Final chance for Springfield, area teams to impress poll voters

The path to the high school boys basketball state tournament becomes more clear Sunday.

That’s when coaches gather at various sites around the state to determine the sectional tournament brackets. Teams in the Miami Valley get one more chance tonight to impress fellow coaches before voting for seeds ends at noon on Saturday.

Springfield could be one of the top movers if the Wildcats can beat the Wayne Warriors. Springfield hosts the defending Division I state champions Friday night in a Greater Western Ohio Conference Central Division game.

Wayne, ranked No. 1 in the D-I state poll, is 18-0 and leads the GWOC Central at 7-0. Springfield (13-5 overall) is tied for third with Northmont at 4-3. Centerville is in second at 5-2.

Springfield visited Wayne on Jan. 8 and left with an 85-50 setback. The Warriors jumped out to a 29-6 lead after one quarter. Springfield regrouped and stayed competitive the final three quarters, playing Wayne to a score of 56-44.

University of Dayton-bound Trey Landers leads Wayne with 16.4 points and is second with 7.5 rebounds. L’Christian Smith, a major Division I football recruit, is second in scoring at 15.1 and leads in rebound with 9.2. The duo combined for 35 points in the win in January.

Springfield counters with Danny Davis, also a major D-I football recruit, who averages a team-high 19.6 points and 7. 1 rebounds. Michael McKay averages 14.6 points and Darius Harper, who will play his college ball at Miami, adds 11.8 points and 8.1 rebounds.

Springfield finishes the regular season with Beavercreek on Tuesday, at Northmont on Feb. 12 and with No. 5 Wilmington on Feb. 13.

Won and done: The Tecumseh Arrows (16-3 overall, 7-1 CBC) can clinch the Central Buckeye Conference Kenton Division outright by winning one of its final two division games. The first chance comes Friday at Stebbins (7-11, 3-5 CBC).

Tecumseh — which already has at least a share of the title — has a two-game lead over Shawnee (10-7, 5-3 CBC). The Braves host Kenton Ridge (9-10, 2-6 CBC) tonight.

Should the title come down to the final game, Tecumseh finishes the CBC season against Bellefontaine (7-10, 3-5 CBC) on Feb. 12.

OHC down to Tigers, Trojans: The battle for the Ohio Heritage Conference could come down to the Feb. 12 season finale between West Liberty-Salem (17-0 overall, 12-0 OHC) and Southeastern (18-2, 11-1 OHC).

Unless Mechanicsburg or Greeneview can play spoiler. West Liberty-Salem plays Mechanicsburg (4-11, 2-9 OHC) and Southeastern plays Greeneview (5-13, 4-8 OHC) on Friday.

A WL-S win clinches at least a share of the title.

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