OHS Claims Several Area Titles

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ON THE MARK
D. MARK MITCHELL

Four Opelika High School spring sport teams — varsity girls’ and boys’ soccer team, varsity softball and varsity baseball — won the Area regular season area championship last week.

SOCCER

The Lady Bulldog soccer team (11-3) beat Valley, 11-1, on senior night, capturing the Area 4 Regular Season Championship. All three seniors, Phoebe Darcey, Arizela Ambrocio and Fatima Santamaria, scored one goal apiece. Three Lady Bulldogs, Amiya Brown, Karly Phatsadavong and Scarlet Posadas, scored two goals apiece, while Ashley Hilyer and Maelee Story scored single goals.

The girls won their second game of the week by beating Smiths Station 1-0 on a goal from Brown. Posadas recorded the assist.

Opelika now advances to the second round of the playoffs, due to Montgomery High Schools not having soccer teams.

Opelika’s varsity boys soccer team (8-4-1) won the Area 4 Regular Season Championship after beating Valley, 9-0, at the W. James Samford Soccer Complex. George Meyers, Moe Forbes and Dexter Graham scored two goals apiece. Three players scored single goals: Charlie McCullough, Said Rujana and Nathan Faison. Assist were from Luke Roberts (two), Faison (two), Rujana (two), Meyers and McCullough.

The Dogs lost at Smiths Station, 0-2, last Thursday on the road to end the week.

JV GIRLS SOCCER

The OHS girls’ JV soccer team beat Central, 3-1, last week. The Lady JV Dogs received goals from Gabi Ramirez, Collier Bradshaw and Maricele Cruz. Penelope Posadas assisted in all three goals.

BASEBALL

The Opelika Bulldog Baseball team (18-8) won its second straight regular season area championship after beating Valley in a two-game sweep last week.

Game one of the two game series was at Crestview Park in Fairfax last Tuesday. Opelika scored five runs in the top of the first inning, including a grand slam from JD Chase. Chase added two more hits to finish with three hits, four RBI and a run scored. Jackson Harris, Harrison Long, Taylor Fields and Kydyian Ligon added hits for OHS.

JT McArdle continued to dominate on the mound, pitching a complete game, seven innings. The senior allowed three runs on seven hits, striking out seven Ram batters to earn the win.

Two days later, the Bulldogs thumped the Rams, 16-2, in a five inning mercy rule game at Bulldog Park. OHS scored eight runs in the first inning, six runs in the third and two runs in the fourth behind 12 hits from the Dogs. Jake Smith led at the plate with three hits; Jackson Harris and Harrison Long recorded two hits; Brantley Davis, Paul Goodman, JD Chase, Bryce Speakman and Jackson Kilcreas recorded one hit apiece.

Starting pitcher Kydyian Ligon allowed two runs on six hits over three innings. Killcreas pitched two innings, allowing no runs, no hits and recording three strikeouts.

Opelika will host Stanhope Elmore Friday in the first round of the AHSAA 6A baseball playoffs. The two teams play a best of 3 series, with two games Friday, and the ‘if” game Saturday. First pitch Friday is 4:30 p.m. for game one; game two will start 20 minutes after completion of the first game. You can listen to the Opelika/Stanhope Elmore baseball series, presented by the Orthopaedic Clinic, on WZMG FOX Sports the Game 910am, the iHeartradio app or online at foxsportsthegame.com. The broadcast starts at 4:15 p.m. on Friday, and 11:45 a.m. Saturday for the “if” game.

SOFTBALL

The Lady Bulldog Softball team (13-13-1) finished 3-1 last week, beating Russell County (13-0 and 15-1) and Dadeville (13-3), and losing 2-15 at Alabama Christian. OHS won the regular season area title for the second year in a row by sweeping Area foe RCHS.

OHS shutout out Russell County, 13-0, behind a strong pitching performance from McKay Yountz and seven hits on offense. Yountz allowed one hit while striking out 11 of the 15 batters over five innings to earn the win in the mercy rule game. Sanai Stringer and Yountz recorded two hits apiece to lead the offense. Thomas, Lee, Jones and Lyles added one hit apiece.

Opelika won game two, 15-1, over the Warriors. Jade Jones earned the win in the circle, pitching five innings, allowing one run and allowing three hits. Smith led the team at the plate with four hits; Jones added three hits; Long, Foley and Freeman added singles.

In the third game of the week, OHS beat Dadeville 13-3 on the road. The girls smacked 13 hits, including three from Thomas, two from Smith, Lee, Jones and Stringer and one from Harrelson and Myles. Sania Stringer earned the win, allowing three runs on four hits in six innings.

Opelika lost 15-2 to Alabama Christrian in Montgomery. OHS managed five hits, but recorded seven errors. Harrelson led the offense with two hits, while Thomas, Lee and Jones added hits.

The Lady Bulldog Softball team will host the area tournament at West Ridge Park, but no date has been announced. According to AHSAA rules, area tournaments are to be played between April 29-May 6.

AHSAA CENTRAL

BOARD OF CONTROL

MAKES CHANGES

The Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) held its quarterly meeting last week in Montgomery. The board voted to start playing Regions instead of Area in Soccer, Baseball and Softball. These three sports will mirror football with Region play. This mean the three sports will have more teams in the region and must finish in the top 4 to qualify for the playoffs.

The board also voted to extend the football sidelines 5 yards on each end of the field, moving the box from 20 yardline to the other 20 yardline.

In other news, Pike Liberal Arts petitioned to join the AHSAA and was approved by the board. Pike Lib will not be able to participate in the football playoffs for two seasons, but can participate in winter and fall sports.

The current president and vice president of the central board of control resigned for various reasons. President Van Phillips retired as principal at Center Point and therefore must relinquish his role on the COB. Vice-President Dr. Farrell Seymore resigned as VP due to being hired as superintendent of OCS. He will remain on the board. Seymore felt is was best to step down as VP so he can concentrate on his new duties at Opelika.

The board voted longtime member Mike Welsh as president and Jamie Chapman as vice-president.

D. Mark Mitchell is the sports director at iHeartMedia, host of “On the Mark” Fox Sports the Game 910-1310, co-chair of the Auburn-Opelika Sports Council, chairman of the Super 7 and Dixie Youth Baseball state director.

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