lifts North Adams into the district tournament. The Green Devils will face Fairland.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Jordan Brabson, Piketon: The senior swingman enjoyed a huge week in a pair of sectional tournament games at Waverly High School. On Tuesday night, Brabson scored 26 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in a 74-59 win over Lynchburg Clay. Brabson and the Redstreaks faced another Southern Hills League opponent in Eastern Brown in Friday’s final, and again, it was Brabson’s 34 points that led the way. On the year, Brabson is averaging 17 points and seven rebounds. His Redstreaks have been a mainstay in the top-10 of the D-III state rankings during the second half of the season.
NEWS, NOTES & NUGGETS
Ready for rematch: The Unioto Lady Shermans defeated New Lexington 49-35 and Greenfield McClain defeated Warren 56-45 to setup a district final match-up between Unioto and McClain. These two met earlier in the regular season with Unioto winning. The Shermans, who appeared nearly untouchable throughout the regular season, faced some serious adversity this week when they found out their Ashland-bound guard Shiann Ray would miss the remainder of the tournament with an injury. Unioto responded in her absence with the 14-point victory behind a 19 point, 15 rebound, and 6 block performance from sophomore pivot Mackenzie Arledge.
Fleming steps down at Shadyside: Shadyside football coach Ty Fleming resigned this week. After posting an 89-24 record including eight playoff appearances and two regional titles since the year 2000, the highly successful Shadyside football coach decided this past fall would be his last. The Tigers were the Division VI state runner-ups in 2006.
A triple threat: Barnesville’s Colby MacMillan recorded a triple-double this past week in a 60-43 win over Caldwell. MacMillan led the Shamrocks to the win with 20 points, 10 assists, and 10 steals. Teammate Bryson Stephen added 12 points and Dalton Smith scored 11 points and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds.
Road to repeat begins: The Chillicothe Cavaliers – the defending D-II State Champions – started this year’s hopeful repeat run with a blowout sectional final win over McDermott Northwest, 83-38. In the win, Michael Turner scored 20 points, while teammates Caleb Knights and Seth Dawes chipped in 17 and 12, respectively. The Cavs forced 27 turnovers and out shot the Mohawks 68-31.
Nine seniors end nine year drought: The Sheridan boys’ basketball team is heading to the Convo for the first time in nearly a decade. Down by 14 points at one point, the Generals outscored Fairfield Union 34-14 at one stage to record a 60-47 win. Senior Vince Cardi scored nine of his 15 points in the fourth quarter. Anthony Crane added 14 points and Brian Crader chipped in with 11 points.
A perfect roll: Unioto’s Dallas Johnson rolled a perfect game and qualified for the Ohio State Bowling Finals with a 739 score in individual action at HP Lanes in Columbus. Johnson, a freshman, bowled a 439 in the first two games, and then rolled his incredible 300 to finish with a 739 series.
Daugherty dominates: River View’s Kari Daugherty scored 36 points to lift the seventh-ranked Lady Bears to a sectional title win over Philo earlier this week. River View led by only one at the half; however, Daugherty and company pulled away in the second half to record a 62-43 win. In the win, the Lady Bears also got 11 points and 11 rebounds from Olivia Neace.
Season-saver: On Wednesday night, Huntington Ross had Zane Trace down three with less than 10 seconds remaining. Following Huntington’s inability to put the game away at the charity stripe, it was ZT’s Gabe Haynes dialing up a triple from well beyond the arc to tie the game. The shot lifted the Pioneers to an overtime win. Haynes scored 24 points while Kirk Maxwell added 14 points. In the loss, Huntington’s Corey Cottrill scored 21 points and grabbed 16 rebounds.
Three nights later, Zane Trace upset Peebles to capture a sectional title. This time it was Maxwell’s turn to shine as he scored 23 points and pulled down seven boards. Haynes added 13 points and Rick Chamberlin scored 11 points and grabbed nine rebounds.
Upset watch: Nothing spells March like a little postseason upset. In the Jackson sectional Fairland defeated Wheelersburg 44-39. On paper, the upset seemed mild – just a No. 5 beating a No. 4 – but when you consider Wheelersburg has reached the Convo in 12 of the previous 14 years, it is going to be a shock anytime a sectional net doesn’t get cut down by the Pirates.
Watch Waterford: The Lady Wildcats from Waterford are 20-2 and on their way to the Convo thanks to an easy 66-34 win over Portsmouth Clay. The Lady Cats had three players in double-figures led by Jessi Drayer and Sina King with 16 points and Britany Brown with 13 points. The Tri Valley Conference’s Hocking Division champion is now just one win from the sweet 16 in this year’s D-IV tournament.
If you love tournament basketball and you are a follower of hoops in the southeast (boys or girls), then the Convo on the campus of Ohio University in Athens is the place for you this week. Take a look at this week at the Convo:
Thursday, March 5 – Division II Boys’ District Semifinals
Marietta vs. McClain (6:15)
Chillicothe vs. Warren (8:00)
Friday, March 6 – Division II Boys’ District Semifinals
Logan Elm vs. Sheridan (6:15)
Vinton County vs. Hillsboro (8:00)
Saturday, March 7 – Division II Girls’ District Championship
Unioto vs. McClain (3:00)
Saturday, March 7 – Division III Girls’ District Championships
Federal Hocking vs. South Point (5:00)
Zane Trace vs. Ironton (7:00)
Huntington/Oak Hill vs. North Adams/Minford (9:00)
*These two semi-finals are being played Monday night at Waverly High School (6:15/8:00)
Sunday, March 8 – Division III Boys’ District Semifinals
Chesapeake vs. Westfall (2:00)
Piketon vs. Ironton (3:45)
North Adams vs. Fairland (5:30)
Alexander vs. Zane Trace (7:15)
State Bowling Championships: The top bowlers from all over the state will be at Lancaster this upcoming weekend at Tiki Lanes. The girls take center stage on Friday, March 6th and the boys will compete Saturday, March 7th.
State Wrestling Meet: The top wrestlers from all divisions will hit the mat at The Jerome Schottenstein Center on the campus of The Ohio State University this week. The action runs Thursday through Saturday.