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Vote now: What was the best OHSAA championship team in boys sports covered by SBLive Ohio in 2021-22?

Here are the 15 nominees for the top boys OHSAA championship teams from football, basketball and baseball.
Marion Local football Ryan Isley

In the 2021-22 high school boys sports season, SBLive Ohio covered the state championships in football, basketball and baseball. 

In all, there were 15 state championship teams covered by SBLive over those three seasons.

Now is your chance to vote on which of the 15 teams that won the championships in those three sports was the best, as we have outlined each of the championship teams below (listed in chronological order by season).

Read through the nominees and cast your vote. Voting will conclude Sunday at 11:59 p.m.

Lakewood St. Edward football

Behind 210 yards rushing and two touchdowns from running back Danny Enovitch, the Eagles soared to the Division I state title with a 23-13 win over Springfield. St. Edward finished the season 14-1 and had eight players named to the first three All-Ohio teams, led by QB Christian Ramos, OL Joe Lavelle, DL Michael Kilbane, LB Zyion Freer-Brown on the first team.

“Indescribable,” Enovitch said. “It’s absolutely unbelievable. These guys mean the world to me. They are my brothers for life, and we will never forget this.”

Cincinnati Winton Woods football

Coming into the Division II state championship game as underdogs against Archbishop Hoban, the Warriors stunned the crowd with a 21-10 win to take home the title. Winton Woods was the first team all season to keep the Hoban offense out of the end zone and they contained running back Lamar Sperling to just 121 yards on 21 carries after he averaged 258 yards per game in the playoffs entering the state championship.

Winton Woods was led by the Division II defensive player of the year in Jay’Ron Gibson. He and LB Seven Blue were both named All-Ohio first team, and a pair or Warriors teammates joined them with either second or third team honors.

“Being that it has been five years since we have been to a state title game, we had a lot of reporters say we were going to lose by 14 points,” Winton Woods linebacker Seven Blue said. “We just shut that out and locked in.”

Chardon football

The Hilltoppers took home their second straight Division III state championship with a 21-14 win over Badin when Sean Carr took a handoff and went two yards for the game-winning touchdown with 1:05 left in the fourth quarter.

Chardon, who became the first team in OHSAA history to finish 16-0, had three players on defense named first-team All-Ohio in defensive lineman Alex Kisley and defensive backs Nathanael Sulka and Trey Liebhardt. Carr led four other Hilltoppers on the second or third team.

“I took it in a couple of times,” Carr said. “It was awesome, that atmosphere. It’s just crazy that people can get together like that and support something.”

Clarksville Clinton-Massie football

The Falcons found themselves trailing Ursuline 28-7 in the Division IV state title game before coming all the way back to win the game 29-28.

After Clinton-Massie had scored a touchdown with 45 seconds left in the fourth quarter to cut the deficit to one, coach Dan McSurley put the decision to tie or go for the win in the hands of his players, who wanted to go for the win. The Falcons did just that and running back Carson Van Hoose took the toss and went around the right side for the conversion and the eventual win.

Van Hoose led four Falcons players who were named All-Ohio first-team, as he was joined by offensive lineman Owen Trick, linebacker Colton Tramper and defensive back Kody Zantene.

“We called a timeout and asked the seniors, ‘Guys, what do you want to do,’” Clinton-Massie coach Dan McSurley said. “They said, ‘We want to win it.’”

Versailles football

When Versailles entered the Division V state championship game, all that stood in its way was the nation’s longest winning streak of Kirtland, who had won 55 straight.

Versailles never trailed and won the game 20-16 to capture the state title with a 15-1 record. The final score was closer than the game itself, as the Tigers led 20-3 after three quarters and a touchdown with less than a minute left in the game for Kirtland made it 20-16.

Versailles was led by Division V co-defensive player of the year Carson Bey who was one of two Tigers to earn first-team All-Ohio accolades where he was joined by offensive lineman Taran Tyo.

“I am speechless,” Bey said. “I am just so proud of the way we played all year and proud of the way we finished.”

Carey football

Carey took down Coldwater 26-14 in the Division VI state championship game to win its first state title since 1975. In the game, Carey did what it does best and possessed the ball, keeping it out of the hands of Coldwater. Carey held the ball for over 34 minutes and chewed up 243 yards rushing on 64 attempts.

The Carey defense finished the season by not allowing more than 14 points in any of its last eight games.

Carey had six players on one of the three All-Ohio teams, led by first-team selection Easton Korody on the offensive line.

“As a lineman, I take pride in those little 3-yard plays,” Korody said. “It really just wears down the defense, and when you have the momentum, you don’t feel it. You don’t get tired from a 17-play drive that takes seven minutes off the clock. It’s an awesome feeling knowing you can just dominate and control the game like that.”

Maria Stein Marion Local football

For the 12th time in program history, Marion Local hoisted a football state championship trophy when the Flyers defeated Newark Catholic 42-7 in the Division VII state title game and matched Chardon as the only teams in OHSAA history to finish 16-0.

Marion Local never gave Newark Catholic a chance, as they jumped out to 21-0 lead in the first quarter. The Flyers racked up over 400 yards of offense and allowed just 148 yards of offense for Newark Catholic.

In going undefeated, the Flyers allowed just 28 total points in six playoff games and had a pair of shutouts. Linebacker Darren Meier and defensive back Peyton Otte were both named All-Ohio first team for the Flyers.

“I like physical football,” Goodwin said. “Some teams try to come and make it a finesse game, and we make sure we show up and make sure it’s a football game.”

Pickerington Central basketball

All Pickerington Central had to do to win the Division I state championship was defeat defending state champion Centerville and end their 45-game win streak. Mission accomplished.

The Tigers rode the backs of their two stars – Devin Royal and Sonny Styles – to a 55-48 win to finish the season 26-2 and give Pickerington Central its first title since 2012.

Royal finished the season earning first-team all-Ohio honors.

“It’s pretty crazy. I can’t believe we just won,” Styles said. “It’s a great way to end a high school career, for sure.”

Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary basketball

The Fighting Irish won their state semifinal and state championship games by an average of 26.5 points to claim their second consecutive Division II state title.

Led by Division II player of the year Sencire Harris and first-team All-Ohio selection Ramar Pryor, STVM won 21 of its last 23 games, with the losses being to Centerville without Pryor in the second half of the game and to Oak Hill Academy without either Harris or Pryor.

The title was the seventh for head coach Dru Joyce and the 10th overall for STVM, an Ohio state record.

“It never gets old. This is special,” Joyce said. “To have them come and put in the time and the work, it just makes it even more special.”

Cincinnati Taft basketball

The Taft defense locked in and held Ottawa-Glandorf to just six points in the fourth quarter to capture the Division II state championship with a 48-45 win.

The defense was the calling card for the Senators, who gave up just 36.8 points per game in eight postseason games and never allowed a single team to eclipse 50 points in the tournament.

Taft finished the season 19-8 and was led on the season by first-team All-Ohio selection Rayvon Griffith and Mekhi Elmore, who earned honorable mention All-Ohio honors.

“When you work so hard for something and you see that clock hit 0:00, nothing else goes through your mind but to go celebrate,” Taft junior Rayvon Griffith said. “That’s what was going through our minds. We thought the game was over but as you can see it wasn’t. We just had to finish it so we could celebrate for real this time.”

Richmond Heights basketball

In winning the Division IV state championship, the Spartans didn’t allow either opponent to even score 30 points in the semifinals or finals.

Even without first-team All-Ohio honoree Josiah Harris in the championship game, Richmond Heights defeated New Madison Tri-Village 50-29 to capture the first state title in program history. With Harris watching from the bench, Jaiden Cox-Holloway led Richmond Heights with 18 points in the state title game, including seven of the team’s nine points in the first quarter. He hit back-to-back 3-pointers in the fourth quarter to help the Spartans stretch the lead and put the game away.

The Spartans reeled off 21 wins in a row to end the season and finish 25-4. Harris was joined on the first team by London Maiden, while freshman point guard DeErrick Barber was named to the third team. Cox-Holloway and Dorian Jones each earned honorable mention nods.

“Our group, we are a family — for real. We love each other,” Richmond Heights senior Jaiden Cox-Holloway said. “I didn’t just want to win it for me, I wanted to win it for everybody because that was everybody’s first ring.”

Sylvania Northview baseball

With a 6-1 win over Grove City in the Division I state championship game, Northview won its first baseball state title and finished 21-8 on the season.

Blake Bradford tossed a four-hitter and struck out six in the championship game, while Garrett Zimmerman threw a two-hitter in a 3-2 win over Kenston in the state semifinals.

Brodey Acres, who was second-team All-Ohio, drove in what would end up being the championship-winning run with a two-run single in the third inning.

“I have imagined it, but I never thought it would actually happen,” Acres said. “I can’t complain that it did happen. Much better than I imagined.”

Chardon baseball

The Hilltoppers took home the first baseball state title in school history by defeating defending state champion Archbishop Hoban 8-5 in the Division II state championship game.

Christian Hall started the game on the mound for Chardon, was relieved in the third inning, and then returned to the mound to close out the victory. The senior also closed out a 6-5 win over Bishop Hartley in the state semifinals.

In the state championship game Chardon came back from a 5-3 deficit with five runs in the top of the sixth inning to take a three-run lead. It was the second game in a row in which the Hilltoppers had scored five times in the sixth.

Chardon finished the season 24-9 and Hall was named honorable mention All-Ohio.

“We knew people thought we were the underdogs,” Hall said. “We like that. We have a bunch of players who are football players who have won two straight championships. We like being the underdog, we like to fight.”

Apple Creek Waynedale baseball

With a 2-1 win in eight innings over Milan Edison in the Division III state championship game, Waynedale captured its first baseball state title.

With the bases loaded in the bottom of the eighth, Connor Gatti took a pitch to the opposite field for a game-winning hit to score Josiah Raber. Otto Solorzano went the distance in the championship game, allowing just the one run and striking out seven. He also picked up the save in the state semifinals in a 5-3 win over Liberty Union.

Waynedale was in the championship game because Trey Barkman outdueled Liberty Union star pitcher Jacob Miller in the semifinals for the 5-3 win.

Waynedale finished the season 27-4 and Jay Mast earned honorable mention All-Ohio honors.

“That’s a tough situation to be in going into extras with the state title on the line,” Daugherty said. “But I think our guys really stayed composed.”

Russia baseball

Russia scored seven times in the bottom of the sixth inning of the state championship game to extend what had been a 3-2 lead into a 10-2 lead with one inning to play and defeated Lincolnview 10-4 to win its first state title since 1971.

Xavier Phlipot went the distance in the state championship game and allowed just two runs and six hits in the first six innings. This came after Grant Saunders allowed three runs (two earned) on just two hits in a 3-2 win over Newark Catholic in the state semifinals.

Russia finished 25-6 on the season.

“One run lead was nice,” head coach Kevin Phlipot said. “But I wasn’t too confident until Quinter (got the hit) to right. Right then, the mind was starting to wander a little bit.”


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