Area Boys Basketball Teams Turn From Successful Regular Seasons to the Tourney

Photo by Fred Kremer
Staff Writer

The Marion Local boys basketball team decided not to share.

The Flyers’ dominating third quarter led to a 57-43 outright title-clinching victory over Coldwater on Friday night,  completing a perfect 9-0 run through the difficult Midwest Athletic Conference for its first outright conference title since 2013-2014 and the 10th MAC title in program history

Led by the league’s stingiest defense, Kurt Goettemoeller’s Flyers never tripped up in MAC play, beating St. Henry early in the season and Versailles near the end of the campaign — key wins over the third and second-place teams in the league, respectively. They could never relax, with Eric Rosenbeck’s St. Henry squad making a late-season charge that has included winning 15 of 16 games and eight straight MAC wins since that 77-40 loss to Marion Local back on Dec. 22.

With its 10th MAC basketball title, Marion Local moves ahead of St. John’s nine titles. Only St. Henry has more with 13. Marion Local has won MAC titles in 2017-2018, 2013-2014, 2002-2003, 2000-2001, 1999-2000, 1985-1986, 1984-1985, 1980-1981, 1976-1977 and 1974-1975.

Regular season goal reached, the Flyers now eye the tournament. Last year the Flyers got to within a game of state before a frigid shooting night against Archbold led to a blowout loss at Savage Arena in Toledo.

With much of that same roster intact and a MAC title trophy in hand, Marion Local will open tournament play on Friday against either Lima Temple Christian or Ridgemont at Wapakoneta High School. The winner advances to play Upper Scioto Valley, New Bremen or Lima Perry on Tuesday, March 6 at 6:15 p.m. in Wapakoneta.

Minster: Minster finished its best season in Midwest Athletic Conference play since 2005-2006, emerging with a 69-63 overtime road win against Parkway to finish the conference season at 6-3 and 14-7 overall. Jarod Schulze scored 19 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and blocked five shots. Isaac Schmiesing added 17 points while Mike Ketner had 14 points in the win Minster plays Allen East or New Knoxville on Friday, March 2 at 8 p.m. at Coldwater. The winner plays St. Henry, Ada or Waynesfield-Goshen at Wapak on March 6 at 8 p.m.

Fort Loramie:  After building such a big lead early in the game on Saturday against Mechanicsburg, the Fort Loramie bench started checking in in waves like hockey players for their shifts. It was befitting of a Redskin squad that has chosen the mullet as its haircut of choice. The starters spent much of the night in their warm-ups on the bench while Fort Loramie opened its tournament with an easy 65-21 victory over overwhelmed Mechanicsburg at Piqua High School in what the Redskins hope is another deep run in the tournament. The Redskins improved to 21-2 on the season, setting up their next sectional match-up against Bradford on Wednesday, Feb. 28 at Piqua. The winner plays Ansonia or Botkins on Saturday, March 3 at Piqua High School, a trip to UD Arena on the line. A 24-0 run in the first half catapulted Fort Loramie to a 24-2 lead and the rout was on. Austin Siegel and Dillon Braun each scored 18 points for the Redskins, who played without injured big man Tyler Siegel, who was injured in the Russia game.

New Bremen: If a team is judged by how much it improves over the course of a season, the New Bremen boys basketball team has had quite a campaign. From a 1-7 squad that appeared lost as the calendar turned from 2017 to 2018, New Bremen has matured into a squad that went 8-6 since and a team still in the fight for a league title and one of Ohio’s hottest teams down at the half. The Cardinals led 22-18 over St. Henry on Friday night before the streaking Redskins—winners of 15 of their last 16 games — rallied in the second half for a 51-39 victory. New Bremen’s Nolan Bornhorst led the Cardinals with 14 points. Luke Vonderhaar added nine points. New Bremen held the MAC’s third leading scorer, Tyler Schlarman, five points under his average as he scored 12 points. New Bremen opened its tournament on Tuesday with a 63-54 win over Lima Perry. The winner will face Upper Scioto Valley on Friday, March 2 at 8 p.m. at Bath.