Moeller Extends Streak, Wins District Title


Posted on 3/9/2019 at 3:26 p.m.

Crusaders Use Fast Start, Defense To Beat Winton Woods

An early start time was no problem for defending Division I state champion Moeller, as the unbeaten and No. 1 seed Crusaders jumped out to a 21-7 lead after one quarter, extended the advantage to 44-11 at halftime, and then allowed just four points in the final two quarters to post a 57-15 victory against Winton Woods in the Dayton District I final of the Ohio High School Athletic Association State Basketball Tournament early Saturday afternoon at the University of Dayton Arena, the first of four district finals scheduled there today.  The game was played in just under one hour.

Moeller (25-0), which has not lost since December 2017, will meet either Lakota East or Kettering Fairmont in the Division I regional semifinals at 6:15 p.m. next Wednesday at Xavier University’s Cintas Center.  East meets Fairmont in the third district final today at UC Arena, with tipoff at 7 p.m. – the first game of the night session.  Moeller defeated East, 61-53, as part of the inaugural Midwest King Classic at Middletown High School on January 20.   The margin was the second closest this season for Moeller.

Elder (14-10), the second Greater Catholic League South Division team to advance to the district final, faces Springfield in the finale at 9 tonight.  If victorious, Elder would advance to meet the winner of Centerville vs. Mason – the second district final at 3 this afternoon – in the other regional semifinal at 8 next Wednesday at XU. Elder, which has won four straight games, is looking for its ninth victory in the last 10 games – the lone loss during that span at Moeller.  Elder finished second in the GCL South behind Moeller.

It certainly is no surprise that Moeller got off to a fast start and won by double figures against Winton Woods.  The Crusaders have made a habit of coming out strong this season and, as a result, have won 23 of 25 games by double digits.  Only East and Dayton Chaminade-Julienne (62-55) got within single digits of Moeller – which is winning by an average margin of nearly 30 points this season and 31.8 in the postseason.  Moeller has now won 12 consecutive postseason games, the last loss coming in the 2016-17 Di state final to Massillon Jackson, 39-38.  Including that season, Moeller has won18 of its last 19 games in the state tournament.

Moeller, which also defeated Winton Woods, 60-42, during the regular season, used a 41-6 run to end the first half after Winton Woods held an early 5-3 lead.  Senior Miles McBride scored all 12 of his points in the first half, while sophomore Will McCracken scored nine of his 12 in the first two quarters, and senior Alec Pfriem had nine of his 11 in the first half as well.  The trio combined to hit 13-of-16 shots from the field, and Moeller was a perfect 6-of-6 from three-point range in the first half.