Ninety-eight and Counting…In a show of dominance destined to
perpetuate any and all myths surrounding the MAC dynasty, Minster and
Versailles captured two more state titles this past weekend. That gives the MAC six state championships this school year…
Ninety-eight and Counting…In a show of dominance destined to perpetuate any and all myths surrounding the MAC dynasty, Minster and Versailles captured two more state titles.
When it comes to prep sports, the Midwest Athletic Conference dominates. Winners of 96 state championships, the Minster baseball team and Versailles girls track team added two more titles this past weekend at the OHSAA tournaments in Columbus.
The mighty MAC collected six state trophies this school year (Marion Local-football, St. Henry-volleyball, Coldwater-men and women bowling, Minster-baseball, and Versailles-track), the most since winning six during the 1990-1991 school year. The last time this conference was shut out of any state titles was the 1980-1981 school year when the Minster girls finished runners-up in the state track meet.
Minster defends state championship in heroic fashion
COLUMBUS – When it comes to baseball, there is no substitute for timely hitting.
Devon Poeppelman responded on cue with a game-winning single as Minster defeated Cuyahoga Heights 5-4 in a thriller at Huntington Park in the 85th Annual State Baseball Tournament in the D-IV championship game Saturday night.
Minster coach Mike Wiss said, “When we left the park last night, we knew that if Doug (Huber) felt okay when he woke up, he was pitching.”
Adam Niemeyer didn’t pitch due to a sore right elbow.
The Wildcats scored a run in the first and pushed across three more in the fifth for a comfortable 4-0 lead. Doug Huber was in command. The senior ace pitcher allowed one hit with three strikeouts and two walks in five complete innings before Austin Knapke pitched the final two innings. Not bad considering he pitched a gem 24 hours earlier with zero earned runs, seven strikeouts, and four walks in 86 pitches, 55 of which were strikes.
“My curve ball was breaking where I wanted it to,” Huber said. “I had great control both games.”
Huber pitched 10 innings in the state tournament. He allowed just three hits, zero runs, and struck out 10. He threw 155 pitches and 99 of them were strikes.
Entering the top of the seventh inning with their backs to the wall, the Redskins posted four runs on three hits and one Minster error to knot the score. AndrewTesler singled up the middle. Sam Marurowski pinch ran and stole second. Austin Lane walked. Zach Browning reached first base on a fielding error. Jason Kleppel singled, scoring two runners and then Jim Korewosky singled, scoring Kleppel. Kevin Kozelka grounded to second base, but Ryan Rosenlieb scored. Just like that, a four-run lead wiped out.
Jay Eilerman started the home-half of the seventh inning with a single. Austin Knapke bunted Eilerman to second. Two batters latter, Poeppelman stepped to the plate with two outs. He stretched the 3-2 count with two foul balls. Once again, Browning delivered the pay-off pitch and Poeppelman lined it to left-center for the game winner, scoring Eilerman from second.
The mob scene erupted as Poeppelman was tackled to the ground and swarmed by teammates.
“I can’t find words to describe it. Truely amazing,” said Poeppelman. “I didn’t realize the game was over until when I turned around and saw my teammates running at me.”
The junior shortstop displayed a remarkable hitting performance in both games. He was 5-of-7 with two doubles and five RBIs.
He said, “I was seeing the ball real well. The black tarp in center field really helped…There was some pressure coming in to repeat, but our pitching and hitting made it easier.”
Minster has earned three state tournament appearances in 10 years, including back-to-back titles and a runner-up finish in 2003. The Wildcats end another remarkable season 26-6. Their record the past two seasons is 49-14 and Wiss has 310 overall wins in 18 seasons at the helm.
Wiss said, “We got what we needed from our seniors. Guys with experience like Huber, Knapke, and (Ryan) Hoying stepping up.”
Cuyahoga Heights made its first trip back to state since 1976, where the Redskins finished as runner-up. They conclude the season 25-5.
Versailles wins second state title in three years
COLUMBUS – Versailles’ Magnificent Eleven teamed together to capture its second state title in three years in the 38th Annual Girls Track & Field Championships at Jesse Owens Stadium Friday and Saturday.
It all came down to the final event – the 4×400 meter relay. Waynesfield-Goshen led 34-33 and the Tigers needed no worse than a 7th place finish to win it all. The relay team of Taylor Winner, Tammy Berger, Jacquie Moorman, and Amanda Winner answered with a 3:59.42 clocking to finish in 3rd place.
Versailles finished with 39 points and Goshen ended with 34 points.
The Magnificent Eleven were led by senior Tammy Berger, who scored 22 points. She finished 2nd in the 1600M in 5:01.21, 3rd in the 800M in 2:15.15, and teamed up to finish 2nd in the 4×800 and 4×400 relay teams.
None of the 11 girls won gold, but they placed in six of seven events.
The 11 girls on the team are Chloe Warvel, Natalie Grillot, Hannah Wenig, Lauren Bohman, Abby Barlage, Gwen Keihl, Megan Hemmelgarn, Amanda Winner, Taylor Winner, Moorman, and Berger.
Last year Versailles finished runners-up to Steubenville Catholic Central and won it in 2010.
Side Note: Spectators of the D-III girls 3200M witnessed an awesome act of sportsmanship when West Liberty-Salem junior Meghan Vogel, who earlier won the 1600M, stopped 20 yards from the finish line to help Arlington sophomore Arden McMath finish the race when she was struggling with cramps. The duo was the last two to finish the race to a standing ovation.
More Track & Field Chips & Salsa
*The Reynoldsburg girls won their fourth straight D-I title led by senior Destinee Gause. She has won 12 gold medals, the most in the history of the tournament, boys or girls.
*Sidney senior Jasmine Glover earned second place in the girls D-I high jump with a PR of 5-8. It was her fourth trip to state and she is headed to Ohio State on a track scholarship. She also runs the hurdles.
*Fairlawn junior Olivia Cummings placed third in the girls D-III shot put with a throw of 39-11.50. Earlier in the season she recorded a PR throw of 43-7.5. She also throws the discus.
*Senior Jacob Blankenship of Gahanna Lincoln established a state record in the pole vault with a 17-02 height. He is a repeat state champion, who cleared 17-00 last year for gold.
*Chris Wormley of Toledo Whitmer is headed to Michigan to play football. He finished third in the discus (186-02) and eighth in the shot put (56-10.5).
*Kenton’s Maty Mauk, headed to Missouri to play QB for the Tigers, finished sixth in the long jump (21-02.75). After his event, he was packed and ready to head to Columbia, Missouri.
*Jalin Marshall (Middletown) won the long jump in 23-00.75 and tied for fourth in the high jump, clearing 6-6. The junior is committed to Ohio State to play football.
*Sam Prakel of Versailles won the D-II 1600M in 4:10.33 and the 3200M in 9:16.14.
*What do a basketball player and football player have in common? Thurgood-Marshall’s 4×200 relay team captured gold and set a D-II state record with a 1:26.98 clocking. The team consisted of Tavonn Crisp (RB on football team), Alante Oliver, Vayante Copeland, and Joe Ballard (F on basketball team).