How does Badin follow up a great football season? No better way to do that than in basketball.
The Rams (9-4) reset many significant program records during this past football season. That included a rare Greater Catholic League Co-Ed co-championship with Chaminade Julienne, twice beating nemesis Alter and pushing eventual Division III state champion Trotwood-Madison in a regional final.
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That’s a lot of can-do success that has taken its game to the next sport.
“It’s awesome we have the same group of guys plus another group of guys that we’re buddies with and everybody is playing basketball together,” said Badin senior Alex DeLong following an impressive 65-52 blowout of visiting Carroll on Friday night. “It’s a great transition.”
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These are the best of times for two of the most high-profile Rams boys programs, many of whom also will play on Badin’s top-level baseball team in the spring. It was the third straight win by the basketball team (5-1) and keeps the Rams in a tie with McNicholas and Purcell Marian for the early GCL Co-Ed lead, all at 3-1.
DeLong, Badin’s record-setting running back, ignited the Rams’ first-half blitz and had a team-high 17 points. Josh Hegemann, like DeLong another two-way football standout, added 14 points and Donovan Watkins 12.
That deep football playoff run that interfered with preseason basketball was just fine with veteran coach Gerry Weisgerber.
“I like having good football seasons,” he said. “Everybody is pumped up going into the next season and you build off of it. That’s what we’re seeing. The football kids are now getting into basketball shape and they know how to win and they’re doing it now on the basketball court.”
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Badin asserted itself early and led by 20 points at halftime. Carroll (3-3, 2-2) made a second-half run behind junior Sam Severt’s game-high 19 points that included five 3-pointers. Senior Jaden Dahm added 13 points.
Carroll has just two seniors and graduated most of its regulars from last season. The Patriots have one of the area’s tallest players in 6-foot-10 junior sub Maro Egodotaye.
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“They believe in what they’re doing and (Weisgerber) has a great squad,” conceded Carroll coach Tim Cogan, in his seventh season with the Patriots. “He can make a run.”
Also in Badin’s lineup is 6-5 senior standout quarterback Zach Switzer (nine points). Senior Marshall Flaig, 6-4 junior twins David and Michael Schweinefuss, and junior Bobby Young, all key football players, also made that football/basketball transition.
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And there’s more: Former Fenwick boys basketball coach Pat Kreke has joined the Rams’ staff.
Badin’s next five games are non-league. The Rams resume GCL Co-Ed play at Alter (2-1, 2-1) on Jan. 10.
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“We have a lot of good athletes in this senior class,” said DeLong, who remains uncommitted about college football. “There’s a lot of good athletes as juniors, sophomores and freshmen, too. We’ve just got a good wave (of athletes) coming through and that’s courtesy to the people who have been here before and what they’ve done. That’s a big reason why we’re here.”
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