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 Roundup 10.28.09

Written by David Green.

FAYETTE ACADEMIC: Nine Fayette students were named fall season scholar athletes by the Buckeye Border Conference.

The award is presented to juniors and seniors who maintain a GPA of at least 3.25.

Fayette’s all-academic students are senior cross country runners Erica Goeltzenleuchter and Olivia Molina; senior volleyball player Elisha Hartman; and junior cross country runners Chase Hookstadt, Clay Burkholder, Hunter Colegrove, Darrell Randall, Alexa Kessler and Rachel Seiler.

Hookstadt was also a member of the golf team.

FAYETTE CROSS COUNTRY: Fayette’s boys team will move on in state cross country competition and they’ll bring one girl along with them to the regional run.

The boys placed fourth overall at the district run last Saturday—just one point behind Archbold—and will advance to the regionals Saturday at Tiffin.

“Everything went about as good as it could,” said coach Bryan Stambaugh, and he was pleased the boys are able to move on for another week.

Fayette lost to Columbus Grove at an invitational earlier in the season, but Eagles finished more than 20 points ahead of them this time around.

At the front of the pack, it was business as usual for Fayette’s Darrell Randall and his two usual foes from the BBC. Stryker’s Kenny Graber was first at 16:53, followed by Hilltop’s Cody Livensparger at 17:04 and Randall at 17:05. Travis Burwell of Hilltop placed fourth at 17:13 and Lincoln Frey of Pettisville took fifth at 17:26.

“Those guys have been battling back and forth for a long time,” Stambaugh said about the top three.

Stryker has the best chance among league members of advancing to the state finals and Stambaugh hopes they get there to represent the BBC.

Stryker won the meet with 35 points, followed by Hilltop with 46, Archbold with 116 and Fayette with 117.

After Randall, Eagle runners were Trevor Cox (14th, 17:47), Dalton Goeltzenleuchter (21st, 18:09), Tim Stoltzfus (38th, 18:48), Hunter Colegrove, (41st, 18:55), Tyler Keefer (43rd, 18:57) and Clay Burkholder (78th, 21:17).

Coach Stambaugh was disappointed to learn that Goeltzenleuchter broke his wrist over the weekend and might not be able to run Saturday. Goeltzenleuchter had one of his best showings of the season Saturday.

Fayette’s girls squad placed sixth out of 10 teams, and Stambaugh was delighted just to be able to use the word “team.” With Erica Goeltzenleuchter injured most of the season and Rachel Seiler running to help rehabilitate from surgery last year, the Eagles couldn’t compete as a team very often.

Goeltzenleuchter placed fifth overall and will advance to Tiffin.

“I’m happy for her to make it and move on,” Stambaugh said.

Tanner Hostetler of Pettisville placed first at 20:00, followed by Sarah Flickinger of Pandora-Gilboa at 20:04, Chelsea Knapp of Liberty Center at 20:17, Jordan Sidel of Liberty Center at 20:47 and Goeltzenleuchter at 21:10).

Olivia Molina placed 24th with a time of 22:50, Alexa Kessler  was 38th at 24:03, Sarah Kovar was 49th at 25:20 and Rachel Seiler was 63rd at 27:08.

Liberty Center won the team competition with 34 points, followed by Pettisville with 83.


At one point Friday, the Bulldogs looked like they were going to overcome all the hardships they created for themselves at Whiteford.

Then they went and created some more hardships.

Fumbles and penalties hurt the Morenci over and over again as Whiteford claimed a 20-8 win and moved on to the playoffs with a 6-3 record.

The Bulldogs ended at 3-6, leave behind a few almost-wins along the way.

“It was a sad ending to a season of would-a, could-a, should-a’s,” coach Tom Saylor said.

Whiteford recorded the first fumble of the night in the rainy first-half. Just as the Bobcats were about to score, they fumbled the ball at Morenci’s three-yard line where Clayton Wolf jumped on the loose ball.

After a couple of punts, Whiteford finally made it into the end zone for an 8-0 lead with two minutes gone in the second quarter.

This time it was Whiteford’s time for big break. The snap went over the head of Morenci’s punter and the Bobcats took over on the 15-yard line. They scored on the next run to go on top 14-0, a lead that led until half-time.

The Bulldogs lost the ball on an interception, got it right back on a Whiteford fumble, then lost it again on an interception.

The half ended with the Bulldogs in the hole and the ball never crossing the 50-yard line.

Dustin Roller picked off an interception in the third quarter and Chas Frey soon had a touchdown on a 33-yard run, trimming the score to 14-8.

Morenci soon had possession again and started to advance. A score would tie it up, but quarterback Brett Bovee threw another interception late in the third quarter.

Whiteford got another big break—a fumbled punt at the Morenci 15—and soon went on top 20-8.

A final Morenci drive ended with another interception.

JV: Morenci freshman Cody Graham needed just 118 yards to tally a thousand-yard season at Morenci’s reserve football game Thursday.

He covered that, plus a couple hundred to spare, to lead the Bulldogs to a 46-12 victory over Whiteford.

“They just couldn’t stop our run,” coach Ryan Love said. “We never threw a pass, but we didn’t have to.”

Graham ran for 312 yards on 15 carries to finish the season with 1,206 yards. Lucas Hollstein ran for 119 on 11 carries.

The Bulldogs punted on their first possession, but scored on their next try on a 44-yard jaunt by Graham. Simon Jeffers carried for the conversion.

The Bobcats made it 8-6 on a touchdown with about two minutes left in the first quarter, but Morenci answered with six points on a 62-yard run by Graham.

Whiteford threatened again, but lost the ball on a fumble at the Bulldog one-yard line. Brad Funchion made the recovery. Four plays later, Graham scored again on a 66-yard run.

Following a Whiteford punt, Hollstein capped a long drive with a short run. Jeffers’s conversion made the score 28-6 at half-time.

In the rainy third quarter, Kendrick Taylor scored to end a 10-play drive. Whiteford came back with a touchdown on a 47-yard pass.

Jacob McVay made a fumble recovery and Graham carried for a 35-yard touchdown late in the quarter.

At 9:33 in the fourth, Hollstein broke loose for a 40-yard run to end the scoring.

McVay was the leading tackler with 14. Larry Barron added eight, Coach Love said, while doing a good job stopping Whiteford’s veer end play.

Love is certain the Bulldogs at least tied for the league title and maybe won it outright.

“It was a great season either way and I’m really proud of the kids,” he said.

Morenci (6-2-1) was a resilient team that gutted it out this season, he said, by coming from behind to win more than once.

MORENCI VOLLEYBALL: Morenci made a remarkable come-back to take two matches from TCC foe Whiteford last week.

After dropping the first two games (25-27, 22-25), the Bulldogs turned it around in game three to win six straight for the double-header victory.

“The turn around came in game three of the first match,” coach Dennis Owens said, “when Barbara Hollstein came off the bench and served 10 straight points, including five aces.”

She finished the night as the leading server with a perfect 30 for 30.

Whiteford fell hard in that third game, losing 10-25, before Morenci tied the match with a 25-16 win. In the deciding game, the Bobcats kept it close but the Bulldogs prevailed, 15-13.

The second match was close in a 25-22 Morenci win, but the next two went easier, 25-18, 25-18.

Holstein finished the night with six aces and 20 points. Tess Ramsey went 20/20 from the serving line; Mariah Bovee went 33/38, with seven aces and 23 points; Meghan Smith finished at 31/36, with three aces and 21 points; and Chanler McCaskey went 25/30, with four aces and 17 points.

After her initial 10-point run, Holstein made another run of five points. Smith produced an eight-point run and Bovee had a seven-point run.

 Setting leaders were Ramsey with 46 assists and Mercedez McCaskey with 25.

 Attack leaders were Tia Tompkins, 29 kills and one block; Phoenix Duncan, 18 kills and four blocks; Chanler McCaskey, 18 kills; and Smith, eight kills and two blocks.

Chanler McCaskey finished with 50 digs and a 40/43 serve reception record. Bovee made 49 digs and had a 27/28 serve reception tally. Duncan made 33 digs.

LCS: After a slow opening at home Oct. 19 against Lenawee Christian School, Morenci kept it close. The Cougars needed only three games to win the non-league match, 25-15, 28-26 and 25-23.

 Serving leaders were Bovee with 10 service points, Ramsey (8/8), and Chanler McCaskey (8/10, three aces).

Setting leaders were Ramsey  with 12 assists and Mercedez McCaskey with eight assists.

At the net, Tompkins finished with six kills and one block, Duncan with six kills and Smith with five kills.

In passing, Bovee finished with 25 digs and 14/14 on serve reception, Chanler McCaskey had 10 digs and 14/16, and Duncan went 11/11.

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