The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

Sports

The rough-and-tumble Genoa Comets football team once again showed their true colors Oct 30, 2009 when the then 9-0, gridders put yet another convincing beating on another poor SLL opponent in front of a packed house at Comet Stadium.

They looked jacked-up, nasty-as-nails and all-business as usual as they trotted out onto the field clad in their traditional, sharp maroons and grays for pre-game warm-ups.

But team leaders Greg  “the Human Bowling Ball” Hillabrand, an ever-focused Matt Bassitt, Mr. “All-Ohio” Connor Wendt and the rest of their fierce charges proved that these Comets also have a softer side. It was evident in the splash of pink on players’ cleats and ankles, a pair or two of receiving gloves, armbands and even a steel knee brace.

The show of color went a long way in sending out a battle cry to the fans, the community and the local football world that the boys from G-Town were in the mood to lay the smackdown on visiting Elmwood and that this team cares enough to pause between snaps to look at what’s truly important in this world – like lending a hand in knocking out breast cancer.

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The 2009 season didn't start off with a bang for Oak Harbor's boys soccer team.

"We were a young team last year when we won the league title and we had a lot of lettermen coming back," fifth-year coach Rob Schimmoeller said. "I thought we were in store for a pretty good year, but we started off a little slow."

The Rockets, who finished 15-4-1 and 8-3-1 (third) in the Sandusky Bay Conference, started three seniors, five juniors and three sophomores this season. They had a 2-2-1 record through five matches but then reeled off eight straight wins.

"The kids kind of thought it would be easier than it was and they wouldn't have to work too hard," Schimmoeller said. "Once we got a few losses, they kind of got it together and started to play extremely well."

Oak Harbor beat Clyde and Rossford in the Division II sectional tournament to advance to the district, where it beat Port Clinton 2-0 in the semifinals. The Rockets lost to Lexington 2-1 in the district finals on Oct. 31 at Fremont Ross.

Oak Harbor junior midfielder Ian Miller scored a first-half goal against Lexington. The Rockets became the first boys soccer team in school history to reach the district finals.

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The drought is over for Northwood.

Despite posting 8-2 and 9-1 records in 2007 and 2008, respectively, and winning the Toledo Area Athletic Conference title both years, the Rangers were shut out of postseason play.

This season, the Rangers finished 7-3 and garnered enough computer points to qualify for the state playoffs for the first time since 2004. Their reward? A first-round road game against the top-ranked Division V team in the state.

Northwood, which won its third straight TAAC title, played at Northwest Ohio Athletic League champion Patrick Henry (10-0) Friday. The winner will play either Ashland Crestview (9-1) or Jeromesville Hillsdale (8-2) on Nov. 13.

"We knew even mid-year that if we had a chance to get in, we would get in as a number seven or eight seed and we knew we would draw somebody at the top of the region or at the top of the state (poll)," Northwood coach Ken James said. "If we want to get where we want to go as a program, we're going to have to play teams like this. We're going to have to play at this level and compete against them.

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