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.
  • Front.homecoming Court
  • Cheer
  • Front.park.lights
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Sports round-up 09.22.2010

Written by David Green.

FAYETTE CROSS COUNTRY: Fayette senior Darrell Randall took control of the Fayette Eagles Invitational cross country meet and led the way across the finish line Saturday morning.

Randall turned in a 16:50 at Fayette’s Harrison Lake State Park course to lead a field of 11 teams.

“That’s a very good time for our course,” said Fayette coach Bryan Stambaugh. “Only a handful of boys have run under 17 minutes on it.”

The Eagles were edged by Anthony Wayne in team standings, 34 to 37. Morenci placed fourth with 93 points,

Anthony Wayne’s Josh Hilton gave Randall his closest competition, coming in at 17:05.

Other Eagle finishers were Trevor Cox (4th, 18:05); Tim Stoltzfus (9th, 18:38); Dalton Goeltzenleuchter (15th, 18:52); Chandler Sanford (24th, 19:23); Tyler Keefer (27th, 19:50); Dusty Lantz (39th, 20:32); Clay Burkholder, (45th, 20:46); Dylan Ashemeier, (46th,  20:50); Tyler Cox, (51st, 21:06); Ian Schrock (56th, 21:17); Nathan Seiler (57th, 21:22); Alec Hylander (79th, 24:39); and Jonathan Boesger (81st, 25:05).

For Morenci, Tyler Guelde crossed the line at 18:13 to place sixth overall, followed by Luke Spaulding (11th, 18:43); Jake Spaulding (29th, 19:52); Micah Gillen (30th, 19:52); Logan Drummond (35th, 20:15); and Reagan Stowell (50th, 21:06).

Fayette’s varsity girls placed third with 102 points, well behind Anthony Wayne with 19. The Patriots’ Victoria Hassen won the race at 20:11.

Melani Seiler took sixth at 21:28. Alexa Kessler also took a medal with a 20th place finish at 23:51, followed by Madelyn Maginn (23rd, 24:04); Sarah Kovar (32nd, 25:11); Ashtyn Baker (44th, 26:17); and Sydney Brown (50th, 27:09).

For the Bulldogs, Mariah Gillen led the way with a 17th place finish at 23:41. She was followed by Barbara Hollstein (56th, 28:02); Taylor Baugh (67th, 29:49); and Mary Margaret Hollstein (69th, 29:54).

Bulldog coach Brad Brown is seeing a lot of improvement in his inexperienced girls team. They’re not where they should be yet, he said, but times are coming down for many of the girls and boys.

“We’ll see where we’re at on the tough Pittsford course this Saturday,” Brown said.

Junior High

Fayette’s boys clipped Anthony Wayne 24-31 to take the junior high title. Skylar Lantz was the first runner across the line at 11:41, followed by Dylan Stannard at 12:07. Other Eagle runners were Jared Wagner (9th, 13:05); Mark Maginn (11th, 13:14); Joel Smith (23rd, 14:31); and Jerad Seiler (24, 14:39).

Spencer Elliott was Morenci’s only competitor, finishing 12th at 13:27.

Fayette’s junior high girls were second to Anthony Wayne, 24-52.

Liz Maginn placed fourth for Fayette at 14:06, followed by Alexis Fruchey (7th, 14:33); Taylor Griffiths (11th, 14:59); Adrianna Hylander (21st, 15:52); and Miranda Minzey (31st, 18:24).

For Morenci, Aubreigh Stowell placed 35th at 22:02.

The race was won by Antwerp’s Bailee Sigman with a time of 13:31.

FAYETTE GOLF: Jonathan Boesger fired a 38 last week against North Central, but it still wasn’t enough for medalist honors.

Boesger ended with the second best score, but top honors went to the Cadets’ Brandon Turner with 36.

North Central won the match 160-172.

Other Eagle scorers were Chase Hookstadt, 40; Zayne Colegrove and Kevin Ferguson, 47s; and Dusty Lantz and Riley Martin, 51s.

Scores were higher Sept. 13 at Emmanuel Christian’s Bedford Hills course, with Fayette losing 180-199.

Martin was tops for the Eagles at 47, with Boesger one stroke back. Hookstadt finished with 51, Colegrove with 53, Ferguson with 55 and Alec Hylander with 56.

Emmanuel’s Mike Henning was medalist at 42.

MORENCI VOLLEYBALL: Morenci split a league double-header  Thursday with Sand Creek, losing the opening in five games and coming back for a four-game win in the nightcap.

“We showed great heart to come back and win the second match after losing a tough one,” said varsity coach Dennis Owens.

After a shaky start in the opening game—a 25-16 loss—the Bulldogs came right back for a 25-19 victory. The Aggies prevailed in the next round, 25-17, but once again Morenci held on to post a 27-25 win to keep the match even.

Sand Creek finally got the win in a decisive 15-7 game.

In the second match, the Bulldogs started off with a pair of wins, 25-15 and 25-23, then dropped a 19-25 decision. They wrapped the match up with a 25-20 victory.

Chelsea Phillips missed only two of 35 serves and finished with six aces and 23 points. Tia Tompkins scored 20 serving points, with three aces and a 24 for 28 showing.

Mercedez McCaskey went 22 for 24 with two aces and 15 points.

McCaskey delivered 30 assists and Tess Ramsey gave 21.

Phoenix Duncan finished with 41 digs. Naomi Hoffman added 27 and Matea Garcia notched 26.

At the net, Tompkins and Duncan each scored 23 kills. Duncan made five blocks and Tompkins made three.

JV VOLLEYBALL: Morenci’s JV volleyball squad advanced to the semifinals Saturday at the Hudson Tournament before falling to top-notch Madison.

“Madison has won every tournament we've been to, so we knew we were up against a tough team,” said coach Shana Love. “The girls totally stepped up and rose to the challenge with no fear.”

The Bulldogs kept it close before losing 19-25, then came back to top the Trojans 25-20. In the deciding game, the lead went back and forth before Madison claimed a 15-9 win.

Morenci ended up in third place among 11 teams.

“We played awesome, the best I’ve seen them play all season,” Love said. “We set the ball up well and had great energy.”

The Bulldogs opened with a 25-10, 25-20 win against Hudson, then immediately topped Addison 25-22, 26-24. After a break of two matches, they fell to Lenawee Christian 14-25, 16-25.

The top servers were Emma Binegar 25/33; Hannah Jeffers 22/25 with 6 aces; Chloe Molitierno 15/17; Ashley VanBrandt 10/10; and Jessica Storrs 44/47 with 10 aces and two runs of 10 consecutive points.

Jeffers scored 17 kills, followed by  Melissa Burk with seven and Taylor Schisler with five.

 Binegar gave 16 assists and Erin Vanderpool gave 12.

Jeffers finished with 17 digs, while Molitierno had 19, Julie Terry 12 and Storrs 21.

Sand Creek

Close but not quite.

The Bulldogs played closely with Sand Creek in a double-header at home Thursday, but the Aggies won both matches.

Despite poor serving, Morenci lost only 23-25 and 27-29 in the opener.  In the second match the Bulldogs won 25-6 before losing some focus and falling 17-25. The Aggies took game three 13-15.

Leading servers were Storrs, 16/18 with seven aces; Binegar, 14/18 with three aces; Jeffers, 14/18 with three aces; Vanderpool, 12/14 with seven aces; and Schisler, 10/14 with three aces

 Jeffers made seven kills and seven digs. Terry also had seven digs.

MORENCI FOOTBALL: The Bulldogs tried to be cordial hosts. They gave away 96 yards on penalties, fumbled twice and allowed an early touchdown pass, but that wasn’t nearly enough.

After a slow start, Morenci (2-2) scored two touchdowns in each of the second, third and fourth quarters to swamp visiting Whitmore Lake (0-4) here Friday, 47-6.

Quarterback Brett Bovee ran for three touchdowns and passed to Simon Jeffers for another. Sophomore Cody Graham carried for the other two, including a 66-yard run in the final quarter.

“We played them all four quarters,” said Bulldog coach Tom Saylor—something Morenci failed at last season. They’re weren’t solid all the time, he said, but for the most part the squad stayed focused and got the job done.

The Trojans were hurt by the loss of senior starter Steve Briggs in the first quarter. The all-league linebacker left the game with a shoulder injury after moving the ball well against Morenci in Whitmore Lake’s first series.

Morenci was without the services of Jay Howard for a week, but the first appearance of the season for two-way starters Max Gautz and Austin VanBrandt made a difference in the Bulldogs’ play.

Gautz carried for 128 yards, averaging nearly 10 yards a carry, and he notched eight tackles on defense. VanBrandt also came on strong, Saylor said.

The Trojans took advantage of two Morenci face mask penalties and an encroachment call on their way to a touchdown on their opening drive.

The Bulldogs were forced to punt, but the Trojans got in a hole after a sack by Jacob McVay and Morenci soon had the ball back. This time it was the Trojans who gave up 15 yards on a face mask call and Bovee scored his first touchdown at 9:22 in the second quarter.

Morenci punted again before going on a scoring binge. Bovee threw deep to Jeffers who caught the ball after a Trojan defender deflected it. Jeffers had only a couple steps to the end zone for a 47-yard pass play.

Gautz carried for most of a 60-yard drive in the third quarter for a 24-6 lead. A sack by Kenny Maxfield and McVay, followed by a sack from Josh Namyslowski ended the Trojans’ possession and the Bulldogs needed just four plays to take a 32-6 lead.

In the fourth quarter, Graham scored from five yards out and again from 65 yards out after a fumble recovery by Peter Bach.

Jeffers and Tyler Benjamin scored on conversion runs and Bovee made three.

Lucas Hollstein finished with nine tackles. McVay made three sacks and Maxfield added two.

“We’re coming together,” Coach Saylor said. “Our front four on defense—[Maxfield, Nick Wilson, VanBrandt and McVay]—are playing very well and our backfield is improving with Max Gautz and Jordan Bach.”

He’s been pleasantly surprised with Graham’s play on both sides of the ball.


The Bulldogs will face another struggling team Friday when they travel to play winless Madison. The Trojans have scored only 22 points to their opponents’ 190, but two of the big losses were to undefeated teams.

Madison is expected to run a wide-open spread offense with an option off the shotgun.

JV FOOTBALL: Morenci’s JV grid team scored its second consecutive shutout last week, downing Whitmore Lake 52-0.

The 4-0 Bulldogs entertain Madison this week, and coach Ryan Love expects a much stiffer challenge.

“We should have our hands full,” he said. “Last year’s eighth graders had a tough time with them.”

That wasn’t the case last week, at least not after the first series.

Whitmore Lake put a stop to Morenci’s first possession, but the Bulldogs quickly adjusted and were soon on the scoreboard.

Following a Whitmore Lake punt, Morenci needed only two plays to reach the end zone, with KC Clegg breaking loose for a 59-yard run. Cody Powell ran the conversion.

Coaches Love and Matt Bostick came up with some offensive adjustments that the Trojans couldn’t stop.

“I’m proud of the way the kids were able to adjust on the fly,” Love said.

Clegg scored again on the next possession, then it was Powell’s turn for a touchdown in the second quarter. Colin Smith scored the conversion. Clegg scored once more, and Smith passed to John Michael Martinez for the conversion and a 30-0 lead at intermission.

Powell scored from 10 yards out in the third quarter and quarterback Colin Smith hit Martinez again. After a Bulldog punt in the fourth quarter, the Trojans fumbled on their own five-yard line. Powell scored his third touchdown and Kendrick Taylor carried for the conversion.

Powell’s kickoff went off the side of his foot and dribbled off to the sideline. Rather than down the ball, the Trojans backed off and Martinez jumped on it for another Morenci possession.

Clegg broke free for a 46-yard scoring run and the final 52-0 tally.

Clegg covered 225 yards on 21 carries. Powell gained 86 on 16 carries. Brandon Myers led with five tackles. Powell and Martinez each finished with four. Smith was three-for-three in passing for 54 yards.

Madison visits Thursday at 6:30 p.m.

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