Sports Roundup 2011.09.14

Written by David Green.

FAYETTE CROSS: Fayette’s top girls turned in fast times at the large Tiffin Invitational cross country event Saturday as the Eagles went up against some strong competition.

Melani Seiler turned in the best place for Fayette, finishing 67th in the varsity girls race with a time of 21:27. Jill Stuckey followed with another good time, taking 74th at 21:40.

Other teammates were Liz Maginn (131st, 22:51), Sarah Kovar (175th, 23:56), Maddie Maginn (209th, 24:43) and Ashtyn Baker (257th, 26:22).

In the boys race, Dalton Goeltzenleuchter placed 181st at 19:32, followed by Ian Schrock (192nd, 19:44), Cole Burkholder (245th, 21:49), Nathan Seiler (239th, 21:31), Jared Wagner (211th, 20:20), Dylan Aschemeier (231st, 20:51) and Dylan Stannard (261st, 23:06).

Fayette junior high boys placed third overall, led by Casen Burkholder (6th, 12:11) and Austin Lopez (11th, 12:26).

Other Eagles finishers were Alex Jaramillo (29th, 13:08), Christian Suarez (34th, 13:14), Bryce Conklin (49th, 13:33) and Jerad Seiler (63rd, 13:47).

Fayette’s girls placed fifth: Kaela Seiler (19th, 13:38), Haley Perdue (20th, 13:39), Kelsey Fruchey (28th, 14:05), Alexis Fruchey (54th, 14:44) and Taylor Griffiths (69th, 15:05).

FAYETTE GOLF: Fayette’s Riley Martin enjoyed the home course Sept. 30, blazing across DeMor Hills for medalist honors with a 37.

Dusty Lantz wasn’t far behind at 40 strokes to help lead the Eagles to a 178-197 BBC victory against Edon.

Jon Boesger was next at 50, followed by Zayne Colegrove and Matt Storrs who each carded 51s. Alec Hylander finished at 54.

Edon’s top scorer came through with 46.

MORENCI CROSS: Morenci’s Luke Spaulding turned in his best time ever at Hudson’s course Sept. 6 with an 18:20 to place fifth overall at the Hudson Invitational.

His brother Jake was next for the Bulldogs at 19:32 in 13th place, followed by Reagan Stowell (21st, 20:28) and Spencer Elliott (34th, 22:19).

Addison’s Stephan Biggs won the race with a time of 16:50.

Morenci’s Tatyana Pless placed second in the girls race at 22:15, far behind the winner, Shaley Albaugh from Hillsdale Academy who finished at 19:51.

Mariah Gillen took ninth at 24:20, Taylor Baugh was 26th at 27:19 and Mary Margaret Hollstein placed 43rd at 35:44.

With only four runners in each race, the Bulldogs didn’t post a team score.

MORENCI FOOTBALL: Of course it had to happen on the longest road trip of the season.

After making the 80-mile drive to Whitmore Lake (0-3), Morenci’s football team faced a long series of weather delays.

By the time the Bulldogs (2-1) walked off the field for the final time, with a 33-14 TCC victory, it was nearly 11:30 p.m.

There was never more than a drizzle when the players were on the field, said coach Taz Wallace, but every new flash of lightning took players off the field for 30 minutes.

“It was a sloppy game,” Wallace said, “but we went out there and got it done. We did some good things.”

The Bulldogs also made some mistakes and one of those led to a Whitmore Lake touchdown. One incident was a blown assignment and the other resulted from a wrong line-up.

“Those are the things you have to eliminate,” he said. “We still need to improve.”

Morenci scored on its first possession of the game when quarterback Cody Powell hit Austin Sandusky for a 56-yard pass play. Kendrick Taylor kicked to make it 7-0.

The Trojans matched that early in the second quarter with their own 56-yard pass play, but Morenci added two more touchdowns—both by Max Gautz—before halftime.

After a Whitmore Lake fumble, Gautz traveled 39 yards on the next play.

With time running out in the half, Gautz crossed the goal line from one yard out with just 15 seconds on the clock. Taylor kicked the PAT on both scores for a 21-6 lead.

The Trojans closed the gap to 21-14 on a touchdown run and conversion pass late in the third quarter, but the Bulldogs pulled away in the fourth.

Morenci’s defense did the job for the next score when Gemonte Gibson moved in to grab a Trojan pass and race 55 yards to the end zone.

“We put pressure up front and the quarterback threw the ball up,” Wallace said.

With two minutes to play and the Trojans facing a fourth-and-43 situation, a bad snap gave Morenci the ball. Sandusky ran the next play for a 15-yard touchdown to make it 33-14.

Although Morenci was the clear leader on the scoreboard, Whitmore Lake nearly tallied as many yards rushing, finishing with only four yards less. The Bulldog defense socked the Trojans with a loss of 71 yards for a total of 77 yards on the ground. Whitmore Lake, with its 34-player roster, lost the ball once on a fumble and three times on interceptions. Jay Howard had one interception and Gibson grabbed a pair.

The Trojans attempted 30 passes and netted 152 yards on 13 completions. Their quarterback was caught behind the line several times and netted negative 23 yards rushing.

Powell completed five of 13 attempts for 89 yards—most of that on Sandusky’s touchdown play. Gautz led in rushing yards with 72 on 14 attempts.

“We haven’t established our running game yet,” Coach Wallace said.


After three games on the road, the Bulldogs finally have a show for their home fans Friday. Madison (1-2) visits for the second league contest of the season.

The Trojans have a quarterback capable of passing, Coach Wallace said, and some overall team speed.

If Madison goes with their same game plan, the Bulldogs will face a pass-oriented team this week.

“That will be a new challenge for the kids,” he said.

Wallace has had enough bus rides for a while.

“It’s going to be great to be home,” he said.

JV FOOTBALL: Morenci’s junior varsity football team picked up a league win Thursday without ever stepping onto the field.

Whitmore Lake canceled its trip to Morenci claiming a shortage of players.

The Bulldogs will travel Thursday to Madison for a 6 p.m. contest.

  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.base Ball
    UMPIRE Thomas Henthorn tosses the bat between team captains Mikayla Price and Chuck Piskoti of Flint’s Lumber City Base Ball Club. Following the 1860 rules, after the bat was grabbed by the captains, captains’ hands advanced to the top of the bat—one hand on top of the other. The captain whose hand ended up on top decided who would bat first. Additional photos of Sunday’s game appear on page 12 of this week’s Observer. The contest was organized in conjunction with Stair District Library’s Hometown Teams exhibit that runs through Nov. 20.
    VALUE OF ATHLETICS—Morenci graduate John Bancroft (center) takes a turn at the microphone during a chat session at the opening of the Hometown Teams exhibit at Stair District Library. Clockwise to his left is John Dillon, Jed Hall, Jim Bauer, Joe Farquhar, George Hollstein, George Vereecke and Mike McDowell. Thomas Henthorn (at the podium) kicked off the conversation. Henthorn, a University of Michigan–Flint professor, will return to Morenci this Sunday to lead a game of vintage base ball at the school softball field.
  • Front.cross
    HUDSON RUNNER Jacob Morgan looks toward the top of the hill with dismay during the tough finish at Harrison Lake State Park. Fayette runner Jacob Garrow focuses on the summit, also, during the Eagle Invitational cross country run Saturday morning. Continuing rain and drizzle made the course even more challenging. Results of the race are in this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.
  • Front.crossing
    Crossing over—Jim Heiney was given a U.S. flag to carry by George Vereecke (behind Jim in the hat), turning him into the leader of the parade. Bridge Walk participants cross over Bean Creek while, in the background, members of the Morenci Legion Riders cross the main traffic bridge on East Street South. Additional photos appear on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.hose Testing
    HOSE safety—The FireCatt hose testing company from Troy put Morenci Fire Department hose to the test Monday morning when Mill Street was closed to traffic. The company also checks nozzles and ladders for wear in an effort to keep fire fighters safe while on calls.

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