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Athletes finish fall sports season with awards, memories

Photo: Jessica Wuensch

Junior Becca Barnett dribbles up the field during the first Oakwood field hockey game. The Firebirds won 1-0 on Aug. 31, 2010.

By The Flyer Staff

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As fall comes to a close, the varsity fall sports teams at Fairmont also wrapped up after a season of thrilling victories and sometimes heartbreaking defeats.

Varsity Football

The Varsity Football team didn’t let a record of 2-8 bring them down this season. Their two big wins were against Miamisburg and Fairborn. “It was a very rewarding season with a great senior class who really bought into changing the culture of Fairmont Football,” said Head Coach Andy Aracri.

This year, the Firebirds were under the reign of a new coach. Aracri took on the position after Brian Blevins was hired as an assistant coach at Wayne. “Coach Rock did a great job this year, and he is going to have a great career as head coach,” said senior captain Tim Trummer.

Sophomore Tom West had a shining season for the Firebirds. He started off playing defense, where he was third in GWOC with five interceptions for the season. He might have pulled in even more interceptions, except he was moved from playing defense to being the team’s starting quarterback. West was nominated for “Gold Star Chili Star of the Week” in week two of play.

Team Awards were as follows: MVP: Tom West; Most Improved: senior Henry Stephenson; Coaches Award: senior Brandon Fischer; and Sportsmanship: junior Jordan Schlemmer.

Varsity Girls’ Tennis

The Varsity Girls’ Tennis team finished 2nd in the GWOC with a 11-8 overall record. The highlight of the season was a particularly exciting win against Centerville – the first time in 20 years. “Our girls overachieved throughout the season,” said Head Coach Tim Voegeli. They were the ‘little team that could!’”

Voegeli wasn’t the only person who felt strongly about the 2010 Varisty Girls’ Tennis season. Senior Co-captain Kaitlin Pickrel also felt like the season was very successful. “This season was one of my favorite seasons because it was my senior year and we beat Centerville!” said Pickrel. She was the only member of the team to go to post-season, where she lost a difficult match in the first round of Districts.

“We had a really great season and everyone had a lot of fun,” said senior Laura Cordonnier, the other co-captain.

The team awards were as follows: MVP: Kaitlin Pickrel; Sportsmanship: Laura Cordonnier; Most Improved: freshman Allison Bendel; and Coaches Award: senior Shenna McGlone.

Varsity Boys’ Soccer

The Varsity Boys’ Soccer team completed a very successful season again, going 10-6-3. They made it to the District finals against Centerville, but lost a close game 2-0.

Last year the boys won the GWOC and District finals, but they fell short of repeating those accomplishments. “I was a little disappointed with this year because we were District champions last year, but this year was still good,” said sophomore Adan Salguero.

Team awards were as follows: MVP: senior Mitch Ballard; Sportsmanship: senior Nick Braun; Most Improved: sophomore Damian Hughes; and Coaches Award: sophomore Kyle Mellon. In the GWOC, the boys earned: All-GWOC First Team: senior Austen Starr; GWOC Central First Team: seniors Connor Darnell and Austen Starr; GWOC Central Second Team: seniors Mitch Ballard and Caleb Berlon; GWOC Central Special Mention: Kyle Mellon.

Varsity Girls’ Soccer

Fairmont Varsity Girls’ Soccer wrapped up their season against Chaminade-Julienne on Oct. 19 with a 5-3 loss. They ended their season with a 4-10-3 record. However, for the girls, winning wasn’t the only focus. “My favorite part of the season was spending time with the girls and meeting new freshmen,” said senior Taylor Moore. “Or toilet papering Coach Kuns’ house.”

Even though the team didn’t have a flawless season, Head Coach Jeff Kuns was impressed with the team and how they did this season. “Overall, we had a good season. The girls all worked hard and came together as a group,” he said.

On Oct. 27, the girls had their end-of-season banquet at The Deep End in Christ United Methodist Church across from Fairmont. Team awards were: MVP: senior Jane Nicosia; Sportsmanship: sophomore Jessica Gould; Most Improved: senior Allie Gaeke; and Coaches Award: senior Mady Brahm. Other awards included: GWOC First Team: Jane Nicosia; GWOC Second Team: junior Natasha Wilson; and GWOC Special Mention: senior Emily Bradenburg and sophomore Justine Miller.

Varsity Girls’ Volleyball

The Varsity Girls’ Volleyball team beat Centerville twice this year. The girls made it to Regionals in the tournament and finished with an overall record of 14-11.

“This was a very good year. It went a lot better than last year,” said Captain Lauren Kraemer, a senior. Kraemer was especially happy with how the team worked together during the game against Huron.

Head Coach Bill Buirley was named Greater Western Ohio Conference Coach of the Year, and Kraemer captured the GWOC Player of the Year award. Other awards were: GWOC First Team: sophomore Cheyenne Jones and Lauren Kraemer; GWOC Second Team: sophomore Staci Bennett and senior Nicole Ray; and GWOC Special Mention: senior Rachel Specht and freshman Kathryn Westbeld.

Team awards were announced at the banquet on Nov. 11 as follows: MVP: Lauren Kraemer; Most Improved: Cheyenne Jones; Sportsmanship Award: junior Alyssa Erbes; and Coaches Award: senior Nicole Ray.

Varsity Field Hockey

The Varsity Field Hockey team’s final record was 10-5-3. They opened their season with a 1-0 win against Oakwood, but lost by the same score against Oakwood to end their post-season play.

The year went by smoothly with only three injuries. Senior Audrey Phibbs sprained her ankle, and junior Annie VonderBrink broke her big toe. Starting goalkeeper Cari Pierce, a sophomore, also sustained a hand injury outside of play and right before the team entered the tournament.

Phibbs thought the year went fairly well. “The younger players did a great job and we all were excellent with teamwork,” she said.

Team awards were: MVP: senior Jackie Brown; Sportsmanship: junior Allie White; Most Improved: senior Dani Schaaf; and Coaches Award: senior Samantha Murdock. Other awards were: Honorable Mention All Southwestern Conference Awards: Dani Schaaf, junior Sarah Miller and Samantha Murdock; 2nd Team All Southwestern Conference Awards: seniors Stacie Gilbert, Libby Ganzsarto and Audrey Phibbs; 1st Team All Southwestern Conference Award: Jackie Brown, Annie VonderBrink and Allie White; and All Ohio Award: Jackie Brown and Allie White.

Varsity Boys’ Golf

The Varsity Boys’ Golf team finished their season with a final record of 4-3. The team’s top average scorer was senior Nathan Duff with 37.67 per 9 holes. The boys finished their season in fifth place in GWOC.

“The season was great. The team worked well together and we had a great time with Hipp,” said senior Spencer Kerivan, referring to Head Coach Steve Hippenmeyer.

Awards for the season were: MVP: Nathan Duff; Most Improved: senior Robby Wydman; Sportsmanship: Nathan Duff; Coaches Award: Spencer Kerivan; GWOC Second Team: Nathan Duff and Spencer Kerivan; and GWOC Special Mention: senior Robby Wydman.

Varsity Girls’ Golf

The Varsity Girls’ Golf team wrapped up their season with a 3-11 record and a 1-4 record in the GWOC. Their leading golfer was senior Alex Storie, who scored an average 48.30 per 9 holes. The girls finished 12th in the GWOC this season. 

The awards for the season were: MVP: senior Alex Storie; Most Improved: sophomore Taylor Connolly; Sportsmanship: sophomore Meagan Wilson; Coaches Award: senior Caity Jackson; and GWOC Special Mention: senior Alex Storie.

Varsity Cross Country

The Cross Country team ended a trial of a season on Oct. 30 by placing 15th at the Troy Regional competition. The Firebird finishers were senior Kevin LaVoy (63rd), sophomore Ben Gilbert (78th), junior Jake Gentile (79th), junior Jeff Bruns (93rd), sophomore Max Ducharme (98th), senior Mike Minoughan (108th) and senior Tony Cannon (110th).

Head Coach Pat Miller said he wished they had placed better at Regionals, but understood the results as two of their top runners, Gentile and Cannon, had to run through illnesses. “We had a good season,” said Miller. “But we were inconsistent individually. That probably caused us some problems in our scoring.”

The boys fought their way to the Troy Regional from a third-place position in the Dayton District competition, where they had championed last year. Meanwhile, the girls’ team finished fifth at the district contest, barely missing a spot at the regionals.

The Firebirds returned from GWOC, undoubtedly the site of their best performance, with a swagger in their steps. They placed third in the Central Division and fourth overall among 16 teams. Junior Jake Gentile led the boys’ team and finished third in the division and fifth overall to secure the first team All-GWOC title. Senior Maria Meredith took 10th place and led the other top placers, freshman Lyndsi Doll, freshman Nicole Olgiate, sophomore Brandi Kenrick and senior Hannah Ortega.

Many of the runners set their personal records while racing against hundreds of competitors at Lebanon High School’s course. “It showed everyone’s improvement,” said junior runner Melanie West. “Everything we worked for came out.”

For the runners, the taste of victory isn’t near as sweet as the companionship developed on the team. “It’s a supportive team. You get to see the best and worst in people when you run 10 miles a day with them,” said West.

The team presented its player awards at the Awards Night in the Fairmont Commons on Nov. 11.  They were: Most Valuable Runners: junior Jake Gentile and senior Maria Meredith; Most Improved: sophomore Ethan Vinson and senior Scarlett Vercher; Sportsmanship: seniors Kevin LaVoy and Jennifer Belt; and Coaches Awards: seniors Tony Cannon and Audrey Gleason. Juniors Jeff Bruns and Melanie West will lead the team as captains for the 2011 season.

The Flyer staff writers who worked on this story were Paqui Toscano, Kevin O’Donnell, Kelly Hart, Nikki Kelley, Kevin Menke, Stephanie Taylor and Tristan Buirley.

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The school newsmagazine of Kettering Fairmont High School.
Athletes finish fall sports season with awards, memories