The Press Newspaper
Nietz, West compete in state volleyball tournament
Twenty-three Wood County Special Olympics traveled to Columbus on June 28 to compete at the Ohio Special Olympics Summer Games.
Mike Nietz of Walbridge and Jacob West of Pemberville are members of the Wood County Comets’ volleyball team, which began state semifinal action at the Ohio State University Recreation and Physical Activity Center on Saturday.
Wood County athletes will also be competing in athletics (track and field), volleyball, or cycling. The games feature competition in 11 sports: aquatics, athletics (track and field), bocce, bowling, cycling, gymnastics, power lifting, roller skating, soccer, tennis, and volleyball. The two-and-a-half day event was the team’s largest event of the year in Ohio with 2,400 athletes participating.
“There will also many enjoyable activities, such as Tent Town, when athletes are not competing,” says Liz Sheets, public relations coordinator, Wood Lane/Wood County Board of Developmental Disabilities.
All competition venues were on The Ohio State University campus with the exception of roller skating and bowling. Athletes and coaches were housed in dorms on campus.
The opening ceremonies were held in Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. The ceremony featured a parade of athletes with representative athletes and coaches from throughout Ohio, along with the dramatic entrance of the Torch Run into the stadium and the lighting of the “Flame of Hope.” Law Enforcement Torch Run officers handed off the torch to the athletes, who in turn ignited the Flame of Hope. The lighting of the flame officially signified the opening of the Games.
The Learfield Sports Directors' Cup is program that honors institutions maintaining a broad-based program, achieving success in many sports, both men's and women's. It began in 1993-94 for Division I by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) and USA Today. It was expanded in 1995-96 to include NCAA Division II, III and the NAIA and, in 2011-12, expanded to the Junior/Community Colleges. The scholarship division consists of both NJCAA Division I and II members.
The Express increased their National point total from 48-points, following the Winter Sports standings, to 61-points on the strength of the men's golf team's 10th place finish at the NJCAA National Championships.
Of the 401 scholarship offering institutions. Owens Community College was the only program in the NJCAA Region XII ranked in the Top-25.
"2012-13 was the best athletic campaign ever for Owens Athletics, with four of eight teams qualifying for National Championships," said Owens Director of Athletics Rudy Yovich.
"We made eight Regional appearances, captured four Ohio Community College Athletic Conference titles, had five National Junior College Athletic Association All-Americans, nine NJCAA All-Academic Student Athletes and two NJCAA All-Academic Teams. We are proud to be able to promote Owens Community College and our community on the National level."
Iowa Central Community College paced all NJCAA scholarship division schools with a point total of 181. (— by Nick Huenefeld/Owens Sports Information)
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