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Trotwood-Madison caps 15-0 season with Division III state title

Published: Saturday, December 02, 2017 @ 9:48 PM
Updated: Tuesday, December 05, 2017 @ 6:31 PM

Trotwood-Madison receives D-III state title trophy after defeating Dresden Tri-Valley 27-19 at Canton on Sat., Dec. 2, 2017. MARC PENDLETON / STAFF

With time running out, Trotwood-Madison linebacker Jayvanare Nelloms got a little help from his friend. The end result is a spot in Rams football history.

“James Parker, he told me to help out with the receiver,” said Nelloms, whose goal-line interception and long return in the final seconds secured a Division III high school football state-title clinching 27-19 defeat of Dresden Tri-Valley on Saturday night. “Much love to him, because he told me what it was about to be.”

»MR. FOOTBALL: Trotwood RB Ra’veion Hargrove runner-up

»FINISHED BUSINESS: Rams on a mission to complete unbeaten season

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»MINSTER COACH: ‘We have a different mindset about losing’

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Fittingly for a championship game at the new Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium, it was Trotwood’s fiercest and final test to cap a perfect 15-0 season. It’s the second state title for Trotwood, which also went 15-0 and won the 2011 D-II championship.

Unlike the bulk of its blowout victories, this was an intriguing matchup of programs that had never played. Although Tri-Valley, anchored at Muskingum County, had been in the playoffs every year since 2011, the Scotties had never played for a state title. Trotwood was making its sixth title appearance and fifth since 2010.

That made Tri-Valley (13-2) a big underdog, which was fine with Scotties coach Justin Buttermore.

“I’m certain that’s why people thought (Trotwood) was going to beat us by 30 or 40 because of the intangibles, the height, weight, the 40 times,” he said, “but you can’t measure heart.”

Trotwood senior William McDaniel delivered three touchdowns. His 10-yarder with less than a minute left in the third quarter regained the lead for Trotwood. That was only the third time this season the Rams had trailed, the first against D-I state champ Pickerington Central in Week 3 and in the state semifinals against Toledo Central Catholic.

McDaniel also had a nifty catch and mostly 56-yard run on a screen pass from quarterback Markell Stephens-Peppers.

Ra’veion Hargrove’s brilliant career ended on a relative high note. He had 138 yards rushing and opened the scoring with a 41-yard run in the first quarter. “That’s why they call me Big-Play Ray,” he said.

“Twenty-one carries for (138) yards, as crazy and it sounds that’s kind of holding him in check,” said Buttermore.

But Hargrove also suffered a minor left knee injury that resulted in McDaniel shifting from receiver to the backfield. Hargrove, Ohio’s Mr. Football runner-up this season, finishes his Rams career with more than 7,000 rushing yards and 100 touchdowns.

“It’s a bittersweet moment,” he said. “I’m still happy we’re 15-0, but I’m going to miss it. I love Ram Nation.”

Tri-Valley knocked out state powers Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary – which they had lost to in the season opener – and two-time defending D-IV state champ Columbus Bishop Hartley the previous two weeks and showed why.

Quarterback Andrew Newsom completed 11 of 19 passes for 221 yards and two touchdowns. And he was just as lethal running, going for 149 yards, which included a stunning 99-yard TD dash after Trotwood appeared to have Tri-Valley pinned for a second-quarter safety.

McDaniel had 92 yards rushing and another 93 return yards. Stephens-Peppers completed six passes for 115 yards.

Newsom completed several passes the moved the Scotties from midfield to 1st-and-goal at the Trotwood 7 with 21 seconds remaining. Tri-Valley had to score and add a two-point conversion to force overtime. But Nelloms’ pick – his first of the season – ended that threat.

He raced nearly to midfield and was pushed out of bounds and into the Rams’ sideline. His teammates swarmed him and the Rams’ celebration was on.

“It wasn’t the prettiest game, but at the end we finally did what we had to do to win the game,” Trotwood coach Jeff Graham said. “We knew this was going to be a fight.”

It’s the fourth state football championship for Greater Western Ohio Conference teams. Besides Trotwood’s two titles, Piqua won a D-II title in 2006 and Lebanon also won a D-II championship in 1998, although the Warriors were a Fort Ancient Valley Conference member then. Wayne and Centerville also have played for D-I football state titles.

Trotwood was on a state-title mission ever since the Rams were crushed 30-0 by Akron Archbishop Hoban in last year’s D-III state title game. Their season-long cry was “Finish!”

“It’s an amazing feeling,” Hargrove said. “All the hard work we put in all year long, it’s finally paid off.”

»FACEBOOK: For more high school sports you should like Marc Pendleton

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Reds top prospect will miss rest of season

Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 11:05 AM

2018 Cincinnati Reds: 10 things to know

Cincinnati Reds top prospect Nick Senzel will miss the rest of the season after tearing a tendon in his right index finger Friday, the Reds announced Saturday.

Senzel, who will undergo surgery Tuesday, addressed the injury in a message posted to Twitter and Instagram.

» PROSPECT WATCH: How the top Reds minor leaguers are doing

“I would like to start by thanking my family, friends and teammates and fans for the support over the last 24 hours,” Senzel wrote. “It had been a challenging season from the start, but it has made me grow. The news this morning was very unfortunate, but I was prepared mentally on how to handle it whether good or bad. I had a goal this season, and it was to make it to the big leagues and help the Cincinnati Reds win ballgames. Although I did not fulfill this goal, it will not stop my drive to continue to fulfill my dream. The support that has been shown is what makes me blessed and thankful for everything in my life, inside and outside of baseball. It’s what makes me keep going, and make no mistake, I will be back stronger than ever. Love u all Reds nation.”

» RELATED: Reds win fifth straight

The No. 2 overall pick in the 2016 draft, Senzel was hitting .310 with six home runs and 25 RBIs with Triple-A Louisville.

Senzel’s 2017 season was also cut short as he battled vertigo late last season while playing for Double-A Pensacola. The same condition cost him time this spring.

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Dayton draft drought ends as Antetokounmpo chosen with last pick

Published: Friday, June 22, 2018 @ 12:04 AM

Who is Kostas Antetokounmpo? Facts about the former Dayton forward

A 28-year drought ended for the Dayton Flyers on Thursday as the Dallas Mavericks selected Kostas Antetokounmpo, a 6-foot-10 forward, with the 30th and last pick of the second round in the NBA Draft at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. He was the 60th player chosen overall.

» FIVE THINGS TO KNOW: Who is Kostas Antetokounmpo?

Antetokounmpo, 20, is the first Dayton player drafted since Negele Knight in 1990. The Phoenix Suns drafted Knight in the second round.

Dayton had 38 players drafted between 1952 and 1990. Twenty Flyers have played in the NBA, including four undrafted players (Chris Wright, Chris Johnson, Brian Roberts and Charles Cooke) since Knight was drafted.

Antetokounmpo seeks to become the third member of his family to play in the NBA. His brother Giannis Antetokounmpo, 23, was the 15th pick of the first round in 2013 and now is one of the top players in the league. He averaged 26.9 points per game last season for the Milwaukee Bucks.

Thanasis Antetokounmpo, 25, played in two games in 2016 for the New York Knicks. He was a second-round pick in 2014.

» KOSTAS STORIES: High ceilingTrying to live up to his name | A star in victory over Saint Louis

The 6-foot-10 Antetokounmpo committed to Dayton in June 2016 but sat out his freshman season as a NCAA partial qualifier.

Antetokounmpo debuted in the 2017-18 season and averaged 5.2 points and 2.9 rebounds in 15.1 minutes per game. He led the team with 31 blocks. He appeared in 29 of 32 games and started six games.

» RELATED: Grant talks about Dayton’s offseason | Knight last Dayton player to be drafted

In late March, weeks after the end of a 14-17 season, Antetokounmpo left the program and the university.

“His mindset was he wants to test the waters to see what his prospects are for being in the NBA,” Dayton coach Anthony Grant said. “And he felt it was in his best interest to leave school to do it. I’m not trying to judge his decision in terms of basketball, but the timing of his leaving did surprise me with just six weeks of school left.”

     

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Blue Jays reliever Roberto Osuna suspended 75 games 

Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 5:11 AM

Toronto Blue Jays reliever Roberto Osuna was suspended for 75 games.
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images
Toronto Blue Jays reliever Roberto Osuna was suspended for 75 games.(Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

Toronto Blue Jays closer Roberto Osuna was suspended for 75 games without pay, retroactive to May 8, for violating baseball’s domestic violence policy, the New York Daily News reported.

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Osuna, 23, an All-Star in 2017, was charged with one count of assault in Toronto and was put on administrative leave, the Daily News reported. The right-hander has not pitched since May 6. 

Osuna has nine saves and a 2.93 ERA in 15 games.

The suspension will cost Osuna $2.54 million of his annual $5.3 million salary, the Daily News reported. He will participate in an evaluation and treatment program, which is confidential and supervised by the joint policy board of Major League Baseball and the players’ association, the newspaper reported.

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Sorting through some 2026 World Cup questions

Published: Saturday, June 23, 2018 @ 2:41 AM

Xherdan Shaqiri of Switzerland shoots past Dusko Tosic of Serbia during the Friday's match at the World Cup in Russia.
Clive Rose/Getty Images
Xherdan Shaqiri of Switzerland shoots past Dusko Tosic of Serbia during the Friday's match at the World Cup in Russia.(Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Soccer’s international governing body, FIFA, voted last week to play the 2026 World Cup in the United States, Mexico and Canada.

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And while the announcement raised much excitement in North American soccer circles, it left questions that won’t be fully answered for years. Here are some of them.

WHICH CITIES WILL HOST MATCHES? 

Sixteen North American cities -- at least 10 in the United States -- will be chosen by FIFA in 2020 or 2021 to host matches. Those 16 choices will come from 23 “candidate cities.” FIFA will have negotiating leverage in whittling the number.

The U.S. host cities will be chosen from among these candidates: Atlanta (Mercedes-Benz Stadium), Baltimore (M&T Bank Stadium), Boston (Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts), Cincinnati (Paul Brown Stadium), Dallas (AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas), Denver (Broncos Stadium at Mile High), Houston (NRG Stadium), Kansas City (Arrowhead Stadium), Los Angeles (Rose Bowl Stadium in Pasadena, California, or the new NFL stadium under construction), Miami (Hard Rock Stadium), Nashville (Nissan Stadium), New York (MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey), Orlando, Florida (Camping World Stadium), Philadelphia (Lincoln Financial Field), San Francisco (Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California), Seattle (CenturyLink Field) and Washington (FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland.) 

In addition, current plans call for matches to be played in up to three cities in Canada (Edmonton, Montreal and Toronto) and up to three in Mexico (Guadalajara, Mexico City and Monterrey). 

"We are blessed with 23 really world-class stadiums -- some iconic, some brand-new cutting-edge and everything in between," U.S. Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro said. "I think it will be a very difficult decision to make … when we have to determine the final 16 cities. But it’s a high-class problem.”

Under current plans, 60 matches will be played in the U.S., 10 in Canada and 10 in Mexico. 

WHAT IS THE COST OF HOSTING? 

It helps that no new stadiums will have to be built in North America for the event, but the costs of security, transportation and other requirements will be considerable in any host city. 

“We’ve been told during the bid process it is on the level of (hosting) a Super Bowl,” said Dan Corso, president of the Atlanta Sports Council and chairman of Atlanta’s World Cup committee. “We have not gotten into too much detail on that yet, but we will during this next phase of the process.” 

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