Category Archives: Sports

Athlete of the Month

Some students excel in more than just academics, even though academics are the main focus of high school. Athletics play a huge role in high schools and many student lives.

Each month,  the high school chooses two players: one boy and one girl. Their coaches choose them to be featured in “The Player of the Month” column.

This month, a member of the girls bowling and the boys basketball team will be featured.

This month’s male player is junior Nathan Bower-Malone, who leads the bulldogs with 252 points.

“Nathan is a remarkable player and an even better teammate,” coach Andrew O’Keefe said.

Bower-Malone is the team’s best scorer on any given night. He is an excellent student, an active member of student council and is also involved at the Stow Campus of Christ Community Chapel.

Bower-Malone will be recognized with numerous awards at the end of the season as the leading scorer on the team. He is currently tied for first place in the conference.

“We are fortunate as a school and as a basketball program that Nathan still has his senior year and season ahead of him,” O’Keefe said.

This month’s female player is senior Sarah may (Katie) Schlea, from the girls bowling team. She has had high series in two of their tournaments. Schlea bowled a 544 in the G-Men Classic and a 528 in the Black Tiger Tournament.

“Katie is our only left handed bowler and has improved her average to a 171,” coach Paula Duncan said.

Duncan said, “Katie does not give up, and can turn a game around after a slow start. She always has a smile and encourages the other players to do better. Katie got to anchor the last tournament because of her high series.”


Coaches send bowling team to victory

One sports team having a strong season this year at the high school is bowling. Both boys and girls have great players on the teams, showing their best bowling abilities this season.

“The bowling is scored in a very distinct way. Five [players] out of eight bowl a regular game in the first round. The second round the same five [players] can bowl or be replaced by the other three. After ten games of regular bowling, three baker games are bowled. Five [players] bowl one game, the first [player] who bowls the 1st and 6th frame, second [player] bowls second and seventh frame and so on. The anchor bowls the fifth and tenth frames. Total scratch score determines the win after all 13 games are bowled,” Coach Paula Duncan said.

Duncan has been coaching for 14 years now. She works at Echo Hills in the multiple Handicap classroom with Kindergarten and first graders.

She also bowls in her free time on a Casino League at Sto-Kent Family Entertainment.

Duncan loves being a coach and the many great things it brings to her life.

“[The most enjoyable part of coaching is] the friendships that are formed by the teams, with each other, coaches and parents,” Paula Duncan said.

Looking back on their past season, they won the NOC conference. Now they are currently 5-5 this season.

The team captains this year are seniors Natalie Menke and Rachel Huber.

Out of the many talented bowlers, they have a few special players who help bring a special spark to the team. Sophomore Meghan Ritzinger has the highest average of all the girl bowlers.

Sarahmay (Katie) Schlea is the teams only left handed bowler. Being with the bowling team her whole high school career is senior Alyssa Bedilion.

The biggest rival for the girls is Mentor. Last year, they had to beat them to win the NOC conference, holding tension between the two school teams. They will also be the biggest competition for this year, seeing as their average is 200 pins higher than Stows.

The girls plan on going to states, if they pull it together at the sectionals. If they aren’t able to go as a team any of the girls would be capable of bowling a high series at districts.

The boys bowling coach, Glenn Duncan, has been coaching bowling for the past 14 years. He has worked full time at Land O Lakes in production for 23 years.

He has been in leagues for the past 40 years with his wife Paula.

Just like his wife, he gets to watch many great things as a coach for the boys bowling team.

“[The most enjoyable part of coaching is] watching the kids improve. Beating their previous high scores and series,” Glenn Duncan said.

The boys struggled slightly early on in the season but have been picking themselves up with better scores lately.

They recently finished second in the G Man Tournament behind last years runner state runner up, Struthers High School.

The team captains for the boys bowling team are seniors Tommy Gallagher and Nick Powell.

They are led by their starting five: senior Tommy Gallagher, senior Nick Powell, junior Chris Ferguson, junior Sam Croy and junior Kevin Kunz.

Their six man is sophomore Scott Hopkins. They also bring up a few.

JV boys on occasion have some extra help, which includes sophomore Christian Studt and freshman Alex Snowberger.

Throughout the past, Cuyahoga Falls has always been their fiercest competition. This year they will also have Brunswick, Brush and Mentor as rivals.

The boys bowling team believes they will have a chance for states if they continue to improve as they have been lately.

Both Paula and Glenn Duncan hope for a great ending to the season and look forward to coaching the new team next year.

Girls basketball slaughters Solon

The girls varsity basketball team knew that winning a Divisional game against Solon on Feb. 4 was imperative if the Bulldogs wanted to clinch the Northeast Ohio Conference Valley Division title for the 2014-15 season.

In the first quarter of the game, Stow lead the game 15-2. Solon took advantage of some foul trouble by Stow late in the game to finish regulation tied at 58-58. Solon would go on to win 71-67 in double overtime.

“We had Chrissie [Vaughan] and Morgan [Thompson] foul out,” Coach Podges said in an interview with Michael Leonard. “It was a very physical game. It was a well-played game. Our younger kids had a hard time with some of the Solon pressure. We had some rushed shots and some turnovers [in the fourth quarter] that allowed them to get back in the game.”

For the first time all season, Stow worked out of a 2-2-1 zone defensively. The game could not have begun much better for the team, with their 13 point lead after the first quarter.

“We did some things differently on defense,” Podges said. “We tried to take the driving lanes away from them.”

The changes worked to a par, as seen in their 13-point lead.

Even after Solon’s offense made adjustments to the zone defense put on by Stow, the Comets couldn’t find a way back into the game and put some points up on offense.

The Bulldogs still led 30-20 at halftime and 47-35 after three quarters.

The trouble for Stow started early in the fourth quarter, when Vaughan fouled out with about five minutes to go in regulation.

With the Bulldogs’ starting point guard sidelined, Solon’s full-court pressure defense went into attack mode.

“They did the same thing they always have done,” Podges said. “We had to make some adjustments with some of our young kids on the floor. Obviously, we don’t spend a lot of time practicing zone, either. So not all of our kids were fully prepared.”

Things got worse for Stow in the following minutes. During a scramble on the floor for ball, Thompson got hit her face on the gym floor and lost a tooth.

Thompson returned to the game in overtime but would foul out in the first minutes.

Despite the loss of two starting guards, Stow was able to hang on and force overtime again and limit Solon to four points; however, Solon out-scored Stow 9-4 in the second overtime to claim the win.

Vaughan and Thompson led Stow with 16 points each. Fellow senior guard Sam Shaver scored 14 points.

Despite the loss, Podges said he was happy with his team’s effort.

“I’m very pleased with what we did,” Podges said. “When we have our whole team on the floor, we showed what we can do now. We’ve been playing very good ball since Jan. 1 against some very good teams. It prepared us last night to go to the tournament.”

Podges notes Solon is “pretty well set” to claim the Valley Division crown after beating Stow Feb. 4 and smashing Mentor 72-40 Jan. 31.

Browns release ‘new’ logo

Cleveland sports fans are used to being let down. Until the return of LeBron James, Clevelanders have been getting one mediocre season after another.

After a 7-9 season from the Browns, football aficionados saw many positives from the team. At Week 10, the team was 6-3 and leading the AFC North conference. The last leg of the year the Browns lost six of their last seven games.

When the regular season ended, the management announced the release of a new logo. Most Browns fans throughout Ohio thought it would be either the infamous Brownie the Elf or the bulldog.

The Browns did not have a definite logo. They had the helmet, the bulldog and Brownie. Finally after all the confusion the Browns would have one for sure logo. One new, fresh logo. That was not the case.

For anyone who does not know the look of the 2014 Browns season logo, it was a basic football helmet with a pale orange crown with brown and white stripes from front to back and a very light grey facemask. The 2014 Dog Pound logo is a mean-looking, orange bulldog with a brown shadow on the bottom of its face.

Browns fans were ready for something new, and on Tues, Nov. 24 they were going to get it. A new logo for the team they are so fanatic about.

The new logo for the 2015 Browns is the same basic helmet, a slightly brighter orange crown, same brown and white stripe with a brown face mask.

The excitement does not stop there. The new Dog Pound logo is a very feminine looking bulldog, with no definitive head outline with the words “DAWG POUND” under it.

As a Browns fan, this really angers me. It is not as much the new logo. I am fine with the fine tune. The fact that they said it was a new logo, and even worse than that is that they tried to play it off like its some new great thing is what angered me.

According to, “The orange is brighter and richer and matches the passion of our fans and city, the brown is unchanged.”

If that was not enough, they have a new font. They said, “The contemporary redesigned wordmark is simplistic and utilizes a stronger, bolder font,”

The great and new Browns logo is a brighter orange, brown facemask and a bolder font. Yet another let down from Cleveland Browns football.