CINCINNATI, Ohio — The Southwest region featured three Division II contests last night at Fifth Third Arena on the University of Cincinnati campus. Let’s take a look at the outcomes and look forward to what’s next.
#1 Wyoming Cowboys 66, #2 Archbishop Alter Knights 77
The Cowboys came into the night unbeaten as they took down all 24 opponents they had come across. Wyoming senior forward Evan Prater gave it everything he had as he concluded his high school career with a 32 point outing. However, they ran into a buzz saw in the early game in Kettering Alter. The Knights bolted out to a nice early lead and ultimately it was too much for Wyoming to overcome despite making a run late.
Alter had four players score in double figures on the night. They were led by senior guard Jack Smith who dropped in 20 points. It was the fifth time all season that Smith eclipsed the 20 point mark for Alter. Sophomore guard Jacob Conner and senior forward Conor Stolly both added 17 points a piece. Stolly did so in just 19 minutes of action and for Conner, it was a season-high. Lastly, Brady Uhl pitched in a nice line of 13 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists in the win.
Alter advances to the Dayton regional to play the winner of Beechcroft and Eastmoor Academy at the University of Dayton on Thursday, March 12th at 6:15 PM.
#2 Hughes Big Red 65, #3 Thurgood Marshall Cougars 68
It was the second time on the season that the Big Red and Cougars were able to battle it out. In the first meeting, Thurgood Marshall came out victorious in a close game in Clifton that ended by a final count of 68-64. Sure enough, this game took place in Clifton and the Cougars got it done again by an almost frighteningly similar score of 68-65.
It was a back and forth contest between two entertaining and talented teams. Hughes got tremendous production from their big three of Jaesean Martin, Camron McKenzie, and Kionte Thomas as they combined to score 62 of the Big Red’s 65 points.
However, Chanze Amerson and Mekhi Elmore were outstanding for Thurgood Marshall when it mattered most. Elmore finished with 27 points and seemed to have all the answers for the Cougars when they needed a bucket.
In a back and forth game that featured seven lead changes, Hughes had a chance in the waning moments of the fourth quarter to tie the game. However, the shot fell short and Thurgood Marshall claimed the district championship.
Thurgood Marshall advances to the Dayton regional to play Trotwood Madison at the University of Dayton on Thursday, March 12th at 8 PM.
#1 Trotwood Madison Rams 74, #14 Purcell Marian Cavaliers 63
Purcell Marian’s run finally came to a close last night but they gave the Rams everything they could handle. The Cavaliers got a great first half from a trio of Jared Baldock, Dustin Davis, and Andre Simmons. Baldock led the way with 18 first half points and at the break, it was the 14th seeded Cavs that held a 17 point lead.
In the second half, Trotwood Madison would respond. The Rams outscored Purcell Marian 22-8 in the third quarter to make things interesting again. In the final period, we had moments of back and forth action between the two schools. There was a time when a Dustin Davis three gave the Cavaliers a 4 point cushion. However, Carl Blanton (29 points) and Trotwood Madison pulled ahead in final few minutes and walked away with the win to end an outstanding effort and tournament run by Purcell Marian.
Trotwood Madison advances to the Dayton regional to play Thurgood Marshall at the University of Dayton on Thursday, March 12th at 8 PM.