TROY — Sidney and Vandalia-Butler established themselves as the Miami Valley League’s best Division I teams during regular season. They’ll establish a definitive best during postseason play.
Sidney was voted the No. 9 seed in the stacked 20-team Dayton Div. I sectional and opted to place itself opposite No. 8 Butler for a first-round tournament matchup. The squads, which split in MVL play, will face off on Feb. 15 at Troy High School’s Trojan Activities Center.
“We had an idea of what we wanted to do and where we wanted to go,” Sidney coach Jamal Foster said. “… We’re happy with it and we’re ready to compete.”
Sidney (15-5, 12-4 MVL) secured the MVL Valley League title in mid-January. The Aviators (14-6, 12-4) are in second place in the MVL Miami behind Tippecanoe (16-4), which earned the top seed in the Tecumseh Div. II sectional.
Butler rallied to beat Sidney 53-51 on Dec. 14 in Vandalia while the Yellow Jackets led the whole way in a 49-41 victory on Jan. 22 in Sidney.
“They’re a good team,” Foster said of Butler. “We kind of felt like the first time we kind of let it get away. We won the one at home, and we like our chances to do things different in tournament and survive and advance.”
The Dayton D-I sectional has 12 teams that had 12 or more wins as of its seeding meeting, which took place on Sunday at Troy High School like most other Dayton-area sectional meetings.
Seed voting began online early last week and concluded on Saturday. Results were tallied in preparation for Sunday’s meetings, during which teams placed themselves on their sectional’s brackets in seed order.
It’s the first season for the revived MVL, which originally existed for 49 years before disbanding in 1975. Sidney, Butler and eight other Greater Western Ohio Conference teams left that league to reform the MVL.
Despite having the fifth-best record in the sectional and having split with Butler, the Yellow Jackets could do no better than the ninth seed.
That’s partly due to the strength of GWOC teams this years — and coaches valuing GWOC losses more than MVL wins.
It shouldn’t be surprising that Sidney was voted below the likes of No. 3 Centerville (13-7), which has a stout nonconference schedule and owns a win over No. 4 Springboro (16-4). It may be a bit surprising to some that GWOC members Beavercreek (12-8) and Miamisburg (10-10) were voted ahead of the Aviators and Yellow Jackets.
“The MVL is coming,” Foster said. “Everything is coming. There’s a youth movement (on many teams) and it’s a new league. The GWOC is established for what they’ve done as a great conference for years.
“The MVL, just give us some time. There’s some teams that can play that are going to put their names on the map soon.”
If Sidney can beat Butler, it will continue to have tough opponents. The Yellow Jackets would likely face Springboro in a second-round game, and Centerville would likely be a district semifinal opponent.
Fort Loramie earns top seed in Sidney D-IV sectional
Fort Loramie (19-0) was voted the No. 1 seed in the Sidney Div. IV sectional for the eighth time in the last 10 years on Sunday.
The Redskins, which were ranked No. 1 in D-IV in Tuesday’s Associated Press state poll, have a nonconference regular-season game against Findlay Liberty-Benton scheduled when tournament play opens on Feb. 15.
As such, Fort Loramie opted to take a first-round bye. The Redskins went into the sectional’s bottom bracket and will open postseason play on Feb. 18 against the winner of No. 11 Triad and No. 12 Ansonia.
The Redskins are hoping to make a state tournament run after losing to eventual D-IV champion Minster in regional finals the last two years.
“I think every team looks forward to tournament,” Fort Loramie coach Carla Siegel said. “It’s a brand new season; records don’t matter. I think our girls will be excited for it.
“It’s an old cliché, but we’ll take it one game at a time. …Our word this year is ‘today.’ We can’t worry about what happened last year, last week, yesterday and we can’t worry about what happens tomorrow, next week or next month. It’s just today, and I think that’s what has made this team so driven, that they’re just worried about today.”
Fort Loramie is guarnteeded not to lose to Minster in a regional game this year. The southwest Ohio D-IV girls regional will be made of its three district winners in addition to a Columbus district winner. A northwest Ohio district winner had rounded out the southwest regional the last two years.
For those that like to plan far ahead, Fort Loramie wouldn’t face Tri-Village (19-1) until a potential regional final matchup on March 7.
The Patriots, which are ranked No. 6 in D-IV in the state AP poll, lost in regional semifinals to Minster the last two years and are generally considered the co-favorite along with the Redskins to win the region.
Fairlawn (7-14) was voted the sectional’s No. 6 seed, Jackson Center (5-15) was voted the No. 7 seed and Riverside (9-9) was voted the No. 8 seed. All three teams went into the sectional’s bottom bracket with Fort Loramie.
Fairlawn and Jackson Center will face off in a first-round game on Feb. 15, and the winner will play Riverside on Feb. 18.
The Tigers will face off in their second Shelby County Athletic League matchup on Thursday; Jackson Center won the first matchup 35-28 on Jan. 4. Both squads beat Riverside in nonconference games earlier this season.
Botkins (14-5) was voted the No. 3 seed, Lehman Catholic (14-6) was voted the No. 4 seed, Russia (9-10) was voted the No. 5 seed and Houston (5-15) was voted the No. 9 seed. All squads went into the sectional’s top bracket.
Lehman will face Houston on Feb. 15, and the winner will face Botkins on Feb. 20. Russia will face No. 2 Mechanicsburg (18-2) on Feb. 15 and if it upsets the Indians will face No. 10 Mississinawa Valley (3-17) on Feb. 20.
The winners of the Feb. 18 games will play in a district semifinal on Feb. 24 at 6 p.m. while the winners of the Feb. 20 games will play in a district semifinal on Feb. 24 at 7:30.
All games will take place at Sidney High School.
Anna No. 1, Versailles No. 3 in Dayton D-III sectional
Anna (14-6) was voted the No. 1 seed in the Dayton D-III sectional while Versailles (12-8) was voted No. 3.
The Rockets will open tournament play on Feb. 15 against No. 20 Dayton Meadowdale (4-18) and if victorious will play No. 21 Northridge (2-18) in a second-round game. If they win their second postseason game, they’ll face the Miami East vs. National Trail winner on Feb. 24.
The Tigers will open postseason play on Feb. 15 against No. 19 Miami Valley (4-17) and if victorious will play No. 14 Dayton Christian (10-6) in a second-round game. If they win their second postseason game, they’ll face either Greenon, Middletown Madison or Greeneview in a district semifinal on Feb. 24.
Anna and Versailles’ tournament games will take place at Covington High School.
Minster voted No. 3 seed in Wapakoneta
Minster (15-4) was voted the No. 3 seed in the Wapakoneta D-IV district while New Bremen (11-7) was voted No. 6.
Minster opted to go in the district’s top bracket and will open tournament play on Feb. 22 at St. Marys Memorial against either Parkway or Ridgemont. No. 2 Marion Local is a likely district semifinal opponent.
New Bremen will open tournament play on Feb. 19 against Hardin Northern and if victorious will face either No. 4 New Knoxville of No. 10 Ada in a second-round game on Feb. 22.
Reach Bryant Billing at 937-538-4818, or follow @SidneyOHSports on Twitter and @BryantBillingSDN on Facebook.