The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

February 24, 2013

A Don McCormack column: It’s time to mark your calendars

Sports Editor

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The dates have been set for our annual winter-sports all-star clashes, both set for March and to be stage in beautiful Lakeside Gymnasium.

The annual Star Beacon-Mike Scully Senior Classic wrestling match is slated for Monday, March 4, with action commencing at 6 p.m.

The match, which is being held two days after the conclusion of the state tournament in Columbus so that the wrestlers can be in the best possible shape, is named in honor of Mike Scully, the late Star Beacon sports writer whose love for wrestling jumped off the pages in his written words.

The match will showcase the top seniors on teams in the Star Beacon coverage area.

The annual Star Beacon-Ed Batanian Senior Classic basketball games are slated for one week after the wrestling match — Monday, March 11, also at Lakeside Gymnasium.

The girls game will tip off at 6 p.m., featuring the best seniors on teams in the Star Beacon coverage area.

Fifteen minutes after the conclusion of the girls game, the boys will take center stage, also showcasing the top senior players from teams in the Star Beacon coverage area.

A 3-point contest, including two players from each girls team and each boys squad, will be held during the respective halftimes.

More information, including players, coaches, officials for our Senior Classics, will be announced in the coming days.

Seed stuff

The Ohio High School Athletic Association changed the way seeded teams can go on the board for respective postseason tournaments for the 2012-13 school year.

Previous to this year, each of the top four seeds in each sectional-district tournament were required to be in separate quarters of brackets. That system resulted in the fourth-seeded team having less options than squads seeded fifth, sixth, etc.

After a bit of an outcry, including from yours truly, the OHSAA, to its credit, altered that system.

Starting in the fall, the only stipulations in place were the top two seeds must be in different halves of each bracket.

The change had an effect on the Division I girls sectional-district at Perry.

After top-seeded Mentor went on the top half of the bracket, second-seeded Euclid, third-seeded North, fourth-seeded Chardon and fifth-seeded Mayfield all went in the lower half of the bracket.

That resulted in those four seeded squads matching up in sectional finals, No. 2 Euclid and No. 4 Chardon emerging victorious to move on to district play.

It also had an effect on coach Mike Smith’s sixth-seeded Madison Blue Streaks. With the top half of the bracket pretty much wide open, Smith chose to take a by there, meaning his squad would need to defeat no higher than eighth-seeded South to win a sectional championship. Which is exactly what the Blue Streaks did Friday night, beating Premier Athletic Conference rival South for a third time this season, 45-35.

Madison will meet top-seeded Mentor in the first district final Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Spectator Gymnasium, with the Chardon-Euclid clash following 20 minutes later.

It also came into play on the boys side in Division I at Euclid and Division II at Lakeside.

In D-I, top-seeded Mentor went in the lower half of the bracket and No. 2, No. 3, No. 4 and No. 5 seeds Glenville, Brush, North and East Tech all went into the upper half of the bracket.

In D-II at Lakeside, top-seeded Lake Catholic went into the upper half of the bracket, while No. 2 West Geauga, No. 3 University School and No. 4 John Hay went into the lower half of the bracket.


Our thoughts and prayers go out to Bob Walters, the Ashtabula County Basketball Foundation Hall of Famer from his playing and coaching days at Ashtabula High School and the current girls and boys tennis coach at Lakeside High School.

Coach Walters’ wife, Cynthia, passed away Thursday at age 61 after a courageous battle against cancer.

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