• Thu. Jun 1st, 2023

First state girls hoops title in school history

By Mike Dyer

WCPO Channel 9

DAYTON, Ohio — The Purcell Marian High School girls basketball team is a state champion for the first time in program history.

Purcell Marian defeated Worthington Christian 62-38 in a Division III state final on Saturday, March 12, at University of Dayton Arena.

“Right now we just want to soak this in and enjoy the moment,” Purcell Marian coach Jamar Mosley said.

“I am proud of this team, in terms of the season, where we started to where we finished.” Mosley said. “We made significant progress throughout the season, which is a real credit to our players, especially our lone senior, Jermyrha Behanan. She missed a majority of the season due to an injury her junior year, but never stopped working to get back.

“The best thing about this group is they really are for one another. Everyone knows Dee Alexander and the team let her be her. Dee is one of the most unselfish stars you’ll meet. We had three girls score 30+ points this season. This group was consistent throughout the year and gratefully so, our youth didn’t show. They played like vets all year.” 

Freshman wing Dee Alexander scored a game-high 25 points, 16 rebounds and five steals to lead Purcell Marian. Sophomore guard Jayda Mosley scored 16 including 4-of-5 on 3-pointers. Freshman guard Ky’Aira Miller added 10 points.

The Cavaliers shot 63% from the field (24-of-38). Purcell Marian led 19-11 at the end of the first quarter and outscored Worthington Christian 31-17 in the second half.

Alexander, who has several significant college scholarship offers, completed a memorable freshman year as the program’s all-time leader in points and rebounds for a season. Alexander scored 661 points this season, according to statistics from the Miami Valley Conference website.

Alexander scored 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting in the first half Saturday.

“It felt good to hear the clock go off and the score showed we were up and won,” Alexander said. “It was a moment to enjoy.”

The Cavaliers (27-1) completed a special journey this winter after making its second straight state Final Four appearance. The Cavaliers completed the season with 22 consecutive wins.

Purcell Marian was ranked No. 2 in the season’s final Division III state poll.

The Cavaliers defeated Belmont Union Local 59-43 in the state semifinal March 10 and the team stuck with a game plan the coaches had during practice the entire week. That relentless effort throughout 32 minutes of Thursday’s game was evident.

That momentum carried over to Saturday’s state final, as the Cavaliers returned to Cincinnati as state champions.

Reposted with permission from WCPO 9 Cincinnati