By Tom Gamble, GCL South Commissioner
Senior forward Jeremiah Davenport posted game highs of 21 points and 12 rebounds to lead Moeller to a 66-48 victory over St. Xavier on the road Friday night, moving the Crusaders to a perfect 10-0 this calendar year and wrapping up the Greater Catholic League South Division championship outright – the sixth consecutive year that Moeller has won at least a share of the coveted league crown. In the other GCL South game, senior forward Riley Haubner – the GCL South leading scorer averaging 21.7 points a game – poured in a career-high 37 to lead La Salle to a 60-53 victory over Elder at La Salle.
Davenport, a Wright State University recruit, was 9-of-13 from the field, while pulling down six offensive rebounds and recording four assists for Moeller (17-3, 5-0 GCL South) – which is ranked No. 2 behind Princeton in The Enquirer’s Division I weekly area coaches’ poll and No. 3 in the Associated Press DI state rankings this week. Junior guard Alec Pfriem added 16 points to go along with eight rebounds, six assists and four steals for the Crusaders, while senior forward Jaxon Hayes chipped in nine rebounds and blocked shots as Moeller extended its GCL South winning streak to 13 games, including the postseason, dating back to February 2016.
The game was tied after one quarter before Moeller outscored St. Xavier, 18-9, in the second period to take a nine-point halftime lead. St. Xavier (13-6, 2-3) narrowed the margin to eight points after three quarters, but Moeller responded with 22 points in the final eight minutes to up its road record to 7-1 this season (the lone loss at Covington Catholic, Northern Kentucky’s top-ranked team, 58-53, on December 12). St. Xavier junior guard Nathan Stockman scored 11 points, while senior forward Chase Wolf added 10 for the Bombers – who were held to 34 percent shooting, including 7-of-22 from three-point range. Moeller also outrebounded St. Xavier, 40-19.
It was a career night for La Salle’s Haubner, who has been the league’s leading scorer all season and entered the game coming off a 29-point performance in the Lancers’ 49-46 victory at Dayton Cmaminade-Julienne on Tuesday. Haubner has been the model of consistency this season, scoring in double figures in all but one of the 20 games he has played (nine in a 46-36 loss at Hilliard Bradley on December 16), while scoring 20 or more points 12 times – including a previous career high of 30 in La Salle’s 75-61 loss to Moeller on January 19. He has scored 29 points three times – in the season-opener against Shroder Paideia, against Walnut Hills and at C-J. Friday, though, Haubner took it up another notch.
The 6-foot-2, 152-pound guard was 10-of-20 from the field, and connected on 16-of-19 free throws to help La Salle (12-9, 2-3) overcome a 28-25 halftime deficit with a big third quarter to win its second straight and set up a matchup at St. Xavier next Friday to determine second place in the GCL South. Haubner was one of only six players to score for La Salle, which got eight points off the bench from junior guard Nathan Vogelpohl, seven points from sophomore guard Derek Eddings and six points and a team-high eight rebounds from senior forward Henry Louden. The Lancers knocked down 20-of-27 free throws, good for 74.1 percent shooting from the line as a team. Senior guard Zach Harp led Elder (11-10, 1-4) with 19 points, including five three-point goals, while senior guard Trevor Estep added 12 points and two three-pointers.
Moeller and St. Xavier both have non-conference games tonight. The Bombers host Eastern Cincinnati Conference member Walnut Hills (15-4), which has clinched at least a share of its league title with an 11-1 ECC record, at 7:30 p.m., while Moeller plays Greater Miami Conference member Lakota West (3-16) in Kenwood. Tipoff is also 7:30 this evening in the final home game for Moeller. The regular season wraps up next week, with Moeller at Elder and La Salle at St. Xavier on the final Friday night of the GCL South season on February 16. All four schools are off next Tuesday, with St. Xavier at Woodward a week from today is the final GCL South game scheduled before the postseason tournament.