A Page -- Aug. 13, 2010

Two freshmen lightening bolts mixed 

with veterans Ellen Dreher and Lia 

Labate could make the Blue Streaks 

deeper and stronger as perennial 

area golf power

Aug. 13, 2010

By Norm Weber

Student/Athlete-Cleveland Editor


ROCKY RIVER – Magnificat High’s golf program, the most successful of all Northeastern Ohio high school girls’ golf outfits over the past five seasons statewide, returns two seniors who were integral parts of the state-qualifying teams of the past two seasons as a springboard for more success this season.

Lia Labate and Ellen Dreher, both seniors and two-year lettermen, will lead this year’s group that quests to keep the Blue Streaks state tourney streak alive.

Although Labate has been a regular scorer since she was a sophomore and had the slight edge on Dreher as juniors (45.2-47.4 for nine holes), Dreher, whose sister was a member of the nationally ranked University of Dayton soccer team last year, has emerged over the summer as the No. 1 golfer for the Streaks and Labate No. 2.

The rest have been playing close to one another but a true 2-6 lineup has been defined absolutely for now and it is headed up by a couple freshmen.


Ali Nageotte and Cara Kelley have emerged as the No. 2 and No. 4 players, respectively, even though they have not even take a high school class in their lives yet.

Alley Vondreau, a junior, has been the No. 5 girl in the lineup. Battling it out to take out the four or five spots are sophomore Morgan MacClean, junior Sarah Cuturic and freshman Caroline Bello. MacClean has the inside edge with a 49.4 average, but Bello is the younger sister of former Mags standouts Alex and Victoria Bello, the former of the two having emerged at the No. 1 player over the past two years at Vassar.

“We do have great depth,” said Magnificat coach Libby McGrath, who is now in her 10th season after starting the program in 2001. “Our goal as always is to qualify for the D-1 State Golf Championships in Columbus.”

The youth factor should not present a problem for the Blue Streaks.

“Although 2 of our starters are freshman, we appear to be far more consistent in our scoring so far this year,” McGrath said. “The top four players are typically scoring below 85, and our 5th starter is also shooting in the 80s. The top 2 JV players are really pushing our 5th starter, also.”

They should be able to maintain their standing near the top in the regional area here. The Streaks won the sectional and finished third at districts last year.

“We are definitely capable of becoming one of the top D-1 Teams in NE Ohio this year,” McGrath. “With our 2 starting freshman challenging our returning letterman from last year, my expectations are rising more each week. We appear headed for an exciting season with more consistency and depth than last year.”

With these two quickly emerging starting freshman, the Blue Streaks might end up surprising some people, their competitiveness making up for the void left over from the graduating 4 seniors from last year’s team.

All in all, six new freshmen are coming into the program, with the three others having the assignment of keeping the JV program strong for this year. The JV outfit lost only one match last year.

Also, members of this team excel in the classroom as well, as many of them will be going on to private colleges and East Coast schools for further learning. Golf and school are directly related for this group of Student/Athletes.

“Part of the golf program’s ongoing success is directly related to our academic rigor and mission as a school to educate the whole person,” McGrath said. “Our players are able to be successful both on the golf course and in the classroom.”

There is a method for breeding this twofold high level of success.

“Although matches are scheduled in a way to minimize the amount of time that Student/Athletes will miss class, golf is obviously constrained by the amount of daylight.” said McGrath. “Our upper classmen are good role models for our younger players; nearly everyone spends her “travel-time in the van” studying. These young women quickly learn how to balance their priorities and utilize their time.”

One change in the schedule has the Blue Streaks competing at a tournament in Loveland, near Cincinnati, late September at the St. Angela Merci Invitational, on the O’Bannon Golf Course.

Baldwin-Wallace Adds Bob Merritt 

and Timothy Spatz to Baseball 

Coaching Staff

BEREA - Baldwin-Wallace College first-year Head Baseball Coach Brian Harrison has announced the hiring of Bob Merritt and Timothy Spatz as assistant coaches. Merritt will work with the pitchers. Spatz will coach the catchers and assist with the hitters.

St. Ed alum, current B-W Coach Brian Harrison

"Both Bob and Tim are going to bring passion and energy to the program," said Harrison. "They have numerous years of experience coaching players that have had successful careers. The way they teach the game and care about each kid is what makes them great coaches."

With new coach Karra Fantone, 

Woodridge's volleyball team ready to 

begin new era and make the climb 


Aug. 13, 2010

By Norm Weber

Student/Athlete-Cleveland Editor


PENINSULA – With a core group of three seniors, Woodridge High’s volleyball team is counting on leadership skills of veteran Student/Athletes to be the impetus for being a serious contender in the Portage Trails Conference.

Fourth-year players Breanne Sypherd, Katie Koehler and Amanda Reid will make up the apex of the Bulldogs’ team this year.

“We have three senior veterans who will keep our team playing together,” said Karra Fantone, the new Woodridge coach. “We have a strong core of girls who have worked hard all off-season and their hard work will pay off in the upcoming season.”

Joining Fantone under the new coaching regime is Jenna Steyer, who is the new varsity assistant and JV coach. The two will go on a mission to turn around an ailing program that went 3-19 last year. From here, there is nowhere to go but up.

"We are excited about this opportunity at a great school and a wonderful group of girls,” said Fantone, who was a high honors student at Kent State. “We are eager to begin our season. We have much to improve on and we expect to have a winning season this year.”


The two freshmen expected to have an immediate impact are Emily Kasper and Lindsie Thursby.

The biggest obstacle the Bulldogs will have to overcome is lack of height but will make up for it by working on becoming the best possible on defense.

We have a strong core of girls that want to win this year,” Fantone said. “We are building our confidence one practice at a time.  We have a ways to go from last season and the girls are building that confidence one day at a time.

This is Fantone's first year at Woodridge and her first head coaching position

The highlight of last season was that despite a rough going during the regular season, the Bulldogs did make it to the second round of sectionals. They hope to build off that as well.

They are smart enough to turn it around in one year.The Bulldogs have four returning players who are Scholar/Athlete Award winners: Ashley Christopher, Amy Donze, Karli Westren.

"We have a very good grade point average across the board with all of our Student/Athletes<" Fantone said. "We hope to have even more student scholar athletes by the end of the season." 
Caila Ferro

Caila Ferro Leads Central Team

To Big League World Series Title

Viking Sophomore Drives In Three 

In Title Game

Aug. 13, 2010

By Brian McCann

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Cleveland State sophomore Caila Ferro went two-for-four with three RBIs and even stole home in the first inning to lead her Central team to a 14-4 victory over Asia Pacific in the title game of the 2010 Big League Softball World Series on Wednesday night.  The contest was televised live on ESPN2.

Ferro, a native of Wyoming, Mich., started every game in centerfield for Central, which represented District 9.  It was the 10th straight appearance by Central in the tournament as the District 9 representative with Central also winning titles in 2002, 2004 and 2008.

Ferro had 12 hits in the nine games, helping her squad to an 8-1 record.





Aug. 13

By Harry Plumer

MARION, Ill. - The Lake Erie Crushers banged out 12 hits but fell to the Southern Illinois Miners 6-5 in the opener of a road series on Friday night.

The Crushers put Southern Illinois behind in the first inning for the fourth consecutive night. Jodam Rivera led off the game with a walk and was replaced at first on a fielder's choice by Drew Saylor. Andrew Davis and Matt Sutton singled to load the bases before Lee Huggins drove in the game's first run with a sacrifice fly to put the Crushers ahead 1-0.

Joey Metropoulos, 2009 Frontier League MVP, led off the bottom of the second inning with a solo homer to left, knotting the score at 1-1. Lake Erie immediately answered by tacking on three more in the top of the third. Andrew Davis and Matt Sutton opened the frame with consecutive singles before Lee Huggins drove home both runners with a triple to the wall in left-center. Huggins trotted in to score on an RBI single to right off the bat of Arden McWilliams. 

The Miners cut into the lead with a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth. Nate Hall led off the inning with a first pitch single and Will Block recorded a ground rule double to right on the first pitch of his at bat. Tyler Bullock drove in a run with a groundout and Brad Netzel lifted a sac fly to center. Lake Erie added to the lead in the top of the sixth, bumping the edge to 5-3. Arden McWilliams doubled and scored on a safety squeeze bunt by Dom Duggan.


Subpages (1): B Page -- Aug. 13, 2010