Moeller Caps School’s First Perfect Regular Season

02/18/2017

Posted on 2/18/2017

Crusaders Defeat Elder, La Salle Beats St. Xavier In GCL South Finales

Senior Keegan McDowell scored 13 points and sophomore guard Miles McBride added 11 as Moeller defeated Elder, 53-35, Friday night in a Greater Catholic League South Division basketball game at Moeller High School.  The Victory capped a perfect regular season for the Crusaders, the first in the school’s hoops history, against the only school in GCL South history to enter postseason play undefeated.  Elder’s 1971-72 team went an un blemished 18-0 during the regular season, while the Panthers’ 1960-61 squad was the league’s first at 17-0.

Moeller came to within two games of regular-season perfection in the 2010-2011 season before losing the final two games to Middletown and La Salle.  Moeller heated up in the postseason that year, reeling off five consecutive wins before falling to GCL South colleague La Salle in the regular final, 46-35.  That win helped propel the Lancers to Columbus, where coach Dan Fleming’s team earned the school’s second Division I state basketball championship after ending the season on a 14-game winning streak.

Speaking of La Salle, the Lancers closed their regular season with a 57-44 win over St. Xavier Friday night at La Salle behind a combined 32 points from senior guards C.J. Fleming (17) and Tre Crigler (15).  The win was the fourth straight for La Salle (19-3, 4-2 GCL South), and wrapped up sole possession of second place in the GCL South for the Lancers. St. Xavier (7-14, 0-6), which dropped its sixth consecutive game, closes the regular season by hosting Winton Woods at 7:30 tonight.  

Moeller (22-0, 6-0 GCL), ranked No. xx nationally in the MaxPreps Xcellent 25, No. 1 in the Associated Press Division I state poll, and a wire-to-wire No. 1 all season in The Enquirer’s DI are coaches’ poll, kept its unblemished record in typical fashion – using stingy defense to hold Elder below its league-best 40.4 defensive average entering the game. The Panthers were the ninth team this season Moeller held below 40 points.  Moeller shot well in the game, connecting on 23-of-42 field goals for 54.8 percent.

Seniors Riley Voss and Caleb Canter each grabbed a team-high five rebounds on Senior Night as Moeller outrebounded Elder, 21-18, which has been a common theme all year.  And the Crusaders had their usual balanced scoring, with four players scoring seven more points.  Senior Dashawn Mosley scored 13 points to lead Elder (10-11, 2-4), while junior guard Brett Marsh added nine.  Junior Zach Harp, who poured in 25 points in a spectacular performance in the first meeting between the schools, was held to two points on 1-of-7 shooting.

With the regular season ending today, and St. Xavier the lone GCL South team with a game remaining, the GCL South schools will now turn their attention to the postseason.  NO. 1 seed Moeller, which receives a first-round bye, will meet the winner of Harrison-Little Miami in its sectional opener at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, March 1 at Hamilton High School.

The other GCL South teams open postseason play next week.  La Salle tips off first, opposing Winton Woods next Thursday, March 23 at 6 p.m. at Hamilton.  Elder opens sectional play next Friday, March 24 against Hamilton at 6 at Lakota West, while St. Xavier closes the week taking on Lakota West at 8 p.m. Saturday, February 25 at Hamilton.