Pioneers Halt 49-Year Drought to Win District Basketball Crown

The 2018-19 Zane Trace Pioneers have put an old ghost to rest with a 51-45 Division 2 District Basketball Championship Sunday at the OU Convo. The title sends the Pioneers to their first boys basketball "Sweet 16" since the great 1970 squad went to the State Final Four.

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Despite shooting only 15/38 for 39.5% from the field, ZT was sharp on the foul line, going 18/23. The Pioneers were also 3/5 from outside the 3-point arc. In contrast, Fairfield Union shot 15/43 from the field for 35%- including 7/20 from the arc, but were 8/12 from the foul line.

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SVC "Player of the Year" Cam Evans led all players with 23 points while also grabbing 5 boards. 6'6 forward Nick Nesser scored 12 points while hauling down 6 rebounds, while 6'5 post-player Triton Davidson added 8 points and 7 rebounds. Chad Ison and Luke Johnson each had 3 points and Colby Swain 2 to go along with his 8 rebounds.

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The Falcons were led by senior guard Evan Conley' 20 points and pivot Huston Harrah added 12 points and snared 9 rebounds.

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Zane Trace held the rebounding edge 29-25. Both teams handled the ball well, with the Pioneers turning it over 8 times and Fairfield Union 7.

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The Pioneers led most of the game, holding the edge at every stop. They led 11-10 after the first period, 22-16 at half, 33-30 after three and the final of 51-45. ZT had leads as of several points a few times in the game, only to see the Falcons battle back each time.

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Zane Trace improves to (21-4) and will face (21-4) New Philadelphia at 8pm Wednesday at the Convo in the regional semis. New Philly advanced with an East District title win over East Liverpool, 67-48 on Saturday night. 94 Country WKKJ airtime will be approximately 7:45pm. Fairfield Union closes their season at (16-9).

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To relive the Zane Trace district championship as broadcast with Mike Smith and Tom Beard on WKKJ, go to our podcast link found below...

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