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.
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    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 9.16.09

Written by David Green.

FAYETTE GOLF: It was just a so-so day for the Eagle golf team Saturday at the Stryker Invitational.

“Nobody played really well or really bad,” coach Ryan Colegrove said. “Everybody just had some bad holes.”

Kevin Ferguson had the best showing for Fayette with a 97. Zayne Colegrove, Nelson Barnhiser and Sye White each carded 99s and Jonathan Boesger was two strokes back at 101 for a team total of 394.

FAYETTE VOLLEYBALL: Fayette’s varsity spikers notched a pair of three-game victories, although Montpelier pushed them to the edge.

In a non-league match-up at home Monday, the Eagles finally topped Montpelier by a score of 32-30. The final two games weren’t that much easier, with Fayette winning 25-22 and 25-23.

“The girls looked very good and had a strong offensive night at the net,” Coach Danni Keefer said. “I am very pleased.”

From the serving line, Sydney Coger scored four aces and Sierah Griffiths had three. Andrea Canfield, Elisha Hartman and Leah Brinegar each served two aces.

The Eagles had an easier time Thursday in their first BBC contest of the season, downing North Central 25-19, 25-12 and 25-10.

That match marked the return of libero Tara Lichtenwald who had recovered from an injury.

“I was glad to have her back,” Coach Keefer said.

Lichtenwald served a pair of aces to get the Eagles on a roll in the opening game. With North Central just a point behind at 14-13, Fayette stretched the lead to 21-14. Aces by Brinegar and Griffiths, plus a kill by Brinegar finished it off.

Jacy Lewellen recorded a block and a pair of kills as the Eagles forged a commanding 16-4 lead in the second game. Kills by Griffiths and Hartman aided the attack, and a save by Brinegar brought it to an end.

Griffiths and Brinegar scored most of the offensive points in the final game while the visitors never got into the flow.

Earlier in the season, Fayette lost to Edgerton in three games and played close with Swanton in a four-game loss.

FAYETTE CROSS COUNTRY: Fayette cross country coach Bryan Stambaugh didn’t get the results he was hoping for at the big Tiffin Carnival run Saturday, where many of the state’s best runners competed.

The top two runners in the Div. III race finished below 16 minutes.

Darrell Randall was tops for the Eagles with a 39th place finish at 17:12, followed by Trevor Cox in 53rd at 17:30.

Hunter Colegrove crossed the line at 18:39 for 161st place and Dalton Goeltzenleuchter took 189th at 18:57. Tyler Keefer was 229th at 19:22 and Tim Stoltzfus took 303rd at 20:52.

Maplewood had the top team finish. Fayette was about in the middle of the pack, 24th among 52 teams.

In the girls Div. II/III open race, Alexa Kessler took 18th at 22:44, followed by Olivia Molina (86th, 24:38) and Sarah Kovar (88th, 24:39).

Junior high

Fayette’s junior high boys remained unbeaten this season, but not by much.

The Eagles were the Div. III champions, topping Sylvania St. Joe by one point and Minster by two points.

Chandler Sanford took 13th place, followed by Ben Grieser in 19th, Tyler Cox in 27th, Skylar Lantz in 29th, Ian Schrock in 37th, Dylan Ashemeier in 65th, Ben Kessler in 74th, Jared Wagner in 81st and Thomas Ehman in 108th.

In the girls open race, Jill Stuckey placed sixth at 13:51, Liz Maginn was 20th at 14:39 and Miranda Minzey was 185th at 14:39.

MORENCI VOLLEYBALL: Morenci’s varsity volleyball squad rolled to a victory Thursday to open the Tri-County Conference season on the road against Britton-Deerfield.

The Bulldogs took the match in three games, 25-23, 25-19 and 25-9.

“We played well as a team and our serving was very good, making 67-71 serves and 16 aces,” coach Dennis Owens said.

Serving leaders were Mariah Bovee, 20 /20 with five aces and 14 points, Tia Tompkins, 11/12 with five aces, Mercedez McCaskey, 10/12 with three aces, and Chanler McCaskey 11/11 with one ace.

Tess Ramsey finished with seven assists to lead all setters.

Hitters Bovee and Chanler McCaskey each scored five kills. Bovee went nine for 10 in serve reception, with five passes to the setter.


MORENCI FOOTBALL: Let’s hope there isn’t a trend building.

Week One: Blowout win.

Week Two: Blowout loss.

Week Three: Blowout win.

Morenci football coach Tom Saylor wants to break up that pattern when the Bulldogs make the long trip to Whitmore Lake Friday. Instead, he would like to see more of what his squad showed at home last week against Britton-Deerfield.

The Patriots were held to a single touchdown while Morenci tallied 483 yards of offense to open TCC play with a 53-7 victory.

“I thought the kids responded well,” Saylor said following the loss at Hudson. “They pretty much played to their ability. I saw hitting that I haven’t seen yet this year. The level of contact was raised.”

That statement especially refers to the offensive line that worked hard in the past week with coaches Nate Parker and Lance Thompson, Saylor said.

“The offensive line was the real catalyst,” he said. “That was the hardest they hit all season.”

Their efforts allowed quarterback Brett Bovee to show his skills, Saylor added, something he never had the chance to do at Hudson.

The Patriots nearly got the game off to a different start, but a dropped pass prevented what might have been a touchdown. The visitors then bobbled the punt and Morenci took over at midfield.

The Bulldogs didn’t get anywhere on that series, but on their next try, Bovee capped a drive with a 19-yard completion to Isaac Jeffers in the corner of the end zone. Morenci’s scoring barrage was underway.

Dustin Roller intercepted and Jarrett Keller made a 20-yard gain before scoring from 15 yards out. Before long, Chas Frey grabbed a Patriot pass and covered 28 yards to the end zone to put Morenci on top 18-0 in the first quarter.

Fumbles and penalties hurt the Bulldogs’ next two drives, but after the Patriots’ next punt, Bovee carried for a 38-yard gain and Keller ran the ball in from 12 yards out.

The Patriots drove to Morenci’s 11-yard line—aided by two 15-yard penalties—but the drive stalled there. On Morenci’s first play, Keller ran the ball 89 yards for a touchdown and a 34-0 lead.

Britton-Deerfield threatened again on a long pass, but a sack by Travis Janish ended the drive as time ran out in the first half.

In the third quarter, Morenci was aided by two B-D penalties, along with a 12-yard gain by Frey. Bovee passed to Roller for a 16-yard touchdown pass that put the mercy clock into action. On the first play after a Patriot punt, Michael Snyder raced 55 yards for a 46-0 lead.

In the final quarter, Max Gautz broke free for a 31-yard touchdown play and Morenci’s final score. The Patriots passed to get into position before running in for a score.

Coach Saylor said he felt more pressure in the closing minutes of the game than he did at the start, when he was trying to substitute players to prevent injuries. He’s accustomed to teams much larger than the 21 he had to work with Friday.

He described his squad’s efforts as “beautifully balanced,” but he did single out Nick Wilson.

“He was the real heart of the defense,” Saylor said. “He bottled up the middle most of the night.”

The Patriots finished the game with 191 passing yards on 13 completions, leaving only 20 yards gained on the ground.

“We need some work there,” Saylor said, “but I was pretty pleased.”

WHITMORE LAKE—The Trojans scored two wins against two teams that are still winless this season, then dropped their TCC opener to Summerfield when they went for two points to win after a late touchdown.

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