Northeast Ohio Huddle: Harding 4×100 shines at Penn Relays, Geneva Tennis dominates


Northeast Ohio Huddle

Warren G. Harding’s boys’ 4-by-100 relay represents Ohio to its fullest at the Penn Relays and the Geneva boys’ tennis team steps up and smothers the Northeastern Conference Tournament. Lake Catholic’s Jerica Sanders and Norwayne’s Cody Miller make waves on the track while a pair of pitchers in the Eastern District go the long haul with a combined 35 strikeouts in 16 innings.

Warren G. Harding’s boys’ 4-by-100-meter relay team didn’t just travel to any old invitational last weekend. They went all the way to the University of Pennsylvania for the prestigious Penn Relays.

At a typical invitational, there may be 20 or more schools competing with three to five heats in each event. With 250 relay teams in the 4-by-1 alone, Harding bested all but eight in the qualifying round, taking the ninth and final spot in the second-day finals with a time of 42.64 seconds.

In the finals, the team of Carlton Wilson, Aundre Davis, Joseph Threats and Deaver Williamson took fourth in 42.27 seconds in the Big School Division. Rancho Verde of California was first in 41.93 ticks.


Jerica Sanders, Lake Catholic Girls’ Track and Cody Miller, Norwayne Boys’ Track: Sanders topped the 100-meter hurdle and 300-meter hurdle records at the Trinity Invitational last weekend. She also won the 200-meter dash.

Sanders’ time in the 100 hurdles broke the previous record of 15.40 and the 300 hurdle time broke the previous top mark of 47.00, both in 2004.

Miller, the defending state champion in the 400-meter dash, won the devastating duo of the 200 (new meet record of 21.7) and the 400 (50.30) while also taking the 1,600 relay in 3:35 with his teammates. His time in the 200-meter dash was over a second faster than second place.


Geneva Boys’ Tennis: In the last Northeast Conference Tournament due to the folding of the league, Geneva, long the dominators of Ashtabula County tennis, swept all five championships in scoring 40 points to win the league title. The Eagles bested Jefferson’s 30 points as the Falcons were second in every spot.

Coach Phil Dubsky’s squad got a win by Nick Falzone at first singles and Jake McMahan at second singles. Kyle O’Dell closed out singles action with a victory in the third spot.

At first doubles, Tyler Foglio and Tom Kelly won while at second doubles, Stuart Jackson and Brandon Privatera also won.


‘K’ City: It took 16 innings but Magnolia Sandy Valley scored on a bunt single by Kelli  Mohr to beat Inter-Valley Conference rival West Lafayette Ridgewood 1-0. In those 16 innings, Sandy Valley winning pitcher Allysa Lancaster struck out 19 batters in going the distance while allowing just five hits and one walk.

Not to be outdone, Ridgewood’s Haley Kolmerten fanned 16 Cardinal batters with four walks while scattering 13 hits.

Wailing West:
Cleveland Lutheran West finished with a 4-1 record to end a tournament in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee as runners-up. West is 10-1 overall now and 5-0 in the Patriot Athletic Conference.

In a recent 14-6 win over Wellington, Ryan Jones killed the ball, smashing four hits, including a grand slam and a 3-run homer while finishing with eight RBIs and three runs scored.

In Tennessee, it was Mike Holick going 8 for 14 at the plate with three triples, six stolen bases and 10 runs batted in. Teammate Zach Hausmann hit .500 while pitcher Cal Thomay continues his hot streak this year.

More For Matthews:
The Amherst softball team gave head coach Bill Matthews his 400th career coaching victory in their 8-0 win over Berea. Pitcher Jessica Sand tossed a 1-hitter with 10 strikeouts while Amherst improved to 12-0 overall. They are ranked sixth in the state in Division I.

No More No. 1:
The top-ranked baseball team in Division II, Dover, fell 12-0 to Canton Central Catholic last week and to start this week, No. 7 ranked Benedictine of Division II knocked off top-ranked Walsh Jesuit 8-5.

Jarred Cooper had two hits with four runs batted in to lead the Bengals, who are 11-3. Walsh Jesuit falls to 13-2.

Adding up for Adamczyk:
Westlake’s Kevin Adamczyk struck out nine batters in beating Midpark 13-7 but also went 4 for 4 at the plate with two RBIs, two runs scored and three stolen bases.

T-County League Leaders:
Two Tuscarawas County baseball teams have ruled their respective competitive leagues with undefeated records and one sits with one loss. Dover heads the East Central Ohio League at 8-0 while Sugarcreek Garaway is 9-1 in an ultra-competitive Inter-Valley Conference that features Division II state runner-up from a year ago Hiland as well as strong teams in Sandy Valley (15-2) and Malvern (just beat state-ranked Lake Christian of D-4). Finally, Indian Valley in Gnadenhutten is 10-0 in a tough Principals’ Athletic Conference. IV used to play in the ECOL with Dover.

In a doubleheader sweep of Cleveland John Adams, New Philadelphia pitchers Lexi Flores and Maddy Shelley combined to allow no hits.

In a 21-0 first game, Shelley tossed a 5-inning perfect game with 13 strikeouts. In the second game, Flores threw a 20-0 no-hitter in five innings. Her only blemish was a 2-out walk in the final inning. She had eight strikeouts.

Fabulous Freshman:
Apple Creek Waynedale freshman Trinity Schlabach broke her own school record for strikeouts in a game recently, putting down 17 Smithville batters in a 6-0 shutout. She also had three hits at the plate for her 9-6 Golden Bears.

Dover Tennis Triumphs:
The Dover tennis team won the Orrville Tennis Invitational by claiming titles at third singles and at both first and second doubles.

Kody Eckert won third singles while the first doubles team of Scott Williams and Kenny Scherer also won. Second doubles was won by Eddie Scherer and David Maurer.

Dover had 12 points to runner-up Orrville’s 11.

Second Inning Explosion:
Jeromesville Hillsdale’s softball team scored 15 runs in the second inning of a 17-0 win over Wayne County Athletic League rival Chippewa. Hillsdale is an impressive 7-0 in the WCAL and 13-1 overall. In the win, Hannah Fulk had two homers with a single and Rashel Louis had three hits.

Maplewood Explosion:
In its first 10 games in starting out undefeated, Mathews had only allowed two total runs while scoring more than 70. In one game, Maplewood scored six times the runs as it handed Mathews a 13-8 loss.

Mike Finch had a 2-run double and picked up the win by going 6 2/3 innings on the mound. Chris Hall smacked a 2-run homer as well for the winners.

Just three days earlier, Mathews had bested Maplewood 2-1 in another game as Jared Smith hit the game-winning RBI single in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Cardinals Going Crazy:
Magnolia Sandy Valley hitters Jeff Brothers and Jordan Tozzi have been on fire the past week.

In a doubleheader win over East Canton (18-12 first game), Brothers had a grand slam and a single with five RBIs and in a 16-6 win over East Canton, he had two homers, a triple and a double with six RBIs. In an 18-3 win over St. Thomas Aquinas, he added a double and single with three RBIs.

Tozzi had a pair of homers with five RBIs in the first win over East Canton while hitting a double and single in the second. Against St. Thomas, Tozzi added a triple and single with two RBIs.

In an 18-4 win over Conotton Valley, Tozzi hit a homer, a double and a single while Brothers slammed two hits with four RBIs.

In the latest explosion, it was a bit more subdued but still solid. Brothers earned a 3-0 win on the mound to improve the Cardinals to 16-2 while Tozzi smacked two singles.

Krafty Kreider:
Ashtabula Edgewood distance standout Mallory Kreider dominated her events at the Pymatuning Laker Invitational, leading her Warriors to the team title as well.

Kreider shattered her own 3,200-meter record by five seconds in 11:31.84 and she also crushed the 1,600 record in 5:17.08.

Breaking the Curse:
The Lake Catholic softball team broke a 23-game losing streak to rival Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin, topping the Lions 3-1. Freshman pitcher Bonnie Zappitelli earned the win.

Kruising Kent:
Kent Roosevelt is a strong 12-2 overall and 8-0 in the competitive Portage Trail Conference Metro Division in baseball. They defeated Springfield 7-4 recently as Nick Sacchini had a double and single with two RBIs.

Hammerin’ Hudson:
The Hudson softball team has won 13 games in a row and sits at No. 8 in the recent Division I softball poll. Hudson lost its first game of the season and is now 13-1 after beating Stow 5-0. Mindy Meredith improved to 9-1 on the mound with four strikeouts in the win. They are also 6-0 in the Northeast Ohio Conference River Division.

Magnificent Marshall:
East Canton’s Cody Marshall broke the Stark County pole vault record at the Stark County Meet last weekend, topping 15 feet, 2 inches which broke the record of 15 feet, 1 ½ inches held by David Bernabei of Canton GlenOak.


Mentor Cardinal Relays, Saturday, 9 a.m.: Mentor hosts this big-school meet that featured girls’ champion Brecksville-Broadview Heights and runner-up Mentor last year and boys’ winner Mentor and runner-up Brecksville-Broadview Heights. Other teams include Lakewood St. Edward’s, Euclid and Painesville Riverside.

Dover Tennis Invitational, Saturday, 9 a.m. at Dover City Park:
Dover’s tennis team is hot off its title at the Orrville Invitational and will welcome in some of lower Northeast Ohio’s top teams.

Austintown-Fitch Optimist Meet, Saturday, 9:15 a.m.:
Fitch hosts this monster meet. Twinsburg girls won with Hudson as runner-up last year while Wadsworth won the boys’ meet with Copley taking second. Other teams include Canton GlenOak, Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy, Boardman, North Canton Hoover, Mantua Crestwood, Cuyahoga Falls and Green. There were 28 teams a year ago.

Sugarcreek Garaway at Berlin Hiland baseball, 4:30 p.m., May 7:
This rivalry of Route 39 pits two teams who are always at the top or near the top of the Inter-Valley Conference in basketball and baseball. These kids face each other in every sport and it’s always a grudge match. Garaway currently leads the conference with Hiland, the defending champion, in second.

North Coast League Meet (at Padua Franciscan) and Trumbull County Meet (at Cortland Lakeview), May 5 and 7: Both of these meets take place on dueling days with the NCL taking place at 4 p.m. both days and Trumbull County Meet going at 5 p.m. on May 7.

The Trumbull County Meet features schools Hubbard, Warren G. Harding, Lakeview, Badger, McDonald, Liberty, Niles McKinley, LaBrae, Maplewood, Mineral Ridge, Howland, Southington Chalker, Bloomfield, Mathews, Newton Falls, Warren JFK, Lordstown, Brookfield, Girard and Champion.

At the NCL, Franciscan joins Trinity, Villa-Angela St. Joseph’s, Elyria Catholic, Akron Hoban, Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin, Lake Catholic, Holy Name of Parma, Bedford St. Peter Chanel and Cleveland Central Catholic.

Diocese of Youngstown Championships, Sunday, 9 a.m.:
This meet will feature the top Catholic schools in the Northeast, including Youngstown Cardinal Mooney, Canton Central Catholic, Youngstown Ursuline, St. Thomas Aquinas and Warren JFK.

Columbiana County Meet at Salem Reilly Stadium, May 5, 4:30 p.m.:
Teams featured at this meet are Salem, Beaver Local, Crestview, Columbiana, Southern Local, United Local, East Liverpool, Lisbon David Anderson, Leetonia, Wellsville, East Palestine.

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