FAYETTE CROSS: Fayette’s cross country team faced plenty of competition at the tough Tiffin Cross Country Carnival run Saturday. Skylar Lantz had the best success among the Eagle competitors and turned in his top time of the season.
Lantz, a sophomore, placed 45th with a time of 17:26. A runner from Versailles led the pack at 15:32. The Eagles placed 30th among 39 teams.
Other Fayette runners were Casen Burkholder (138th,18:46); Dylan Stannard (159th, 19:02); Dylan Aschemeier (208th, 19:57); Ian Schrock (215th, 20:04); Cole Burkholder (230th, 20:45); and Jared Wagner (255th, 22:55).
Two members of Fayette’s girls team missed the race and the team placed 42nd among 50 entries. A Toledo Christian runner finished first at 18:40.
The Eagles were led by Jill Stuckey who placed 144th at 22:55. Others were Noelle Goodson, (198th, 24:10); Emilie Keiser (199th, 24:15); Madelyn Maginn (229th, 24:47); and Liz Maginn (245th, 25:27).
JUNIOR HIGH—The Eagles boys improved from third overall to second best this year.
Runners were Christian Suarez (8th, 12:02); Austin Lopez (9th, 12:04); Alex Jaramillo (22nd, 12:36); Skylar Jones (26th, 12:40); Bryce Conklin (28th,12:50); Mason Maginn (44th, 13:14); Jason Stuckey (87th, 14:09); Cole Stuckey (103rd, 14:26); Christian Renner (147th, 16:02); Max Baker (159th, 17:18); and Grant Reinking (166th, 18:03).
Fayette’s girls finished 12th of 25 teams, led by Haley Perdue, 15th, at 13:34. She was followed by Kelsey Fruchey (29th, 14:04); Jennaya Hibbard (90th, 15:47); Alexus Ball (124th, 17:23); and Caitlin Macintosh (142nd, 18:15).
FAYETTE VOLLEYBALL: Fayette’s spikers were on the edge of victory at home Thursday against North Central, but they couldn’t quite pull it off.
The visitors won in three close games, 25-23, 25-22 and 25-20.
Coach Danni Keefer is seeing some good things, but she’s looking for improvements.
“Our blocking and hitting has been strong and our serving looks good,” she said, “but we haven’t been able to put it all together. Still, they went fighting all the way and that’s all I can ask of them.”
The girls have given up some leads and not been able to come back for the win.
At home Aug. 30 against Edgerton, the visitors won in three games, 25-17, 25-14 and 25-21.
At Montpelier on Monday, the Locomotives took a three-game match, 25-22, 25-18 and 25-16. The girls were slow to adjust to a setting change in that match, Keefer said, and they seemed to lose their momentum in the final game.
“We’re starting to come together at the net and the back row is talking more and moving better,” said the coach. “It’s still early in the season.”
JVs—The junior Eagles struggled in their three matches, losing to Edgerton 25-11 and 25-14; to North Central 25-12 and 25-23; and to Montpelier 25-10 and 25-14.
MORENCI CROSS: Morenci’s girls scored an invitational win last week when the Bulldogs competed in a cross country run at Hudson. Morenci took three of the top five places.
Tatyana Pless led the way with a second-place finish of 22:39, followed closely by Mariah Gillen in third (23:07) and Madi Gleckler in fifth (23:59).
Taylor Baugh placed 15th at 27:07 and Maelle Delhaise took 24th at 29:09. Whiteford’s Ashley Daniels won the race at 22:32.
Gillen cut more than a minute off her time from last year.
Morenci led the way with 49 points, followed by Whiteford with 55.
The Bulldog boys took third place among seven teams with 75 points, trailing Madison at 46 and Clinton at 55. Clinton’s Dominic Muessig was the champion at 17:40.
Luke Spaulding was first for the Bulldogs, placing third at 18:48. He was followed by Jake Spaulding (5th, 19:32); Reagan Stowell (10th, 20:42); Brandt Kelley (33rd, 24:38) and Adam Roseman (34th, 24:46).
It’s still a young team on the field when Morenci’s 16-member varsity football team moves into action, and that inexperience showed through Friday.
After knocking off Hudson the previous week, the Bulldogs fell to Whitmore Lake 16-0 in the first week of league play.
“Our youth really showed up this week,” said coach Mike McDowell. “Whitmore Lake took away what we do and we need to adjust. We’re not very good yet offensively.”
The Bulldogs had trouble mounting much of an offensive attack and finished the night with only 131 total yards. The Trojans racked up 292, but didn’t have much to show for it.
“It could have been a 0-0 game,” McDowell said. “They scored on two big plays—once when we let a tight end go free and once when we didn’t cover a punt.”
Other than that, Morenci made the stops to keep the visitors out of the end zone. The Trojans had the ball only five plays in the first quarter. In the second, the Bulldogs got the job done other than punt return.
“Defensively, we didn’t play that poorly,” McDowell said.
But the Bulldogs struggled when they had the ball.
“We didn’t block anybody,” McDowell said. “We just didn’t execute. We’ve got to get better at sustaining blocks.”
The second half was better than the first, he said. Morenci drove to the Trojans’ 17-yard line in the third quarter, and another drive that continued into the fourth quarter advanced to the nine before a pass was intercepted.
“We just couldn’t finish it off,” he said. “We tried to do some things we probably shouldn’t have done, but it’s tough when you’re trying to catch up.”
The fired-up Whitmore Lake team notched its first win of the season while the Bulldogs took their first loss.
“There are a lot of kids out there without a lot of varsity experience,” McDowell said about the five sophomores and a freshman.
Cody Powell was the leading rusher with 51 yards on 14 carries. The Trojans were ready for speedster Austin Sandusky on each carry, holding him to only five yards on 15 carries.
Powell joined in with quarterback Torin Merillat on throwing duties, completing two passes for 38 yards.
Hayze Wolf had five solo tackles and one pass deflection. Powell, the leading tackler, caused two fumbles. Fumble recoveries were recorded by Brandon Myers and Nick Stutzman.
JV FOOTBALL: The score says that Monroe High School’s freshman team claimed a big victory against Morenci’s JV squad, but it wasn’t quite that overpowering.
A few big plays gave the Trojans a 41-14 win, but the Bulldog defense had plenty of bright spots.
“Defensively, we played well other than three or four really big plays,” said coach Tim Roberts.
The Bulldogs made many good stops until a big play allowed the Trojans to break through.
“We were sluggish in the first half and not able to do a lot on offense,” Roberts said. “In the second half we were able to put a couple of drives together and finally get in the end zone as time expired in the game.”
Morenci’s first points came when Alex Thomas made a long kickoff return for a touchdown. Austin Gilson also had two decent returns, Roberts said.
Thomas also threw a touchdown pass to Alex Pless that was called back for ineligible man down field, but Thomas later scored himself on a fourth-down run over the right tackle from five yards out.
“All in all we played much better in the second half than the first half,” Roberts said about his young squad, “and we are improving...slowly.”
MORENCI VOLLEYBALL: It wasn’t easy, but Morenci’s varsity volleyball girls stayed focused for a double-header win Thursday at home against Sand Creek.
The night marked the beginning of the TCC competition and lifts the Bulldogs’ overall record to 8-4-2.
“I was pretty pleased with out effort with the exception of the second game of the first match,” said coach Dennis Owens. “Our total serving was actually good, but a couple of girls had trouble and it seemed we missed at critical times.”
Overall, he said, the wins were a total team effort with all 12 team members contributing.
In the first match, Morenci won 25-16, 20-25, 25-19 and 25-18. The Bulldogs took the second match in three games, 25-16, 25-13 and 25-21.
In the opener, the Aggies came from behind to tie the score at 15-each until a kill by Brooke Bovee halted the advance. Morenci added seven points with Jessica Storrs serving to take the win. Sand Creek led throughout most of the second game before taking the win, but Morenci came back slowly in the third game to win. An ace by Storrs finished it off.
In the fourth game, the Aggies closed the gap to two points, 14-12, before the Bulldogs took control. A pair of kills by Hannah Jeffers kept the momentum in Morenci’s favor to win the match.
In the second match, the Bulldogs broke away from another 14-12 lead to move ahead. Blocks by Ashley VanBrandt and Ali Piercy made it 21-15, followed by kills from Jeffers and Bovee. Bovee finished it off with one hard spike.
The Bulldogs had their easiest time of the night in the next game, winning 25-13, then battled for the final win, 25-21.
• Breanna Gilson, 24 assists, 27/28 serving, 4 kills, 1 block.
• Hannah Jeffers, 11 kills, 4 blocks, 36 digs.
• Jessica Storrs, 38/38 serving with 8 aces.
• Erin Vanderpool, 23 digs, 2 kills.
• Brooke Bovee, 45 kills, 2 blocks, 30 digs, 23/23 serving, 24/24 in service reception.
JV VOLLEYBALL: Morenci’s JV volleyball squad picked up its first win of the season when Sand Creek visited Thursday, then narrowly fell in the nightcap of the double-header.
The Bulldogs took the opener 26-24, 25-19. After splitting the first two games of the second match, the Aggies posted a 16-14 margin to take the match.
Emily Schmidt and Courtney Fletcher came through with great serving performances, said coach Renae Schaffner, and Rebecca Heinze led the team with six kills.
Saturday at the Madison tournament, Morenci opened the day by defeating the host squad 21-12 and 21-8. In the second game, the Bulldog defense allowed only one Madison service point.
In the second match of the day, Morenci split with Summerfield 21-19, 15-21. In the loss, the contest was close at 11-13 before Summerfield took control by scoring six straight points. Justis McCowan provided several scoring sets to Heinze.
Morenci also split with Lenawee Christian School, 21-19 and 15-21. Serving held the JVs in the match as they came through with a season high 94 percent. Schmidt and Sydney Weeks were the team leaders in both serving and serve reception. Ali Vanbrandt kept the team in the match by providing several quality sets.
With a 4-2 record, Morenci advanced out of pool play into the championship bracket where they were defeated by Blissfield, 17-21 and 17-21. Fletcher helped keep the Bulldogs in the match defensively by controlling many attacks at the net, Coach Schaffner said.