The Swami got off to a slow start and finished
slowly on our sectional and district picks for 2007. The 102-46 (69%)
win/loss record was a drop off of two games from 2006. The Swami once
again picked only five district champions correctly out of the thirteen
districts from around Northwest Ohio. In five other districts, the
Swami had his projected district winner fall short in the district
championship game. The regional and state predictions should be a bit
more difficult in 2007 since we don’t have the clear cut favorites that
we had in 2006.
Three of the four teams crowned as champions in the
final Associated Press poll (Lakewood St. Edward, Liberty-Benton, and
New Knoxville) have advanced to the regional with only D2 poll champ
Greenfield McClain being eliminated. Three of the 2006 state champions
(Dayton Dunbar, Cincinnati North College Hill, and South Webster) remain
alive with D1 Canton McKinley eliminated in a sectional final.
Jon Diebler of Upper Sandusky enters the regional
with 975 points on the season and 3,081 points in his career. He is the
only player in OHSAA history to top 3,000 points in a career and is a
sure bet to become the fifth player to top 1,000 points in a season.
Rather than taking up space with some
editorializing, let’s go to the picks. It’s Swami time.
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Five of the thirteen teams ranked by the Associated
Press in their final poll are playing in the regional. Four teams (St.
Henry, Cleveland Villa-Angela/St. Joe’s, Wheelersburg, and Cincinnati
North College Hill) were regional qualifiers in 2006. Liberty-Benton is
the only undefeated team in D3.
BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY: #1 Liberty-Benton
is the only ranked team at Anderson Arena. Columbus Africentric
eliminated #11 Columbus Bishop Hartley in a district final. Evergreen
defeated #3 Archbold in a district semifinal while St. Henry ousted #13
Lima Central Catholic in a sectional final. Nathan Hyde is the top
player for L-B with help from T.J. Recker and Aaron Craft. Tim Mapp and
Bernie Agnew lead Africentric. Andrew Pinkelman is Evergreen’s top
player with Tyler Post and Mitch Niekamp leading the way for St. Henry.
Semifinals – Liberty-Benton over Columbus
Africentric; St. Henry over Evergreen
Final – Liberty-Benton over St. Henry
CANTON FIELDHOUSE: #5 Rocky River Lutheran West and
#9 Cleveland VASJ are ranked teams at Canton. Campbell Memorial
defeated #7 Youngstown Ursuline in a district final. This is Cleveland
VASJ’s third straight trip to the regional. The Vikings lost to North
College Hill 90-73 in last year’s D3 state final. Nate Barnes, Ashen
Ward, and Maurice Haynes lead VASJ. Blake Marsh and Mike Lewis are the
top players for Manchester while Jermaine Richardson leads Campbell
Memorial. Scott Voiers and Mike Telzrow are big guns for Lutheran West.
Semifinals – Cleveland VASJ over Akron Manchester;
Campbell Memorial over Lutheran West
Final – Cleveland VASJ over Campbell Memorial
OHIO UNIVERSITY: #6 Wheelersburg is the only
ranked team at the Convo. Zoarville Tuscarawas Valley defeated #8 West
Muskingum in a district semi-final. Wheelersburg is the defending
regional champion. Camden Miller (Western Carolina) and Drew Spradlin
are top players for the ‘Burg. Drew Copas leads Seaman North Adams, and
Garland Stiltner is Oak Hill’s top player. Jacob Brown paces Tusky
Semifinals – Wheelersburg over Oak Hill; Tusky
Valley over Seaman North Adams
Final – Wheelersburg over Tusky Valley
WRIGHT STATE UNIVERSITY: #2 Dayton Oakwood is the
only ranked team at the Nutter Center. Cincinnati North College Hill is
the two-time defending state champion in D3. Damon Butler returns for
NCH with help from Nathaniel Glover. Kyle Peterson leads River Valley.
Chris Hardy and Robby Sherk are top players for Oakwood while Fred
Willis leads Purcell Marian.
Semifinals - North College Hill over River Valley;
Purcell Marian over Oakwood
Final – Purcell Marian over North College Hill
D3 kicks off the eighty-fifth annual state boys
Final Four – Liberty-Benton, Cleveland
Villa-Angela/St. Joe’s, Wheelersburg, Cincinnati Purcell Marian
Semifinals – Liberty-Benton over Cleveland VASJ;
Wheelersburg over Cincinnati Purcell Marian
Final – Wheelersburg over Liberty-Benton
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Eight of the eleven teams ranked in the final
Associated Press poll have advanced to regional tournaments. #1
Greenfield McClain was eliminated by Chillicothe in double overtime in a
district final. Six teams (Cleveland Benedictine, Painesville Harvey,
Columbus DeSales, Zanesville, Tipp City Tippecanoe, Dayton Dunbar) are
making a return trip to the regional tournament in 2007. Tipp City
Tippecanoe is the only undefeated team in D2.
OHIO UNIVERSITY: #7 Zanesville and #11 Columbus
DeSales are ranked teams at the Convo. Unranked Chillicothe eliminated
#1 Greenfield McClain in a district final. DeSales is the defending
regional champion. Zanesville has three straight district titles.
Elijah Allen, Alex Kellogg (Clark’s son), and Dane Johnson top DeSales.
Adam Bice leads Tri-Valley. Logan Aronhalt and Korey Haddox are top
players for Zanesville. Anthony Hitchens, Chris Givens, and Ray
Chambers lead Chillicothe.
Semifinals – DeSales over Dresden Tri-Valley;
Zanesville over Chillicothe
Final – Columbus DeSales over Zanesville
WRIGHT STATE UNIVERSITY: #2 Kettering Alter, #4
Tipp City Tippecanoe, and #6 Dayton Dunbar are ranked teams at the
Nutter Center. Dayton Dunbar is the defending D2 state champion. This
is the fourth straight trip to the regional tournament for Dunbar.
Paris Harris and J.J. Laumann are the top players for Alter. Troy
Cherry and Darren Hughes lead Beechcroft. Kellen Zawadzki, Robert
Goldsberry, and Kyle Corbin lead Tipp. Norris Cole and Aaron Pogue are
returning starters for Dunbar.
Semifinals – Kettering Alter over Columbus
Beechcroft; Tipp City Tippecanoe over Dayton Dunbar
Final – Kettering Alter over Tipp City Tippecanoe
UNIVERSITY OF TOLEDO: #8 Olmsted Falls, #8 Van
Wert, and #10 Upper Sandusky are ranked teams in the Toledo regional.
Akron Kenmore defeated eight-time defending district champion Akron St.
Vincent-St. Mary to advance to the regional. Jon Diebler (OSU)
dominates for Upper with sophomore Alex Falk providing support. Chris
Morrow, Jared Myers, and Brett Leon lead Van Wert. Tyler Sparks, Dave
Pellerite, and Pat Pellerite pace Olmsted Falls. Joe Miller, Marcus
Golden, and Sinisa Srbijan are top players for Kenmore. The semifinal
between Kenmore and Olmsted Falls is being played at the Canton
Fieldhouse with Upper Sandusky and Van Wert meeting in a semifinal at
Toledo. The final will be played at UT’s Savage Hall.
Semifinals – Upper Sandusky over Van Wert; Olmsted
Falls over Akron Kenmore
Final – Upper Sandusky over Olmsted Falls
CANTON CIVIC CENTER: There are no ranked teams at
Canton. This is Painesville Harvey’s third straight trip to the
regional. Navarre Fairless advanced with a win over two-time defending
regional champion Wooster Triway. Scott Alston, Devonne Johnson, and
Jeff Spikes are top players for Harvey. Chris Lovell leads Poland
Seminary. Freshman Cameron Wright is the top player for Benedictine
with help from Walter Boykins. Jonah Manack and Brian Cross are big
guns for Fairless.
Semifinals – Painesville Harvey over Poland
Seminary; Cleveland Benedictine over Navarre Fairless
Final – Painesville Harvey over Cleveland
D2 will play the Thursday evening games and the
early Saturday afternoon final in Columbus.
Final Four – Columbus DeSales, Kettering Alter,
Upper Sandusky, Painesville Harvey
Semifinals – Kettering Alter over Columbus DeSales;
Upper Sandusky over Painesville Harvey
Kettering Alter over Upper Sandusky
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Eight of the twelve teams in the final Associated
Press poll have advanced to regional play. Seven teams (Holgate,
Bucyrus Wynford, South Webster, Lockland, Houston, Windham, and Berlin
Hiland) were regional qualifiers in 2006. Canal Winchester Harvest
Prep, New Knoxville, Georgetown, and McDonald are undefeated teams still
playing in D4.
BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY: #6 Van Buren is the
only ranked team at Anderson Arena. Van Buren eliminated #3 Toledo
Christian in a district final. Holgate has seven consecutive district
championships. Joe Baker and Logan Brubaker are veterans for Holgate.
Derek Geise leads Fort Jennings. Matt Phillips and Logan Grant are top
players for Van Buren while John Shifley and Chad Snyder lead Wynford.
Semifinals – Holgate over Fort Jennings; Van Buren
over Bucyrus Wynford
Final – Van Buren over Holgate
COLUMBUS FAIRGROUNDS: #5 Canal Winchester Harvest
Prep and #12 Latham Western are ranked teams at the Barn. Harvest Prep
eliminated #7 Worthington Christian for a district title. South Webster
is the defending D4 state champion. The Jeeps have three consecutive
district championships. Tyler Kreim and Blaine Erwin lead Buckeye
Central while Jeremy McLeod and Michael White pace Latham Western. Remon Nelson and Marquis Mathis are the big guns for Harvest Prep. Josh
Campbell and Ryan Fenton are top players for South Webster.
Semifinals – Buckeye Central over Latham Western;
Canal Winchester Harvest Prep over South Webster
Final – Canal Winchester Harvest Prep over Buckeye
MIAMI UNIVERSITY: #1 New Knoxville and #8 Lockland
are ranked teams at Millett Hall. Georgetown is unranked despite being
undefeated. Houston defeated #2 Russia in a district semifinal.
Lockland returns to the regional for the third consecutive season and is
the defending regional champion. Thomas Smith and Antoine Wilhite are
returnees for Lockland. Ross Stienecker and Josh Niemeyer lead New
Knoxville. Brandon Hughes is the top player for Houston while Jay
Chadwell and Isaiah Felder lead Georgetown
Semifinals – Lockland over New Knoxville; Houston
Final – Lockland over Houston
CANTON FIELDHOUSE: #4 McDonald, #9 Berlin Hiland,
and #11 Windham are ranked teams at Canton. Windham is the defending
regional champion. Andy Timko and Bradley Hinton are top players for
McDonald while Drew Fetter and Travis Gregory lead Rittman. Joel Gause
is the top player for Hiland. Zach Jacobson and Phil Workman lead
Semifinals – McDonald over Rittman; Berlin Hiland
Final – Berlin Hiland over McDonald
D4 will play the early Friday games and the late
Saturday afternoon game at the Value City Arena.
Final Four – Van Buren, Canal Winchester Harvest
Prep, Lockland, and Berlin Hiland
Semifinals – Canal Winchester Harvest Prep over Van
Buren; Lockland over Berlin Hiland
Lockland over Canal Winchester Harvest Prep
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Seven of the ten teams ranked in the final
Associated Press poll are playing in regional tournaments. Seven teams
(Solon, Cincinnati St. Xavier, Trotwood-Madison, Cincinnati Elder,
Toledo St. John’s, Strongsville, Lakewood St. Edward) quailed for the
regional in 2006. Lakewood St. Edward and Columbus Northland are
undefeated teams in D1.
UNIVERSITY OF AKRON: #9 Canton GlenOak is the only
ranked team at the JAR. GlenOak eliminated #10 Warren Harding in a
district semifinal. This is the third straight trip to the regional
tournament for Solon. 7’1” Kosta Koufos (OSU) leads GlenOak with help
from Mark Quinn. 6’9” Dallas Lauderdale (OSU) paces Solon who had 6’7”
Reggie Keely transfer to Bedford at midseason. Kendall Holt and Jermale
Hines lead Cleveland Glenville while Joe Pope, Robert Johnson, and Ramel
Mitchell are top players for Akron Firestone.
Semifinals – Canton GlenOak over Solon; Akron
Firestone over Cleveland Glenville
Final – Canton GlenOak over Akron Firestone
XAVIER UNIVERSITY: #2 Trotwood-Madison and #8
Cincinnati Elder are ranked teams at the Cintas Center. Cincinnati St.
Xavier and Trotwood-Madison have three straight district titles to their
credit. Trotwood-Madison lost 63-33 to Canton McKinley in the 2006
state championship game. Chris Wright (Dayton) and Duane Morgan are top
players for Trotwood-Madison. Walt Gibler is the big gun for St. X.
Kyle Rudolph is the top player for Elder while 6’9” Yancy Gates leads
Semifinals – Trotwood-Madison over Cincinnati St.
Xavier; Cincinnati Elder over Cincinnati Withrow
Final – Trotwood-Madison over Cincinnati Elder
COLUMBUS FAIRGROUNDS: #4 Columbus Northland, #6
Newark, and #7 Cincinnati Moeller are ranked teams at the Barn. Upper
Arlington eliminated #5 Dublin Scioto in a district semifinal. Greg
Avery is the top player for Newark while Devon Moore and Jared Sullinger
lead Northland. Troy Tabler (Wright State) and Quinn McDowell lead
Moeller. Matt Hutton and Chris Sullivan are top players for Upper
Semifinals – Newark over Columbus Northland;
Cincinnati Moeller over Upper Arlington
Final – Cincinnati Moeller over Newark
UNIVERSITY OF TOLEDO: #1 Lakewood St. Edward is the
lone ranked team in the Toledo regional. Toledo St. John’s defeated #3
Toledo Libbey for a district title. St. Ed’s has three consecutive
district titles. Toledo St. John’s is the defending regional champion.
Joe Jakubowski (Rice) and Michael Taylor lead St. John’s with Luke Kraus
and Jesse Wohl the top players for Findlay. 6’8” Delvon Roe, 6’8” Tom
Pritchard, and 6’5” Kyle Hubbard lead St. Ed’s. Nate Korinchak and
Danny Kelly pace Strongsville. The semifinal between Strongsville and
Lakewood St. Edward will be played at the Canton Civic Center while St.
John’s and Findlay will meet in a semifinal at the University of
Toledo. The final will be played at UT’s Savage Hall.
Semifinals – Toledo St. John’s over Findlay;
Lakewood St. Edward over Strongsville
Final – Lakewood St. Edward over Toledo St. John’s
D1 will close out the 2007 state tournament playing
the Friday night games and the late Saturday game.
Final Four – Canton GlenOak, Trotwood-Madison,
Cincinnati Moeller, Lakewood St. Edward
Semifinals – Trotwood-Madison over Canton GlenOak;
Lakewood St. Edward over Cincinnati Moeller
Final – Trotwood-Madison over Lakewood St. Edward
This closes the book on Trail Trash for another
year. Try not to laugh too hard at some of these picks. We appreciate
your support and value any feedback. The opinions expressed are those
of the Swami. If you have any questions, comments, or corrections,
See you in Columbus.
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Predictions: The Swami