Lorain Titans lead post season seeding at 17-1
The OHSAA first-round matchups Feb. 10 place Lorain as No. 1 seed in Div. I Elyria District in basketball.
The OHSAA announced the seeding and first-round matchups for the 2018-19 boys basketball tournament Feb. 10. The majority of The Morning Journal area teams are featured in the Division I Elyria District. Lorain (17-1), the heavy favorite in the district, received the No. 1 seed, followed by No. 2 Olmsted Falls (17-2) and No. 3 Lakewood (11-6). Lorain was ranked sixth in the most recent AP state poll and clinched its fourth Lake Erie League title in five seasons on Feb. 8 with a win over Cleveland Heights. The Titans are the reigning Elyria District and Akron/Toledo Region champions, and were knocked out of the state semifinals last season by eventual D-I champion Cincinnati Moeller. Olmsted Falls received the No. 2 seed last season and was upset in a sectional final by then-No. 10 Berea-Midpark. The Bulldogs control their destiny the rest of the regular season and can secure the outright Southwestern Conference championship if they win at least two of their final three games before the tournament begins.
Avon (12-6) was seeded fourth in the Elyria District and will face No. 13 North Olmsted (1-17) in the first round. Elyria (8-11) is fifth and will face Greater Cleveland Conference foe Strongsville, No. 6 North Ridgeville (11-8) will take on No. 11 Amherst (2-13), No. 7 Avon Lake (11-8) will face No. 10 Westlake (7-12), and No. 8 Midview (9-8) will face No. 9 Berea-Midpark (8-8). In the D-II Mansfield District, Vermilion earned the third seed and the district’s only first-round bye. The Sailors will face the winner of No. 6 Sandusky and No. 10 Shelby. Vermilion (16-3) was the No. 1 seed in the district last season and was upset by the eventual regional champion, third-seeded Lexington, in the district semifinal. The Sailors clinched at least a share of the Sandusky Bay Conference title Feb. 9 with a win over Margaretta. In the D-II North Ridgeville District, Bay received the area’s highest seeding at No. 3. Cleveland Central Catholic is No. 1 followed by Holy Name at No. 2. The Rockets are the reigning North Ridgeville District champions after downing rival and topseeded Holy Name in the final before losing in a onepoint heart breaker to Lexington in the regional final. Bay is 14-4 with four games left on their regular-season schedule and has gone 2-2 in its last four games. Fairview (17-2) is seeded fourth and will face crosstown rival No. 13 Lutheran West (5-12) in the first round. The Warriors have three games left in the regular season and can claim their first conference championship in nearly 60 years with a win over Clearview on Feb. 15. No. 5 Buckeye, leader in the PAC Stars Division, will face No. 12 Brookside (6-12), No. 6 Rocky River (12-4) will face No. 11 Firelands (5-15), No. 7 Clearview (14-4) will take on No. 10 Padua (9-10), and No. 8 Cloverleaf (13-7) will face No. 9 Keystone (9-10). Elyria Catholic (10-7) will once again play in the D-III Garfield Heights District. The district features reigning regional champion Lutheran East as well as top seeds Kirtland, Beachwood and Warrensville Heights. The Panthers received a first-round bye and will face the winner of Crestwood-Brooklyn in a sectional final. Last season, Elyria Catholic lost, 68-63, to Beachwood in the district semifinal. Wellington (7-9) will play in the D-III Wooster District. The Dukes open the postseason at home with a first-round matchup with Smithville. Last season, Wellington earned the No. 1 seed and was upset by No. 4 Manchester in a district semifinal. The final four area teams are featured in the D-IV Norton District. Richmond Heights (155) earned the district’s top seed, followed by No. 2 Columbia (13-5) and No. 3 Open Door (15-2). Columbia is in third place behind Fairview and Clearview in the PAC Stripes Division and will face the winner of No. 7 Dalton-No. 10 Independence in a sectional final, while Open Door will face the winner of No. 6 Lake Center Christian-No. 11 Kidron Central Christian in a sectional final. No. 9 Oberlin (6-12) will open with No. 8 Cornerstone Christian, last season’s D-IV state runner up, while No. 13 Lake Ridge will face No. 4 Rittman in the first round.