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April 15, 2010

Heams takes over program By Don Richter Sports Editor

SOFTBALL PREVIEW

A new chapter for Milan softball will begin this season as Stacey Heams takes over control of the program. Heams inherits a solid squad. Last year’s team finished 277 overall sharing the Huron League title with Carleton Airport. Returning to lead the Big Reds this season will be senior All-State candidate Lani Ernst. An infielder, Ernst will play next year at Bowling Green State University. Besides Ernst, other top players returning for Milan this season include Nena Doran, Vanessa Garcia, Kat Hoffman, Anna Hargrove and Krista Hoevemeyer. In the circle, Cheyenne Brierley and Hoffman will be the aces for the Big Reds this year. Both athletes will also roam

the outfield for Milan when not pitching. Behind the plate, Milan will look to Drey Garrett and Hoevemeyer to hold down the catching duties this season. Despite bringing in an entirely new coaching staff this year, Heams said it wouldn’t be a concern. “We’re coming in with great knowledge,” she said. Heams said the strength of this year’s team would be its overall depth. “Most of the athletes on this team can play anywhere,” she said. “They all have strong arms and great bats, along with quickness on the bases.” Heams said the Big Reds’ goals this season are quite simple. “Our goal is to be better than the day before,” she said. “And by the time districts come we are the best we can be.”

Photo by Burrill Strong

Milan sophomore keeper Erin Jenna just misses making the save as Chelsea’s Kelly Fournier scores in last week’s 4-0 loss.

Milan falls to Chelsea By Terry Jacoby Editor

The last few weeks have featured more than a few summer-like days around the state. Unfortunately for the Chelsea and Milan girls’ soccer teams, their schedule and these warm temperatures were not on the same page last Thursday. The Bulldogs delayed their league-opening soccer game with Milan on Thursday a few hours and moved to the football field where the turf wasn’t effected by all the rain that had fallen over the previous few days. The delay didn’t seem to bother the host Bulldogs who scored twice in the first half and two more times in the second half in a dominating 4-0 victory. Chelsea goalie Michelle Wellman had to make only two saves the entire game as the Chelsea defense turned away most of Milan’s scoring threats. “Our defense played really well,” said Chelsea coach Kirsten Smart. Milan coach Leah McGrath, who knew going into the game that Chelsea was going to be tough, was impressed with the Bulldogs. Chelsea plays at a level Milan hopes to get to someday. “We actually played them better than we have in the past,” said McGrath, in her first year as the varsity coach. “So we’re getting better and catching up. But we’re not there yet. They are a very good team.” McGrath said a slow start proved costly for the Big Red. “We started slow and a week off because of spring break didn’t help, and we weren’t used to playing on a turf field,” she said. “It also took us a while to figure out that (Anna Rode and Katelynn Stehlik) were really good and that we need to know where they were at all times. They already had a goal on the board before we figured that out.” Still, there were plenty of positives for Milan. “We are a really young team and playing teams like Chelsea is great experience,” McGrath said. “We have a freshman starting on defense, a freshman starting in the midfield and a freshman starting on offense. We need to get used to the speed of play at this level.” The Big Reds also have sopho-

Kat Hoffman will be one of the Big Reds’ top pitchers this season. Milan, co-champions of the Huron League last year, finished with an overall record of 27-7 in 2009.

Big Reds run at Jefferson

Photo by Burrill Strong

Milan’s Tiffany Stacy chases Chelsea’s Ashley Chrisman in last Thursday’s match-up against the Bulldogs.

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Video of MilanChelsea game at www.heritage.com

Photo by Burrill Strong

Milan’s Lauren Eisen kicks the ball away from Chelsea’s Victoria Heumann in last Thursday’s 4-0 loss against the Bulldogs. more Erin Jenna starting in goal. “Erin actually plays on a club team (the Novi Jags) with a bunch of the girls from Chelsea,” McGrath said. “Erin started last year as a freshman and we are expecting a lot from her. She’s one of the team’s strengths.” While the defense was doing its job against the Milan offense, the Chelsea offense was creating plenty of chances. The Bulldogs were called for a num-

ber of offside penalties early in the game as the Big Reds were trapping the aggressive Chelsea forwards. And when they were getting shots off, Jenna was making some nice saves. The Bulldogs kept the pressure on and Anna Rode got the Bulldogs on the board with a goal at 28:35 of the first half with an assist from Kelly Fournier. It was a great individual effort by Rode who came down on the left side with Jenna charging out of the net. The

Milan goalie was able to get her hands on the ball but couldn’t pull it in as Rode regained control, kept her composure and placed her shot into the open net. Fournier made it 2-0 at 19:48 with an assist from junior Ashley Chrisman. Chelsea’s third goal was as good as it gets, especially this early in the season. Sophomore Katelynn Stehlik came down the middle of the field with the ball. When two Milan defenders converged on her she flicked the ball to her left to an open Fournier. The senior made a nice move, cutting between two Milan defenders, and pushed the shot below a charging Jenna and into the net, just inside the post. Rode scored her second of the game at 32:08 to finish the scoring.

By Don Richter Sports Editor

TRACK AND FIELD

Milan’s girls’ track and field team participated in the Monroe Jefferson Freshman/ Sophomore Invitational last Saturday. The Big Reds performed well, earning 44 medals in the meet. In high jump, Milan freshman Tess Odegard placed fifth with a height of 4-feet, 2 inches. In the long jump, sophomore Asha Lewis, freshman Hannah Meissner and freshman Keya Minott combined for a secondplace measurement of 25-0 for the Big Reds. Freshman Grace Bartley, sophomore Brianna Hurley and sophomore Lynzi Patton combined for a third-place heave of 47-0 in the shot put for Milan. Hurley, Patton and Bartley also finished third in the discus with a combined 126-4. In the 400-meter relay, the Big Red foursome of sophomore Jealissa Kitchen, freshman Courtney Freeman, sophomore La’asia Moore and Asha Lewis broke the tape first with a time of 55.0. Freshman Eran Young, freshman Catie Campbell, sophomore Asia Jones and sophomore Karis Kanitz placed fourth in 59.9 for Milan. In the 800-meter relay, the Big Red group of Jones, Kanitz, Freeman and Moore placed second in 2:08.6, while sophomore

Sam Ludwig, Campbell, Minott and Meissner finished fifth in 2:10.4. In the co-ed 1,600-meter relay, the team of Ike Fink, Alex Huling, Kitchen and Odegard crossed the line second in 4:13.0. Dylan Miller, Taylor Osborne, freshman Samantha Leacher and Young ended up eighth in 4:48.9 for Milan. Huling, Fink, Odegard and Leacher placed second in the co-ed 3,200-meter relay with a clocking of 10:35.5, while Josh Priest, David Swain, sophomore Karen Schelkun and Meissner finished seventh in 12:48.2. In the sprint medley relay, Kitchen, Young, Lewis and Odegard placed first in 4:47.7, while Campbell, Ludwig, Jones and Leacher ended up fifth in 5:30.1. Dan Fick, Chris Sharp, Lewis and Meissner finished second in the co-ed shuttle hurdle relay with a time of 41.1 for the Big Reds. Milan next travels to Huron League for Flat Rock for a meet Thursday at 4 p.m. On Tuesday, the Big Reds host Grosse Ile in a league meet at 4 p.m. On April 27, Milan hosts Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central for a league meet at 4 p.m.


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