DAYTON — Dru Joyce II is looking for his seventh state championship as head coach of the Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary boys basketball team.
Joyce — a 1973 graduate of East Liverpool High School — has guided the Irish to the state semifinals for the 13th time in his 21 seasons as head coach.
Top-ranked Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary (23-4) will play second-ranked Kettering Alter (25-2) in a Division II semifinal at 5:15 p.m. today at University of Dayton Arena.
Joyce led the Irish to state titles in 2003, 2009, 2011, 2017, 2018 and 2021 and state runners-up in 2002, 2013, 2016 and 2019.
Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary opened the season with losses to Pickerington North and Sierra Canyon (Calif.) and later lost to Centerville and Oak Hill Academy (Va.), which was at the Canton Civic Center.
Oak Hill is ranked No. 8 nationally by USA Today. Sierra Canyon, with LeBron “Bronny” James Jr., is ranked 17th and Centerville, which is in the Ohio Division I state semifinals, is 21st.