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Rockets are 7th ranked See page 4

September 30, 2013

R E S Sports S

He does it on a big scale See page 2

Golden Bears, Cardinals go head to head By Yaneek Smith Press Contributing Writer


Gibsonburg players — front row — senior linemen Alex Garcia (55) and Matt Lutzman (60) and wide receiver/defensive back Isaih Arriaga (8). Back row — junior wide receiver/defensive back Sam Kohler (20), senior lineman Jacob Auld (56), and senior wide receiver/linebacker Adam Copley (12). (Photo courtesy of Innovations Portrait Studio/

Any team in Ohio — you only go where the offensive line takes you. You go where the big boys take you.

Three years ago, Gibsonburg football was in Cardinal Stritch Catholic’s current predicament. The Golden Bears were in rebuilding mode under a first-year head coach and searching for victories. Fast forward to 2013 and it appears that Gibsonburg, led by Coach Steve Reser and quarterback Matt Tille, have one of the top teams in the Toledo Area Athletic Conference. The Cardinals are hoping they can follow a path similar to the one the Bears have taken. The two teams face off this Friday night at Robert E. Krotzer Field in Gibsonburg. In 2010, Gibsonburg finished 0-10 in the final year of the Suburban Lakes League before moving to the TAAC. Since then, the Bears have gone a combined 11-13 with a 96 record in the league. Not a stellar record, but certainly an improvement. On top of that, this is the year that Gibsonburg is expected to take that next step and compete for a TAAC title. Picked to finish second in the league before the season began in close pre-season voting by coaches, the Bears were 2-2 and 1-0 in the conference heading into last Friday’s match-up with Northwood, which may have decided the championship. An opening win over Elmwood (35-13) saw Tille complete 9-of-12 passes for 190 yards and four touchdowns and run for another score. But a Week 2 loss to Lakota (146), a game that saw Tille leave in the first quarter because of an injury, followed by a loss to Fremont St. Joseph Central Catholic (33-13) in which backup quarterback Brent Hayward suffered a hip injury, left the team without two top gunslingers. However, Gibsonburg bounced back, defeating Ottawa Hills, 29-0, in the TAAC opener to improve to 2-2. In the win over the Green Bears, Tille returned to complete 11-of-22 passes for 189 yards and two touchdowns, one to Isiah Arriaga and another to Adam Copley. Derek Angelone led the way with six catches for 78 yards and Josh Dyer and Troy Ickes each had one touchdown run. “We’re just playing it week by week,” Tille said. “We just have to come out and do our best. It’s like we’re playing ourselves — if we screw up and beat ourselves, there’s nobody to blame but us. We just have to approach it that way it each week. If we do a better job on Friday nights, we’ll be okay with how we played.” Tille credits the offensive line with helping to establish a foundation. “Our offensive line is our key,” he said

“Any team in Ohio — you only go where the offensive line takes you. You go where the big boys take you.” Despite the fact that the Bears are known for their spread offense, Tille says it is the defense that is just as, if not more, important to the team’s success. “It helps us so much,” he said. “If we don’t have the momentum, I have confidence that the defense will pound them and it helps us when we don’t have things going for us.”

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GAME OF THE WEEK Cardinal Stritch Cardinals @ Gibsonburg Golden Bears Krotzer Field October 4 7 p.m. Tille is particularly excited that his club is on the verge of reaching a new level that could see them competing for a league title and a spot in the playoffs. “I’m really excited,” he said. “As a football team, we haven’t been put in the position where we are right now. We don’t know what it feels like. We’re expecting a dog fight and hopefully we come out on the winning end.” In the last two meetings, the Bears have won both times, last year by a 57-7 margin

Team Overall Genoa (1-0, NBC) 4-0 Lake (1-0, NBC) 4-0 Eastwood (1-0, NBC) 3-1 Woodmore (0-1, NBC) 3-1 Gibsonburg (1-0, TAAC) 2-2 Northwood (1-0, TAAC) 2-2 Oak Harbor (1-0, SBC) 2-2 Clay (0-1, TRAC) 2-2 Waite (0-0, TCL) 0-4 Card Stritch (0-1, TAAC) 0-4

PF PA 252 39 171 26 149 57 171 67 83 60 143 151 89 140 108 115 54 208 43 118

and the year before by a 12-0 mark. Though Stritch is 0-4, they very well could be 2-2 like the Bears. Two of the Cardinals losses have come by a combined 11 points, one to Lakota (21-16) and another to Woodward (20-14). Stritch also played well at times against a much improved Danbury club in their 21-7 loss to the Lakers. In the loss to the Raiders, a pick-six cost the Cardinals. In the game against the Polar Bears, Stritch blew an early lead before Woodward broke a 14-14 tie with a late touchdown. First-year Stritch coach Brian Wical says if the Cardinals can limit their mistakes, they’ll give themselves a chance to win. Wical took the job during the offseason after coaching at Lima Central Catholic, a program that consistently makes it to the postseason. LCC has been such a small school powerhouse, that the Northwest Conference asked the school to leave because of their domination over the other public schools. LCC is without a league right now, but Wical wants to bring LCC’s gridiron mindset to Stritch.

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SEPTEMBER 30, 2013

‘Big’ Wisconsin-bound Deiter does it all on a ‘big’ scale By Jeffrey D. Norwalk Press Contributing Writer Towering over his Genoa teammates at an imposing 6-foot-5, 308 pounds, 2012 second team All-Ohio offensive lineman Michael Deiter rarely does anything small. Perhaps that’s why it seems fitting that next September 6, 2014, “Big” Deiter will be packing up his oversized shoulder pads and cleats and heading 396 miles northwest to Madison, Wisconsin. He made a verbal commitment to the University of Wisconsin in June and will be joining the likes of veteran offensive linemen Hayden Biegel, Ray Ball, Rob Havenstein, and second-year coach Gary Andersen. “I’ve been a Wisconsin fan for quite awhile now, and I’m very excited to be a Badger next year,” offers the 17-year-old Deiter. He was also courted by a number of other Division I football powerhouses, such as Nebraska, Georgia Tech, West Virginia, Illinois, Bowling Green, Toledo, and Miami of Ohio, but says nobody paid attention to him like Wisconsin did. “They liked my size, my athleticism, and the fact that I’m younger, and still maturing,” Deiter adds. He’s now had the opportunity to visit Madison twice and is in awe every time he thinks of the sprawling UW campus, Camp Randall Stadium, and the 80,321-strong that go with it on Saturdays. “The campus is beautiful, it’s really one of a kind,” continues Deiter, “and back during the spring game, I was shocked at just how many people showed up! They were so loud. They were so intense. “The spring game experience was great,” he says. “But then I got to visit again to attend camp, and the coaches were great, and welcomed me in nicely. I’ve got to meet a few of the players, and they seem like great teammates. Those visits just made the decision so much easier for me, and pumped me up a ton. “Growing up, I rarely thought about football,” shares Deiter, whose favorite sport to watch and play was hockey. “But ever since I started playing here my freshman year, college football has been a dream of mine.” Meanwhile, Deiter has quietly kept his nose to the grindstone to make sure he does all of the little things right, including anchoring one of the best “O”-lines in the Northern Buckeye Conference and Suburban Lakes League for three years running. He’s also mentoring the younger guys coming up on the line, and has been mentored by former all-league Genoa linemen Luke Sutter, Alex Hayes, Jake Schreuder, and Matt Keaton. Current lineman Tyler Baird, a 5-10, 204 pound junior center, said, “Michael’s

Wisconsin bound 6-foot5, 308 pound senior lineman Michael Deiter (left) goes over schemes with Genoa coach Tim Spiess. (Press photo by Harold Hamilton/ HEHphotos. smugmug. com) a great leader for us offensive linemen, and he’ll tell you how it is straight up, and everybody listens. I’ve learned from him that I need to be aggressive on every play, and never to take plays off. Deiter plays aggressive, fast, physical football, and is a tremendous athlete for his size. My favorite Deiter moment? Right before the half against Port Clinton when he drove a kid back 15 yards. He’s a very hard worker. He’s one of the first ones to get on the linemen if we’re not giving it our all. Deiter’s bookend on the Comet “O”line, senior right tackle Nick Herrick (6-3, 261) said, “He’s more of a lead-by-example kind of guy, but isn’t scared to get on your case if you’re doing something wrong. It’s pretty awesome knowing you have a bigtime college recruit as a brother and a teammate, and the best thing about it is, he’s not cocky about it. Deiter’s very humble. “He works harder than anyone I’ve ever played with, and his work ethic in the weight room is outstanding,” praises Herrick. “He’s a leader on the offensive line for us, and just intimidates other teams.” Coach Tim Spiess adds, “Michael is the most athletic big man I’ve ever had the opportunity to coach. He has a mean streak, which is difficult to match because of his overall size and power, but he has the talent of a skills player. “His toolbox is full. He is fast, he has a 30 inch vertical, and he’s athletic, and was an elite hockey player who traveled around to many areas. His leadership value is off

the charts on the football field. I was hoping he would stick to the original plan of going to Wisconsin. He’s been a Badger and J.J. Watt fan for quite awhile.” Deiter throws up a bench press of 315 pounds, runs a 5.2 40, and squats 500 pounds, which gives him explosion off the line. He cites his Comet brothers on the offensive line as the reason he gets so much joy out of playing football. “Every one of our offensive linemen has impressed me,” he says. “Nick (Herrick) is helping me tow the line, and with senior leadership. And our center (Baird), left guard (Blake Traver, 5-10, 181 junior), and right guard (Jay Nino, 6-0, 232 junior) are all ready to take over whenever. It’s very important to have a close-knit offensive line, because you need to be able to trust the guy next to you. We all trust each other, and we’re very close. We’re a family. “My proudest team moment is whenever we take the field, lock arms, and get ready to do the hive,” shares the big guy thoughtfully, of the Comets’ traditional Friday night ritual of solidarity. “It doesn’t bother me that linemen don’t get a lot of attention on Friday nights,” he says, “I like it that way. I would rather be the behind-the-scenes guy. An offensive lineman’s job is to be a protector — to consistently step in the way of the enemy to protect his team, his family. I just try to do my job. It feels the same as if I were the smallest guy out there.”

Genoa has been to the postseason three consecutive seasons since Deiter stepped into a starter’s role sometime during his sophomore year, and six consecutive seasons since the Mike Vicars-Tim Spiess coaching regime took over in ‘07. Meanwhile, Deiter took home All-NBC, all-district and all-state accolades in his junior year alone. This year, his play allows 5-10, 183 pound senior quarterback Logan Scott to count his blessings and keep his jersey clean. “This is my second season as the starting quarterback, and I’m very thankful to have Michael and all of the other guys on the line protecting me,” says Scott, who in the first four wins has thrown for a 26.3yard per completion average with three TDs. “I wouldn’t want it any other way. I know Michael always has my back, and will do anything he possibly can to help the team. He’s a game-changing player. I think he will fit right in at Wisconsin, and I’m excited to see what he can do at the next level.” Deiter even gives respect to the opposition, particularly the Eastwood defensive line. “They play hard, they play fast, they are strong, and they are well-coached,” he says. Deiter carries a 3.2 GPA, with designs to perhaps study meteorology in Madison. Academics, he says, is another reason he chose UW.

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Lake equestrian team on track for fourth state title By J. Patrick Eaken Press Sports Editor

The Press Gridiron Soothsayers


Golfer Jordan Szozda, a Millbury resident and Press distribution manager, had two chances to get a double eagle within one week. The first time, Szozda was “oh, so close” and the second time, he succeeded. Either way, he beat the odds. The double eagle, also known as the albatross, is a rare bird on the golf course — much rarer than the hole-in-one. To make a double-eagle requires acing a par 4 or scoring a 3-under-par 2 on a par 5. The odds for a double eagle are quoted as six million to one, while hole-in-one odds are 13,000 to 1. Szozda, a former Rossford golfer, had his second shot on the par five 18th hole at Tanglewood Golf Course in Perrysburg Township hit the pin during play in the Monday Late Nite Golf League, but the ball fell a couple feet from the pin and he got his eagle. The following Sunday, at Moose Ridge Golf Course in South Lyon, Mich., just north of Ann Arbor, on the 495 yard, par 5, No. 18, from the blue tees, he drove 315 yards off the tee and into the rough. His second shot, from 180 yards with a seven iron, curved around a tree, cutting the dogleg, landed in front of the green, kicked right, and went into the hole. Szozda, from his perspective, did not see the ball fall, but two fellow golfers Tim Marko, formerly of Genoa and now living in Sylvania, and Carlos Lopez, formerly of


Al Singlar WRSC Sports

Marty Sutter GenoaBank President Last Week (Overall) 14-2 (47-14) 14-2 (45-16) Stritch @ Gibsonburg* Gibsonburg Gibsonburg Hilltop @ Northwood Northwood Northwood St. John’s Jesuit @ Clay St. John’s Clay Waite @ Rogers Rogers Rogers Lake @ Eastwood Lake Eastwood Fostoria @ Genoa Genoa Genoa Elmwood @ Woodmore Woodmore Woodmore Oak Harbor @ Huron Huron Huron Western Michigan @ Toledo Toledo Toledo Massachusetts @ Bowling Green BGSU BGSU Ohio State Ohio State @ Northwestern Ohio State Michigan Michigan Minnesota @ Michigan Buffalo Cleveland Buffalo @ Cleveland Green Bay Green Bay Detroit @ Green Bay

Sports announcements The Woodmore cheerleaders are fundraising so they can perform at Quicken Loans Arena prior to the Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Los Angeles Lakers NBA game on Nov. 27. They have to sell 100 tickets, and prices are $40 and $85 for each game. A ticket for Nov. 27 includes a complimentary ticket for another game on Dec. 4 vs. Denver Nuggets, on Dec. 17 vs. Portland Trailblazers, on Dec. 23 vs. Detroit Pistons, or Dec. 26 vs. Atlanta Hawks, or other options are available. The cheerleaders perform at 7 p.m. and the Cavs-Lakers game tip-off is at 7:30. RSVP to Angie Baldauf at the high school with payment. Deadline is Oct. 21. ********* The Benton-Carroll-Salem Food Pantry is running low on items, so the Oak Harbor Athletic Department and the volleyball team decided to get involved and help fill the pantry. Anyone that brings two canned goods to the Oct. 3 Oak Harbor vs. Sandusky St. Mary Central Catholic volleyball game gets in for free.

Walleye fills roster Forwards John Vigilante and Joey Sides have agreed to terms with the Toledo Walleye for the 2013-14 season.


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Yaneek Smith Press sportswriter 13-3 (42-19) Gibsonburg Northwood Clay Rogers Eastwood Genoa Woodmore Oak Harbor Toledo BGSU Ohio State Michigan Cleveland Detroit

Tim Mark Williams Griffin Former Press pro player sportswriter 13-3 (42-19) Gibsonburg Northwood Clay Waite Eastwood Genoa Woodmore Oak Harbor Toledo BGSU Ohio State Michigan Cleveland Green Bay

Vigilante hails from Dearborn, Michigan and has spent the last three seasons overseas playing in Europe. He collected 26 points (9g, 17a) in 52 games last year while playing with Oskarshamn in Sweden. Prior to heading to Europe, the 28-year-old appeared in 290 games over four season in the American Hockey League with Milwaukee, Syracuse, Quad City and Grand Rapids. His AHL totals include 48 goals and 80 assists. His last AHL season was 2009-10 with Grand Rapids when the 6’0” 200 pound forward collected 11 goals and 14 assists in 79 contests. “John is an experience proven producer at many levels,” Coach Nick Vitucci said. “He will bring a consistent veteran presence and scoring to our team.” Vigilante spent four seasons with Plymouth in the OHL before turning professional. In 254 total OHL games, he collected 246 points (93g, 153a) and was team Captain for Plymouth in the 2005-06 season. Sides comes to the Walleye after spending the last two seasons with the Colorado Eagles of the ECHL. Last season the native of Sun Valley, Idaho posted 21 goals and 19 assists in just 44 contests. In 2011-12, he

10-6 (41-20) Gibsonburg Northwood Clay Waite Lake Genoa Woodmore Huron Toledo BGSU Ohio State Michigan Cleveland Green Bay

only appeared in 29 games for the Eagles and collected a point per game with 29 points (15g, 14a). “Joey has a scorers touch,” Vitucci said. “The last two years he has proven to be an excellent finisher at our level. Teams will have to game plan to stop his scoring.” The 27-year-old has also spent part of one year overseas and two full seasons in the Central Hockey League. The forward also appeared in 6 games last year with St. John’s in the AHL, collecting a pair of assists. In his two years in the CHL with Arizona, the 5’11”, 185 pound forward appeared in 123 games with 44 goals and 54 assists. Forward Emerson Clark and Defenseman Garrett Clarke have agreed to terms with the Toledo Walleye for the 2013-14 season. Emerson Clark, a native of Whitby, Ontario, has skated the last four years in the Ontario Hockey League including last season with the Windsor Spitfires. In 63 games a season ago, the 20-year-old posted seven goals, 11 assists and 131 penalty minutes. The 5’10”, 185 pound forward has a total of 496 penalty minutes over the last four years, three of which we spent with the Oshawa Generals. He collected most of those penalty minutes via the fight, 72 of them over four seasons. “Emerson is a tough, physical and strong young man,” Vitucci said. “He plays that Adam Keefe style and will bring a ton of energy into our line up each and every night.”


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Adam Princess Mihalko Peaches Press Press carrier office cat 12-4 (41-20) 11-5 (32-29) Stritch Gibsonburg Northwood Northwood St. John’s St. John’s Waite Rogers Lake Eastwood Genoa Genoa Woodmore Elmwood Oak Harbor Huron Western Toledo Massachusetts BGSU Ohio State Northwestern Minnesota Michigan Cleveland Cleveland Detroit Detroit

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The Press Box

Millbury and now living in Maumee, saw it fall. A fourth golfer, Brad Steinhurst, Millbury, missed out on the double eagle, turning down the opportunity to golf because he had to attend to family, Szozda said.


Double eagle

*Press Game of the Week


Lake High School equestrian team coach Connie Workman says she is keeping her fingers crossed. Her team is on track to compete for their fourth straight consecutive state championship. The Lake team won its second straight Division 2 district championship, scoring 130 points to down Port Clinton (102), Eastwood (95), Otsego (65), and Bowling Green (4). Lake equestrian team members with their horses’ names are seniors Alissa Knieriem (Bristol), Ellen Johns (Oakley), Rhianna Reaume (Dance), junior Kylee Smith (Lola), sophomores Lauren Nissen (Alex), Taylor Barndt (Sassy), and freshmen Hannah Duty (Perks), and Hannah Johns (Bubba). Meanwhile, Oak Harbor won a Division 1 championship, defeating runner-up Perrysburg 160-108, and Genoa was the Division 3 champion, scoring 49 points. The last district meet was to be held Sunday, Sept. 29, at the Wood County Fairgrounds. The winners of each district championship based on cumulative scores will advance to the state show on October 12 at the Fulton County Fairgrounds.



SEPTEMBER 30, 2013

Rocket girls soccer currently ranked sixth in the state By Yaneek Smith Press Contributing Writer

Even with my starting lineup, I have girls off the bench that can step right in and I don’t have to worry. The chemistry is great.

For the Oak Harbor girls soccer program, winning is commonplace. The Rockets have won five consecutive Sandusky Bay Conference titles and consistently make a deep run in the tournament. For the second time in the program’s history, they can now add a state ranking to their resume. In the first Division III coaches’ poll, Oak Harbor received 44 votes to earn a No. 6 ranking and then fell to seventh in the latest poll. Gates Mills Hawken, located just outside of Cleveland, is ranked first. “It’s kind-of exciting,” Coach Renee Goldstein said. “We were ranked once a couple of years ago. It just depends on who’s ranking the teams and who they’ve seen. It is flattering. It’s nice to know that people respect you enough to vote for you.” The Rockets are 10-1-1 overall and 8-01 in the Sandusky Bay Conference. They’ve been absolutely dominant in league play in its six years of existence, going a combined 59-1-1. The only loss came to Woodmore and only tie in SBC play came against Huron, with the 1-1 draw happening on Aug. 31. Oak Harbor’s rematch with the Tigers comes on Wednesday with the winner taking the lead in the race for the conference title. Despite the Rockets’ dominance in the league over the past six years, Goldstein believes the league is improving and things will only get tougher for her squad in the future. The Rockets, who employ a 2-4-4 formation with Ivy Martin in goal, start, Alexa Weis and Paige Velliquette at forward with Ally Croy, Emma Barney, Amanda Hetrick and Emily Winters at the midfielder spots. Karis DeWalt, Hannah Hess, Maddie Rathbun and Noelle Peterson are the defenders. It’s not just the starters that are contributing, however. Nikki Weis, Mackenzie Auger, Addie Barton, Brittany Watkins, Emily Kamann, Gillian Allen, Tessa Tyburski, Eiriel Davis and Miki Blunt are providing depth and making it so that the team is just as potent when the starters need a break, which is

Oak Harbor player Tessa Tyburski (23) competes for the ball with a Genoa player while Rocket Paige Velliquette (4) approaches. (Press photo by Russ Lytle) vital in soccer — a sport that requires conditioning. Also vital is team play, Goldstein said. “The best thing about this team is their unselfishness,” she said. “That’s the kind of team I have, you can’t ask for more than that. Even with my starting lineup, I have girls off the bench that can step right in and I don’t have to worry. The chemistry is great.” They also lost to Woodmore, an 9-1 team ranked No. 5 among D-III Northwest

Ohio schools but unranked statewide, on Sept. 3, Since, the Rockets have reeled off five consecutive wins, outscoring their opponents, 43-6. During that run, freshman Barney has led the team with 12 goals, including three hat tricks, and Velliquette, one of the top scorers from last year, has 11 goals as well as three hat tricks. Alexa Weis has scored seven goals during that span. However, Goldstein says the defense is often where games are won. “I tell the girls ‘Don’t be upset if I ask

you to play defense,’” Goldstein said. “It’s a sign of respect. Defense is very important. We try to count the girls’ stops and touches.” They have had to replace seven key seniors from last year’s squad, among them Kelsey Lacer, Makayla Carpenter, Amber Burnette and Jordan Giesler, all of whom were captains, as well as Erin Bryant, Sydney Street and Sidney Allen. Oak Harbor, because of decreased enrollment, was moved down from D-II to DIII this year. The Rockets had a great run in D-II, advancing to the regional final in five of the last 10 years. Moving down a division can be advantageous, but, Goldstein notes, the team will be joining a district that includes quality opponents like Woodmore, Genoa, Liberty-Benton (9-1), Kalida (6-0-1), Archbold (5-1), Ottawa-Glandorf (6-1-2), and Riverdale (5-2-1). Goldstein says the community’s help in getting the girls involved with the youth programs has gotten the program to where it is today. “I can’t thank the people associated with the youth programs enough,” Goldstein said. “They make my job so much easier and continue to send me some quality players.”

Two sports at once? — No problem, say Oak Harbor Rockets By Yaneek Smith Press Contributing Writer Playing two high school sports during the same season is rare. Succeeding at both is even less common. For the past three years, Oak Harbor juniors Tyler Sievert and Tim Poiry have played soccer and run cross country. Both are endurance sports, and by playing both, they have an edge in being well-conditioned. After two seasons that saw them contribute to both sports as starters, the two have taken their respective games to new levels this year. Sievert, a regional qualifier last year in cross country, has established himself as one of the best runners in Northwest Ohio while serving as a stout defender on a Rocket soccer team that started the season 12-0. Poiry, a returning All-Sandusky Bay Conference midfielder, has been instrumental to the team’s success. Both say it’s a combination of their love for both sports and the fact that both teams are in contention for a league title that motivates them. “I think it’s a little bit of both,” Sievert said. “I love soccer and cross country, and the teams are both good. I’ve always done both and they help each other out.” Poiry added, “I’ve never been able to choose. I’ve been a little better at soccer, but I like playing both, and I’ve been doing them both for a while. It’s tough balancing both. It’s hard finding time for sleep and studying.”

Oak Harbor junior Tyler Sievert (17) goes for a header while being marked by Genoa junior midfielder Joshua Mabus (12) (Press photo by Russ Lytle) In 2013, Sievert, who says his primary sport is cross country, has consistently run below 17-minute times and recently set a school record with a time of 16:13 at the Lakota Invititaional on Sept. 14. Last weekend, he finished first (16:46) at the Cardinal Stritch Invite at Maumee Bay State Park, leading a race that featured 155 runners. Save for the Tiffin Carnival, one of the

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nation’s largest meets that saw him come in 14th, Sievert has finished no lower than fourth in any meet this season. In soccer, Sievert contributes with his defense. “We run a 4-4-2 format,” he said. “Our No. 1 goal is team defense so we can contain (our opponent) and someone will come from behind to get the ball. We try to keep

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them at bay until they make the mistake.” Poiry has consistently been the cross country team’s No. 4 runner and was instrumental, as was Sievert, in helping the Rocket cross country team finish second in the SBC the last two years. This season, however, the two are hoping that the Rockets can get over the hump and win the league title. Poiry ran an 18:24 at the Cardinal Stritch Invite, good enough to finish 28th, and the Rockets finished third out of 20 teams. He has shown improvement this season and, if he continues at his current pace, will help give the team a good shot at winning the league and competing for a spot at the Division II regional meet in Tiffin. Soccer coach Ken Filar and cross country coach Eric Buckman deserve credit for allowing flexibility to play both sports. Oak Harbor athletic director Drew Grahl also tries to help avoid conflicts with crosscountry meets and soccer matches. “Tyler’s good at balancing both,” Buckman said. “He’s starting to learn how to rest and ice his legs. There aren’t many kids that put in the mileage like them. I know that I can contact Tim and he’ll run some miles after soccer. It’s on him to stay healthy and balance his time.” Despite their busy schedules, both Sievert and Poiry maintain grade-point averages just over 4.0 and were named to the honor roll last school year. “They’re two nice guys. They come from good families,” Buckman said. “These two boys are exceptional young men and it is fun to work with them.”

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Boggs credits Flyer golfers for first championship By Mark Griffin Press Contributing Writer It’s all well and good that Dorian Boggs became the only coach to lead Lake to its first conference golf championship in school history. However, Boggs, an assistant coach with the Flyers under Terry Tansel last season, doesn’t want to take any of the credit. All of the accolades, he said, should go to the young golfers. “It’s exciting,” he said, “but I’ve coached baseball and football, and years ago I coached basketball,” Boggs said. “You have more bearing over the game (coachingwise) in those sports than golf. The credit has to go to these kids. When it’s time to play, it’s all on them.” This year’s team, which consists of seniors Jeff Wilson, Michael Kranz, Lucas Zeh and Nathan Ray, juniors Dylan Mauder and Ian Johnson, and freshman Owen Johnson, finished second behind defending champion Woodmore at last Thursday’s Northern Buckeye Conference tournament at Green Hills in Clyde. The Wildcats shot 315 followed by Lake at 332, while Eastwood was fourth at 349. “We played pretty well, but Woodmore just shot very well,” Boggs said. “It would have taken something major to beat them that day. The greens there are tough and we putted well enough that it didn’t hurt us maybe as much as some other schools. We were in second place going into the tournament, three points behind Eastwood. We thought we were going to have to win it and have somebody (finish) between us and Eastwood.” Lake’s runner-up finish at the NBC tourney, combined with its performances in the regular-season NBC shootouts, allowed the Flyers to sneak in and win the overall title ahead of Eastwood and Woodmore, who

Lake golfers, the Northern Buckeye Conference champions. Back: Dylan Mauder, Jeff Wilson, and Michael Kranz. Front: Lucas Zeh, Nathan Ray, Owen Johnson, and Ian Johnson. (Photo courtesy of Innovations Portrait Studio/www. tied for second. Points are awarded to each team based on their place at each shootout and at the conference tournament. “We play four nine-hole shootouts and one league meet (18 holes),” Boggs said. “Eastwood won three shootouts and we won the league without winning an event. We finished second in every event, and in one shootout we finished third. We were re-

warded for being the most consistent team. “I felt we had a chance to be pretty good. If we could finish top two or three and win a shootout at our place (Chippewa), we would have a chance to win the league. We finished second in the shootout at our course.” Ian Johnson and Kranz both earned first-team All-NBC honors, while Owen

Johnson made the second team and Wilson and Mauder were honorable mention. Ian Johnson led the Flyers in scoring average (40.0) for nine holes this season. “Ian had a very good season for us,” Boggs said. “He will finish in the top 10 in scoring average for the season (at Lake). He’s probably going to end up seventh or eighth. He’s a golf junkie. We have a golf simulator here at school and he’s just pounding at the door to get in here.” Owen Johnson had a 42.9 scoring average for nine holes. “Owen is just steady,” Boggs said. “As he gets older, he’s going to be very good. He’s probably our steadiest golfer. Nothing too flashy, but he doesn’t get himself in a lot of trouble.” Kranz and Wilson averaged 43.1 and 43.8 strokes, respectively, per nine holes this season. “Michael is a kid who seems to rise to the occasion for us,” Boggs said. “He plays his best in big events. Jeff pounds the ball. He hits it farther than most people I’ve ever seen. When he’s on, he’s tough to beat. Hopefully he’s got a really good round in him for sectionals this week.” Mauder and Zeh averaged 44.8 and 45.0, respectively. “In the last 2-3 weeks Dylan’s swing has really come around,” Boggs said. “He’s consistent off the tee. He can be a really good golfer.” Lake, which missed advancing to the district tournament last year by one stroke, will compete in the Division II sectional tournament on Thursday at Detwiler. The top three teams advance to districts. “We’re going to have to play well,” Boggs said. “There are some very good teams there. If we play well, we have as good a shot as anyone. We’ve talked about how we were rewarded for being consistent this year, but at sectionals it’s just how you do on that day.”

Alex Gedert’s three-under-par a day to remember Woodmore junior Alex Gedert hasn’t had many days on the golf course he’d like to forget lately, but Monday was one of those days. Gedert and his teammates played in the Edison Invitational at Sawmill Creek in Huron on Monday, and Gedert shot a 19over 90 for his worst round of the season. “That was his first round out of the 70s,” Woodmore coach Steve Burner said. “He did not like that course.” Gedert said he chalked it up to just one of those days, on a course he really doesn’t care for. “That place never fits my eye quite right,” he said. “It’s not a course I prefer. It just wasn’t my day. I play more of a fade (shot) off the tee, and it just doesn’t fit how I play.” As soon as that round was over, Gedert started thinking about Thursday’s Division III sectional tournament at Green Hills in Clyde. “I’m totally refocused and ready to go,” he said. Gedert and senior teammate Devin

This was my best golf season yet. Right now, it just feels right. It feels like it’s all there.

By Mark Griffin Press Contributing Writer

Fisher are the only two returning starters from a Woodmore squad that won the school’s second straight Northern Buckeye Conference title last season and then went on to take the sectional crown at Green Hills. If Gedert shoots the same round he did at last week’s NBC tournament at Green Hills, the Wildcats will have a shot to advance at sectionals. Gedert, 17, repeated as

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cuit and did fairly well in the TJGA. “This was my best golf season yet,” Gedert said. “Right now, it just feels right. It feels like it’s all there. Everything’s coming together at once, just because of going out and practicing every day and playing golf.” Burner, who said Gedert is a jokester who “keeps the team loose,” said he has been impressed by the way Gedert has improved his game. “Alex has total game,” the coach said. “He’s long off the tee and he is knowledgable around the greens, as far as being able to flop it over and get up and down. He gets out there in the summer and they play the bigger courses. I knew he was going to be a real good golfer, but I didn’t know he was going to have the total package he showed this year. There are no weak spots in his game.” Gedert, who also plays organized hockey for the Northwest Eagles midget club, said he is ready for the postseason and has one goal in mind. “State’s the main goal,” he said on Wednesday. “Right now I’m looking at sectionals and taking it one step at a time, but state is the ultimate goal. That’s where you want to be at the end of the year.”

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a first-team all-conference performer this season after earning medalist honors at the NBC tourney. The 69 he carded was his low round for the season. “It was huge for me to make a big move and make a run at it,” said Gedert, who shot 79 in the NBC tourney last season. “Everything just came together. I don’t know if I expected medalist. It never crossed my mind. I just wanted to go out and shoot a good round.” Woodmore won the NBC tournament but fell short of defending its overall conference championship. Lake won the NBC title, which consists of four nine-hole shootouts against NBC rivals and the season-ending 18-hole tournament. Woodmore and Eastwood tied for second place for the overall title. “It was tough,” Gedert said. “Going in, we weren’t in a good spot. It was big that we pulled through and got second. It was a big step. Our coach expected third and we exceeded expectations, because we didn’t play well up to that point. We brought it all to the (NBC) championship.” Gedert honed his game by playing all summer in the Lake Erie Junior Golf Association and the Toledo Junior Golf Assocation. He won four times on the LEJGA cir-

Sept. 14-29, 2013


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Beck takes new approach toward volleyball season By Mark Griffin Press Contributing Writer Eastwood’s volleyball team isn’t thinking about capturing its fifth straight conference title this season. The Eagles aren’t thinking about making it back to the Division II regional tournament, where they lost in three games last year to top-ranked Parma Padua Franciscan. Fifth-year coach Jeff Beck has his squad thinking in more practical terms this season. “We take it one point at a time, honestly,” Beck said. “We take our matches and look at them as being the first team to five points, the first to 10, then 20 and then 25. We look too far ahead, we’re not focused. We have to take that small chunk. We almost lost to Otsego. It was 20-18 in the fifth (set), but this team finds ways to win.” Last year’s team, which finished as the 12th-ranked team in the state coaches’ poll, won the school’s fourth straight championship. Eastwood won or shared the final two Suburban Lakes League titles, and they’ve won the first two Northern Buckeye Conference championships. “They don’t want that to end,” Beck said. “They don’t want to be the seniors who ended the streak. These girls know how to

compete and fight. It’s ugly sometimes, but a win is a win.” Through Wednesday the Eagles were 11-3 and 8-1 in the NBC. E a s t w o o d ’s losses were to Elmwood in league action and to D-I schools Clay, once ranked 19th in the state coaches’ poll, Jeff Beck and Anthony Wayne. “We beefed up our non-league schedule and we’re competing well with those teams,” Beck said. “It’s helping us be prepared for our league opponents. Our strength right now is our offense. We have some girls who jump well and have good hand to ball (coordination) and are aggressive. I expected that. I expected our passing and defense to struggle in the beginning, and it did. It’s really started to pick up, and it’s getting better every match.”

The Eagles are without the services of libero Aricka LaVoy for the first time in four years. A four-year starter, LaVoy was the NBC and District 7 Player of the Year in 2012 and is now playing at Owens Community College. “The girl taking over for her, (sophomore) Mackenzie Albright, is really stepping in and doing a nice job,” Beck said. “She played varsity as a freshman and is an all-around athlete. She was a shortstop on the softball team last year and helped her team to the final four. She’s just good under pressure.” Eastwood has four returning starters in senior outside hitter Elise Wolff, senior middle hitter Cassidy Rolf, senior right side hitter Sara Klink and junior setter Jaci Juergens, a first-team all-district and allconference performer last year. “She’s the top setter in our league, hands down,” Beck said. “She just knows how to run an offense. She’s been doing it since her freshman year. She holds every setting record Eastwood has, and she got those as a sophomore.” Wolff, a first-team All-NBC and all-district player, is a four-year starter and leads the Eagles in kills. “She has improved a lot,” Beck said. “She has separated her kill to error ratio,

and she’s our go-to hitter.” Rolf, a three-year starter, earned honorable mention All-NBC honors last season. “Cassidy is literally our all-around player,” Beck said. “I can put her in any position, which is so helpful to our team. She has played middle, she played libero in the summer, she plays right side - anywhere I need to play a body for someone who’s struggling.” Eastwood’s other starters are 6-foot senior middle hitter Emily Hayward, sophomore outside hitter Bri Hoodlebrink and sophomore DS Ally Decker. Hayward had an ACL tear last year and missed the season. “What a pleasant surprise she has been,” Beck said. “Right now she is our top middle (hitter), as far as kills, and is showing vast improvement. She’s really surprised me just how fast she’s bounced back.” Beck said a solid season of club volleyball has advanced Hoodlebrink’s skill set. She is second on the team in kills. “She came in ready to take that position from the senior who graduated last year,” Beck said, adding that Decker “is another all-around athlete who is fast and very good defensively, and she has a nice, aggressive serve.”

Tigers bring back Larry Parrish as Mud Hens’ skipper International League Hall of Famer and former Major League All-Star Larry Parrish will return as manager of the Toledo Mud Hens when the season opens April 4, 2014. Parrish, who managed the West Michigan Whitecaps in 2013, takes the helm for a third time. He first took the Toledo Mud Hens reins in May, 1994 and guided the team to a 56-62 record. In September of 1998, Parrish replaced Buddy Bell as manager of the Detroit Tigers. He went 69-92 in 1999, his only full season as a big league manager. Parrish returned

to the Toledo Mud Hens in 2003 and led them to back-to-back championships in 2005 and 2006. He was named the International League Manager of the Year in 2005, as well as the Sporting News Minor League Manager of the Year after guiding the Mud Hens to their first Governors’ Cup title since 1967. Toledo Mud Hens President and General Manager Joe Napoli is thrilled to have LP back. “As a manager, he’s a great teacher and I know we’ll see improvement in player development. For our fans, he’s always been a favorite, they will be glad to

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welcome him back.” The Tigers also promoted Mud Hens pitching Coach A.J. Sager to the team’s roving pitching coordinator. The University of Toledo graduate spent six years with the Mud Hens and 12 in the Detroit Tigers organization. “It’s been a pleasure having AJ in Toledo,” says Napoli. “But we’re excited for him and his family and his new role and responsibilities within the Tigers organization, and the best part is we’ll still have the benefit of him coming to Toledo.” The 2014 baseball season has Al

Nipper joining the Mud Hens as pitching coach. He pitched seven seasons in the majors before beginning his professional coaching career in 1992. Nipper spent the last two years with the Tigers. Hitting Coach Leon “Bull” Durham returns for his 14th season with the Mud Hens while athletic trainer Matt Rankin will join the Tigers major league staff as assistant athletic trainer. A replacement hasn’t been named yet for Rankin.



SEPTEMBER 30, 2013

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Suburban Second Section 09/30/13  

Suburban Second Section 09/30/13

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