Northwest Ohio Huddle: Toledo Woodward wins first hoops game after winless season


Northwest Ohio Huddle

In one last look at
football, only three northwest Ohio teams remain in the hunt and two of
them, Norwalk St. Paul and Delphos St. John’s face off in the same
division (Division VI) for the state title. Both teams are undefeated
and should provide a great afternoon of entertainment. Both teams have
enjoyed great seasons and it is a shame that either has to lose.

Football is winding down with the state finals taking place this
weekend but the girls’ basketball season has already begun in earnest
and the boys are waiting in the wings to begin this weekend. Already
there have been some surprises and there will be plenty more before the
season finally wraps up in mid-March.

In one last look at
football, only three northwest Ohio teams remain in the hunt and two of
them, Norwalk St. Paul and Delphos St. John’s face off in the same
division (Division VI) for the state title. Both teams are undefeated
and should provide a great afternoon of entertainment. Both teams have
enjoyed great seasons and it is a shame that either has to lose.

remaining northwest Ohio team is Coldwater in Division V. Coldwater
meets Youngstown Ursuline in what is a rematch of the 2000 Division IV
state championship game. In that contest Ursuline came out on top 49-37
but Coldwater is determined to change the outcome this time and claim
its first state football title.

Turning to girls’ basketball,
one of the early surprises has been the emergence of the Libbey
Cowgirls as a possible contender in the Toledo City League. After many
years of suffering one lopsided loss after another it appears that
there is reason for hope on the Western Avenue campus. John Hobbs took
over the reins of the Cowgirls three years ago and since then has
directed the team through steady improvement. Now, based on the
Cowgirls recent performance against one of the Toledo area’s best
teams, the Sylvania Northview Ladykats, it appears that Hobbs has his
young ladies ready to advance to the next level. On Monday, the
Cowgirls came out on the short end of a 69-62 game with the Ladykats
but the Cowgirls were in the contest from beginning to end and, in the
process, sent a strong message to the rest of the City League that they
are no longer a sure win on the schedule. A possible playoff City
League playoff berth is a strong possibility for the young Libbey

Looking further at the Toledo City League basketball
race, it appears that it will likely be a battle again between Toledo
Start and Toledo Waite. The Start Lady Spartans won the City League
title last season on their way to a berth in the DI state finals and
there is no reason to expect nothing less from them this season.  The
Lady Spartans are anchored by the outstanding play of Ohio State-bound
Maleeka Kynard and have a strong supporting cast in the form of Jaymie
Jackson, Tiffani Blackman, Azia Bishop, Jamie Williams and Keia
McCarver. These young girls took the loss to Mount Notre Dame, 52-38,
in the state finals hard and are eager to make a return to Columbus and
turn the tables.

Strangely, the toughest hurdle for the Start
Lady Spartans in making a return trip to Columbus may be in their
backyard in the form of the Waite Lady Indians. The Lady Indians
feature one of the best players in the nation in senior Natasha Howard.
Any team with Howard on it is a team to be reckoned with but Howard is
surrounded by other talent that provides the Toledo City League with
two of the finest DI teams in the state.

Beyond Start and Waite,
look for Notre Dame, Bowsher, Central Catholic and Libbey to battle for
the other two spots in the City League’s season ending playoffs.


Wenning, Coldwater:
The Coldwater quarterback came into last Friday’s
state semi-final matchup with Patrick Henry with outstanding
credentials. The Ball State-bound senior struggled a bit in the first
half against the Patriots but displayed the full measure of his talents
in the second half to lead his Cavalier teammates to a 35-24 win over
Patrick Henry and to a date with Youngstown Ursuline in the DV state


Toledo Woodward
girls basketball:
This honor is usually reserved for a team that has
accomplished something remarkable like winning a league title or
upsetting a formidable opponent. This week, however, the honor goes to
a team and group of young ladies that did neither but may have
accomplished far more in just winning a single game. The Toledo
Woodward Lady Polar Bears have struggled through many seasons where
they lost one game after another and usually by hugely lopsided
margins. It has not been easy being a Lady Polar Bear but this past
week they did something they failed to do all last season: win a
basketball game. The Woodward ladies opened their season by downing
Maumee Valley, 39-23, and, for at least a few days, are enjoying an
undefeated campaign.


Eagles’ Nest is Empty: The
Clay Eagles basketball team is experiencing an apparent shortage of
available basketball players in their girls’ program. The Lady Eagles
reportedly lack enough players to field a JV team this season and may
be forced by the Toledo City League to play their freshmen team against
the other league members’ JV teams.  Hopefully this is just an
aberration and not a trend and that the numbers will soon increase in
the Eagles’ program.

New Coach For Bowling Green Football: After
seven seasons as the head coach of the Bowling Green Bobcats’ football
team Jeff Cullen has submitted his resignation. Cullen amassed an
overall record of 27-43 during his tenure and a league record of 24-25.

Another Coaching Change: Bowling
Green’s Cullen is not alone in leaving the coaching ranks. Wapakoneta’s
Doug Zimmer has also submitted his resignation. Zimmer’s resignation
comes after only three seasons and the precise reasons for Zimmer’s
departure were not announced.

All-Ohio Honors : Northwest
Ohio was well represented on the Associated Press’ All-Ohio DI football
team as five young men made the first team. The players honored were
Whitmer senior quarterback Joe Missler, Whitmer junior defensive end
Kenny Hayes, St. John’s junior defensive back Cheatham Norrils, Anthony
Wayne senior lineman Andrew Donnal  and Findlay senior placekicker Eric

DII honors were awarded to Central Catholic senior
placekicker Kyle Burkhardt, Central Catholic junior linemen Kyle
Cameron, Rogers senior linebacker Ray Bush and St. Francis senior
punter Pat Dyer.


Youngstown Ursuline (10-3) v. Coldwater (13-1), football, Friday, December 4 at 3:00 pm: The
Cavaliers are seeking their first state football title. Coming off
their upset of number one seed of Patrick Henry the Cavaliers hope to
avenge their 2000 loss to Ursuline in the state finals.

Norwalk St. Paul (14-0) v. Delphos St. John’s (14-0), football, Saturday, December 5 at 3:00 pm:
The battle between two northwest Ohio powerhouses. These two teams have
been on a collision course all year but, alas, only one will be able to
carry the trophy back to northwest Ohio.

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