Calloway’s run as Panthers’ skipper comes to end
Longtime Western baseball coach Ty Calloway joked before the start of the season that he felt like a senior player. Calloway was entering his final season and the end of a fun run was going to arrive in a hurry.
The end came Saturday afternoon.
No. 3-ranked Norwell beat Western 5-2 in the Class 3A Kokomo Semistate at CFD Investments Stadium in Highland Park. The Knights improved to 32-3 and secured a spot in the state finals. Calloway’s Panthers finished 23-6 and two wins shy of repeating as 3A state champions.
Kokomo's Persons chooses NKU
Taylor Persons’ first recollection of the thought of playing basketball at the NCAA Division I level came in the sixth grade.
A dream that started six years ago became a reality late Friday night, when the Kokomo senior-to-be committed to Northern Kentucky University, a school new to Division I located just across the Ohio River from Cincinnati in Highland Heights, Ky.
Norwell halts Western’s repeat bid in 3A baseball semistate
Western’s baseball squad got off to an ideal start Saturday afternoon, scoring a pair of runs in the bottom of the first inning against No. 3 Norwell in their Class 3A Semistate game.
That good start was all Norwell would allow.
The Knights held Western scoreless the rest of the way and steadily took control, beating the Panthers 5-2 in front of a pro-Western crowd at CFD Investments Stadium in Highland Park.
Western, Norwell to clash in semistate
Western’s baseball team doesn’t have to prove it has championship mettle. The bulk of the squad is made up of players who were on last season’s championship team.
The Panthers don’t have to prove that they have heart and focus. They did that last week in a thrill-a-minute regional that saw Western beat South Bend Saint Joseph’s on a walk-off grand slam by Cameron Kuntz in the afternoon, and then clip Griffith with a run in the eighth inning at night.
No, they just have to prove they can beat No. 3-ranked Norwell on Saturday in the Class 3A semistate at Kokomo.
Neeley twins shine at state, but never act like stars
Since I landed in Kokomo in 2010, I’ve been fortunate enough to cover some of the best teams and individual athletes this area has ever seen. Eastern’s girls track and field teams of recent memory are at the top of that list.
Anything but routine
Before he makes his first plate appearance against Norwell in Saturday’s Class 3A north semistate at CFD Investments Stadium in Highland Park, Western leadoff hitter Marcus Pingleton will do a couple of things.
First, he’ll write a message to honor his mother.
“I write my mom’s initials with the cancer ribbon in the dirt before the game starts,” Pingleton said. “She passed away my sophomore year.”
Then, he’ll rub the cross in his back pocket.
“It’s just a little silver cross. I keep it in my back pocket and rub it before every at bat.”
H&R Photography wins rookie title
H&R Photography scored two runs in the top of the seventh inning to beat defending champion Windmill Grill 3-1 in a clash of UCT teams in the final of the Howard County youth baseball tournament for rookie league squads Thursday night at Northside. Button Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep and Ram is the rookie tourney’s sponsor.
With the scored tied 1-1 after a regulation six innings, H&R’s Trevor Crabtree started off the extra inning with a single. After one out, Ian Thurston singled to score Crabtree with the go-ahead run. Thurston then scored on a single by Tyler Flores.
Panthers, Bengals take aim at golf regional
The boys golf squads from Western and Peru face a brand-new challenge today when they tackle the Wabash Regional at Stonehenge G.C. Neither squad had played the course until taking a practice round there this week after the Panthers and Bengal Tigers finished second and third respectively at Monday’s Peru Sectional.
Also taking part in today’s regional are Cass golfers Zach Watterson and David Watterson, and Northwestern’s Blaine Brutus. Those three qualified as individuals from the sectional.
Wabash High School’s boys golf team may want to send the IHSAA a thank you card.
After spending several years in the Warsaw Sectional at Stonehenge G.C. in Winona Lake, the Apaches were moved to the Peru Sectional this season after the latest realignment. Two of their team members are also members at the current sectional site, Rock Hollow G.C.
Wabash made the most of the opportunity, carding a 330 as a team Monday to claim the program’s first sectional title, topping the next closest squad by a full 10 strokes.
Golfers take aim at Rock
Western’s boys golf team turned heads when it posted a 299 in winning the Northwestern Invitational on May 25 at Green Acres G.C.
“We’ve had a nice season and we’re somewhat peaking at the right time,” Western coach Steve Hoppes said. “That 299 we shot was a school record and the kids were extremely pleased with it.
“I figured with this bunch that if we were going to get better, we were going to get better by the end because we’re so young. We have no seniors — three juniors and two sophomores are what’s making up our five. We have consistently improved this year and that’s what we looked for.”
Now, the Panthers will look to carry its hot play into the postseason.
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