District Qualifications Highlight Flashes' Winter Sports Seasons

By Dan Woodlock
Times-Junction Sports Editor

The Willard High School athletic program completed a successful winter sports campaign, as all five teams earned District qualifications to cap their respective seasons.

A total of 120 student-athletes and statisticians were honored Tuesday night at the high school's Winter Sports Awards Night. Of those students, 66 earned varsity letters, including four-year lettermen, Kaitlyn Craft (bowling), Carson Ebert (boys basketball), Matt McCormack (swimming) and Hannah Schloemer (girls basketball).

The WHS boys and girls bowling teams earned championships in both the Sandusky Bay Athletic Bowling Conference and the Northern Ohio League. Both varsity teams also qualified for the District Tournament, with the boys landing a Sectional title, on the way.

The boys and girls teams also won NOL Tournament crowns.

Elyssa Brinkmeier was First Team NOL and Second Team SBABC, while earning her second letter. Craft earned Second Team NOL, All-Tournament at the Tiffin Invite and also picked up Willard's Coaches Award.

Other girls special award winners included Hannah McClanahan (Honorable Mention NOL, All-Tourney NOL and Tiffin, WHS Highest Average, Most Improved, First letter), Kathleen Schaaf (HM NOL, Second Team SBABC, Second Letter) and Annie Cummings (All-Tourney NOL, Second Letter).

Boys special awards were earned by Brayden Bruner (Second Team NOL and SBABC, All-Tourney SBABC, Tiffin and Redskin Invite, WHS Highest Average and Third Letter), Steven Schaaf (Second Team NOL, All-Tourney NOL, Third Letter), Colton Barclay (Second Team NOL, Second Letter), Kaleb Rowe (HM NOL, All-Tourney NOL, Third Letter) and Jakeb Deaner (All-Tourney NOL, Second Letter).

Also earning letters were second-year recipient, Aubrey Mathias, and first-year performer, Nick Garrett.

Jayvee bowling awards went to Mia Murray, Claire Buss, Haylee Baugh, Kourtney Craft, Kristen Hurst, Alona Mayse, Brandon Garner, Nate Garrett, Brayden Senter, Brandon Dye and A.J. Mayse.

Willard's girls basketball team finished in second place in the NOL, compiling a 19-4 overall record and a 9-2 mark in league play. The Lady Flashes won the Division II Mansfield Sectional title and advanced to the District finals, before falling short against Bellevue.

Seniors Hannah Adams, Hunter Feltner and Schloemer, earned Captain Awards for the team. Adams, the Free Throw Award winner, earned her third letter, while Feltner added her second. Both girls were selected to compete in North Central Ohio senior All-Star competition at Shelby High School on Wednesday.

Third-year letterwinners, Gabi Baldridge (Rebounding Award) and Maggie King, were also selected to compete in underclassmen All-Star play for North Central Ohio. CeCe King notched her second varsity letter, while Maddy Crawford not only received her second letter, but also earned the team's Flashes Award.

Maddie Branham (Coaches Award) and Madie Secor were first-year varsity letterwinners.

Picking up junior varsity awards for the Lady Flashes were Kylie Hall, Breighton Hershiser, Sarah Honaker, Kirsten Kochel, Caley Legg, Brandy Mizer, Alexis Moore, Felicia Rosvanis, Brooke Vipperman and Shae Washington.

Freshmen awards went to Sam Bauer, Pressley Buurma, Genesis McCoy and Brittany Montoney.

The boys basketball team battled through a 12-13 season (4-8 in NOL action) to capture the Division III Sectional title at Shelby.

Seven of the nine varsity lettermen were seniors, including third-year recipient and Defensive Award winner, Logan Blanchard. Second-year lettermen were Alex Adelman (Brett Buurma Award), Gebin Hunter (Coaches Award), Gage Keaton (Most Improved) and Connor Robinson (Top Rebounder).

Earning their first varsity letters were Kody Leitz, Keaton Moore (Coaches Award) and Nick Cofer.

Josh Bankes, Caleb Barnhart, Brandon Bohach, Kyle Buurma, Chandler Gibson, Ethan Daub, Lunden Sexton and Bryce Bailey were all jayvee award winners. Receiving freshmen awards were Nate Cofer, Clay Gahring, Alec Gardner, Lucas Goines, Josh Haynes, Dorian Holida, Chance Leitz, Spencer Parrott and Sabastian Sivongsak.

The Flashes' swim team advanced four boys on to the Division II District Tournament at Bowling Green State University. Austin Strayer set three school records on the season, including breaking his own mark in the 200 Individual Medley at Districts.

Joining him at Districts were McCormack (50 Free, 400 Relay) and fellow relay swimmers, Levi Hill, Aaron Feltner and alternate Gavin Buurma.

Brittany Robinson earned her third varsity letter, while Jessica Beamer, Lindsay Holbrook and Feltner were second year varsity performers. Story Smith, Taylor Chaffins, Kendyll Lykins, Emily Nedolast, Shelbie Perdue, Allie Sparr, Emily Rothhaar, Acacia Smith, Buurma and Hill all notched their first letters, while Eric Hillis earned jayvee honors.

Although short on numbers throughout the season, the WHS wrestlers still qualified two athletes, Noah Moore (Honorable Mention NOL) and Bernie Ramos, on to the District Tournament at Fostoria at 132 and 160 pounds.

Moore (Most Improved Award), Ramos (Most Wins) and Drew Short (Coaches Award), all earned letter number-three in their WHS careers.

Devin Brant was a second-year recipient, while Joe Heydinger's first letter gave the Flashes five lettermen. Each of the team's five statisticians, Kristen Danhoff, Hope Dye, Haley Handshoe, Alyssa Lee and Marissa Luevano, tallied varsity letters, as well.

Junior varsity wrestling awards went to Dakota Tackett and Jerry Tackett.

Ten cheerleaders picked up varsity letters, including the third for Jenny Linville (Captain Award), the second for Addison Rockford, Payton Flores and Kaleigh Mills (all of whom earned Coaches Awards) and the first for Addie Coder, Kalin Mills, Acacia Smith, Jenna Robinson, Kelsey Gillmor and Rebecca Blanton.

Gabbie Ousley was the jayvee Coaches Award winner, while Shelby Moneypenny, Yazmin Estrella, Alexus Parsons, JoJo Maciel, Brianna Velasco, Makayla Schiffel, Britney Zeigler and Britney Lykins also earned junior varsity awards.

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