XENIA — Several area individuals and teams lengthed the fall sports campaign as long as possible, but all great things must end at some point.
Scott and Steven made some midseason selections as an overview of how things were back at the end of September, and now it’s time to hand out final awards and recognitions after a great fall season.
Congratulations to all of the area teams for a fun start to the year as we all now move inside for winter hibernation … err, competition.
Top male athlete: Jack Agnew, Carroll. Finishing with a time of 15:31 at Fortress Obetz in Columbus, Agnew became the Division-II state individual cross country champion, also helping his Carroll teammates qualify as a team for the meet as well. As the and his closest competitor reached the final stretch of the course, Agnew powered ahead to comfortably win as he crossed the finish line.
Top female athlete: Erin Thomas, Fairborn. Thomas eclipsed 50 career goals with another strong performance this season. She scored at least three goals on three different occasions and was able to double her career assist total during this season alone. One of the best to ever put on a Skyhawk uniform.
Best team: Beavercreek girls cross country. The team produced a fourth-place finish at the Division I state race and was the only team in the top-seven without an individual top-20 runner. A long-winded way of saying the group as a whole was consistency good. Grace Dailey was near the top of leaderboards throughout the season, while Jamie Confer, Abby Roberts, Macie Roberts, Abby Roderer, Emelie Sandberg and Samantha Thomas made up a strong group that competed in Columbus. — Wright
Bellbrook football. At the midway point I went with a Bellbrook team and will do so again, but I’m switching from volleyball to football. No offense to the Bellbrook girls, the football team made it to the regional final and was in control of that game against No. 1 Badin until the end. — Halasz
Coach of the year: Steve Popp, Beavercreek. The Beavercreek girls soccer team advanced to regionals after reaching its 13th straight district final with Popp at the helm. He organized a team effort for the Lady Beavers which saw six players score at least five goals and have players rotate into multiple positions as the team figured out its identity. — Wright
I’m sticking with my midway pick in Maurice Harden, Xenia football. To me, it’s more about wins and losses and even X’s and O’s. You get a great vibe being around Coach Harden. He’s always around. He watched the two youth teams play for their championships and it seems like whenever there’s something to do with Xenia sports happening, he is lurking — in a good way. — Halasz
Top individual effort: Andrew Magill, Bellbrook. Hard work paid off for the junior in becoming the Division I Southwest District champion in the tournament held at Beavercreek Golf Course. He scored a nine-hole tournament best 35 on the front nine to shoot 72, and oh by the way, has been playing competitive golf for barely a year. — Wright
Again, I’m sticking with my midseason pick of Seth Borondy, Bellbrook football. His 356-yard effort against Franklin earlier in the season simply can’t be topped. Oh wait, it can. He led all of Ohio in rushing yards. — Halasz
Bright future: CJ Scohy, Bellbrook. The freshman was the co-medalist at the boys golf sectional tournament held at Reid Park with an even-par 72 and took home several other individual titles during the season, including at the SWBL tournament by six shots. He finished with the third best scoring average per nine holes in the SWBL during league play. Incredible feats to begin high school.
Boys cross country: Jack Agnew, Carroll. The D-II state champion after taking both the sectional and district titles as well. Not much more needs to be said for the junior that will look to repeat the feat again next year.
Girls cross country: Abby Roberts, Beavercreek. She finished as the top individual racer on the team at the state meet with a time barely placing her outside of the top-20. Beavercreek as a whole had a strong group, but we will recognize who performed best on the top stage.
Top offensive player, football: Cole DeHaven, Greeneview. As the junior went, so did the Rams down the season’s stretch. He showed himself to possibly be the best dual-threat quarterback in Greene County with solid passing performances that weren’t relied upon but could be done as needed, as well as being a powerful runner that scored at least one rushing touchdown in each of the team’s final eight games. He led Greeneview to an OHC South title after taking over the lead role mid-season and to a near upset of the one of the state’s top teams in the playoffs. — Wright
Not to sound like a broken record — and I loved what DeHaven did for the Rams this season — I’m going with Borondy from Bellbrook. More than 350 in a game and he led the state in rushing yards. — Halasz
Top defensive player, football: Tremell Wright, Xenia. A second-team selection on the state team for Division II, he had five interceptions to lead a strong Bucs secondary. As the season wore on, opponents appeared to throw his direction less and less. A highlight for a rejuvenated Xenia team. As a side note, Wright was close to being first-team All-SW District as a receiver as well.
Boys golf: Shane Ochs, Carroll. We’re sticking to the midseason pick and awarding consistent, solid play. The senior wrapped his career by matching his best season average at 36.3 per nine holes and came up one shot short of qualification for the state tournament after an agonizing wait for the final scores to be entered at districts.
Girls golf: Marisa Alfes, Bellbrook. Shooting under par playing The Golf Club at Yankee Trace is no easy task and the senior was able to do so at the sectional tournament with a 71 to finish in third-place and the top individual qualifier. She also held her own against the boys by finishing in the top-20 in nine hole scoring average in the SWBL this season.
Boys soccer: Eli Eyrich, Yellow Springs. The numbers were mind-boggling good with 99 total points, 40 goals, and 19 assists on top of them. A threat to score every time he touches the ball, the junior finished top-5 in the state in scoring across all divisions. Even so, with so many great players in the area, this was the toughest award to pick only one.
Girls soccer: Erin Thomas, Fairborn. She closed out her senior season by leading the MVL in total points and assists while finishing second in the leagues for goals scored.
Girls Tennis: Maya Brink, Bellbrook. A state tournament individual qualifier after rolling through her sectional tournament by winning several matches without dropping a single game. Maybe next year if a repeat trip is in the cards for the sophomore, the weather will play nicer and not force a mid-match relocation.
Volleyball: Alanna Vavao, Bellbrook. The junior was one of the top hitters in the area and led the SWBL in service aces. She also was second on her team in digs and could block opponents playing up front. Don’t be surprised if her name reappears here next year. It was a close decision along with Layne Burke of Legacy Christian.