DRESDEN, OH- The Tri Valley Scotties are District Champs. “I’d like to say our defense. Our kids were really locked in mentally. Defensively, they got after them and set the tone early in the game,” said head coach Todd McLoughlin on what led to the win.
The Scotties got off to a blazing start in the District Final against John Glenn. The team led 30-6 midway into the second quarter. It’s the first time Tri-Valley will play in the regionals since 2007.
“Great to get back into the situation. First time for me as a coach; I was there as a player. I like what we have right now where our guys started at the beginning of the year to where we are at currently right now,” McLoughlin stated.
Right now: the Scotties will be going up against a 23-3 Fairfield Union Falcons team. They are coming off a 58-41 win against New Lexington in the District Finals on Sunday.
“They’re a difficult challenge for us. They’re a team that’s got three guys that got a lot of size; kind of an old school team who punch it in the post,” said McLoughlin.
Lucky enough for the Scotties, they have Erik Neal, who has been doing his thing on the low block all year long. He will be matched up against Caleb Schmelzer, who had 11 rebounds on Sunday.
“It’s really more about blocking out and getting position on him in the paint. He’s a big guy and he’s pretty nimble on his feet,” said Neal with a smile.
Tri-Valley could match up with the Maysville Panthers in the regional semifinals for an ultimate rematch.
“If that’s the situation then that’s awesome because you know what? That means we’re in the regional finals and we’ll get one chance to play another day and ultimately we’re this far, why not go ahead and get to the final four?” McLoughlin stated.
With a win on Thursday, Tri-Valley will return to Athens on Saturday for the regional finals against either Maysville or Bishop Ready. The winner of that will have a date in the state tournament next Friday in Dayton.