The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

April 11, 2013

A Don McCormack column: A fun night of hoops at Lakeside

Sports Editor

Paying a visit to the variety store...

Getting fresh

While most high school sports programs in the area have pretty much done away with freshman programs because of budget crunches, there’s a movement under way at Lakeside High School to stave off running up the white flag for ninth-grade programs.

The Save Freshman Sports committee at the school will be hosting a pretty cool event Friday from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at beautiful Lakeside Gymnasium.

The Lakeside seventh- and eight-grade boys and girls basketball teams will be playing a game against a group of family members and community leaders.

Games for younger children will also be staged and the high school pep band, the junior high cheerleaders and the Dragon mascot will all be on hand to perform.

Musical entertainment will be provided by Divine Nation.

The best part is admission is only $2. “I Believe” T-shirts will be on sale for 10 bucks.

Kim George, who along with Amy and Cory Nagle is heading up the Save Freshman Sports push, said the focus of the concept is the same as everything done at the school.

“The bottom line is, this is for our children and our community,” she said. “The support has been tremendous. Watching a fun basketball game with musical entertainment for $2  is a value, no matter how you look at it.   

“We hope to see the community, regardless if you have an upcoming freshman.”

Anyone wanting or needing more information can contact George at 228-4683.

Making the grade

Heather Brant is a fine three-sport athlete.

Turns out, though, she is extremely proficient in the classroom, too.

The Pymatuning Valley senior is the only area basketball — girls or boys — to be named to the Academic All-Ohio squad, as selected by the Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association.

Brant, who boasts a grade-point average of 3.96, is on the Division III team, along with Hannah Plybon of Orrville, Izzie Englehart of Summit Country Day, Megan McKean of Northwestern, Theresa Jackson of Western Reserve, Brittany Gross of Elmwood, Jenny Grigsby of Adena, Natalie Robson of Western Reserve, Kaylee Koker of Alexander and Erica Huber of Anna.

Brant averaged 11.3 points per game for coach Jeff Compan’s Lakers, who went 21-3 this season and won a Division III sectional championship.

All three of PV’s losses came by two points and at one point, the Lakers won 18 consecutive games. Their 21 victories represent the second-highest victory total in the history of the PV program.

McCormack is the sports editor of the Star Beacon. Reach him at