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Published: Monday, 2/13/2006

Boys basketball: Scott, St. Francis are top seeds

BY STEVE JUNGA
BLADE SPORTS WRITER

Tournament basketball is right around the corner and teams from around northwest Ohio met yesterday for sectional drawings.

In the Division I boys draw at Central Catholic, things went pretty much as expected, as sixth-ranked Scott (16-1) and eighth-ranked St. Francis de Sales (15-1) were voted into the top two seeds and subsequently placed themselves into first-round bye slots on the bracket.

"It's nice to be the No. 1 seed, especially since it's coming from your peers," Scott coach Joe Suboticki said. "It's good to get a bye because you have to play less games to get down the road. But there's a big lull between your last [regular season] game and when you play your first [tournament] game. Sometimes that's not good."

Each of the 14 coaches ranked the teams in order, and most voted according to merit. One who did not - first-year Woodward coach Corey Tucker - skewed things by voting his 4-13 Polar Bears (0-10 City League) No. 1 on his ballot. Each ballot was read aloud after the vote.

Tucker's vote enabled his team to avoid a first-round matchup against either third-seeded St. John's Jesuit (14-3) or fourth-seeded Libbey (10-7).

St. John's will open March 1 against Bowsher (3-13, 3-7 CL), which got the No. 14 slot despite defeating Woodward 44-40 on Friday. Libbey opens March 1 against Southview (5-13, 3-9 Northern Lakes League), which was voted 13th. Woodward faces Clay (8-9, 2-8 CL) in a sectional semifinal.

The most compelling first-round matchup has fifth-seeded Start (10-7, 6-4 CL) against sixth-seeded Springfield (10-6, 6-6 NLL) on March 1.

Central Catholic joined Waite as a D-I sectional site this year, replacing the traditional venue at Libbey. That move was made primarily because Central's boys team has dropped to Division II.

Central (8-8, 4-6 CL) promptly received the No. 1 seed at the Anthony Wayne D-II sectional draw, a seven-team grouping that includes just one team, Wauseon (12-5), with a winning record. The Indians got the No. 2 seed.

Central opted for a first-round bye, and opens March 3 against the winner between Bryan (6-11) and Rossford (3-14).

In Division IV, Toledo Christian is the top seed at Northview.

Toledo Christian (14-3, 10-0 TAAC) will play the Northwood-Maumee Valley winner in a March 3 sectional final at 6:15 p.m. Cardinal Stritch (14-4, 9-2) was voted No. 2 at Northview, but coach Jim Sheehy opted for a first-round game instead of an available bye.

Stritch will open against Monclova Christian (5-11), while Ottawa Hills (11-5, 7-4) took the bye, and will play March 3 against the Stritch-Monclova winner.

Contact Steve Junga at: sjunga@theblade.com or 419-724-6461.



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