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Vikings preparing for first-ever regional

WILLOW WOOD – Is this the sequel? In an area that produced the famous Waterloo Wonders, the Symmes Valley Vikings are looking to make their own niche in high school basketball history.

Monday, March 12, 2001

WILLOW WOOD – Is this the sequel? In an area that produced the famous Waterloo Wonders, the Symmes Valley Vikings are looking to make their own niche in high school basketball history.

Symmes Valley is a consolidation of Waterloo, Cadmus, Wilgus, and Aid high schools. And although they haven’t matched the Waterloo’s legendary success, that doesn’t overshadow what the Vikings have done so far this season.

The Vikings have set a school record with 18 wins against five losses and they won the school’s first-ever district championship Saturday night at Ohio University with a 58-55 win over Manchester.

Next up is Tuesday’s first-ever regional tournament game, an 8 p.m. matchup against the 10-ranked Reedsville Eastern Eagles.

"The kids have just worked hard since back in the summer," first-year coach Alvin Carpenter said. "I told the players it may not mean as much to them now as it will in five or 10 years from now. They’re just a couple of games away from their own Waterloo Wonders story."

Eastern will present a tough challenge for the Vikings. The Eagles lost three games early in the season coming off an extended football season due to the postseason playoffs, but since then they have been on a roll.

The Eagles are (20-3) are led by a trio of players.

Joe Brown, a 6-foot-1 senior, averages 15.9 points and 5.4 rebounds. Center Matt Simpson, a 6-4 senior, averages 13.9 points and 7.0 rebounds and leads the team in assists and steals. Chad Nelson, a 6-1 senior, averages 11.1 points and 4.1 rebounds and is second on the team in assists.

Rounding out the starting lineup are 5-7 senior Josh Kehl (2.3 ppg) and 5-9 junior Garrett Karr (8.0 ppg).

Symmes Valley will counter with first-team all-district center Justin Myers, a 6-6 senior, who averages 20.6 points and 11.9 rebounds. He had 26 points and 11 rebounds in the district win.

Adam Corn, a 6-foot senior, has a 13.6 scoring and 5.0 rebound average, 6-foot sophomore guard Drew Hunt scores at 10.7 points a game, 5-11 senior point guard Brad Carpenter (3.4 ppg) leads the team in assists and steals, and 5-9 senior guard Chris Lafon (1.7 ppg) rounds out the starting lineup.

The Vikings bench played a big part in the district title. Coach Carpenter will utilized 6-5 senior Travis Wilson, 5-7 J. T. Pierce, 5-8 Terry Elswick, 6-2 David Owens, 6-4 Brandon Runyon, and 5-11 Eric Holland.