This week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Imani Jackson, a senior basketball player from Buchtel High School.
“Imani is in the Nursing Program at Buchtel CLC, maintains an accumulative GPA of 3.8, scored a 24 on her ACT & is an overall outstanding individual.”
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Zach Miller, a senior hockey player from CVCA.
Hockey’s been a big part of his life from his early years when his parents had him taking skating lessons.
“Ever since I was seven years old, I started playing hockey and have played it ever since,” Zach said.
He says being around the guys is one of the best aspects of being on the team.
“Being around the guys is so much fun, because of the atmosphere that’s provided,” Miller said.
His coach Doug Fairchild says that Zach is a true leader both on and off the ice.
“Zach is an outstanding student, one of the top students in our engineering program at CVCA,” Fairchild explains.
“Zach was a unanimous selection as a team captain this season due to his hard work and dedication. He is an excellent example for our younger players to follow.”
When he’s not playing hockey, Zach’s a part of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and the National Honor Society. He’s also done some volunteer work for the Akron–Canton Regional Foodbank.
Upon graduation in the spring, Zach plans to major in Areospace Engineering.
Our next Student Athlete is Lauren Davis, a senior basketball player from CVCA.
She says working with her coaches and teammates is something she truly enjoys whenever she steps on the basketball court.
“We all just care about each other so much and it makes for a good atmosphere during games and practices,” she explained.
She is a two year captain, and a three-year varsity letter winner for the Royals.
Her coach Andy O’Keefe says that leadership translates to all facets of Lauren’s life.
“She exemplifies what it means to be a servant leader. Lauren's toughness, skillset, and determination make her a force to be reckoned with on the basketball court,” O’Keefe.
“At the same time, her selfless and humble character makes everyone on the team better.”
Upon graduation in the spring, Lauren plans to attend Kent State University to study nursing.
We wish Zach and Lauren the best in all of their future endeavors.
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is junior basketball player Josh Fleming from Woodridge High School.
“Josh epitomizes what we want Woodridge Basketball to represent,” Blevins said.
“He is a tireless worker and a great teammate as well as an excellent student and we always know Josh will give 100% in any situation.”
One unique thing about Josh is his volunteer work during the Polar Express in Peninsula during the holiday season.
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Samuel Lord, a junior wrestler from Ellet High School.
He started wrestling at an early age, but now as a junior in high school, the grind and the discipline of the sport drives him and his teammates.
“The coaches push us to be our best and the athletes in there all really push each other to be better every day,” he said.
His coach Brian Biel said that the junior captain knows the meaning of working hard and staying focused.
"He leads by example and has earned the respect of his teammates and coaches through his hard work, positive attitude, and pursuit of personal and team growth," he said,
Lord said that school always comes first and the coaches and his fellow teammates are always cognizant of that.
“Sometimes practices have to be short so we can get our work done, but it’s all about balance,” he said.
As always, the goal is States, but last year in just his sophomore season, Samuel was 6th in sectionals and 7th in the North Coast Classic.
As a team leader, he says leadership by example is more his style, but he’s not afraid to motivate a teammate when he knows they can do better.
Our next 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Sarah Mason, a senior basketball player from Ellet High School.
She learned the sport of basketball growing up with 6 brothers and grew to appreciate the game that way.
“I just grew up around basketball,” she said.
She also appreciates her head coach Tina Wallace, who is a tough coach, but looks out for her team day in and day out.
“She’s always there for us and always there to support us and teach us what we need to know,” she explained.
Coach Wallace talked about Mason’s hard work on and off the court
“She’s a relentless defender, first one in the gym, last one to leave, I call her the rock in your shoe” Wallace said.
“But the most impressive quality is her character, Sarah has Great Parents and she truly exemplifies Student-Athlete.”
Sarah is a four year starter and letter winner for Ellet and says it’s great playing basketball with people she’s grown up with and enjoys being around.
“It’s just a great feeling,” Mason said with a smile.
Upon graduation in the spring, Sarah says she plans on attending the University of Akron to study art.
We wish Samuel and Sarah the best in all of their future endeavors.
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Logan Johnson a senior wrestler from Firestone.
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Tyris Dickerson, junior football player from Archbishop Hoban High School.
This week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Theresa Damm, a senior basketball player from Our Lady of the Elms High School.
She says she got into basketball at an early age and as a senior leader, she wants to lead her team not only vocally, but by example as well.
"We have a young team, a lot of freshmen, so it's going to be a lot of them (the coaches) coaching, but also myself helping out the younger players learning the game," she says.
Coach John Reed echoed that sentiment as he offered his take on Theresa both as a player and as a person.
"She is a role model on and off the court and we are looking for her to model and teach the younger ladies how to play the game and how to do things the "Elms" way,"
On the court, she will be expected to lead as well, Reed says.
"This will be her 4th year in the program in which she excels in every facet of the game and she has the ability to handle the ball and to post up."
Damm says that the Elms community is a very close one and they encourage leadership and being involved all across the board.
"Everybody really gets a fair shot at leadership and to have a voice, and to speak and be heard," she explained.
Theresa is also her class vice president, and is involved in community activities such as volunteering at the Haven of Rest and the American Red Cross.
Upon graduation in the spring, Theresa plans on attending the University of Akron to study criminal justice and participate in the ROTC program.
Our next 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Nick Llewellyn, a senior football player from St. Vincent-St. Mary High School.
Nick says that the brotherhood amongst the football players and especially his fellow seniors was one of the things he most enjoyed during his time with the Fighting Irish.
"Not much has changed with our group, we were always fighting and shooting for what we want, that was the main thing that kept us going all the way through."
He said that the alumni who played for the Irish also helped guide the team as well.
"Everyone comes back and the whole school supports you, and it's a great family atmosphere," he said.
Llewellyn's coach, first year head coach Bobby Nickol talked about his grit and toughness on the football field.
"He's an Unbelievably hard working player and gives every ounce of his 160 pound frame to play a position meant for 200 pound guys," Coach Nickol said.
Nick 13 tackles, a forced fumble and an interception on Friday, their last game of the 2018 season.
As a young man, Nickol says Llewellyn is just as impressive.
"He has 4.0 GPA and is going to be highly successful in anything he chooses to do in life," Nickol continued. " He is the definition of a STVM student athlete."
Nick is a two-sport athlete as a football player and a wrestler.
In addition to those things, he is also a Peer Minister, a member of the National Honor Society, and a member of the Irish Athletes for Christ, among other clubs and groups.
We wish Nick and Theresa the best in all of their future endeavors.
This week our 1590 WAKR Student Athlete of the Week is junior football player Ethan Wright of Manchester High School.
Ethan says he got into football at an early age and loved the team aspect and the camaraderie of his teammates, some of whom he plays with today.
“I just love the game,” Ethan says. “I started playing in second grade, and have just loved it ever since.”
He plays for the Panthers and legendary coach Jim France, Ohio’s all time wins leader in high school.
France says Wright, who plays running back and safety at Manchester, is a team-first player despite a great deal of individual accomplishments.
“Ethan Wright is a quality young man who strives to get better as an athlete and human being each and every day,” France said.
On the field, even though he was a first team all state performer and a three year letterman, France explains that Ethan’s work ethic sets him apart.
“Ethan is a hard working and humble guy, he is team oriented and is a winner.”
Wright says the team success this year on the gridiron stems from the togetherness and brotherhood that has started since before the season began.
Ethan says that his work on the field translates to the classroom as well, saying it’s going to prepare him for college and beyond, taking pride in his work.
“You just got to work hard in the classroom, you have to have the right GPA or coaches won’t look at you,” he said.
Our next 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Audrey Dolan a junior soccer player from Manchester High School.
Audrey says the coaches and teammates are what keeps her going and looking forward to working with them day in and day out.
“It’s actually a lot of fun,” Dolan said. “It gets stressful when the games get hard, but it’s fun.”
Her coach Eddie Kissner says that Dolan’s work ethic in both the classroom with a 3.5 GPA and the soccer field is apparent to all.
“Audrey has improved so much as the season has progressed. Audrey works extremely hard as a forward pressuring backs to create turnovers,” he said.
“She has also become a great finisher scoring some of our biggest goals of the season.”
In addition to being on the soccer team, Dolan is also a member of the Ski Club and the Art Club.
When she’s not on the soccer field or staying on top of her studies, she volunteers at the Cuyahoga Falls Women’s Club.
“My grandma plays cards there and I cook and clean there a couple times a week,” she says.
Audrey says she enjoys her time there and she’s always picking up some good advice from the people at the Women’s Club.
We wish Ethan and Audrey the best in all of their future endeavors.
This week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Brooke Sells a senior soccer player from Coventry High School.
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Maxwell Moldovan a junior golfer from Green High School.
This week our 1590 WAKR Student Athlete of the Week is Caleb Eckenrode of Springfield High School.
This week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Emily Dente, a junior soccer player from Copley High School.
As a team captain, Dente says her leadership on the pitch is both vocal and by example.
“I’m very vocal on the field,” she says. I play center back, so I can see everything.”
Her head soccer coach Wally Senk echoed that sentiment.
"Emily is a bonafide competitor with an innate ability to lead. She doesn't have an off-switch, embracing the grind and paying attention to the little things that make her and her teammates better,” he said.
Dente is a multi-sport athlete playing soccer, basketball, and track for the Indians.
Away from the field, Senk said she maintains that focus and intensity in the classroom as well.
“Emmy's determination, perseverance, and self-motivation are contagious and evident on the field as well as in the classroom, where she keeps her GPA above 4.0."
Emily comes from an athletic family as her dad Mark, is the boys and girls basketball coach at Copley High, and also has two brothers in sports.
“I really like it (being in an athletic family)because we all support each other,” she said.
Upon graduation in the spring of 2020, Emily plans on studying pediatric nursing.
We wish Emily the best in all of her future endeavors.
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is senior football player Tyler Lenke of Copley High School.
Lenke said he got into football at an early age, and says it’s a lot of fun getting to work with his coaches and teammates day in and day out.
“There’s times, but there’s a lot of good times, and you just make the best of it,” he said. Tyler’s head coach Scott Chouinard, talked about his work ethic on the field. “Tyler Lenke is a three year starter and captain of our 2018 football team,” Chouinard explained. “He has played Offensive Line and Defensive Line and has been one of our most consistent players for the past three years.”
Away from the gridiron, Lenke also exhibits leadership, according to Coach Chouinard. “Off the field he is a kind and thoughtful individual who is always willing to help teachers and fellow students and he represents the best of Copley High School in his actions and his performance on the football field and in the hallways.”
Tyler has played every position along the offensive line during his time at Copley, and as a captain, that versatility gives him insight and credibility with his teammates, especially his mates along the line. “When you’ve played every position along the line, you get to know what everyone’s supposed to do, and if someone needs help, you know exactly what to do, and you help them.”
Upon graduation in the spring, Tyler plans on attending college and mechanical engineering could be a possible course of study. We wish Tyler the best in all of his future endeavors.
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Tyler Scott, a junior football player from Norton High School.
This week our 1590 WAKR Female Student Athlete of the Week is Sicilia Ho, a senior golfer for Wadsworth High School.
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Mason McMillen, a senior football player for Wadsworth High School.
This week our 1590 WAKR Male Student Athlete of the Week is Nick Plucinski, a junior football player for Barberton High School.
Sports writer for the Canton Repository Joe Scalzo discusses the issue with competitive balance in high school athletics in Ohio and if public and non-public schools should have separate state championships.
This week for our 1590 WAKR Coaches Spotlight on the Sam and Brad Show, we head on out to Revere to speak with head softball coach Bob Mosher.
His team got out to a good start in Myrtle Beach going 4-1 in a recent tournament.
For last week's spotlight on former Barberton basketball coach Ken Rector, click here.
Steve Dies spoke with Sam and Brad to talk about the 31st Bill Dies Memorial Wrestling Tournament at Firestone CLC.
The tournament will go from January 12 through the 13th and will feature 40 teams.
For more information, click here.
Tickets are just $9 at the door for adults, $7 for seniors and students, and an all session pass is just $25.
Akron Public Schools Athletic Director Joe Vassalotti spoke with Brad Russell Monday to shed some insight into the team colors and nickname for Kenmore/Garfield High School.
The school will be housed in a new location down the road, but for now the Kenmore/Garfield Golden Rams will be located on 13th Street SW in Akron.
For the full interview with Joe Vassalotti discussing some of the coaching changes in the APS, click here.
At this year's Student Athlete of the Year Banquet at Todaro's Party Center, our Male and Female scholarship winners were seniors Samantha Wolf of Ellet High School and Clayton Langdon of Revere High School.
Both Samantha and Clatyon were both humbled and grateful to recieve the $1,000 scholarships to their respective schools.
"It's amazing I don't know what to say," Wolf said. Adds Clayton, "It means a lot to me, I don't know what I did to deserve it, thank you," he said.
Samantha was a three sport athlete at Ellet, as she competed in cross country, softball, and was a cheerleader. She plans on attending the University of Akron and studying nursing. Clayton competed in track and field for Revere as well as football. Clayton plans on studying pre-med and play football at the University of Dayton.
Congratulations to both Samantha and Clayton, and also thanks to our sponsors, NECA, IBEW( International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers), Akron Children's Hospital, Dominion, and Todaro's Party Center.
Former Ellet football coach Joe Yost joined Sam and Brad to talk about his retirement from the sidelines after 38 years.
Veteran high school sports reporter Tim Rogers who covers a lot of the area teams for various outlets spoke with the Sam and Brad Show on Thursday to talk about the tournament and some of the teams making some noise in the early part of the tournament.
Tim talked about Copley's win over Barberton in the first round, some of the big games tomorrow, including Coventry/Kenmore and St. Vincent St. Mary, who will be taking on Field.
The full interview can be heard below.
Russ Swartz, the head boys' basketball coach of the Mogadore Wildcats, joined the Sam and Brad Show Tuesday to talk about his team's matchup with Hillsdale tonight.
The game starts at 7p.m.tonight in Mogadore.
Tim Rogers, reporter for various media outlets in the area spoke with Sam Bourquin and Brad Russell Monday about the seedings in the upcoming boys basketball tournament.
A lot of the focus is placed on the Canton Division I district with a bevy of tough teams out there.
For the full interview, click here.
The Louisville School District has decided to not join the Federal League for interscholastic athletics and will be independent for the forseeable future.
Sports writer Joe Scalzo from the Canton Repository joined the Sam and Brad Show Thursday to talk about Louisville's decision and what it means for them moving forward.
The full interview is below. For a link to Joe's article, click here.
|1||Hoban||9-0||Knights win 51-6 over Walsh||Vs. ND Cathedral Latin|
|2||Massillon||9-0||Tigers win over Louisville. Get ready for rivalry week||Vs. Canton McK|
|3||Wadsworth||9-0||Grizz going for second undefeated regular season||Vs. Hudson|
|4||Barberton||9-0||Magic roll on even with Gotto on the sidelines||Vs. Highland|
|5||East||8-1||Bulldogs handles North. Get's ready for big week 10||Vs. Butchel|
|6||Highland||8-1||Hornets 49-12 over Tallmadge||@ Barberton|
|7||Canton McK||8-1||Bulldogs fell to Perry||@ Massillon|
|8||Perry||7-2||Perry gets Big Win vs Canton McK||@ GlenOak|
|9||Revere||7-2||27-14 over Bay Village||@ Tallmadge|
|10||Norton||7-2||Panters fall vs Woodridge||Vs Coventry|
|11||NC Hoover||6-3||Hoover falls to Bishop Hartley 45-38||@Jackson|
|12||SVSM||6-3||Irish win Saturday match up||@ Ursuline|
|13||Mogadore||8-1||Widcats keep rolling 41-8 win over Valley Christian||Vs. Rootstown|
|14||Manchester||7-2||Panthers win at Loudonville sets up for week 10 vs CVCA||@ CVCA|
|15||CVCA||6-3||Royals 40-0 Over Triway... See Above||Vs. Manchester|
After a storied career with Canton Central Catholic, Doug Miller will be the new athletic director and head baseball coach of the East Canton Hornets.
Miller joined Sam Bourquin Monday to talk about the new gig and what being a Hornet means to him at this point in his baseball journey.
''I love the community and I remember over the years some of the sports we played East Canton in, they were very competitive," Miller said. "It's a great fit."
He also said the community supports the district and their athletics as well, creating a positive environment within the East Canton cluster.
Miller joins East Canton after 700 wins in 34 years of coaching with the Crusaders, where he won three state titles.
For the full interview with Coach Miller, click right here.
A familiar name will be patrolling the sidelines in Barberton this coming basketball season, and he hopes to bring the "magic" back to one of the area's more known programs.
Jackie Greynolds, Jr. will be the next head coach of the Barberton boys' basketball team, and he plans on making his imprint on the program.
"I'm really excited," Greynolds said. "It really hasn't sunk in yet, and it doesn't matter who my dad was, if you don't get the job done."
Jack Greynolds Sr., Jackie's dad was a legendary coach of the Magics who guided the team to a state title in the 1976.
For the full interview with Coach Greynolds, click here.
After coaching the boys' basketball team at St. Thomas Aquinas the past few seasons, Matt Hackenberg has decided to take a new challenge with the GlenOak Golden Eagles.
Matt Hackenberg joined Sam Bourquin on Wednesday afternoon to talk about the Federal League, the jump to Division I, and the new move he made in his career.
"I'm really excited about the Federal League, it's something that certainly jumped out to me, the chance to compete against great coaches, great players, great programs," he said.
"I want to see how we stack up, and I want to build something that can get to the level of some of those top programs with a little bit of time and effort."
Matt said he enjoyed his time at St. Thomas and he appreciates the support he had from that community, but he felt it was time for a change, and he's looking to put his imprint on the GlenOak basketball team and the school and community as as a whole.
"This was a big picture type of move and I want to see how I can build this program," he said
The Hudson Explorers are coming off a big league win over the Wadsworth Grizzlies yesterday 6-1 and things are moving in the right direction in Hudson.
Buddy Dice, the head coach of the Explorers joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about his club and what they've been doing well.
"The kids that came out in the offseason have done everything in the offseason to prepare themselves with what they're doing now, and everything appears to be on the upswing for us."
Hudson is 11-5 on the season, and appear to be battle-tested heading into the tournament.
The pitching staff has performed well, led by seniors Michael Moreland and Doug Erb, who is 1-1 with an ERA under 3, and several junior pitchers who are gaining experience and getting some quality starts.
One of the area's better high school baseball teams is off to a hot start, and things are looking up.
Greg Pickard, the head coach of the Wadsworth Grizzly baseball team joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about his team and what they've been doing on the diamond.
"Things are going well, we're 12-2 right now, we've been dodging the rain, we've been hitting well, and have been pitching really well too," Pickard said.
The Grizzlies have had to get a few make-up games in with the rain and snow in the early part of the season and are led by three seniors at the top of their pitching rotation.
"Chris Byers and Cameron Deemer have been doing well for us, as three-year starters, and then Ross Thompson, who worked in last year, has had a great year, including a win over Brecksville."
The Grizzlies will be at Canal Park this coming Sunday against Medina Highland at 2 p.m.
The Ellet Orangemen boys' baseball team is doing well on the diamond, and coming off of a good week, they are looking to continue to get better.
John Sarver, the head coach of the Orangemen joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about his young team and what they need to do to have success in the City Series.
"I like the makeup of our team, we lost four senior pitchers, so we're young in that area, we have a good defensive team and a good hitting team," he said.
Ellet only has one senior pitcher in Dustin Franklin, but coach Sarver says the young pitchers in the rotation have talent on their side, and with the experience they've been gaining this year, it has proven to be invaluable.
Ellet will face nearby rival Tallmadge this weekend, and he knows Kenny Linn's kids will be competitive on Saturday.
"He's always going to have his kids playing good defense, hitting the ball well, and have good pitching," Sarver said. "Kenny's always tough.
There's busy times for the Ohio High School Athletic Association in Division I football as the announcement was made to have four regions for the D-I tournament instead of two this coming fall.
Tim Stried from the OHSAA came on with Sam Bourquin to discuss the move, how it was made.
He says by formatting it in the same vein as Divisions II-VII, there will be more of an emphasis from teams and coaches on the regional championships and a decrease in travel for some teams.
Two high school basketball coaching jobs are open in western Stark County, and both schools are looking to find quality leaders for both the Massillon Tigers and Perry Panthers boys' teams.
The Northeastern Buckeye Conference announced this week that they will disband in 2 years and Louisville High School will be looking for a new home.
NBC Commissioner Jim Carmichael joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about the move and what it means for the schools involved including Louisville.
"The league bylaws say the league will be in place for two years, and then they will break apart," Carmichael said.
The other schools in the NBC are Alliance, Marlington, Carrollton, Canton South, Minerva, Salem, and West Branch.
Carmichael, who was not at the meeting when NBC officials made the vote to disband says he's not sure of the future of Louisville being in a new league. (Writer's Note) Calls to Louisville athletic administration were not returned as of Friday.
Carmichael said in talking to other league officials the main reason for the move was competitive balance across the sports, mainly football.
Many different issues are going on in and around high school athletics, and one of the issues that has been much talked about is competitive balance.
Tim Stried from the OHSAA joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about it and what it means for high school athletics moving forward for coaches, players, and school districts alike.
"The release was prompted by the fact we needed to announce the timing of it," he said. "We initially planned on collecting roster data this year (2015-16) and having it apply to the rosters and school enrollments for next year (2016-17."
In 2014, the member schools of the OHSAA passed the competitive balance plan to address the balance in team sports and how schools are grouped in certain divisions for the tournament.
Schools will submit their rosters and could move up a division, depending on a series of factors.
"From our public schools, they've said all along there's a fundamental difference between public and non-public schools, and we agree with that, but we want everyone to stay together," Stried said.
There will be a new enrollment cycle in 2017-18.