The Weekly Newspaper serving the citizens of Morenci, Mich., Fayette, Ohio, and surrounding areas.

  • Snow.2
    FIRST SNOW—Heavy, wet flakes piled deep on tree branches—and windshields—as the area received its first significant snowfall of the season. “Usually it begins with a dusting or two,” said George Isobar, Morenci’s observer for the National Weather Service, “but this time it came with a vengeance.” By the end of the day Saturday, a little over four inches of snow was on the ground. Now comes the thaw with temperatures in the 40s and 50s for three days.
  • Front.sculpt
    SKEWERS, gumdrops, and marshmallows are all that’s needed to create interesting shapes and designs for Layla McDowell Saturday at Stair District Library’s “Sculptamania!” Open House. The program featuring design games and materials is one part of a larger project funded by a $7,500 Curiosity Creates grant from Disney and the American Library Association. Additional photos are on page 7.
    Morenci marching band members took to the field Friday night dressed for Halloween during the Bulldog’s first playoff game. Morenci fans had a bit of a scare until the fourth quarter when the Bulldogs scored 30 points to leave Lenawee Christian School behind. Whiteford visits Morenci this Friday for the district championship game. From the left is Clayton Borton, Morgan Merillat and James O’Brien.
    DNA PUZZLE—Mitchell Storrs and Wyatt Mohr tackle a puzzle representing the structure of DNA. There’s only one correct way for all the pieces to fit. It’s one of the new materials that can be used in both biology and chemistry classes, said teacher Loretta Cox.
  • Front.tar.wide
    A TRAFFIC control worker stands in the middle of Morenci’s Main Street Tuesday morning, waiting for the next flow of vehicles to be let through from the west. The dusty gravel surface was sealed with a layer of tar, leaving only the application of paint for new striping. The project was completed in conjunction with county road commission work west of Morenci.
  • Front.pull
    JUNIORS Jazmin Smith and Trevor Corkle struggle against a team from the sophomore class Friday during the annual tug of war at the Homecoming Games pep rally. Even the seniors struggled against the sophomores who won the competition. At the main course of the day, the Bulldog football team struggled against Whiteford in a homecoming loss.
    YOUNG soccer players surived a chilly morning Saturday in Morenci’s PTO league. From the left is Emma Cordts, Wayne Corser, Carter and Levi Seitz, Briella York and Drew Joughin. Two more weeks of soccer remain for this season.
  • Front.ropes
    BOWEN BAUMGARTNER of Morenci makes his way across a rope bridge constructed by the Tecumseh Boy Scout troop Sunday at Lake Hudson Recreation Area. The bridge was one of many challenges, displays and games set up for the annual Youth Jamboree by the Michigan DNR. Additional photos on are the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.homecoming Court
    One of four senior candidates will be crowned the fall homecoming queen during half-time of this week’s Morenci-Whiteford football game. In the back row (left to right) is exchange student Kinga Vidor (her escort will be Caylob Alcock), seniors Alli VanBrandt (escorted by Sam Cool), Larissa Elliott (escorted by Clayton Borton), Samantha Wright (escorted by JJ Elarton) and Justis McCowan (escorted by Austin Gilson), and exchange student Rebecca Rosenberger (escorted by Garrett Smith). Front row freshman court member Allie Kaiser (escorted by Anthony Thomas), sophomore Marlee Blaker (escorted by Nate Elarton) and junior Cheyenne Stone (escorted by Dominick Sell).
  • Front.park.lights
    GETTING READY—Jerad Gleckler pounds nails to secure a string of holiday lights on the side of the Wakefield Park concession stand while other members of the Volunteer Club and others hold them in place. The volunteers showed up Sunday afternoon to string lights at the park. The decorating project will continue this Sunday. Denise Walsh is in charge of the effort this year.
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Sports Round-up 4.16

Written by David Green.

Fayette softball: With two out in the sixth inning, Fayette’s softball squad made its move to overcome a North Central lead and post a 5-3 BBC victory.

Neither team could get much going in the first three innings, but back-to-back errors in the fourth helped the visitors take a 3-0 lead.

Fayette scored its first run in the bottom of the fourth when Katie Borer reached base and advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Brittany Seiler. Borer came home on a passed ball.

Trailing 3-2 in the bottom of the sixth, the Eagles had two outs before coming up with three runs to take the lead. Trisha Bates was sent home from third on a wild pitch. Her slide knocked the ball out of the catcher’s glove for the go-ahead run and Katelyn Downing added one more for a 5-3 advantage.

North Central threatened in the top of the seventh, but Fayette’s defense held the visitors in check.

From the mound, Shenae Nuoffer stopped a ground ball and tossed to first for an out. A North Central batter smashed a triple between outfielders Downing and Borer, but that’s all the farther she got.

Bates fielded a ground ball near third and threw to first to end the contest.

Morenci softball:

The Bulldog softball team found a lot of offense in their season opener Monday at Addison, but don’t short the defense. Only two errors were committed during the double-header win.

Jade Pfund tossed a seven-hitter in the 9-4 opener. She walked three and struck out 11.

Morenci took an early lead when Tess Ramsey singled in the second inning and came home on a sacrifice bunt by Chanler McCaskey.

In the third, four runners scored on a double by Rachel Rutkowski, singles by Pfund and Ramsey and walks to Brooke Barrett, Nicolette Swimmer and Mariah Bovee. Ramsey’s base hit brought two runners home.

In the fourth, Barrett slammed a home run after Megan Cox got on base with a single. Pfund led off with a triple in the sixth inning and Swimmer followed with a triple.

Ramsey had a third base hit in the seventh and scored on Cox’s sacrifice.

Swimmer went to the mound in the second contest—an 18-6 five-inning game. She struck out seven, walked seven and hit two batters.

Swimmer had a shaky start when she walked the first two batters, gave up a triple, hit a batter and walked another. Then came three straight strikeouts and the Bulldogs were on their way.

In Morenci’s first at-bat, Barrett and Pfund both tripled and Swimmer doubled. Ramsey and Meghan Smith both had base hits.

Ramsey drove in two runs in the second inning and Bovee came through with an RBI-double in the third. In the seven-run fourth inning, Salena Martinez, Ramsey and Smith each hit doubles and Pfund had a base hit. Pfund and Swimmer each belted doubles in the fifth.

Coach Kay Johnson called the outing a positive experience for the start of the season, but she knows there are much tougher games ahead.

Morenci baseball

Morenci’s young baseball team looked a little shaky at first when it finally opened the season Monday at Addison, but that didn’t last for long.

The Bulldogs dropped both games of a double-header, but they offered the Panthers a competitive contest. Addison took the opener 11-7 and the night-cap 5-2.

“Overall we settled down and played really well,” coach Roger Pontious said. “I saw a lot of good things from young players.”

It was a veteran player who got the Bulldogs off to a start in the opening inning. Senior Anthony Barron got his final season going with a base hit. He stole second base and moved to third on a sacrifice by Steven Pontious. He came home on a single by Devin Martinez.

Nick Wilson drew a walk and Martinez scored on a fielder’s choice off the bat of Isaac Jeffers.

So far, so good, but then the early season jitters set in. The Panthers used four errors to score four runs and take the lead.

Morenci added no runs in the second inning, but a series of walks led to four more runs for Addison.

Morenci tightened the score to 8-4 with a pair of runs in the third inning. Pontious relieved Barron in the third inning and gave up three runs for the remainder of the contest.

The Bulldogs added three more runs for the final 11-7 score.

Barron, Wilson and Brett Bovee each finished the game with a hit. Pontious and Martinez each notched a pair.

Barron belted three of the Bulldogs’ four hits for the 5-2 loss in the second game. Cody Long had the other hit.

Martinez threw three innings of the five-inning second game and Wilson tossed the other two. Three errors and three walks aided the Panthers’ scoring.

“For the first two games of the season, I was happy with the way we stuck together and didn’t let down,” Coach Pontious said.

Morenci track:

It was a sweet ending for Morenci’s girls track team April 8 at Pittsford.

Trailing by 20 points with only three events remaining, the Bulldogs swept two events, then won the final relay to edge the Wildcats 70-67.

Morenci trailed by nine points after the field events and didn’t lose much ground on the track until the 800-meter run gave Pittsford its 20-point lead.

But in the 200-meter dash, the Bulldogs went one-two-three with Hayli Cox, Kathleen Barron and Tequoia Jarrell, then repeated that outcome in the 3200-meter run with Chelsea Howard, Candi Evers and Leslie Montijo to trail by two points.

In the 1600-meter relay, Barron was joined by Phoenix Duncan, Kate Gallup and Tricia Black for the final victory.

Gallup also won both hurdle events and was a member of the winning 400-meter relay, along with Barron, Cox and Jarrell. Duncan was also a winner in the high jump.

Coach Brad Brown cited five events with notable times and distances for the opening meet of the season.

Nichole Elarton opened with a 90-5 toss in the discuss and Duncan cleared 4-8 in the high jump.

Gallup’s hurdle times were both strong (:18.5 and :55.2), Brown said, and he was pleased with the 1600-meter relay at 4:41.


Morenci’s boys won 12 of 17 events, but Pittsford came through with a lot of seconds and thirds, plus sweeping the pole vault, to keep the scoring fairly close, 77-60.

With Morenci not competing in the pole vault, the Wildcats led 26-19 after field events and stretched the lead to 11 points after the 110-meter hurdles. Then the Bulldogs came on strong to win.

Alex Burton won both hurdle events, Lucas Johnson took both throwing events and Zach Phillips won the high jump and 1600-meter run.

Coach Brown said Phillips’s 4:56 in the 1600-meter run was very good for the season opener and he was also pleased with Lucas Johnson’s effort in the discus (126-9), Chas Frey’s 100-meter dash (:11.7) and Justin Swett’s 200-meter dash (:24.0).

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