Division II Boys Basketball State Tournament Preview: Three teams looking to add to state title haul


Division II State Tournament

Three teams with state titles are looking to snag another this weekend
at the Division II boys basketball state tournament. Columbus DeSales,
Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary and Dayton Thurgood Marshall (formerly
Colonel White) hope to add to their trophy haul. Logan Elm hopes to
start one.

Three teams with state titles are looking to snag another this weekend at the Division II boys basketball state tournament. Columbus DeSales, Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary and Dayton Thurgood Marshall (formerly Colonel White) hope to add to their trophy haul. Logan Elm hopes to start one.


Circleville Logan Elm (24-1) vs. Dayton Thurgood Marshall (21-4), Friday at 10:45 a.m.
Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary (21-4) vs. Columbus St. Francis DeSales (22-3), Friday at 2 p.m.
Championship Game: Saturday at 5:15 p.m.


Logan Elm (24-1)
Nickname: Braves
Boys Enrollment: 318
Final 2009 Ranking: 2nd
State Appearances: 2009
Head Coach: Doug Stiverson
School Rec.: 157-72 (10 yrs.)
PPG: 66.9; OPP: 49.0
Probable Starters
F 10 Tyler Pritchard, 6-4, Jr., 5.7 ppg
G 1 Brandon Amann, 6-2, Sr., 21.4 ppg
G 24 Tim Congrove, 6-0, Sr., 16.6 ppg
G 13 Adam Blake, 6-0, Jr., 7.0 ppg
G 3 Chad Holbrook, 5-10, Sr., 3.5 ppg

Thurgood Marshall (21-4)
Nickname: Cougars
Boys Enrollment: 403
Final 2009 Ranking: 10th
State Appearances: 2009, 1990
Head Coach: John N. Ralph
School Rec.: 65-54 (7 yrs.)
PPG: 69.0; OPP: 56.0
Probable Starters
F 25 DeAngelo Gates, 6-1, Sr., 9.5 ppg
F 41 Adrian Quinn, 6-3, Jr., 5.5 ppg
C 33 Greg Gainey, 6-5, Jr., 18.0 ppg
G 3 Juwan Staten, 6-0, Jr., 19.5 ppg
G 5 Shawn Robinson, 5-9, Jr., 11.0 ppg

St. Vincent-St. Mary (21-4)
Nickname: Fighting Irish
Boys Enrollment: 252
Final 2009 Ranking: 3rd
State Appearances: 2009, 2006, 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1987, 1984, 1983
Head Coach: Dru Joyce
School Rec.: 156-41 (7 yrs.)
PPG: 70.0; OPP: 57.0
Probable Starters
F 14 Jakarr Sampson, 6-8, So., 8.0 ppg
G 1 Davonte Beard, 6-1, So, 6.5 ppg
G 3 Michael Hammonds, 6-0, Sr., 12.3 ppg
G 35 Daylen Harrison, 6-6, Sr., 16.5 ppg
G 25 Ricky Johnson, 5-9, So., 11.1 ppg

St. Francis De Sales (22-3)
Nickname: Stallions
Boys Enrollment: 377
Final 2009 Ranking: 8th
State Appearances: 2009, 2007, 2006, 1987
Head Coach: Blair Albright
School Rec.: 94-28 (5 yrs.)
PPG: 66.0; OPP: 50.0
Probable Starters
F 1 Ike Ariguzo, 6-7, Sr., 10.5 ppg
F 12 Seun Adejobi., 6-2, Sr., 4.5 ppg
G 15 Nick Kellogg, 6-2, Jr., 17.1 ppg
G 41 Nick Goff, 6-3, Sr., 13.7 ppg
G 14 Zak Gaborcik, 6-1, Sr., 5.8 ppg


Brandon Amann, Circleville Logan Elm, 6-1, sr., 22.0 ppg: Transfer from Teays Valley was named first team All-Ohio. He scored 36 points in LE’s season opening win over Harvest Prep and hasn’t slowed down. He’s also a 1,000-point scorer.

Juwan Staten, Thurgood Marshall, 5-10, jr., 20.4 ppg:
University of Dayton commit was named second team All-Ohio. Said Marshall head coach John N. Ralph: “I think he has one of the better mid-range games in high school basketball right now.”

Tim Congrove, Circleville Logan Elm, 6-0, sr., 16.6 ppg:
Sharpshooter has canned 226 career 3s and is a 1,000-point scorer and three-year starter. He’s also a two-year captain.

Nick Kellogg, Cols. DeSales, 6-1, jr., 17.1 ppg:
Second team All-Ohio selection is the son of former Ohio State and NBA star Clark Kellogg, who is the lead analyst for CBS’s coverage of the NCAA basketball tournament. Said head coach Blair Albright: “He’s one of the better guards in Division II. He’s a very physical and strong guard who finishes well. Things start with him.”

Daylen Harrison, Akron SVSM, 6-6, sr., 16.0 ppg:
Second team All-Ohio selection is a three-year starter and the team’s leading rebounder. Said SVSM head coach Dru Joyce: “He’s a very, very skilled player. He has a quiet confidence.” Harrison scored 30 on the ACT and has offers from Cornell, Columbia and Wyoming. Added Joyce: “He’ll definitely play at the next level.”

Greg Gainey, Thurgood Marshall, 6-5, Jr., 18.0 ppg:
First team Dayton City League selection. Can be dominant in the post.

Ike Ariguzo, Cols. DeSales, 6-7, Sr., 10.5 ppg:
According to his head coach, Ariguzo is one of he most under-rated “bigs” around. Said Albright: “He’s had games this year where he’s had a legitimate 20 rebounds. He has an absolute tenaciousness with the way be plays.”

Want More? Good, there is some. Click the #2 below to access Top Storylines, Quotes and Predictions


Logan Elm is the first boys team from Pickaway County to make it to the state tournament since Ashville High School – one of the school’s that eventually consolidated into the Teays Valley school district – made the trip in 1945. The Braves lost by a point in last year’s regional semifinals to eventual state champion Chillicothe and avenged that loss this season by knocking the defending champs out in a regional semifinal rematch.  Senior guards Brandon Amann and Tim Congrove have both scored more than 1,000 points in their career. It’s been a very good school year for Logan Elm, whose football team put together a 12-1 season after going 0-10 in 2007. Many of the same faces play both sports.

Marshall won the Division II state championship in 1990 when it was known as Colonel White High School. This is the second state appearance in school history. The Cougars are just in their second year as a school, having moved into a new building that was constructed on the ground that used to house the old Dayton Roth High School. Roth won Class AA state titles in 1976 and 1982 and was AAA champ in 1981 with former Ohio State and NFL great Keith Byars in the line-up. Marshall’s school colors are a mixture of both Colonel White (gold) and Roth (purple).

Marshall head coach John N. Ralph is a seasoned veteran having coached for 32 years. He’s spent stints (coaching boys and girls) at Sandusky, Lorain Admiral King, Mifflin and Alter.

Senior starter DeAngelo Gates is playing his first year of organized basketball. Ralph said he found him “playing on the playground.”

Marshall has beaten GCL stalwarts Kettering Alter, Dayton Chaminade-Julienne and Cincinnati Roger Bacon en route to Columbus.

SVSM is in the state tournament for the ninth time and is looking for its fifth state title. The Irish’s last crown came in 2003 when they also won the USA Today national championship with LeBron James. In 2006 the Irish were semifinalists. SVSM is young with three sophomore starters, of course, the last time the Irish started three sophomores in a state tournament game they won the 2001 D-II state title (see LeBron).

DeSales is making its third trip to the state tournament in four years and is looking for its second state title. The Stallions were AA state champions in 1987. Three of the Stallions’ five starters score in double figures. According to head coach Blair Albright this rendition of the Stallions is more athletic than those of the past.


“We’re going to have to try to slow them down offensively and make them score against us in the halfcourt and not the fullcourt. I think it’s also going to be very important that we rebound the basketball. I’ve seen their last two games and they’ve had over 15 offensive rebounds in each game. They really get to the boards.” – Logan Elm head coach Doug Stiverson on playing against Marshall

“Circleville is very proud of the pumpkin show and it’s something that everyone in our whole town and community looks forward to but at the same time hopefully we’re putting Circleville on the map for something else and that’s basketball.” – Stiverson on the world famous Circleville Pumpkin Festival

“Last year we lost to Chillicothe by a point in the district final and we had a core group of kids coming back. I told the kids coming back that we were close, but that close wasn’t good enough anymore. The kids really believed that they could get to the state tournament this year. They’ve always had it in their minds that they could get here and sometimes that’s half the battle.” – Stiverson on making the state

“The majority of great players and great coaches and great teams in this state never get the chance to play at state during their careers. It means not only a great deal to our team, players and this school, but it’s an awesome experience for the City of Dayton and the whole Southwest District. I’m looking at a note right now from a coach from one of the team’s we beat (Wilmington) and he said ‘Be sure to tell you’re players that they are representing more than themselves in Columbus. They are representing the entire Southwest District, which plays some of the best basketball in the state. They are representing teams like Wilmington because they beat us. I’ve seen other teams, and your team is a great one. Close out the deal.’” – Marshall head coach John N. Ralph on making the state tournament

“Everybody who is joining the party up in Columbus is a good team. Everyone is tough and I respect all of them. But, we have come to win the state championship. We didn’t come to be happy with just being here.” – Ralph on Marshall’s goals

“We’re pleased with where we are but we’re not satisfied. Like (Marshall) we are coming not to just be there but to win.” – SVSM head coach Dru Joyce on the Irish’s goals
“It’s definitely advantageous to have LeBron as an alumni and as a supporter of the program. Kids want to continue that legacy and we’re hoping that we can continue to keep the tradition going and build on it…The negative of having that LeBron James-mystique is that you get guys wanting to be the next one and sometimes you get guys who come in and don’t really have the patience to grow in our program.” – Joyce on LeBron’s impact

“I believe if you want to be the best you have to play the best and it’s always good to beat the best. We’re not in a league so that’s one of the pluses for us because we’re able to go out and schedule whomever will come and play us. We’ve been able to keep that at a high-level of competition. And the one thing that I try to always do is to schedule great teams that play different styles. I think that helps our guys prepare. This is nothing against the other three teams there this weekend, because I have great respect for them, but I don’t think they are going to throw anything at us that we haven’t seen. Now they may do it a little better than somebody else, but we will have seen it. That goes a long way when you’re in a highly pressure-packed game.” – Joyce on SVSM’s tough schedule

“I think this is really special for this particular group because they were very young players the last time we went. Some of them had some experience of playing in the game but many had the opportunity to observe it and dream about maybe having that opportunity for themselves. Here they are having made their own way.” – DeSales head coach Blair Albright

“When you look at Akron SVSM I don’t think it’s overstating it to say that they are potentially one of the best teams in the entire state regardless of division. They are definitely tested. They are definitely proven.” – Albright on SVSM


Semifinals: Marshall over Logan Elm. DeSales over SVSM

DeSales over Marshall

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