Cheripko, Barnhouse tabbed for OVAC shrine

WHEELING — A pair of multi-sport athletes from highly successful athletic programs are the two latest members of the Ohio Valley Athletic Conference Hall of Fame Class of 2024.

The OVAC Hall of Fame Committee has chosen Brooke’s Darrell Cheripko and St. Clairsville’s Scott Barnhouse to join the conference’s shrine this coming summer. They represent the decades of the 1970s.

Previous announced honorees are Cambridge’s Ashley Dunigan and Meadowbrook’s Kinsi Tellep representing the decade of the 2000s as well as Buckeye Trail’s Alexa Abrams and St. Clairsville’s Dan Monteroso as the members of the decade of the 2010s. The 1990 HOF selectees are Wheeling Park’s Rafael Cruz and Steubenville Catholic Central’s Bobby Sismondo. Fort Frye’s Lisa Ribble Stolar and East Liverpool’s Aric Long are the honorees in 1980s.

The banquet will be held at WesBanco Arena in Wheeling on Saturday, Aug. 10.

In two weeks, the pair of honorees from the 1960s will be announced for the hall of fame, which is sponsored by Robinson Automotive Group.

Here’s a capsule look at the honorees representing the decade of the 1970s:

DARRELL CHERIPKO (Brooke, Class of 1979) — Cheripko was a two-sport standout for the Bruins, earning All-State, All-OVAC and All-Valley honors in football and baseball.

The 6-4, 210-pounder started three years for Coach Bud Billiard’s gridders at tight end and defensive end. He was a two-year captain for the OVAC 4A two-time champions. Cheripko played in the OVAC and W.Va. North-South All-Star Football Games. He also received special recognition from the Upper Ohio Valley Dapper Dans.

In baseball, Cheripko was a three-year starter. He was the Bruins’ regular first baseman as a sophomore before moving over to be a catcher and hurler.

As a junior, he earned second-team All-Valley honors while being tabbed honorable mention All-State. As a senior, he was tabbed first-team All-Valley as a catcher and a first-team All-State utility selection.

As a senior, Cheripko led the Ohio Valley with seven home runs, 13 doubles and 35 runs scored while batting a robust. 456. He was second in the Ohio Valley with 37 hits.

Cheripko was also a Bruins basketball performer, picking up two letters.

He was inducted into the Brooke Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009.

Cheripko was After his Brooke High career came to an end, he matriculated to Youngstown State, earning two football letters.

SCOTT BARNHOUSE (St. Clairsville, Class of 1978) — Barnhouse was a three-sport standout for the Red Devils, but it was on the baseball diamond where he had the biggest clout.

He was a three-year letterman for baseball coaching legend Lefty Hall. The multi-talented athlete earned All-Valley, All-Ohio and All-OVAC honors as a senior.

As a junior, Barnhouse tossed a perfect game in an OHSAA Sectional contest. He was tabbed to participate in the Mizuno All-Star Game in Columbus.

Barnhouse turned in a sparkling senior season for the Red Devils, helping Hall’s charges reach the OHSAA Regional tournament. He crafted a 6-2 mound mark with a miniscule 1.67 ERA while batting at a sparkling .372 clip.

The talented right-hander accepted a baseball scholarship to Mercer University in Georgia. He quickly worked his way into the starting rotation and helped the Bears capture three conference championships in four years.

Barnhouse compiled a 26-21 career mound mark for Mercer. He was also the Bears’ starting first baseman as a senior, producing a .321 batting average with 12 home runs and 32 RBI.

Barnhouse was chosen by the Seattle Mariners in the 1982 Major League Baseball Draft. He eventually reached the Class AAA Minor League level with Salt Lake City in 1983. In 1985, he was traded to the San Diego Padres. His pro career ended two years later.

During his St. C. prep days, Barnhouse was an explosive quarterback. He executed Coach George Strager’s famed “belly-series” to near perfection. He earned All-OVAC honors and was chosen to play in the 1978 OVAC Rudy Mumley All-Star Football game.


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