Fairmont winter sports teams are heatin’ up the house

A new year is on the way, but Fairmont’s winter sports teams started their new year before most people even had to break out their winter coats.

Girls’ Basketball

Led by Coach Tim Cogan, the Girls’ Varsity Basketball team is a perennial powerhouse, and this year doesn’t look any different. Last year, the girls were GWOC and District champs, ending their season with a loss to Mt. Notre Dame, the eventual State Champions.

The Girls’ Varsity Basketball team started the 2009-10 season by capturing the first-place title at the annual Bill Yike Kettering Klassic at Fairmont on Nov. 28-29. In that tournament, the Lady Firebirds defeated Bellbrook, 46-29, and then beat Lakota East in the Championship game, 39-38.

As of Dec.18, the girls are 5-0, having also beat Trotwood (48-42), Wayne (56-39) and Centerville (49-46, in triple overtime). Veteran players Cassie Sant and Holly Carey, both seniors, and freshman Chelsea Welch are the leading scorers on a well-balanced team.

“We can definitely win Districts, and winning State is our dream,” said Carey, senior captain.

Boys’ Basketball

With seven returning seniors this year, the Boys’ Varsity Basketball team is looking pretty strong and finding ways to win despite some early injuries. As of Dec. 18, the Firebirds are 2-1.

The boys opened their season with victories over Miamisburg (54-37) and Springboro (49-47), but fell to a stacked Wayne team, 59-49.

The team is led in scoring by Mark Shadowens, who will play for West Liberty University in the fall. Junior Adam Westbeld and senior Matt Lee are also lighting up the scoreboard.

The boys have been getting after it on the court with many two-a-day practices, and they see brighter days ahead. “If everyone stays healthy, it will be hard to stop us,” said senior Kevin Sharick.

Last year, the boys made it to Districts but lost to St. Xavier.

Boys’ and Girls’ Swimming & Diving

The Swimming and Diving teams opened up strong out of the gates.

Fairmont swimmers split into two teams, Fairmont Blue and Fairmont Silver, to participate in a quad meet against Butler and Carlisle on Dec. 4. For the Fairmont girls, the two teams achieved first and third place. The boys’ teams brought home first and second place. On Dec.11, Fairmont hosted the High School Only Invitational featuring 18 teams and 687 swimmers. Several of the Firebirds posted excellent times in this competition.

Returning this year as a three-time state swimmer is senior Abby Galbreath, who will swim for South Carolina University in the fall. Other swimmers bringing power are seniors Madeline Montavon and Jared Mayo and juniors Lindsey Overberg and Kevin LaVoy.

Several experienced divers are returning, too, including senior Adam Nooe, juniors Kaydee Miller and Kyle Flenar and sophomore Natalie Rohr, who just missed going to state last year.

Not only are there a lot of strong returning swimmers and divers, but an impressive freshman class is bringing some power. “We have a really strong freshman class this year,” said Head Coach Steve Hippenmeyer. “They will be really fun to watch.”


The Firebird Varsity Wrestling team started the season by bringing home a runner-up title from the Oak Harbor Invitational on Dec. 5. Justin Kihn (103) and Jake Sage (152) both earned first-place tournament titles. Jason Miller (160) and Aaron Ford (135) fell just short and earned second-place titles.

The wrestlers were in action again Dec. 12 at the 5th Annual Firebird Wrestling Classic. The team finished in 4th place, but only 17 points separated the top four teams. Tournament champions were Sage (152) and Cory Smith (285), who both went undefeated.

Many of the boys are looking to make it to the state tournament this year. “It is every wrestler’s dream to qualify for state,” said Ford, a senior.

Sage, also senior, placed fourth at state last year. Other top returning wrestlers include Kihn, Nathan Streithorst and Tommy Kimbrell, who were district qualifiers last year.

Boys’ and Girls’ Bowling

The Varsity Boys’ Bowling team achieved the title of state runner-up last year, and the boys plan to dominate the lanes this year. Since they placed at state last year, they were invited to the OHSAA Kickoff Classic in Columbus on Dec. 5. They placed eighth in this tournament, but placed the highest of the teams from the GWOC.

The boys have a record of 3-1 as of Dec. 15, with a loss to Troy. They want that one loss to be their last. Leading the team with an average of 229 is sophomore Zach Grubb.

The team members have very high expectations for themselves this year, too. “We can definitely get second place in state this year,” said junior Wes Gibson. “But we really are aiming to win it all.”

The Girls’ Varsity Bowling team is also looking tough. As of Dec. 15, the team had a record of 3-1, with wins against Butler, Xenia and Springboro, and a loss to Troy. “We have a really good chance of making it to state this year,” said senior Brandi Timm.

The team is led by freshman Molly Crouch, who is averaging at 200.

— Staff Writer Kaydee Miller wrote the information about the Girls’ Varsity Basketball team.