Westerville Central boys have letdown against Hilliard Darby
It was an up-and-down week for the Westerville Central High School boys basketball team.
After defeating Westerville South 65-59 on Feb. 5, the Warhawks lost at home to Hilliard Darby 62-34 on Feb. 8.
The victory at South was the Warhawks' first win in the series in 14 meetings. Forward Eric James scored 26 points and guard Jalen Malone added 18.
James scored 13 points against Darby.
"(Last) week was a tale of two teams," coach Todd Minney said. "Against Westerville South, we were a team that came in really focused, with lots of energy and played together. Then for Darby, we were not any of those things. Perhaps there was the classic letdown after a big win, but I don't feel the kids were focused following (the South) game. That ultimately falls on me."
The Warhawks are seeded 24th in the Division I district tournament and will play at Thomas Worthington in a first-round game Feb. 23. The Cardinals are seeded 15th. The winner will play 11th-seeded Westland or Briggs in the second round Feb. 27.
Through 20 games, James was averaging a team-best 15.9 points and Malone was averaging 11.8.
Girls team to play Mount Vernon
The girls team is seeded 27th in the Division I district tournament and will play at 25th-seeded Mount Vernon in a first-round game Saturday, Feb. 16.
"We match up pretty well with Mount Vernon," coach Jamiya Pride said. "With this being an away game for us, we need to maintain a positive attitude, effort and be consistent in our fundamentals. Our hope is that if we play great defense and stay out of foul trouble, we can compete and will be in the game late in the fourth quarter."
Central lost to Mount Vernon 56-53 on Nov. 27.
The winner will play seventh-seeded Olentangy or 34th-seeded Hilliard Darby in the second round Wednesday, Feb. 20.
The Warhawks lost to visiting South 43-34 on Feb. 6 and defeated host Darby 44-32 on Feb. 8. Against Darby, guard/forward Megan Mills scored 16 points and center Emma Stille had 11.