Southwest Ohio Huddle: Tri-Village’s Linkous drops 61 points in record-setting performance


Southwest Ohio Huddle

Whether it’s blogs, Twitter or Facebook – everyone is now starting to
clamor for spring on the various platforms of social media. And rightly
so we might add. But before we ring in spring, there are plenty of winter sports titles still to decide. And this week the postseason heats up even more. Here’s who was on fire last week in Southwest Ohio.

Whether it’s blogs, Twitter or Facebook – everyone is now starting to clamor for spring on the various platforms of social media. And rightly so we might add.

While the mounds of snow start to melt away from the parking lots and streets of Southwest Ohio, it’s only fitting to look ahead warmer days – and a bit of sunshine.

Of course, Major League Baseball has opened spring training this month much to the delight of fans in Florida and Arizona. But, several area high school baseball and softball pitchers and catchers also begin their spring training in gymnasiums across the state this week.

But, for the most part, spring sports generally don’t begin until the end of March. So, while winter can’t end soon enough for some people, the chance to get away from the gray skies is really closer than you think this week.

The postseason – a pre-March madness of sorts – is in high gear for high school swimming and diving, wrestling, bowling, hockey and gymnastics this week. That’s not to mention the start of the boys’ sectional basketball tournament and the sectional finals for girls’ basketball.

This week is definitely a time to celebrate the swimmers and divers who will make the journey to Canton for the state meet starting Wednesday. We can’t say enough about their dedication and preparation to their sport and the postseason. It’s awesome.

It should be another great atmosphere for the state swimming and diving meet at C.T. Branin Natatorium in Canton. The boys Division I diving starts at 9 a.m. Wednesday, and the Division II competition is Thursday.

On Friday, the swimming preliminaries begin at 9 a.m. And of course, the finals begin at 9 a.m. Saturday.


Kayla Linkous, Tri-Village girls’ basketball: The sophomore scored 61 points in a Division IV sectional quarterfinal game at Brookville on Saturday as the Patriots blasted Dayton Jefferson 95-32. The 61 points set a school record and are the eighth-most scored in a game in the history of Ohio high school girls’ basketball. Linkous had already established a school record with 45 points at halftime. Tri-Village, the No. 1 seed in the sectional, plays No. 5 Twin Valley South at 7:30 p.m. today (Tuesday) at Brookville.


Mason wrestling team: The Comets won the Division I sectional title at Moeller on Saturday with 267.75 points. Mason will send a school-record 13 wrestlers to this week’s Division I district meet at Fairfield, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. Moeller was the sectional runner-up with 262 points. The Crusaders defeated the Comets in a dual meet the weekend prior to the postseason, according to the Enquirer. “To beat Moeller in their house after what we did last weekend is amazing,” Mason’s Andy Porter told the publication. Mason senior Robert Shepherd (140 pounds) remained undefeated at 33-0, according to the Enquirer. Shepherd, the defending state champion, is committed to Princeton.


Mercy wins bowling sectional: The Mercy girls’ bowling team won the sectional tournament at Crossgate Lanes on Saturday, according to the Enquirer. Kelsey Schaible was first with a high series of 612, according to the publication. The district tournament is Friday at Eastern Lanes in Middletown.

Northwest boys’ basketball update:
The Knights defeated Ross on Friday to clinch the FAVC Scarlet title. Northwest was scheduled to play Fairfield in a Division I sectional game at Lakota West on Monday. Northwest junior guard Melvin Hunter was named the FAVC Scarlet player of the year recently. Hunter and senior Preston Brown (Louisville football signee) were first-team all-conference.

Shafer is Madeira football coach:
Mike Shafer has been named the new Madeira head football coach. Shafer was previously the coach at Little Miami. He had been at Madeira earlier last decade.

Michigan State offers Grace:
Colerain junior middle linebacker Jarrett Grace has been offered by Michigan State, according to Grace also has offers that include Cincinnati, Notre Dame, Kentucky, West Virginia, Boston College and several others.

Wyoming wins district swimming titles:
The Wyoming boys’ and girls’ swimming and diving teams won the Division II district team titles at Miami University last weekend. Wyoming junior Celia Oberholzer set district record in the 100 backstroke – she won in 56.51. The boys’ team won all three relay events, according to the Enquirer.

Mason wins gymnastics city title:
Mason won its second consecutive city gymnastics title, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. Kara Esler was the all-around champion for the Comets, which are undefeated in seven meets this season, according to the Enquirer. The district meet is this weekend at Lakota East.

Ohio University offers Colerain duo:
Ohio University has offered Colerain junior cornerback Chris Dukes and junior running back Tyler Williams, according to


Indian Hill vs. New Richmond girls’ basketball, 6 p.m. today: The No. 1 seed Indian Hill plays No. 12 seed New Richmond at 6 p.m. in a Division II sectional semifinal at Withrow. Indian Hill (19-2) is led by sophomore guard Nicole Bell, who averages 14.8 points. 4.9 assists and 2.9 steals. The sectional final is 2 p.m. Saturday at Withrow.

Walnut Hills vs. Mount Notre Dame girls’ basketball, 6 p.m. Friday:
The Division I sectional final will be Friday night at Harrison. This could be a very interesting matchup. Walnut Hills is led by seniors Tayler Stanton (Kent State) and Phylesha Bullard (Syrcause). MND, which has won four consecutive Division I state titles, is led by sophomore guard Raeshaun Gaffney, who averages 20.6 points.

McAuley vs. Princeton girls’ basketball, 1 p.m. Saturday:
The two teams play in a Division I sectional final at Kings. The winner advances to the district tournament on Saturday, March 6 at 11 a.m. at Harrison. McAuley is led by junior guard Jenny Burgoyne, who averages 11.7 points and 6.4 rebounds. Princeton (19-2) is led by senior guard Kayla Joiner, who averages 13.2 points, 2.5 rebounds and 2.0 assists.

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