1984-1985 Buckeye Central Basketball Team
Inducted in 2015
The 1984-85 Buckettes were the Class “A” State Champions in basketball. They finished the season with a 25-1 record, averaging 52 points per game. The Buckettes defeated Zanesville Rosecrans 58-49 in the state semi-finals to advance to the final game. Lisa Crace had 13 points and Jill Studer had 12. Rosecrans was a two-time state champion. In the final game, the Buckeye Central girls defeated Tipp City Bethel 48-44. In that game, Spiess’s number 5 state ranked team, managed to hold Class A Player of the Year, Kelly Lyons, to just two points, 26 points below her average. The 6’1” junior managed to foul out with 2:51 to play. Coach Spiess credited Traci Kehres for her defensive play in denying Lyons the ball. After the victory, Coach Spiess credited the team play of the Buckettes for the final victory. Top scorers for the game were Kelly Forehand with 14, Traci Kehres 11 and Jill Studer 10.
The 1985 team roster included head coach Vainard Spiess and assistant coach Chuck Snyder. Team members Kelly Forehand, Linda Dye, Diane Kempf, Jenny Kaple, Jill Studer, Traci Kehres, Lisa Crace, Leslie Zucker, Annissa Rhodebeck, Tammi Kehres, and manager Joanna Norris.
The only loss in 1985 was to River Valley 41-48, and the Buckettes ended up NCC Runners-Up to River Valley. The 1985 team was also the first Buckeye Central team to beat St. Pete’s Mansfield on their home court.
Anissa Tuttle wrote this about their special moment:
This team was not made of any single All-Star player. We had very unselfish players. Teams struggled to compete with us because any one of us could score. Teams that tried to shut down one player, because they scored most in the last game, would find that someone else was now the threat. We were a very disciplined and focused team. Coach Spiess was to credit for this. We had rules and expectations. For example, if we were tardy to school due to being a little tired, Coach assumed we were not in good enough shape. Practice would take care of that. We respected and trusted him. He knew what he was doing. He did not let us get pulled into the hype of any one game, before or after. He never reported to the papers about one player in particular, only the team. Even at the State Championship, we slept in our own beds between the Semi-final and Final game. He didn't want us to lose our focus with any excitement or distraction of a hotel room. No one questioned it, he knew what he was doing. We had a lot of support starting with our parents and families. The town backed us 100% from people/fans dribbling to tournament games to signs posted at the Corporation limits saying "Last one out, shut the lights out". It was truly amazing and very much appreciated.