Westerville News & Public Opinion

Boys Basketball

James leads Westerville Central in tournament opener

Junior forward Eric James had 14 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Westerville Central High School boys basketball team to a 43-42 win over 15th-seeded Thomas Worthington on Feb. 23 in the first round of the Division I district tournament.

Junior forward Kwamel Wade had 12 points for the 24th-seeded Warhawks and junior guard Jalen Malone added 11.

Central improved to 12-11 and advanced to play 11th-seeded Westland in the second round Feb. 27.

The winner plays third-seeded Olentangy Liberty or 23rd-seeded Dresden Tri-Valley in a district semifinal at 8 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, at Marysville. Entering play Feb. 27, Liberty was 21-1 and Tri-Valley was 16-7.

The Warhawks did not play either team during the regular season.

The semifinal winner advances to a district final against top-seeded Northland, Westerville South, Walnut Ridge or Central Crossing at 6 p.m. March 9 at the Fairgrounds Coliseum.

North cruises in district opener

Senior guard Jaylen Benton scored 18 points, including three 3-pointers, to lead second-seeded North past 39th-seeded Logan 77-44 in the first round of the Division I district tournament Feb. 23 at home

Senior guard Jack Gibbs had 13 points and junior forward Alex Stewart scored 10.

North was 22-1 before facing 40th-seeded Columbus West in the second round Feb. 27. The winner plays 13th-seeded Newark or 17th-seeded St. Charles in a district semifinal at 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, at Central. Entering play Feb. 27, St. Charles was 17-5 and Newark was 15-8.

The Warriors defeated Newark 57-42 on Nov. 30, as Benton went 8-for-8 from the field and finished with 18 and Stewart scored 11, but they did not play St. Charles during the regular season.

The semifinal winner advances to a district final against eighth-seeded Reynoldsburg, ninth-seeded Gahanna, Olentangy or Worthington Kilbourne at 3 p.m. March 9 at the Fairgrounds.

North closed the regular season with a 65-47 win over Dublin Jerome on Feb. 19. Benton led the way with 21 points, with Stewart and senior guard Adrian Cook adding 12 and 11 points, respectively.

Ball leads South in district opener

South defeated 31st-seeded Groveport 82-53 in the first-round of the Division I district tournament Feb. 23.

Senior forward Marcus Ball had 20 points, including four 3-pointers, to lead the 12th-seeded Wildcats. Freshman guard Kyran McClure had18 points and senior forward Trent Slade scored 11.

South was 16-7 before playing 20th-seeded Walnut Ridge in the second round Feb. 27.

The winner plays top-seeded Northland or 41st-seeded Central Crossing in a district semifinal at 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 6, at Marysville. Entering play Feb. 27, Northland, which was ranked first in the final state poll, was 23-0 and Central Crossing was 2-20. South did not play Northland or Central Crossing during the regular season.

The semifinal winner advances to a district final against Liberty, Westland, Central or Tri-Valley at 6 p.m. March 9 at the Fairgrounds.

--Scott Hennen

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