COLUMBUS — New divisional assignments for the 2017-18 winter sports of basketball and wrestling were released recently by the Ohio High School Athletic Association. For the first time, Competitive Balance roster data was used in determining divisional alignments in basketball, which is the only OHSAA winter sport affected by the Competitive Balance regulation that OHSAA member schools adopted by referendum vote in 2014.
The divisional breakdowns in wrestling and basketball were approved by the OHSAA Board of Directors June 1 during their June meeting. Additional divisional breakdowns for the 2017-18 winter sports of swimming and bowling will be announced in August.
The Madison County team effected most may just be the London High School girls basketball team. The Lady Red Raiders will remain as a D-II team in the Central District, but a couple of the premier teams in Central Ohio will no longer be in Division II.
The Red Raiders were one of the top teams in Central Ohio this past season, receiving the No. 2 seed in D-II before falling in a district semifinal to Eastmoor Academy. Eastmoor, traditionally one of the better D-II programs in the area has eliminated London from the postseason twice in the last three years. Another top team that the Raiders have run into in recent tournaments is Bishop Hartley.
However with the new divisions being assigned, both Hartley and Eastmoor have been moved up to Division I. This should open the door for London’s chances of advancing deep into the postseason. London is scheduled to return nearly every member of its team next season, as is Jonathan Alder.
None of the Madison County boys or girls basketball teams will be changing divisions. Jonathan Alder and London will play in D-II, while West Jefferson and Madison-Plains will compete in D-III. The Shekinah Christian teams will also remain in D-IV.
Those same divisions will apply for the county wrestling teams. (Shekinah does not have wrestling.)
Division assignments are based on gender-specific enrollment numbers provided to the OHSAA by the Ohio Department of Education. Enrollment figures are then modified in the sports football, volleyball, soccer, basketball, softball and baseball based on Competitive Balance roster data submitted by each school. More information on Competitive Balance is posted at: http://www.ohsaa.org/School-Resources/Competitive-Balance-Resource-Center.
Reach Chris Miles at 740-852-1616, ext. 1618 or via Twitter @MadPressSports.