Flyers win first sectional title since 1975
WELLSTON — In 1975, ground chuck was 69 cents a pound, the best movie Oscar went to “The Towering Inferno” and the St. Joseph Flyers were sectional basketball champions.
It’s now 2007 and ground chuck is nearly $3 a pound, the best picture is “The Departed” and the St. Joseph Flyers are sectional champions.
The Flyers sectional drought ended Monday as they slipped past the Symmes Valley Vikings 51-48 to capture the Division IV sectional championship at Wellston High School, their first sectional title since beating Chesapeake 79-74 in the Class A title game.
The Flyers will play in the district tournament at 6:15p.m. Tuesday, March 6, at the Ohio University Convocation Center against Latham Western.
“The kids didn’t talk about breaking the streak, they just talked about going to the Convo and playing four more quarters,” Flyers coach Kevin Hacker said.
“And the fan support was great. I don’t think we had that many fans ever at Wellston.”
The Flyers had only three players score with senior Michael Basedow leading all players with 25 points to go with 4 rebounds, 4 steals and 4 blocked shots.
Chad Harvey had 18 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists for the Flyers (12-9). Caleb Blackburn had the other 8 points while Ryan Schwab had 3 rebounds, assists and steals.
“Who scored didn’t matter. Everyone played their role. It was a great team win, especially for the seniors,” Hacker said.
Jacob Johnson scored 15 points and Kyle Meadows 14 to lead the Vikings (13-7).
“We played pretty well until the fourth quarter. We just turned the ball over too much and missed too many shots,” Vikings coach Alvin Carpenter said.
Meadows had 6 points as the Vikings took a 13-12 lead in the first quarter. Basedow and Harvey combined for all St. Joseph’s points.
Johnson scored 7 points in the second quarter as Symmes Valley pulled away to a 24-20 halftime lead.
Symmes Valley led by as many as 7 points in the third quarter before Basedow and Blackburn scored 6 points each as the Flyers trailed 41-35.
“We started Caleb in third quarter. (Ryan) Staton got in foul trouble in second quarter and (Blackburn) played well,” Hacker said. “We made an adjustment in third quarter and started Caleb and he pretty much shut Meadows down.”
Then came the fourth quarter and the Flyers defense limited the Vikings to 7 points.
Harvey scored 6 points to key the comeback and Basedow hit a 3-pointer and converted 5 of 6 free throws over the final minute to clinch the win.
“We played excellent defense in the fourth quarter. We played more fullcourt defense in the fourth quarter and caused some turnovers,” Hacker said.
St. Joseph hit 20 of 39 field goal attempts for 51.3 percent.
The Flyers will play in the district tournament Tuesday, March 6, at Ohio University against Latham Western.
St. Joseph and Western are the only two teams in Southeastern Ohio that had never played a district game in the Convocation Center.