The Division IV district tournament draw provides proof that the Grove City Christian School boys basketball team has earned respect in the area.
Despite an 8-14 record entering the postseason, the Eagles are seeded sixth of 18 teams in the tournament. They open against fourth-seeded Shekinah Christian in a second-round game Tuesday, Feb. 27, at Jonathan Alder.
Grove City Christian is looking to repeat the magic of last season when it reached a regional semifinal before losing to Portsmouth Clay 100-97 in double overtime to finish 22-5.
The Eagles won their first district title a season ago, defeating Harvest Prep 64-60.
With a revamped district, highlighted by Harvest Prep, Newark Catholic and Wellington moving to Division III, senior Noah Tomlinson believes the Eagles have the potential to make another postseason run.
"We play a pretty tough schedule and we did pretty well with our opponents that were in Division IV," Tomlinson said. "Now we're playing opponents that are Division IV and we feel like we have a pretty good opportunity to go far in the tournament."
The game with Shekinah Christian was moved to a neutral site because the Flames' gymnasium is not considered large enough for a postseason game.
"Our coach (Chris Timlin) felt that we had the right matchups and since it wasn't a true home game for them that it would be a pretty good opportunity for us," Tomlinson said.
The winner plays fifth-seeded Tree of Life or eighth-seeded Northside Christian in the third round March 2 at the home of the better seed.
Grove City Christian concluded the regular season by defeating Millersport 77-39 on Feb. 16 as Tomlinson scored 25 points and Isaac Harmeyer added 16.
Harmeyer scored 13 points, Taylor Stauffer had 12 and Brayden Holbrook added 11 in a 73-63 loss to Fisher Catholic on Feb. 13.
The Eagles went 5-9 in the MSL-Cardinal Division to tie Berne Union for fifth behind champion Harvest Prep (14-0).
Girls basketball team opens postseason
The 13th-seeded girls basketball team was 6-16 overall before playing at fifth-seeded Granville Christian in the second round of the Division IV district tournament Feb. 21.
The winner plays sixth-seeded Wellington or ninth-seeded Delaware Christian in the third round Saturday, Feb. 24, at the home of the better seed, with that winner advancing to play top-seeded Fairfield Christian, 10th-seeded Morral Ridgedale, 12th-seeded Patriot Prep or 17th-seeded Gahanna Christian in a semifinal Wednesday, Feb. 28, at a neutral site to be determined.
Grove City Christian closed the regular season with a 38-13 win at Millersport on Feb. 10 as Naomi Cotter scored 10 points.
The Eagles went 3-11 in the MSL-Cardinal to finish fifth behind champion Fairfield Christian (14-0).