Sunday, March 11, 2001

Western Hills earns rare trip to regional


Mustangs dispose of Beavercreek

By Dave Schutte
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        DAYTON — Playing in the Division I regional basketball tournament has been a rarity for the Western Hills Mustangs.

        “I've been at Western Hills since 1953 and we never made it to the regional,” former teacher Nelson Homan said. “I don't think we've ever made it this far.”

        The Mustangs will enter uncharted waters Thursday as a result of Saturday's 62-42 victory over Beavercreek in the Division I district championship at University of Dayton Arena.

        Vandalia Butler, a 64-54 upset winner in overtime over defending state champion St.Xavier, will be the Mustangs' regional semifinal opponent at XU's Cintas Center at 8p.m.

        Elder meets Springfield South at 7p.m. in the other regional semifinal.

        “Defense was the key and has been since we started the winning streak,” West Hi coach Lannis Timmons said. “We started in a man-to-man and only changed once.”

        A 12-0 run during the first four minutes set the tone for a game Western Hills controlled from start to finish. During the run, West Hi forced six Beavercreek turnovers.

        “Getting out in front was important for us,” said senior center Danny Horace, who scored 17 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. “We knew Beavercreek would make a run and we had to respond.”

        Trailing 34-18 at halftime, the Beavers came on strong in the third quarter, pulling within nine at 36-27 with more than three minutes left.

        “I don't think we relaxed in the third quarter,” Timmons said. “You have to give Beavercreek some credit. They scrapped and kept coming at us.”

        Western Hills quickly took control in the fourth quarter. The Mustangs had a 10-point run midway through the quarter to pull ahead by 15 points.

        “This has been one of our goals,” Horace said. “During the summer we worked much harder to get ready. Everybody wants to go to state, and this is another step we had to take.”

        Michael Hadnot was the only other Mustang in double figures with 13 points. Dan Nartker led Beavercreek with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

        BEAVERCREEK (42) — Bertke 2-10 2-2 6, Seitz 1-4 0-0 2, Lee 3-8 0-0 6, Meeks 4-7 1-2 9, Nartker 6-9 0-0 12, Williams 1-3 2-2 5, Greenleaf 0-2 2-2 2. Totals: 17-44 7-8 42.

        WESTERN HILLS (62) — Andrews 1-8 4-8 7, Hadnot 6-12 0-0 13, Peterson 3-8 2- 2 8, Banks 2-3 1-2 5, Horace 7-12 3-5 17, Mills 1-1 0-0 3, Taylor 1-1 0-0 2, Smith 2-4 1-1 5, Sellers 1-2 0-0 2. Totals: 24-51 11-20 62.

        Beavercreek ....... 6 12 12 12 — 42

        Western Hills ....... 16 18 6 22 — 62

        3-pointers: B (1-13) Williams. W (3-9) - Andrews, Hadnot, Mills Rebounds: B 27 Nartker 10). W (Horace 11) Blocks: B 1, W 3. Turnovers: B 14. W 11. Assists: B 9 (Bertke 5). W (9) Smith 3, Andrews 2, Hadnot 2. .Records: Western Hills 21-2, Beavercreek 15-8....Officials: Bobby Sagers, Jr., Joe Cole, Kermit Jones. Attendance: 5,500.

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