John Bruce, Contributor
If you are trying to determine the greatest team to ever play in the Scioto Valley Conference, how would you do it? Would you use recency bias? Would you know that a certain number of years were better than others?
Whatever way that you decide to make your picks on these brackets, one thing that I ask of you is this: use the facts and information provided to you in the coming article and whatever experience you have with these teams to make the best choice.
- Larry Jordan Regional / Larry Jordan Round of 32
- Dale Haynes Regional
- Ron Shoemaker Regional
- Jeff Reisinger Regional
Last week, we released four regionals, named after legendary basketball coaches and figures in the Scioto Valley Conference. Today, we continue the trend with our second Round of 32 bracket, coming in our Dale Haynes Regional.
NOTE: Photos in this article have been generously provided or found via Facebook.
Dale Haynes Regional
The Dale Haynes Regional is named after one of the best players in Unioto history, and also one of the most influential members of the SVC. Dale graduated from Unioto in 1967 and finished his basketball career with 1,042 career points, which was good enough for second place at the time. Dale is a member of the Unioto Athletic Hall of Fame and was a long time member of the selection committee as well.
However, following his playing career, Dale made an even greater impact. Dale was a long time coach at Unioto and also helped organize and run the biddy ball program at Unioto. Along with his longtime friend Dave McMillan, Dale tracked and compiled statistics across the SVC in every sport. His programs that he organized at Unioto were a must-have for all local fans, not only for his accurate information on Unioto, but for their opponents and the entire SVC.
Dale made a lasting impact and influenced many in the SVC, including myself and Shayne Combs of SVCsportszone.com. This tournament was done in memory of Dale and his legacy in the SVC community.
No. 1 Unioto ‘14-15 (26-1) vs. No. 9 Huntington ‘06-07 (17-5)
- As just the second SVC team to ever finish the regular season undefeated, the 2014-15 Unioto Shermans were utterly dominant along the way. The Shermans had a single game decided by 10 points or less in their first 26 games and held a late lead before faltering in the Sweet 16 against Walnut Ridge. Matt Hoops’ Tanks were led by two-time SVC Player of the Year Nick Corcoran (15.1 points per game), but were filled to the brim with depth and talent … Nick Overly (14.3 points), Cole Cottrill (10.4 points), Erique Hosley (9.4 points), and super-sub Alek Adkins (8.2 points) off the bench. Oh, and Kyle Strange, Logan Swackhammer, and Isaac Wheeler all scored in double figures at times throughout the season. The Shermans finished fourth in the Division II AP Poll and ran away with a Division II district championship as well.
FIRST ROUND: defeated No. 16 Paint Valley ‘63-64 (77% of the vote)
- With only one senior, Cory Vickers, and a team full of underclassmen, it took the 2006-07 Huntsmen a while to get going. But, once they did, they got on a furious roll that took them to a district championship game. Winners of 14 of their final 16 outings, the Huntsmen made it known that they would be the favorites in 2007-08. Behind SVC Player of the Year Josh Kellough (18.8 points) and twin brother Justin Kellough, Rick Uhrig’s squad could beat you in many ways. With Vickers, Drew Trusty, Corey Cottrill, and the lockdown defense of Zach Riley, these Huntsmen were way more than a one or two-man show.
FIRST ROUND: defeated No. 8 Zane Trace ‘86-87 (55% of the vote)
No. 4 Zane Trace ‘18-19 (19-5) vs. No. 12 Paint Valley ‘14-15 (16-9)
- The 2018-19 version of the Zane Trace Pioneers was thoroughly dominant throughout the SVC season, and into the regional tournament for the first time since 1970. Gary Kellough was able to get his team in tip-top shape to deal with a limited bench. SVC Player of the Year Cam Evans (25.2 points) led a group of outstanding basketball players who may not have wowed you each trip down the floor, but the next thing you know, they would be up 15. Nick Nesser (12.5 points), point guard Colby Swain, Triton Davidson, Luke Johnson, and senior Chad Ison did the playing for the Pioneers, with Ison being the only non-junior in the group. After being pushed in the sectionals by an athletic Hillsboro team, the Pioneers coasted to a district championship. The Pioneers also defeated a very good Chillicothe team early on in the season.
FIRST ROUND: defeated No. 13 Huntington ‘04-05 (52% of the vote)
- Mason McCloy, Clay Stratton, Anthony McFadden, and Dylan Swingle were all featured on the 2014-15 Paint Valley Bearcats roster. All four players would score over 1,000 career points, with Swingle being Ross County’s all-time leading scorer. McCloy (17.2 points, 11.2 rebounds) and Stratton (16.8 points) were seniors for Dave Shoemaker, while McFadden (13.0 points) ran the show. Swingle was a freshman, but was able to make a major impact for the Bearcats as they reached a district championship game, where they fell to an undefeated Trimble ballclub.
FIRST ROUND: defeated No. 5 Logan Elm ‘62-63 (58% of the vote)
No. 3 Piketon ‘91-92 (20-4) vs. No. 6 Southeastern ‘98-99 (20-5)
- Coming off of a 9-12 season in ‘90-91, the Piketon Redstreaks knew that they would be better in ‘91-92. But when Eric Caudill arrived at Piketon, that’s when they knew that they would be special. Phil Howard’s Redstreaks raced out in front of one of the strongest league seasons in SVC history, winning the league by two games over Huntington. Caudill (26.8 points, 7.6 assists, 6.8 rebounds) was otherworldly, but teammates like Jason Lamerson, Jeremy Tackett, Todd Burkitt, Jason Dunham, and Steve Ross made the Redstreak machine march on to the regionals for the first time in school history. After winning a tight game against Southeastern in the sectional, the ‘Streaks won with relative ease over good teams in Minford and Belpre in the district tournament before falling to Wheelersburg in the Sweet 16.
FIRST ROUND: defeated No. 14 Southeastern ‘06-07 (66% of the vote)
- After finishing 20-4 in 1997-98, SE coach Dan Easterday received a bit of a gift in 6-foot-11 Kevin Netter before the ‘98-99 season. Netter (19.3 points, 8.0 rebounds) was able to fill the massive void left by John Danicki’s graduation and the Panthers were able to repeat their success from the previous season. Besides Netter, the Panthers also had a trio of outstanding seniors in Tyler Barbee (14.9 points, Wes Wood (10.6 points, 7.7 rebounds), and point guard Greg Schrader (5.9 assists). Nathan Cash and Matt Castle also provided much-needed depth for the district champion Panthers.
FIRST ROUND: defeated No. 11 Westfall ‘08-09 (82% of the vote)
No. 2 Southeastern ‘76-77 (23-2) vs. vs. No. 10 Westfall ‘80-81 (19-4)
- The 1976-77 Southeastern Panthers became the third team in school history to reach the Final Four as they rolled through the SVC and the entire regional on their way to St. John Arena. Larry Jordan’s crew started four seniors and a sophomore and was built to make a deep tournament run. Seniors Coy Prater (16.4 points), Jeff Schuler (15.6 points), Mark Carroll, and Doug Estep (14 points per game in tournament), along with sophomore Sam Eldridge (8.0 points) got things going for the Panthers, while junior Rick Schrader (the ‘77-78 SVC POY), Toby Kellough, and Dave Duckworth came off the bench. Outside of a loss to Adena, the Panthers were dominant throughout the season. The Panthers closest tournament game on the way to Columbus was their tournament opener against Federal Hocking, a game they won 73-69. The Panthers defeated Strasburg 63-51 to win the regional championship.
FIRST ROUND: defeated No. 15 Westfall ‘68-69 (88% of the vote)
- Behind a talented and experienced lineup, the 1980-81 Westfall Mustangs won their first SVC title and advanced to the district finals for the first time in 12 seasons. Tom Hamman managed a successful run for the Mustangs behind SVC Player of the Year Jerry Mowery (21 points) and Dan Curry (19 points). Guard Scott Galloway, along with Richard Gray, Brad Rivers and Brett Rivers gave the Mustangs the necessary depth to make a run in the Central District. In the Mustangs’ tournament win over Grandview Heights, Mowery set a school record with 10 assists, while also notching 28 points. Curry posted a 16-point, 16-rebound night in the district-semi win over Marion Pleasant.