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Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

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Connor Ryan figures he'll earn his black belt in tae kwon do in about a year.

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“I'm really looking forward to it,” Connor said, “because it's really fun and I like doing it. I like just having fun and learning self-defense and discipline. I don't misbehave anymore ... not as much as I used to.”

The 11-year-old Oregon resident, who has been involved in martial arts for three years, is working his way up the “belt” ladder – he is currently a red belt. Connor's younger sister, Delaney, 9, has been in martial arts for two years. Both Ryan siblings train at Toneff’s Tae Kwon Do, 4320 Navarre Ave.

“Connor had started with (martial arts) at the YMCA and kind of swayed away from it, and then he showed interest again,” said Connor's mother, Lorianne. “We took him to Mr. Toneff and he fell in love with it from day one.

“Delaney was taking dance across the hall, at Brewer's Dance Studio, and she

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Former Cardinal Stritch golfer Torey Brummett, a Toledo Area Athletic

Conference champion, and former Eastwood golfer Nick Speck are beginning their college golf careers this spring at Owens Community College.

Also playing for Owens is Brooks Gardner (Bowling Green), the son of State Representative Randy Gardner, an Eastwood graduate. After four events, this year’s team has an overall record of 8-17.

Owens’ golf program is guided by fourth-year coach Gil Guerrero. The Express golf team captured five match and invitational titles during the 2009 spring season, highlighted by its third consecutive first-place finish in the Ohio Community College Athletic Conference Championships. The program also captured its fourth NJCAA Region XII Sub-Regional championship after rounds of 317-314 (631) at Belmont.

“Our golf team is extremely young as we are without any returning student-athletes from last year’s conference championship squad,”stated Guerrero. “Even though we are young and inexperienced at the collegiate level, our goal remains the same as previous years, which is to compete at the highest level and contend for another conference title.”

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Jake Grigson isn't ready to step into the ring against world-class mixed martial

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arts bantamweights such as Dominick Cruz or Brian Bowles, but a guy can dream, can't he?

“I'm probably going to turn pro after one or two more fights,” said Grigson, a 2007 Northwood High School graduate who defended his bantamweight title at the Ohio Cage Combat VII event April 2 at the Lucas County Recreation Center.

Grigson, 22, who ran his amateur mixed martial arts (MMA) record to 6-0, is a three-time Ohio Cage Combat champion. A two-time state wrestling tournament qualifier during his prep career at Northwood, Grigson took up MMA in 2009.

“My buddy, P.J. McKibben, got me into it just a little over a year ago,” Grigson said. “He said, 'Hey, come to the gym with me.' After that, I stuck with it. It's fun. P.J. did it for about a year. He hurt his knee and hasn't been doing it since.”

Grigson said he feeds off the challenge of facing an opponent mano-a-mano.

“I always liked the one-on-one competitive sports,” said Grigson, an assistant wrestling coach at Northwood. “If you win, it's because of you. If you lose, it's because of you. I enjoy it. I enjoy training and stuff ...”

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minimum wage

Do you think the minimum wage should be raised?
385306876 [{"id":"5","title":"Yes","votes":"21","pct":47.73,"type":"x","order":"1","resources":[]},{"id":"6","title":"No","votes":"22","pct":50,"type":"x","order":"2","resources":[]},{"id":"7","title":"No Opinion","votes":"1","pct":2.27,"type":"x","order":"3","resources":[]}] ["#194e84","#3b6b9c","#1f242a","#37414a","#60bb22","#f2babb"] sbar 160 160 /communitypolls/vote/1-root.html?id=3 No answer selected. Please try again. Thank you for your vote. Answers Votes ...