WOAC 2023-24 Boys Basketball Preview
As boys basketball season kicks off we preview all 12 teams in the WOAC.
The 2022-23 Basketball season was a good one for the WOAC as we look back at those highlights and look forward to what’s in store for the 2023-24 season.
Last season the WOAC top 3 teams reached the District with Preble Shawnee and Tri-Village both advancing to the Regionals before bowing out while the Dixie boys basketball team earned a district runner-up.
Here are the team previews.
Preble Shawnee (23-4, 11-0 Record 2023)
Preble Shawnee will be the top returning team this year with all their players returning including WOAC “Player of the Year” Mason Shrout and the team to beat this season.
Returning players are:
Mason Shrout is a 6-5 Sr., Guard, WOAC POY, District 15 underclassmen POY: 1st Team DIII All State and the all-time leading scorer in school history. Shrout is an excellent shot maker, rebounder and a motor that doesn’t stop. A fierce competitor. He has signed LOI to play in college at DI IUPUI in Fort Wayne.
Logan Hawley is a 6-8 Sr., Forward and was 2nd team WOAC last season. Hawley provides a strong presence on the block on offense with improved post skills. He also is strong rim protector in the paint.
Isaac Blankenship is a 6-3 Jr., Guard and was a 1st team WAOC, and District 15 underclassmen team selection. Blankenship is athletic and has a smooth shot form the perimeter.
Brayden Robinette is a 6-2 Jr., Guard a returning starter who does a lot of the dirty work behind the scenes but is also capable of scoring the ball from anywhere on the floor.
Brody Morton is a 6-2 Soph., Guard was the starting quarterback on the football team and is an all-around athletic player. Was the leading scorer on the JV team last season.
Case Roell is a 5-10 Sr., Guard a role player on last year’s team but will be a key player off the bench this year.
Cooper Shrout is a 6-5 Soph., Forward who will give the Arrows depth inside and was the 2nd leading scorer on the JV team last season.
Knox Mills is a 5-9 Fr., guard
The arrows return 4 starters off a regional final team from last year.
“We look to continue to be one of the top Defensive teams in the state and will work to continue to get better every day and compete for the league title and make a deep tournament run,” Preble Shawnee coach Jake Turner said.
Turner believes his team will complete for a the top spot and expects challenges from Tri-Village, Dixie and Bradford.
“Tri-Village is another Top D3 team in Dayton that will be very good along with Dixie who will win a lot of game and compete for the league title. My sleeper is Bradford as coach Jay Hall does a great job and has several key players returning and I expect Them to be right in the mix,” Turner commented.
Tri-Village (21-6, 10-1 Record 2023)
Tri-Village exceeded expectations last year moving up to D3 in boys’ basketball after finishing state runner-up in DVI the previous year.
They would finish runner-up in the WOAC to Preble Shawnee, then won a D3 District Title before bowing out to Harvest Prep in the Regional Semi-Finals.
The Patriots graduated some talent but have plenty returning:
Tanner Printz is a 6-2 Sr., guard a two-year starter and a three-year letterman at the guard spot. Elite athlete, strong, physical, tough defender…facilitator who can score in a variety of ways. Swiss Army Knife for the Patriots. 5.9 ppg. 2.2 apg. 2.3 reg
Braden Keating is a 6’ Sr., guard will be a two-year letterman and will start on the wing for the Patriots. Tough, strong, competitor ….shot maker and tremendous on ball defender. Will be asked to shoulder some of the scoring load for the Patriots. 6.9 ppg. 1.9 apg. 1.8 rpg.
Trey Sagester is a 6-2 So., guard is a returning Special Mention WOAC as a freshman. Long, High IQ, Shot maker, skilled, unlimited range. Is garnering Division I interest due to size, pedigree and shot making ability. Led the Patriots with 55 made threes last year as a freshman. Will be asked to do more as sophomore on both ends of the floor. 9.2 ppg. 2 apg. 1.6 apt
Reed Wehr is a 5-10 Sr., guard a tenacious strong athlete, physical on ball defender, leader, high motor. Led the JV team to back-to-back undefeated seasons. Will be the most athletic on the floor most nights.
Jayden Hollinger is a 6-2 Sr., post player is a rugged, strong, physical, high motor…Rodman esque for the Patriots. Will be asked to anchor the paint on both ends of the floor. Led the JV team to back-to-back undefeated seasons.
Noah Finkbine is a 6-2 So., forward with the last name Finkbine comes toughness and physicality. Noah has a high motor, strong defender and will be a tough match up for opposing teams on the offensive end due to his versatility. He was a key cog in our undefeated JV season last year.
Kasyn Hollinger is a 6-3 So., forward Tough, high motor will be asked to do a variety of things on the floor for the Patriots. Another Swiss Army knife. He was key in our JV team’s undefeated season last year.
Trey Homan is a 6-3 Jr.. forward capable shooter able to hit open shots.
Dom Black is 6-4 Fr., post player a talented freshman, Dom will bring a presence in the paint on both ends of the court. Dom has good size, a good touch and sound post moves. He will play early in his career to assist as an anchor in the paint.
Griffin Richards is a 5-11 Fr., guard another talented freshman who will see varsity minutes due
to his athleticism and skill level. A long line of lineage in the Richards family for Patriot Hoops!
The Patriots are coached by veteran Josh Sagester and will reflect his history and style.
“Our strengths for this team this year will be our athleticism, toughness, and chemistry. As a coaching staff, we will continue to do our best to tap into each player’s strengths while putting them in to the best situations to succeed on both ends of the floor,” Sagester said.
“The Goals for our Program always remain the same- At Tri-Village, we will aim to maintain our gold standard of basketball. Simply put, our program strives to win, this year a Dixie Holiday tournament Title, a WOAC Championship, a District Championship and ultimately a State Championship,” Sagester commented.
Sagester believes his team can win a league title but also recognizes the talent group returning for Preble Shawnee.
He sees the following teams as top tier contenders.
1. Preble Shawnee- Return the bulk of their WOAC championship team from a year ago along with reigning POY.
2. Tri-Village- As a program in this league, we aim to compete for a WOAC championship regardless of year.
3. Dixie- Return some letterman
4. Franklin Monroe
Dixie (19-6, 9-2 Record 2023)
The Dixie boys’ basketball team is coming off a stellar season reminiscent of some of the past history and tradition of Dixie Basketball. The Hounds finished 3rd in the conference and advanced to the District Finals before bowing out of the tournament. They return the nucleus of that team and have high expectations this year.
Returning players are:
Kole Huffman is a 5-10 Sr., guard who averaged 10 ppg, 3.5 apg and will be a 4-year starter. A fiery competitor and tough match-up.
Ethan Morgan is a 6-4 Sr., forward who averaged 4 ppg and 6 rpg and give the Hounds a presence inside.
Luke Miller is a 6’ Jr., guard and averaged 10 ppg.
Nate Emrick is a 5-10 Jr., guard and saw limited action averaging 3 ppg and 2 apg.
Austin Marker is a 5-10 Sr., guard athletic, quick a good defender and will see more playing time this year.
Key contributors moving up from JV will be:
Logan Miller a 6’ Jr., guard.
Adam Flach a 6-2 Sr., forward.
Ben Thurman a 5-7 Sr., guard.
Dixie is coached by Nick Worley who was the Southwest District Boys DIII coach of the year. They will return 4 starters back from last year but lose Owen Stevenson who was their top scorer and rebounder.
Worley has a concern about team rebounding as they lost 402 rebounds from their seniors last year with 200 of them generating 2nd chance points on offense.
Coach Worley see Preble Shawnee, Tri-Village and Dixie battling it out but also recognized Franklin Monroe, Arcanum and Ansonia as teams who can challenge.
Bradford (14-9, 8-3 Record in 2023)
In 2023 Bradford was considered a top team in the WOAC and got off to a good 8-2 start but then leading scorer and all-state Parker Davidson who was average 25 points a game became injured and was out the rest of the year.
Bradford would take a while to adjust but they have gritty tough kids who are athletic and know how to win. Parker has graduated but the nucleus of the team returns for 2024.
Here are the key players returning for Bradford.
Hudson Hill is a 6-1 Sr., wing player a 3-year letter winner, 2nd team WOAC and scored 11.2 ppg last year.
Landon Wills is a 6-4 Sr., center also a 3-year letter winner, HM WOAC scored 8.2 ppg and 8.5 rpg.
Owen Canan is a 5-8 Jr., point guard a 2-year letter winner and 1st team WOAC averaging 12 ppg.
Zage Henderson is a 6-2 Jr., post player and a 2-year letter winner.
This group will be the core for Bradfords team all who have experience in big games over the last two years. The Railroaders are still trying to figure out the rest of the pieces and who will step forward to contribute this season.
Coach Jay Hall keys to success will be to maintain cohesiveness, display resilience, understanding personnel and team strength and weaknesses and hoping to avoid injury and illness.
Hall cites history that Preble Shawnee and Tri-Village are the two proven programs at the top and until someone changes that it will be them battling it out for the league title.
Arcanum (12-10, 6-5 Record 2023)
Arcanum put together a nice run of wins together late in the season last year winning 6 of their last 8 games. They graduated Nick Sharritts who was their leading scorer at 14.8 ppg and Bryson Sharp at point guard.
However, the Trojans JV team had a great year, and the young talent is ready to step forward and prove they can compete in the WOAC.
Roger McEldowney has moved on and Arcanum new head coach is Kevin Brackman who coached the JV team last year.
Brackman will benefit from his year at the JV level and is familiar with all the kids.
“We have some new faces at the varsity level including myself, but I think we’re there and we’ll be ready to go,” Brackman said.
Key player returning or the Trojans are:
Brady Lock is a 6-3 Sr., guard who averaged 5.6 ppg, 2.4 rpg, and 2.2 asst. per game last season and they will look to lean on Brady’s varsity experience this season.
Regan Christ is a 5-11 So., guard a 2nd Team All WOAC last season as a freshman. Averaged 11.6 ppg, 2.0 rpg, and shot 41% from the perimeter.
Ryan Murray is a 6-2 Sr., forward who came off the bench last year for the varsity team. Will provide a post presence this season.
Caleb Burke is a 6’ Sr., forward also came off the bench last year for the varsity team and will provide a post presence this season.
Braylen Etherington is a 6’ Sr., guard came off the bench last year for the varsity team. Will provide a wing/scoring threat this season.
Other Players who will move up or newcomers are:
Landon Flatter is a 5-9 Jr., guard he had a strong sophomore campaign leading the JV team to 16 wins last season. One of the top scorers. Will see a lot of minutes this season
Matthew McCans is a 5-10 So., guard and started every JV game last season as a freshman. Was a top scorer who provides a strong jump shot and tough body to keep off the glass. Will see a lot of minutes this season.
Cole Kessler is a 6’ So., guard who started every JV game last season as a freshman. Cole is a long combo guard who can play any position on the floor.
Charlie Weiss is a 5-10 So., guard and started 20 of 22 JV games last season as a freshman.
Luke Henninger is a 6-0 Sr., forward started every JV game last season as a JR. Provides a much-needed post presence for us this season.
Nathan Koller is a 6-0 Sr., forward didn’t play his JR season. Will be a shooter and scoring threat off the bench for us this season.
Landon Byrne is a 5-11 Sr., forward played JV last season. Will look to contribute at the forward position this season.
The Trojans will be led by seven seniors and will be a guard-oriented team and looks to apply pressure on both ends of the floor.
“Attacking in transition and cleaning up the boards will be important to our success this season, our goal is to fill the stat sheet with intangibles such as deflections, loose balls, dives on the floor, steals, and charges,” Brackman commented.
“We graduated seven seniors last season, we are a “young” group to the varsity level. We have very few players that have logged varsity minutes, but we have guys who are ready to contribute and play at this level,” Brackman added.
Brackman top favorites for the league are:
1. Preble Shawnee - Lead by arguably one of the best guards in the state & a true post player. PS is the team to beat.
2. TV - Loses scoring to graduation shouldn’t affect TV. Their JV team didn’t lose a game last season whoever they put on the floor to represent them will be a tough matchup for all teams.
3. Dixie - Strong guard play and discipline on the offensive & defensive ends make Dixie a tough match. They were very impressive last season winning 19 games.
4. Bradford - Majority of players are back from last season. They have great guard play and have proven that they can win games.
5. Sleeper: Franklin Monroe
Newton (10-13, 6-5 Record in 2023)
The Newton boys’ basketball will have a new head varsity coach Michael Cantrell. Cantrell has coached basketball in some capacity for 14 years. He has been an assistant coach at Fairbanks High School, Midland High School (Midland, Mi), and Lehman Catholic High School and this will be his second stint as a varsity coach as he was at the head coach at Mechanicsburg from 2018-2022.
The Indians have 4 returning letter winners and one transfer letter winner. But they will have to replace some significant scoring and rebounding that graduated from last year’s team. Gone is Harold Oburn 15 ppg and 6.5 rpg. Also gone is Hudson Montgomery 8 ppg and 4.5 assists per game.
Newton has a few pieces returning from last year and those players include:
Quinn Peters is a 6’ Sr., guard a sharpshooter from distance and was the 2nd leading scorer last year at 13.5 ppg. Look for him to lead the Indians.
Ty Schauer is a 5-9 Sr guard a returning letter winner who will be asked to do more this year.
Will Bowser is a 5-9 Soph., point guard and will take over the role played by Hudson Montgomery. Bowser has good IQ and is athletic will be a big step up from last season.
Luke Cornett is a 5-11 Soph., has shot up 4” from last year and moves into a shooting forward and will see some varsity action for the first time.
Austin Tippie is a 6-4 Soph., center giving Newton some size they lost from last year.
Carson Tucker is a 6’ Jr., forward another returning letter winner averaged 2.5 ppg and 2.7 rpg.
Max Newhouse is a 6-5 Jr., center a returning letter winner, he battled in the paint last year in a back-up role scoring 3.5 ppg and 4.5 rebounds and will be needed to give the Indians inside strength.
Brady Wackler is a 6-1 Jr., power forward a letter winner last season at Franklin Monroe, is a slasher and physical on ball defender.
Rhett Koffer is a 5-9 Soph., shooting guard
Bryce Toney is a 6-5 Sr., center who saw limited varsity action last year.
Quentin Webb is a 6’ Sr., forward who also saw limited varsity action last year.
Newton wants their identity reflect toughness especially on defense.
“Our identity is going to be our defense and how physical we are. Our strength is that we will be a well-balanced team with a common goal and that is to do whatever it takes to win. For us to be successful, we must be able to guard, limit second chance opportunities/rebound, and take good shots,” coach Cantrell stated.
“At the end of the day, we would like to build and create great habits, because in the heat of the moment, you fall back on your habits. That has been our entire focus this offseason and preseason. I have been impressed with our team’s fight this offseason. They have worked at it in the classroom, the gym, and the weight room. I am excited to see them compete this winter,” Cantrell added.
Cantrell see Preble Shawnee, Tri-Village and Dixie top teams in the league.
“One of our main objectives for our program is to give the Newton community something to be proud of, on and off of the court,” Cantrell concluded.
Ansonia (13-11, 5-6 Record 2023)
The Ansonia Boys basketball team has a lot of experience returning for the 2023-24 season and is a very athletic and physical team and one many considered to be a front runner in the league. The success of their football team has delayed players getting into shape and also dealt the team a blow with some injuries especially to a key senior player Garrett Stammen.
“How are we going to respond after losing Garrett Stammen for the season and Landyn Bowman for the first half of the season? That’s the big question not only on 2nd year coach Tony Overton’s mind but also those in the league.
“We are still Senior Heavy and very athletic. But, in order for us to be successful we have to play smart and limit fouls due to our lack of depth. Some younger guys have the opportunity to step in and contribute right away. Freshman Bennett Lehman and Jacob Schmitmeyer. If we can adjust to the loss of Stammen, we expect to be in the thick of the WOAC race,” Overton commented.
Key Players returning this year are:
Jakob Creamer is a 6’ Sr., guard a team leader who does everything and has a high motor.
Matt Barga is a 6’ Sr., guard will need to transition from a role player to an impact player this year.
Ethan Reichert is a 6-2 Sr., forward has potential to be an All WOAC performer with an improved focus.
Trevor Hemmerich is a 6’ Sr., forward will be counted on to pick up some of the slack with the loss of Stammen.
Garrett Stammen is a 6-1 Sr. forward and out for the season with a knee injury from football. Was the leading scorer/rebounder from last year and is just 25 points away from scoring 1,000 points. Currently he will not have an opportunity to score 1000 points unless the Tigers can rally support from other teams to find a way to get him to 1000 points.
Key contributors moving up from JV:
Bennett Lehman a 5-9 Fr., guard is a great competitor with a high IQ it will be a big jump from Junior High to varsity.
Asher Shives is a 6’ Sr., guard/forward and will be counted on for defense and rebounding.
Conner Riffle is a 6-1 Jr., guard/forward is a good shooter but needs to improve strength.
Jacob Schmitmeyer is a 5-10 Fr., forward very strong and athletic, will be eased in varsity action this year.
“Our team strengths will be senior led team, athleticism and shooting. Our goal is to compete for a WOAC title, sectional championship and a good tournament performance. The keys to winning is playing smart, limit turnover and who can step forward to pick up the slack of Garrett Stammen,” Overton said.
Overton sees Preble Shawnee at the top with Dixie, Tri-Village and Ansonia battling it out along with Arcanum as a sleeper.
Twin Valley South (7-16, 3-8 Record 2023)
Twin Valley South will return 4 seniors from last year all who contributed to the team and will lean on that experience to improve upon their 7-16 record last year.
The Panthers are coached by 2nd year coach Braxton Campbell.
Key players returning varsity players are:
Seth Vorhis is a 5-8 Sr., guard averaged 3.6 ppg 1.0 rpg last year.
Chandler Ulrich is a 5-10 Sr., guard averaged 8.9 ppg 2.5 rpg.
Jace Thuma is a 5-10 Sr., guard averaged 9 ppg 2.5 rpg.
Jandon Ankrom is a 6-2 Sr., forward averaged 12 ppg 4.7 rpg is an athletic player who can score in a variety of way.
Griffin Roell is a 6-4 Jr., forward will give the Panthers some needed size inside.
Key contributors coming off the bench are:
Conner Mowell is a 5-8 Jr., guard is a returning varsity player averaged 1.5 ppg 0.7 rpg.
Mason Crews is a 5-8 Jr., guard
Nathan Murphy is a 5-0 Sr., guard
Trent Ray is a 6-2 Fr., guard looking to add value to the team.
“We return four starters from last season who have varsity experience. We have a great group of boys who have a drive to get better and do whatever it takes to help the team win. We, at times, have the ability to stretch the floor a bit with our shooting and driving ability. However, we are undersized as a team. Our keys this year will be to play hard, unselfish basketball, collectively defend, and rebound the basketball. Our goal is to take the next step as a program and compete each and every league game this season,” coach Braxton said.
Braxton thinks Preble Shawnee and Tri-Village will compete for the league with Dixie knocking on the door.
Franklin Monroe (6-17, 3-8 Record 2023)
Franklin Monroe is coached by veteran Troy Myers who has a few key players returning this season and some newcomers as the Jets look to improve upon their season last year.
Here is look at the varsity players this season.
Keir Boyd is a 5-10” Jr., guard and new to the varsity team.
Ty Riffle is a 5-10” Jr., guard a scrappy defender and the ability to get to the rim on offense.
Gage Wackler is a 5-11 Sr., will be a leader by doing on the floor, an aggressive defender, fierce competitor and able to score when open.
Eric Brenner is a 6-3” Jr., guard who has varsity experience as a starter at Greenville, able to handle the ball and shoot from distance.
Blake Riffle is a 6’ Fr., guard
Dalton Winterrowd is a 5-10 Sr., forward able to use his athletic ability to rebound and defend.
Trey Wilson is a 6-1 Jr., forward has good post skills and uncanny ability to operate around the rim.
Ben Denlinger is a 6’ So., guard/forward.
EB Fall is a 6-3 Jr., forward a very athletic talented player who can score in a variety of ways. Led the team in scoring the first half of last year and will get his first full year in at FM.
Lucas Brenner is a 6’ So., guard and younger brother to Eric. Is an excellent shooter to help give the Jets fire power from the perimeter.
Franklin Monroe should have a good mix of talent, size and improved guard play that will position them to a tough team to beat this year.
Coach Troy Myers spoke about his team.
I’m very thankful for this group of kids over the first month. They are really good character people who care about development and have the right intentions. It’s been refreshing to see a collective competitiveness and connectivity among the group. Their desire to achieve excellence is matched by their work and willingness to choose extra work. We are a work in progress on the defensive end but have shown signs of great growth in the preseason. The group is an athletic group which hopefully allows us to play aggressively. Maybe the most impressive trait to date is their willingness to respond. We’ve tried to put pressure on them so that developing their best becomes a habit and they’ve responded to failure with maturity every time. We are unconcerned with a projected outcome or any individual attention and solely focused on improving through whatever is next. That’s something this group is unified on, putting agendas aside and growing collectively every day.
Mississinawa Valley (6-17, 3-8 Record 2023)
After two years Mississinawa Valley coach Nick Hamilton has stepped aside to spend more times with his family and watch his sons who are in Jr. High play basketball.
Young Cole Hamilton a nephew to Nick will now be the point man for the Blackhawks basketball team.
The Hawks have 4 seniors with just one being a letter winner so the team will be lacking in varsity game time experience.
Here is a look at some MV squad.
Aron Hunt is a 6-1 Sr., center a letter winner last year and will see the floor a lot this year.
Kyle Wehrkamp is a 5-10 So., shooting guard will play a lot of big varsity minutes.
Thomas Gower is a 6-0 Sr., guard will be a good leader for the team this year.
Bryson Gower is a 6-3 Sr., forward giving the Hawks size inside.
Cing Scott is a 6-0 Fr., point guard and will direct the team on the floor.
Nick Ward is a 6-0 Fr., power forward will provide key minutes in the post from time to time.
Ethan Grow is a 6-0 Jr., center will see some minutes grooming for next season.
Wyatt Stump is a 6-0 So., shooting guardTanner Leichty is a 6-0 Sr., guard laid back kid but composed and will be a leader for team.
Other players rounding out the varsity roster will be.
Ashton Amspaugh is a 5-9 Fr., guard very athletic player and mid-season could be splitting time with the varsity.
Carson Hamilton is a 6-2 Fr., center/forward will split time with varsity.
Conner Hardy is a 6-0 Fr., center/forward this is growing year for him.
Ty House is a 5-10 Fr., center another player looking to make strides this year.
Jaxin Beanblossom is a 5-5 Fr., guard a super great kid, tons of talent with lots of energy.
Coach Cole Hamilton doesn’t believe in strengths but rather continuous improvement for his team.
“I think when we set goals at the beginning of the year, they are all achievable. One certain goal for a senior was to win more games than last year. Also, to try our very best to come out on top with a sectional win come tournament time. We will take it one game at a time and learn from each single minute of the game from the coach to the whole team this year,” Hamilton said.
Hamilton sees the following teams as top teams in the conference.
1. Preble Shawnee - didn’t lose much whatsoever plus have the best player in the WOAC.
2. Tri-Village - have always been solid and a super hard team to get a win against.
3. Ansonia - lost the Stammen boy but have some talented guards as well that can light it up.
4. Dixie - I don’t know they have a lot returning and was at the top last year.
National Trail (4-19, 2-9 Record 2023)
The Blazers graduated 3 seniors but return a good mix of size and skill and the majority of their scoring and playmaking which should add up to an improved season in 2023-24.
National Trail is coached by Jeremy Laird in his second season who will be excited about seeing this groups progression into this season.
Key returning players are:
Logan Smith is a 6-4 Sr., forward a rim protector who led the team in rebounds and blocked shots.
Nick Brubaker is a 5-10 Jr., guard
Kellen Laird is a 5-9 So., guard led the team in scoring, assists and steals, how he goes is how the Blazers go.
Key contributors moving up:
Tyler Lesh is a 6-1 Sr., forward
Brancin Mowen is a 6-1 Jr., forward
Ethan Osswald is a 5-10 Jr., guard
Tayden Blevins is a 6-2 So., forward who could be a big contributor this year.
Laird is looking for his team to bring focus and intensity with consistency night in and night out.
“Our team needs to play with more consistency. We have the ability to score in bunches, but also give up points in bunches. If we play smart, unselfish basketball we should compete in more games. Our goal is to play better in 2nd half of games, with a chance to win in the 4th quarter,” Laird stated.
Coach Laird see the following as the top teams in the league.
1. Preble Shawnee has the best player in league history and 3 other returning starters off a regional team from last season.
2. Tri-Village has the best coach and program in the league year in and year out.
3. Dixie has a great coach and an underrated backcourt.
4. Bradford has the best defensive guard in the conference.
Tri-County North (1-22, 0-11 Record 2023)
Tri-County North will look to rebound after going winless last season in the WOAC and just 1 win all season.
North will have a new coach this year he is Garrett Woodyard a 2016 TCN graduate who has been the 8th grade coach the past three years. He is an active Air Force member working at Wright Pat and still lives in Lewisburg.
He will inherit 3 seniors one a big scorer and a couple others to help provide leadership.
Key players for Tri-County North will be:
Logan Flory is a 5-11 Sr., guard and was a 2nd team all WOAC last season and the leading scorer at 17 ppg.
Brayden Dawson is 6-2 Sr., post player and was the first inside sub off the bench last year and grabbed 4 rpg.
Parker Overcash is a 6’ Sr., guard and was the first outside sub off the bench last season and scored 4.5 ppg.
Koby Reynolds is a 6-2 Soph., guard/forward with the ability to score inside and out and saw limited action as a freshman last year.
Kids moving up or newcomers are:
Corbin Flory is a 5-9 Fr., guard and outstanding freshman ready to contribute.
Travis Williamson is a 6-1 Jr., wing player moving up from JV.
Clint Barnes is a 6-3 Soph., who can play the post or wing scoring inside and out.
Coach Woodgeard is looking to take the action to their opponents this year.
“Intensity, we are trying to bring a new and improved aggressiveness to TCN basketball. Improving on last year’s record is important, but even more importantly we want to do things the right way and head TCN basketball into a more positive and winning direction,” Woodgeard stated.
He sees Preble Shawnee who is obviously loaded behind Mason Shrout and Tri Village who is always going to be someone competing to win it all. Beyond those two he thinks teams like Dixie, Bradford and TVS have a lot of guys back and should compete as well.
WOAC 2023-24 Girls Basketball Preview
We take a look at the WOAC girls basketball teams and what to expect in 2023-24.
The 2022-23 Basketball season was a good one for the WOAC as we look back at those highlights and look forward to what’s in store for the 2023-24 season.
Tri-Village (30-0, 11-0 Record 2023)
The Patriots won the WOAC league championship for the 2nd year in a row, then went a perfect 30-0 winning the school’s first ever girls basketball state championship last season.
The Patriots graduated three 4-year players Rylee Sagester, Morgan Hunt and Tori Richards from that team … but also return two starters, Bella Black and Sydnee DeLong along with 6th man Kynnedi Hager and letter winner Kiersten Wilcox.
The Patriots will actually be a young team with just two seniors, five sophomores and two freshmen.
Bella Black is a 5-10 senior forward and was the leading rebounder on last year’s team and 2nd team all-conference player. The Patriots will lean on Bella for leadership, increased scoring, rebounding and general toughness.
Kiersten Wilcox is a 5-7 senior forward; Kiersten brings key intangibles to the floor with her gritty competitiveness that the Patriots will need this year.
Sydnee DeLong is a 5-8 sophomore guard and special mention in WOAC last year. Sydnee has the ability to score and will find herself in a bigger role this year.
Kynnedi Hager is a 6-3 sophomore post player and the leading returning scorer for the Patriots and was a 2ndteam all-conference player last year. Hager had some of her biggest games against better competition last year and the TV will look to her to bring that every night.
Adalyn Hines is a 5-5 sophomore guard who played her freshman season at Franklin Monroe where she averaged 10ppg last year. She will have to sit the 1st 11 games of the regular season but will be eligible for the last part of the regular season and the tournament.
Tai Mize is a 5-4 sophomore point guard and will handle the starting PG duties for us this year after coming to Tri-Village from Eaton.
Heidi Bell is a 5-6 sophomore guard and will move up to the varsity after having a successful freshman year playing at the JV level.
Kenna Wilcox is a 5-7 guard/forward and she joins the varsity program after helping to lead her 8th grade team to a conference championship last year.
Reagyn Hager is a 5-8 freshman post player and also joins varsity program after helping to lead her 8th grade team to a conference championship last year.
Tri-Village is coached by Brad Gray, and he knows the Patriots will have a target on their back and will have their work cut out for them after graduation top talent.
“We obviously have some big holes to fill from last year’s graduating class, but I do think we have some good young talent in our program. The key to that is that we are VERY young with 5 sophomores and 2 freshman getting significant minutes for us. However, we do have some valuable experience returning in Senior, Bella Black, and Sophomores, Kynnedi Hager and Sydnee DeLong. All three played starters minutes for us last year and gained big-time playoff experience. We will need to lean heavily on those three to be our leaders as we enter the season. We also have varsity experience coming to us in Tai Mize and Adalynn Hines as well. Both were starters at the varsity level last year at their previous schools so they will be able to give us some additional experience. We will certainly look to be very solid with our half-court defense and also our half-court offense. We will also try to use our team speed to our advantage in the transition game. I think this is a team that can still contend for a WOAC title and also a District Title if things go well for us,” Gray stated.
Gray believes that the Patriots can contend for a title but there will be some stiff competition from Mississinawa Valley, Arcanum and Dixie.
“I think we have some really good talent that can make noise in this league this year but will have to go through Mississinawa Valley who return all of their key components from last year’s team that won 20 games. Arcanum also returns their key players from last year’s team and Dixie behind the play of Sierra Brinson who was the leading scorer in our league along with some key kids from last will all pose a challenge for a title,” Gray commented.
Preble Shawnee (19-7, 10-1 Record 2023)
The Arrows lost a lot of scoring and a couple of 4-year players from a team who finished 2nd in the league and played for a district title. Those players will be hard to replace.
Returning for the Arrows will be
Korrie Woodard, is a5-6 Sr., Guard who led team in rebounds last year. Korrie will be one of our leaders on the court and look for her to be one of the top players in the conference.
Bella Agee, is a 5-11 Sr., Forward a very athletic player with a lot of endurance and is capable of scoring and rebounding. She led the volleyball team to a WOAC title and has the ability to do the same with basketball.
Autumn Smith, is a 5-9 Sr., Forward a player that can play several positions is aggressive and gets after the ball.
Ashleigh Mondello-Garrett, is a 5-6 Sr., Guard is quick on the court and has the ability to get the ball down the court quickly.
Addison Sargent-Eckert, is a 5-9 Sr., Forward has put in a lot of time in the off season. She has a lot to offer both offensively and defensively.
Key Contributors moving up are:
Caylee Hatmaker, is a 5-9 Jr., 5’9”, Forward has worked on strength and conditioning and is a great addition to the varsity team. She is capable of scoring from anywhere and a very coachable kid that will play anywhere we need her.
Aubrey Unger, is a 5-6 Soph., Guard who no doubt is one of the quickest athletes in the WOAC., fast and aggressive and will play a key role on defense.
Braelyn Tangeman, is a 5-10 Soph., Forward probably put in the most time in the off season, who works hard and is a defensive leader.
Ava Apking, is a 5-5 Soph., Guard is a good ball handler and will help the team keep organized on offense.
Rylee Taylor, is a 5-7 Soph., 5’7”, Guard is an energetic ball player that brings intensity to the court.
The Arrows have 6 varsity players plus the 4 sophomore who will also play JV
Preble Shawnee will look to utilize their strength and speed to compete this year.
“Our defense will be very fast and strong. Korrie Woodard looks to be a leader on both offense and defense. We really only have two players coming back with true varsity experience. There are five seniors on the roster, but the rest are young when it comes to experience,” said coach Anitra Roell in her 2nd year.
Although Shawnee graduated 65% of their scoring from last year coach Roell has coached the senior group since 7th grade and could be a sleeper team that most aren’t considering.
“I am confident we can put together a competitive season that most aren’t anticipating, Roell stated.
She does see Mississinawa Valley & Tri-Village as favorites.
“Mississinawa return their key players from last year and Tri-Village always finds a way to get things done,” Roell concluded.
Mississinawa Valley (20-4, 9-2 Record 2023)
The Lady Hawks are coming off their first ever 20-win season in school history as they challenged for a league title last season and was poised to make a nice tournament run until standout point sophomore guard Taylee Woodbury went down with a knee injury hampering Mississinawa in the sectional final.
Woodbury had surgery and has been through rehab and therapy and is just now getting back into form as a basketball player as the 2023-24 campaign kicks off to try and lead her team again along with a full cast who played last year as well. The Blackhawks bring back 50 points of offense from last year.
Taylee Woodbury is a 5-4 Jr., guard and was a 1st team ALL-WOAC & 1st team District 9 player. Woodbury is quick, fast and sees the floor very well and can also pull up and knock down the outside shot. She averaged 15.7 ppg and dished 5.8 assists, as she goes so will the Blackhawks.
Syenna Purdin is a 5-7 Jr., guard and was honorable mention in the WOAC last year. Purdin is a streaky shooter 8.3 ppg last year, but if she gets hot from behind the arch you can be in for a long night.
Brooklynn Seubert is a 5-10 So., forward and a lefthander who can give MV some size and strength inside and is capable of scoring on the block. She averaged 5 points and 5 rebounds last year.
Brenna Price is a 5-8 Sr., forward who came into her late last season and in the tournament giving the team some rebounding and added scoring from midrange to the rim. She averaged 8.2 points & 7.5 rebounds per game.
Kenzea Townsend is a 6-1 Sr., center and was 1st team ALL-WOAC & 1st team District 9. Townsend dominated in the paint last year and was nearly a double double every night pulling down 9 rebounds and scoring 9 points.
Ingrid Ojeda is a 5-2 Sr., guard and gives the Hawks a quicker defender off the bench and someone to help handle the ball on offense.
Other key contributors:
Paige Emrick is a 5-6 So., guard and one of the leading scorers on an 18-2 JV team last year.
Lily Geesaman is a 5-7 Fr.; guard coach Paige is excited to see come out and so far she has looked very impressive as a freshman and could be a big contributor before the season is over.
Mississinawa coach Michael Paige will be hanging their hat on defense and wants to generate offense off turnovers and get the tempo moving.
“One of the keys for this team is our ability to control the pace and flow of the game,” Paige stated.
The Hawks have set lofty goals and they’re not afraid to challenge themselves with winning a state title a primary goal and winning the WOAC a secondary goal.
The Lady Blackhawks have tried to put together tougher non-conference schedule to help prepare them down the road.
Coach Paige believes his team has all the pieces necessary to be the frontrunner to win the WOAC this year.
He also sees Tri-Village with 3 returning starters and a wealth of experience as a team who will compete for the top spot in the conference along with Arcanum who is very well coached with a lot of talent.
Paige also likes Dixie and Newton and knows they will be very competitive and capable of knocking other teams off.
Dixie (15-8, 8-3 Record 2023)
The Greyhounds are coached by Andrew Blevins, and he will have his team ready to play every night. It helps that he is able to lean on senior Sierra Brinson who has a chance to become the school’s all-time leading scorer this year.
Key players returning are:
Sierra Brinson is a 5-11 Sr., power forward who averaged 23 points and 12 rebounds a game last year and is nearly impossible to stop one on one and is a match-up problem for most teams. She was 1st team WOAC, District 15 and All-Southwest District.
Charleigh Crawford is a 5-7 Sr., point guard who had 4 assist per game and is a great on ball defender. She will be looking to become more involved offensively this year.
Maddi Clouse is a 5-7 Sr., guard and a good defender who has worked hard on becoming a more consistent shooter.
Mirra Gephart is a 5-8 Sr., forward and is a good defender and rebounder. She also had a 53% field goal average. Looking to score more this year.
Cooper Miller is a 5-3 Jr., guard who battled a knee injury last year. Will look to provide good things on both ends of the floor now that her knee is ready to go.
Key contributors moving up from JV
Erin Crotty is a 5-4 Sr., guard and strong on defense and a great team player.
Bethany Himan is a 5-3 So,, guard is a defensive specialist and very quick.
Kaylie McConnel is a 5-7 So., forward and is a good rebounder, quick and good defensively.
Kendyl Hypes is a 5-11 Fr., center who has the length to alter shots, see the floor well and a good rebounder.
The Greyhounds fell in the sectional finals last year and Coach Blevins is pushing execution to take it further this year come tournament time.
“We are putting an emphasis on team defense and boxing out. We want to make teams take tough shots and limit them to one possession. Offensively we want to run our sets to create and use our physicality to our advantage. Get quality shots and score efficiently. The girls are buying into the team defense and starting our game there, and if we get some consistent scoring we have a chance to be pretty dangerous. We are working on every girl having confidence and being a threat offensively. Our goal is to compete in the top half of a strong WOAC and have a successful tournament run,” Blevins stated.
Andrew sees Mississinawa Valley at the front runner but knows there is some talent at the top this year that includes his own squad.
“Mississinawa coach Mike Paige has a good returning group and a couple young girls coming in they should be tough to beat this year. Tri Village, Brad Gray always does a great job with his program and with the addition of two transfers they kind of filled some holes he had and should be good as always. Arcanum, Abbey Moore runs a top-notch program, and she has a good core, I look for them to be very tough and of course I think with our core coming back and some young girls stepping up we should be able to compete in the top 4 of the conference,” Blevins concluded.
Arcanum (8-15, 7-4 Record 2023)
The Trojans overall record is a bit deceiving playing a tough non-conference schedule. They will be under the guidance of Abbey Moore now in her 4th season. Expect Arcanum to challenge as one of the top teams in the conference.
Ashlyn Miller is a senior guard who averaged 6 ppg and 2.2 steals last year.
Rylee Leeper is a senior guard and score 3 ppg and 2.5 rebound last season.
Ava Gilbert is a senior forward who saw limited action last season but provides valuable leadership for the squad.
Brooke Anderson is a junior guard who averaged 7.5 ppg, 2.9 steals and 4 rebounds. She will be a big part of the Trojans offense.
Lexy Gibbons is a junior forward who was the leading scorer last season 13ppg. A smooth player who has worked hard on her game and will be the focus of a lot of defenses this year.
Avery Leeper is a sophomore guard moving up to varsity this season.
Faith Wooten is a sophomore center who has the size to defend the post and skill level on the block to be a threat offensively inside.
Matty Noe is a freshman guard who was a big part of the 15-2 8th grade team last year.
Claire Hein is a freshman forward who was a big part of the 15-2 8th grade team last year.
Abbey Moore is excited about this group of athletes and ready to get the season going.
“I am very excited to get this season kicked off! We have had a great preseason, and I can’t wait to see these girls put it all together. Keys for us to have success this year are going to be giving everything we have every second we are on the floor and consistently play to our level. This group is very motivated and thankful for another opportunity to win the WOAC,” Moore stated.
Although coach Moore didn’t name any front runners she fully expects her team to be in the hunt.
“I see the battle for the conference to be very competitive and exciting this year that will lead to some very good WOAC matchups throughout the season. For us to reach our goal of a WOAC Championship we have to give our best every time we hit the floor. Our tough non-conference schedule will help us prepare for the battles we will have within the conference,” Moore concluded.
Tri-County North (15-10, 6-5 Record 2023)
The Lady Panthers are coming off one of their best seasons in nearly 15 years under the leadership of coach Jessica Spitler. They graduated Rilee Terry who is the school’s all-time leading rebounding and last year’s top scorer, those will be tough shoes to fill.
North however has some talent returning and looks to mix things up this year in the league.
Key Returners are:
Hannah Webster is a 6-0, Sr., center and a 2nd team All WOAC player with the ability to score at all 3 levels and rebound the ball very well. She is a leader on the court and off. Hannah averaged 9.5 ppg and 7 rebounds last season.
Bella Cherry is a 5-6, So., guard and is very quick and has shown the ability to have a nice all-around game while getting others involved. She was special mention all WOAC as a freshman and averaged 8.6 ppg, 4.8 rebounds and 4 steals.
Leinani Garcia is a 5-5, Jr., point guard and returns with some quality varsity experience as well as leadership. She has shown the ability to knock down shots and the Panthers have some high expectations for her this season being one of their outside shooters, she averaged 5.3 ppg and 2.5 steals.
Nicole Lefeld is a 5-10, Sr., and is another player that returns a lot of experience along with leadership. She is a team-first player that will do whatever it takes to help the team win. Nicole averaged 3.2 ppg and 3.6 rebounds per game.
Other players who will look to contribute are:
Jr., Gracie Hemp and So., Jordan Pinion, both gained valuable varsity experience last season and each contributed in some key moments to help the team win. They will have important roles this season and will be seeing big minutes. They both can contribute defensively and offensively.
Coach Spitler feels the teams’ strengths will be the experience they have returning and how hard they worked to build on the success of last season with the goal to continue to get better each day.
“I expect Tri Village who is returning experience from a State Championship team along with Mississinawa Valley and Dixie, both bringing back returning key players to battle it out this year in the WOAC,” Spitler said.
National Trail (9-14, 4-7 Record 2023)
After losing 71% of the team’s scoring from last year’s graduating class the Blazers will look to regroup and retool for the 2023-24 campaign under the direction of 2nd year Head Coach Kenneth Stewart.
Kendyl Johnson is a senior forward and the lone senior on the team, she will use her athleticism, speed, and work ethic to gain a competitive advantage over her opponents.
Josie Stine is a junior guard lanky with plenty of speed, she will challenge opponents at both ends of the floor.
Hannah Henderson is a junior guard and possesses great speed to compliment a great shot to stretch the floor.
Ollie Mason is a sophomore forward is a tremendous team player with plenty of court awareness to go along with her status as a lock-down defender.
Morgan House is a sophomore forward a well-rounded player who has great skill and can play any position on the floor.
Other players looking to contribute this year are:
Chloe Graves a freshman guard is a good ball handler and even better shooter.
Claire Osswald is a freshman forward with a sweet stroke and good court awareness.
Lillian Corle is a freshman guard is an intelligent and supportive teammate who understands the game.
Peyton White is a freshman center and give the Blazers a low post presence working on the block.
Belle Anderson is a junior forward and a newcomer to the team; she will provide tremendous leadership and presence in the low post.
Coach Stewart is excited about this group and plans to speed up the game.
“We will utilize our great team defense to create more turnovers and transition opportunities while building upon a cohesive offense that emphasizes continuity and player movement. We are looking to break double digits in the win column this year as we field a very young team featuring only one senior along with six incoming freshmen. We are also privileged to have a new Assistant Head Coach/JV Head Coach, Garrett Denlinger, who brings plenty of playing and Varsity coaching experience to our team,” Stewart stated.
Coach Stewart has echoed other coaches on the top teams to look for in the WOAC.
“Tri-Village has great talent plus great coaching which equals sustained success. Mississinawa Valley has a successful and talented group of players returning; great height; great offense and rebounding ability. Dixie returns the league’s leading scorer from last season, along with a seasoned coach and Arcanum has great teamwork, work ethic, schemes; and players who “buy in” to the team culture,” Stewart commented.
Newton (8-15, 4-7 Record in 2023)
The Newton girls team went 8-15 last season and 4-7 in the WOAC. The Indians will have a new face on the sidelines this year Stefanie Landiss.
Ryan Fiely who after 4 seasons step aside as Stefanie Landis takes the reins. Landis has previous coaching experience with 2 years at Hamilton and also experience as a player at an elite level. The former Stefanie Miller played high school basketball at Beavercreek and college basketball at the University of Dayton.
Stefanie graduated from UD in 2004 and until recently had set the mark for the most 3-pointers in a career as a Flyer connecting on 221 triples while also scoring 1254 career points.
She will inherit 3 seniors, 2 juniors, 2 sophomores and 2 freshmen.
Key players this year will be:
Reese Hess is a Sr., guard and a returning starter averaged 12.2 ppg, 4 reb and 2 steals. Look for Reese to set the tone for the Indians this season.
Brooke Hines is a Sr., guard and averaged 3 ppg and 2 reb last year.
Payton Nicholas is a Sr., guard/forward, another returning starter and was 3.2 ppg and 2 rebounds last year.
Layla VanCulin is a Jr., forward returning starter and was the leading rebounder last year with 8 a game and 5 ppg. VanCulin give the Indians a physical presence in the paint.
Felicity Harbour is a Jr., forward who saw some action at varsity last year as a JV/V swing player.
Other players looking to add value are:
Rylee Hess is a So., guard seeing some action at the varsity level as a JV/V swing player.
Estie Rapp is a So., forward Saw some action at varsity last year as a JV/V swing player.
Mya Denlinger is a Fr., guard and will look to provide minutes and contribute.
Mia Szakal is a Fr., guard/forward and another incoming young player looking to contribute.
For Coach Landis this will be a season of becoming familiar with coaches and school in the WOAC and their programs while she looks to build hers at Newton.
“This first year will involve of lot of learning and growth, both with the players and myself. Our focus will be on implementing a new system, establishing standards and expectations. Defense will be key, with emphasis on box outs, intensity, and energy. While we return 4 varsity players, the team overall is younger and does not bring a lot of on-court experience at the varsity level,” Landis stated.
When asked about the league and top teams she said. I am not as familiar with all the teams, but I know Tri-Village and Arcanum usually bring solid squads each year. I look forward to getting to know the conference, coaches, and teams,” she added.
“I am excited to be at Newton and to excited get started,” Landis concluded.
Ansonia (8-14, 3-8 record in 2023)
Franklin Monroe (5-17, 3-8 Record 2023)
The Lady Jets have suffered the last few years with low numbers and lack of height but not effort. They play as hard as any team in the league. Zane Shellabarger has stepped down as coach and taking over the reins will be Tim Barga.
Barga coached the Mississinawa Boys program for 6 years is no stranger to coaching girls’ basketball having coached at Versailles and Yellow Springs. In fact, he has a career girls’ coaching record of 486 wins and 143 losses.
The Jets should be in good hands and given time Barga should be able to get the Jets flying high again.
Key Players for the Jets will be:
Lillie Shellabarger is a 5-6 Sr., forward and has been an undersized big but battles hard she pulled down 5.2 rebounds and scored 4 points per game last year.
Olivia Sease is a 5-5 Sr., guard who ran the point last year, she grabbed 2.3 steals a game and averaged 5.4 points.
Presley Cox is a 5-7 Jr., center returns to basketball after playing in Junior High, she is an athletic player who should give the Jets the ability to score in the paint.
Kyra Barnes is a 5-4 Jr., guard who is fast and athletic, she started 4 games last year and should figure to be a bigger part of the Jets attack this season.
Eva Shellabarger, is a 5-5 So., forward who also is undersized but has all the instincts and knowledge to be effective.
Caydance Nichols is a 5-2 So., guard who saw limited action as a freshman but will be see increased minutes this year.
Expect the Jets to be defensive minded and to compete hard this season as they get used to a new system.
Twin Valley South (2-20, 1-10 Record 2023)
The Panthers had a rough season last year but return quite a few players that gained valuable experience.
Twin Valley South coach Brayden Waggoner also returns and is optimistic they will be much more competitive this season.
Key players returning are:
Jordan Ritchie is a 5-9 Jr., guard and the leading scorer last year. She was also the district 15 DIV underclassmen of the year. She is athletic and likes to get the ball out a go but also can knock down the outside shot as well.
Maci Arndts, is a 5-6 Jr., guard she took a step forward during the second half of last year and the Panthers are looking for her to help lead and facilitate the offense this season
Brylii Day, is a 5-10 So., forward who was hurt most of last year and they are looking for a big leap from her this year while also giving them some size they missed last year.
Kenzie Wise is a 5-6 Sr., guard who is a great defender and leader. Looking for her to become more of an offensive threat this year.
Sidnee Elswick is a 5’6 Sr., guard is a great shooter and is very good at getting a hand in passing lanes on defense.
Kiki Allison is a 5-7 Sr., forward and is the heart and soul of the team, she always brings energy and hustle when she is on the floor.
Clara Meyers is a 5-9 Jr., is another one that only played half of last year, they are looking for her to be a defensive anchor and compete as a top rebounding leader in WOAC.
Key contributors moving up from JV:
Abby Crouse is a 5-1 Sr., but is fairly new to the varsity level, she has made great improvements over the summer and is looking for that to translate into solid point guard minutes for the Panthers.
Kelsie Maggard is a 5-2 Fr., guard is very quick and athletic, Kelsie will play both guard spots and will provide great defense, and an ability to get to the rim.
Coach Waggoner wants to use his extensive roster to push tempo.
“Our strengths will be our defense and ability to get to the foul line. In order for us to succeed, we must limit turnovers on offense and force opposing teams to take outside shots. We want our girls to push in transition and get hands in passing lanes to force deflections and steals on defense,” Waggoner stated.
Brayden sees the top 4 teams being the same as most coaches.
“Mississinawa Valley they have great guard play, they play fast, and can score form anywhere on the floor. Tri-Village has talented players, always plays disciplined and very active defensively. Arcanum is well coached, they have multiple shooters, long and athletic which makes it hard for opposing offenses and Dixie who arguably has the best player in the league, and they like to slow the game down and run good sets,” Waggoner said.
Bradford (0-21, 0-11 Record in 2023)
The Lady Railroaders had a rough season in 2023 and will be looking to rebound in 2024.
They are coached by John Siedling in his second year at Bradford. The Railroaders will play through one senior, three juniors, two sophomores and a freshman.
Brooklyn Crickmore is a 6-1 Sr., forward and the leading rebounder and shot blocker from last season and a great defensive player.
Avery Helman is a 5-10 Jr., forward who sets the pace for the team and is extremely tough defense.
Ryleigh Dotson is a 5-7 So., guard and will be the floor general and an outstanding leader.
Claire Hill is a 5-7 So., guard a hustle player who can stretch the floor on offense and a lock down defender.
Megan Wood is a 5-10 Jr., forward who slashes hard on offense and is excellent on defense and a good rim protector.
Vivian Harleman is a 5-8 Fr., guard a knockdown shooter and extremely talented offensively.
Daphne Lavey is a 5-7 Jr., forward and another hustle player who’s willing to put anything on the line to make the right play.
“Our team hangs our hat on tenacious defense and effort. For us to be successful we must apply and keep pressure the entire length of the court. Another key to be successful is to be patient on offense and be gritty,” said coach Siedling.
Siedling agrees with other coaches on who they see as the top 4 teams.
Tri village is very well coached and coming off of a championship year plus they have that pedigree. Mississinawa Valley was a younger tough team who is bringing back the majority of their team from last year and will be tough to beat. Dixie has an extremely talented group of girls who play hard, and Arcanum is very well coached and is bringing back a lot of talent.
Good Luck to all our girls teams in 2023-24.
Ansonia Bid To Reach State Final Four in Football Ends in Regional Finals
Ansonia fell to Marion Local in the Regional Finals to end the best season in school history. (Dale Barger Photo)
Game Photos Album 1 https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.367746102271583&type=3
Game Photos Album 2 https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.367765528936307&type=3
PIQUA – For one half of football the Ansonia Tigers competed at a high level against Marion Local and trailed just 7-0 at the half. The 2nd half would be all Flyers who erupted for 41 points to advance to the DVII State Semi-Finals ending the Tigers dreams of reaching the State Final Four.
The loss doesn’t diminish the incredible season Ansonia produced on the gridiron finishing with the most wins in school history with a 13-1 overall record, the first regional semi-final appearance and their 2nd WOAC League Championship.
It wasn’t a secret to anyone coming in the challenge presented to the Tigers who embraced it playing their brand of football that engulfed 11 minutes off the clock in the first quarter keeping the ball out of the Flyers hands.
Ansonia received the opening kick-off and was able to pick-up a first down … but Marion stiffened forcing a punt that was blocked but scooped up by an aware Cameron Grilliot who advanced it for a 1st down to keep possession and the drive alive.
The Flyers were keying in hard on Keegen Weiss and Zane Henderson stepped forward to take some of the load. (Dale Barger Photo)
Ansonia then consumed the clock with a steady drive before stalling at the red zone without any points as the Flyers took over with 1:00 minute left in the opening quarter.
“We didn't score on the first drive, but we held the ball most of the quarter and that helps when you can keep a great offense like Marion’s off the field,” Ansonia coach Adam Hall stated.
Marion went to work on their 1st possession but found it thwarted when Landyn Bowman jumped the receiver picking off the Flyers pass giving the ball back to Ansonia near the 45-yard line.
Senior Landyn Bowman picked up his 5th interception this year by jumping the Marion Local Receiver. (Dale Barger Photo)
The Flyers held forcing two straight punts after the Tiger’s held Marion on their second possession.
But on Marion Locals third possession they struck paydirt. After two long pass plays they capped the drive on a 2-yard plunge to go up 7-0 at 4:45 in the 2nd quarter.
Both teams coughed it up late trading possession and then the Tigers had one more drive stalling near midfield and got an incredible 48-yard punt from Keegen Weiss that was downed at the one-yard line with 15 seconds left to go in the half.
Marion completed a 50-yard pass and then had one second left, time to throw one more time to the endzone but it was picked-off near the goal line by Ansonia Cainan Robinson and the score remained 7-0 at the half.
Cainan Robinson grabs the INT to end the 1st half. The Tigers turned over the Flyers 3 times in the half and trailed 7-0. (Dale Barger Photo)
“I thought we played great defensively in the first half, we were tackling and filling well, and our coverage was pretty good too, not a lot of people can say they held Marion Local to 7 points in a half,” Hall commented.
Marion Local struck quickly to start the 2nd half by returning the kick-off down to the 10 yard-line and moments later ran it in from 2-yards for a touchdown to go up 14-0.
Keegen Weiss nearly slipped this tackle for a big gain but the Flyers pursuit was their all night. (Dale Barger Photo)
The Tigers were unable to respond, and the Flyers scored again on their next possession facing a 4th down they got a 13-yard run to go up 21-0 at 6:49.
Marion again held Ansonia and for the 2nd time in the game blocked the punt in the endzone and recovered it for another TD and then had all the momentum as the Tigers now trailed 28-0.
The Tigers Defense played outstanding in the 1st half but the Flyers were able to get things rolling in the 2nd half. (Dale Barger Photo)
Ansonia who already faced adversity with a few key injuries and a number of two-way players starting to wear down, it was a tough ask to continue holding down an explosive Marion Local team who has the numbers and hasn’t lost a game since 2020.
While the Tigers would end up falling 48-0 they can take pride in their first half performance against a team who will more than likely end up as State Champions.
Senior Quarterback Nick Burns would have to throw a number of short passes to try and keep Marion Local honest and to get into space. (Dale Barger Photo)
“Things went south for us from the start in the 2nd half, we gave up the kick return there to start the half and we just couldn't get going after that while they started churning. You’ve got to give credit to Marion they are a great team. Everyone knows that coach Goodwin is one of the best and we wish them all the best going forward,” coach Hall said after the game.
It’s never easy walking off the field for your last game as a flood of emotions hit you, but for the 12 seniors on the Tigers team it will be a season they can take pride in and in time will come to know how special it really was.
Senior L-R: Wyatt Spencer, Nick Burns, Jordan Troutwine, Grant Barga, Garrett Stammen, Keesen Weiss, Ethan Reichert, Trevor Hemmerich, Landyn Bowman, Jared Schmitmeyer, Devin Geyer and Colton York.
“It's been a great year, there's a lot to be proud of, I know this loss stings now, but as we get further away from this game we’ll all see we have a lot to go back and be proud of,” Hall said.
“Our seniors did a great job being good leaders for us all year long, they’re hard workers, they’re great kids and you can’t say what that mean to our program and how much I appreciate them as a coach,” Hall added.
When he was asked by another reporter about whether the younger kids look up to the seniors and believe they can achieve what they did, and Hall had this to say.
“Yes, they can do that, they should, and the thing is, you know, you can't just wait to be a senior, and hope it happens. Our seniors went out and decided in January this is what they wanted and worked for it. Now our young guys know if they want to do it they can follow their example and make it happen. It is something we can do year in and year out if we're all working towards it,” Hall concluded.
Coach Adam Hall addressed his team one last time at the conclusion of their Regional Final game. (Dale Barger Photo)
The Tigers captured the heart of the Ansonia community and have inspired the next generation of young football players, can they do the same thing as the 2023 team? Only time will tell.
The Ansonia Cheerleaders were all in helping make the 2023 football season magical.
(Dale Barger Photo)
OPSWA All-Southwest District Football Teams
The Ansonia Tigers lead the list of 1st team players selected to the All-Southwest District Team in DVII. (Dale Barger Photo)
Below is the list of WOAC Football Players recognized by Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association on the Southwest All-District football teams, as selected by a media panel from the district in DV, VI and VII.
Tri-Village had 6 players and Ansonia 5 selected to the first team in their respective divisions to lead all WOAC Schools.
The Tigers Keegen Weiss and Garrett Stammen would also take their league player of the year honors and repeat them at the District level as well. Congrats to all the players selected.
Offensive player of the year: Keegen Weiss, Ansonia, (Dale Barger Photo)
DVII - 1st Team
Ansonia: Keegen Weiss Sr., Running Back – Garrett Stammen, Sr. Linebacker – Jared Schmitmeyer, Sr., Offense Linemen, Garrett Stammen, Sr., Linebacker – Landyn Bowman, Sr., Defensive Back
Bradford: Hudson Hill, Sr, Receiver – Trey Schmelzer, Sr., Linebacker, Tucker Miller Sr., Defense Linemen
Tri-County North: Colten Vanwinkle, Sr., Running Back
Mississinawa Valley: Anthony Ibarra, Sr., Linebacker
Ansonia: Ethan Reichert, Sr., Defense Linemen – Trevor Hemmerich, Sr., Defensive Back
Bradford: Owen Canan, Jr., Quarterback – Eric Keener, Sr., Offensive Linemen – Kaleb Tegtmeyer, So., Offensive Linemen – Griffin Trevino, Jr., Defensive Back – Landon Wills, Sr., Defensive Back
Mississinawa Valley: Brandon Pisano, Sr., Linebacker – Leland Kauffman, Jr., Defensive Back
Defensive player of the year: Garrett Stammen, Ansonia. (Dale Barger Photo)
DVI - 1st Team
National Trail: Bryce Thompson, Sr., Offense Linemen – Jamison Watts, Sr., Defensive Back
Tri-Village: Braden Keating, Sr., Quarterback, Reed Wehr, Sr., Running Back – Tanner Printz, Sr., Receiver – Seth Jesse, Sr., Offense Linemen – Noah Finkbine, So., Defensive Back – Jayden Hollinger, Sr., Defense Linemen
Twin Valley South: Paul Day Sr., Offense Linemen – Brayden Koeller, Sr., Linebacker
Arcanum: Devin Craport, Sr., Linebacker
Dixie: Alex Bess, Jr., Receiver
National Trail: Chase Ruebush, Sr., Running Back – James Baker, Jr., Offense Linemen – Cooper Lee, Sr., Defense Linemen – Joey Roberts, Sr., Defensive Back
Twin Valley South: Cais Kingsley, Sr., Running Back – Cole Bishop, Sr., Defensive Back
DV – 1st Team
Preble Shawnee: Isaac Blankenship, Jr., Receiver
Preble Shawnee: Garrett Campbell, Sr., Offense Linemen – Reece Smith, Jr., Defensive Back
Preble Shawnee: Lane Lovely, Brody Morton, Brody Lynch
The Tri-Village Patriots led the list of 1st Team All-Southwest District selections in DVI.
(Dale Barger Photo)
Ansonia Advances to Regional Final with win over St. Henry.
Keegen Weiss scores up middle thanks to the offensive line giving him plenty of room to run in win over St. Henry in the OHSAA DVII Regional Semi Final game. (Gaylen Blosser Photo)
PIQUA – The Ansonia Tigers defeated the St. Henry Redskins under the direction of head coach Adam Hall to go 13-0 on the season, a first for the Darke County WOAC school.
“No. 1 it’s our guys buying in,” Ansonia coach, Adam Hall said of the team’s success on the field. “We know that they know and when teams still can’t stop it that is from how hard we work, how well we execute it, how well we fake, how well we block. Our offense is a team offense and it shows every week and it really gives us an edge when we do it that way.”
Coming into the game the Tigers were without Garrett Stammen the WOAC Defensive Player of the Year and lead fullback on offense but Ansonia would persevere with Stammen cheering on the sidelines.
Ansonia dominated the clock from the opening kick to the final buzzer grinding out third and fourth down conversions while the defense kept the Redskins on their heels for most of the night.
Zane Henderson pulls in an Ansonia 19-yard touchdown pass from Nick Burns to give the Tigers a 12-0, 1st half lead over the Redskins. (Gaylen Blosser Photo)
The teams played to a scoreless first quarter before the Tigers took advantage of a 19-yard touchdown pass over the middle from Nick Burns to Zane Henderson with 7:12 on the second quarter clock to lead 6-0 with the Redskins stopping the Tigers’ two-point conversion attempt.
Ansonia put a second first-half touchdown in the scoring column as time was winding down in second-quarter action with Keegen Weiss scampering 13 yards untouched up the middle for a Tigers TD to lead 12-0 with 0:33 remaining in the opening half. A failed two-point conversion attempt had the teams headed to the halftime locker with Ansonia holding a 12-0 advantage.
Ansonia QB Nick Burns picks up a big gain in the Tigers Playoff win over St. Henry. (Gaylen Blosser Photo)
“That is all credit to my guys up front they open everything for me,” said Weiss. “It happens every game. We do things right, they were out of position and we pop a big one.”
“He has carried a lot all year, he has done great all year,” Coach Hall said of his Weiss. “About January, six o’clock lifting, every day he is there; when he’s playing baseball he’s there, great leader, great athlete, we wouldn’t be where we are at without him.”
When asked if he ever gets tired, the senior running back stated, “No, that is what the offseason is for. I’m glad my guys don’t get tired either. They have been in their all offseason working just as hard as I am and it shows.”
St. Henry dented the scoreboard with 31 seconds on the third quarter board with a 50-yard touchdown pass and made good on its PAT kick to cut the Tigers’ lead to 12-7 where the score would stand after three complete.
Ethan Reichert gets over the goal line to give Ansonia a late 4th quarter TD to go up 18-7. (Gaylen Blosser Photo)
Ansonia battled back with an Ethan Reichert 3-yard touchdown run at 3:45 in the fourth. Attempting a two-point conversion run the Tigers were flagged for illegal procedure moving the ball back to the 8-yard line where Weiss would carry for an 8-yard 2-point conversion giving the Tigers a 20-7 lead.
Keegen Weiss gets an important two-point conversion to put Tigers up 20-7 late in 4th quarter. (Gaylen Blosser Photo)
With time winding down on St. Henry’s playoff hopes the Redskins went to the air and moved the ball quickly downfield and scored on a 1-yard touchdown pass with 0:45 on the fourth quarter clock. The PAT kick hit the right upright keeping the score a 20-13 with St. Henry attempting an onside kick.
Ansonia had no problem handling the onside kick attempt. Weiss ran for a first down before the Tigers took a knee to run out the clock and advance in playoff action with a 20-13 win while keeping its perfect season intact.
Ansonia now advances to the OHSAA Region 20 DVII Regional Finals and will take on 11 time State Champion Marion Local on Friday, November 17 at Piqua High School with a 7 p.m. start time.
Ansonia coach Adam Hall gives instructions on the sideline to Cainan Robinson.
Hall's Tigers improved to 13-0 on the year for the best season ever at Ansonia &
for the 1st time will play in the Regional Finals! (Gaylen Blosser Photo)