Sunday, February 04, 2001

Cincinnati boys sectional draw

West Hi jumps in with No. 1 Winton Woods

By Dave Schutte
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Few coaches ask their players which team they'd prefer to play in the sectional tournament. Lannis Timmons, coach of No.3 Western Hills, is the exception.

        During a team meeting last week, Timmons posed the question, and the response, which he honored, was the talk of the coaches at Saturday's Division I tourney draw at Princeton.

        “They told me to get in with Winton Woods, and that's where I went,” Timmons said. “I'm not disappointed with our fourth seed, and I'm also all right playing in Oxford rather than UC.”

        The decision to jump in the bracket with the top-ranked and undefeated Warriors (16-0) didn't come as a surprise to Winton Woods coach David Lumpkin.

        “I can understand the decision, because Western Hills hasn't had much success against Moeller and Elder,” Lumpkin said. “Coaches look for a team they match up with.”

        To play Winton Woods, the Mustangs must win an opening- round game with Fairfield and then defeat the winner of the Lakota East/Harrison game.

        The Division I seeding went as expected. Coaches gave Winton Woods 20 of 28 first-place votes and 229 points, good for the No.1 seed.

        Although Moeller defeated St.Xavier Friday, the defending state champion Bombers were voted No.2 (167 points) in front of Moeller (164 points). Western Hills was No.4 with 154 points.

        The bottom five seeds were Oak Hills (133), Elder (96), Hamilton (66) and Withrow (31). Loveland (16-1) received 27 points, four behind Withrow, falling short of a seed.

        Mike Ferone, Loveland's veteran coach, also made a surprise choice, electing to place the Tigers in the same bracket with St.Xavier.

        After the coaches of the seeded teams pick spots in the bracket, the remaining coaches pick in an order determined by drawing numbers.

        “I wanted to stay in Cincinnati and give our kids a first-round game against a team (Glen Este) they can compete with,” Ferone said. “I've seen St.X play, and we match up size-wise with them.”

        Ferone's decision may prove to be a wise one if the Tigers defeat Glen Este.

        After all, two of St.Xavier's key players, Jordan Cornette (knee) and Steve Callahan (right ankle sprain), are hurt. Callahan sat out three games before returning against Alter but reinjured the ankle last week and sat out Friday against Moeller.

        “Steve injured another bone in the ankle and will propably be out another week,” St. Xavier coach Scott Martin said. “Jordan's injury will require surgery after the season.”

        There were no surprises in the Divisions II, III and IV drawings.

        Roger Bacon, edged McNicholas for the No.1 seed in Division II at Anderson; Madeira topped Reading for the No.1 seed in Division III at Sycamore.

        Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy earned the No.1 seed in Division IV at Loveland, followed by Cincinnati Country Day, Williamsburg and Hillcrest.

        Roger Bacon is one of the hottest teams in Cincinnati and could be a factor in the Division II tournament. The Spartans not only beat McNicholas on Tuesday but also Purcell Marian on Friday.

        “It all turned around Christmas after I gave the kids some time off,” Roger Bacon coach Bill Brewer said. “We then went to Savannah , Ga. and went 3-1. We lost by two to the host school in the championship game.”

        Tournament action begins Feb. 20.

Schedules: Division I | Division II | Division III | Division IV
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