Sports Columns

Park overcomes obstacles to play Division I hoops

BALTIMORE — David Park enjoyed a superb prep basketball career. After thousands of miles, several stops and many hurdles, the Wheeling native is finally realizing his dream - that of playing Division I basketball. Park helped lead Wheeling Central to the West Virginia Class A state ...

A lot of intriguing matches could develop at OVAC

The weather outside is usually frightful this time of the year, but the action inside downtown Wheeling’s WesBanco Arena Thursday through Saturday should be delightful as the 65th annual Ohio Valley Athletic Conference Ron Mauck Wrestling Tournament sets up shop for three days. Parkersburg ...

Plenty of blame to go around in Steelers loss

PITTSBURGH -- To be perfectly honest, it wasn't supposed to end like this for the Pittsburgh Steelers. After all, they did go 13-3 in the regular season, won the AFC North in a runaway and owned the second seed in the conference, meaning they had a bye. It was supposed to be a second ...

Two Park gridders conclude careers in all-star fashion

TAMPA — The Blue-Grey All-American Bowl is a showcase of the nation’s best senior prep football players. The Ohio Valley, specifically Wheeling Park, was represented quite well in the Jan. 6 grid extravaganza. Patriots’ quarterback Cross Wilkinson and wide receiver Nate Phillips were ...

Regan tabbed for third Hall of Fame honor

WHEELING — Jim Regan has netted an elite hat trick. The successful Wheeling Jesuit men’s soccer coach has been selected for induction into the West Virginia Soccer Association Hall of Fame - Class of 2018. The latest honor marks the third hall of fame Regan will have on his impressive ...

OVAC Tourney shaping up to be one of best ever

The 65th annual Ohio Valley Athletic Conference Ron Mauck wrestling tournament could be one of the best ever. Less than three weeks away, several teams and individuals have already showed their dominance on the mat. Parkersburg South has captured six tournament overall championships since ...

Light shining in mat return

Wrestling is about as individual of a sport as you can get. It’s just you and your opponent out there on the mat. Not everyone can be a wrestler. It takes determination, guts, hard work and many, many sacrifices. Travis Light has all of the aforementioned credentials, and then ...

Sam Andy Classic off and running

WHEELING -- Sam Andy is nothing short of an Ohio Valley basketball legend. The former Wheeling High and Wheeling Park taskmaster amassed an amazing 611 wins to go with three West Virginia Class AAA state titles - just two of his countless coaching milestones. He died in July of ...

Prep Wrestling: Two big tourneys slated during the holiday break

The high school wrestling season does not take a break for the holidays as a couple of exciting tournaments are scheduled before the ‘Big Ball’ drops to signal the start of 2018 at midnight on Jan. 1. The biggest of the biggest — the 27th annual Wheeling Park Duals — is scheduled for ...

Durdines excited with new football challenge at SJC

BELLAIRE — John Durdines resuscitated a football program on life support at Bishop Donahue. He did it masterfully for 15 seasons, taking it to OVAC championship levels before the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston closed the doors on the school last winter. Now the highly-respected coach has ...

OVAC shines at Ironman

CUYAHOGA FALLS — Nine Ohio Valley Athletic Conference wrestlers competed in the prestigious Walsh Jesuit Ironman over the weekend, with one claiming the top prize. Parkersburg South sophomore Braxton Amos, who is ranked No. 3 among sophomores nationally and No. 4 overall, received a first ...

Committed players keep Reno going

STEUBENVILLE — When you think prep football in the Ohio Valley, Steubenville Big Red immediately pops into your mind. When you think Steubenville Big Red football, you immediately think of Reno Saccoccia. Big Red football and their ageless taskmaster are still basking in the glory of ...

Rataiczak records 1,900th consecutive game

During my high school days I had perfect attendance for all four years at Troy High School. Sure, there were some difficult times in achieving that honor, but I was the only one in my class of more than 300 to do so. Just think, roughly 180 days a year times four is 720 days of going to ...

Bell building on collegiate grid success

WHEELING -- Elijah Bell is not one to rest on his laurels. Rather, the former Wheeling Park standout continues to raise his game. Bell played a key role in the Patriots capturing their first state football championship in 2015. He landed 17 TD passes that fall, encompassing 1,124 ...

Wheeling Jesuit, West Liberty wrestlers set to square off

This is a big week of wrestling, both collegiately and scholastically. Bragging rights for Ohio County will be on the line Thursday when nationally ranked Wheeling Jesuit University travels up W.Va. 88 to meet West Liberty University in a Mountain East Conference dual meet. The first bout ...

Youthful WJU spikers primed for regional

WHEELING — It has become a rite of late fall: Wheeling Jesuit University winning the conference volleyball championship. The youthful Cardinals captured their fifth straight Mountain East Conference net title last weekend, downing rival West Liberty in the finals at the McDonough Center. ...

Mancini sees local boxing as key

CHESTER — A boxing legend doesn’t think fighters are as tough these days as they were during his career. Nor does he like the distance championship bouts are. “The bigger name fighters nowadays get paid a helluva lot more for doing a helluva lot less,” International Boxing Hall of ...

New lease on life

BELLAIRE — Larry Schmidli has a lot to say. It’s important, he believes. For, as he sits down today to enjoy Thanksgiving with his family, he’s thankful. Thankful for his new lease on life, one that came via an unexpected source. “I’m so thankful I have a family,” he said. ...

Linsly grad earns Ohio Athletic Conference hoop POW for Marietta

MARIETTA — Anthony Wallace is a pretty good basketball player. He was pretty good at Linsly School and he’s continued into his collegiate career. Just last season he played a major role in helping to lead Marietta College into the NCAA Tournament and he’s seemingly picked up right ...

Crutchfield’s second job off to solid start in Fla.

FORT LAUDERDALE — He won at a rate few, if any, coaches do. He also had his program on cruise control, winning 30 games per season and making annual national tournament runs. After rescuing the West Liberty University men’s program from the scrap heap and elevating it to magnificent ...