by D. Mark Mitchell
Spring sports are in full swing at OHS and OMS. In fact, the busiest time in the athletic department is spring.
Just look at this list of the OHS sports that are played during the spring: baseball, softball, girls and boys golf, girls and boys tennis, girls and boys track and boys and girls soccer. OMS offers baseball, softball, track and golf.
As you can see from the number of teams that play during the spring, it is a busy time for both principals, Dr. Keith York (OMS) and Dr. Ferrell Seymore, (OHS) and both Athletic Directors, John Wilson (OMS) and Brian Blackmon (OHS). The support staff at both schools stay extra busy during this time.
Every time a game, match or other event is scheduled in Opelika, an administrator has to be present. Someone has to take up money and tickets. The middle school teams have to be taken by bus to West Ridge for softball and baseball everyday. The golf team has to go to Indian Pines while the track team practices at the middle school.
There are other things that have to be done in order for the games to played. The city of Opelika and ESG must make sure the two baseball and two softball fields are ready for games. The dirt on the fields the dirt has to be smooth, grass has to be cut and the fields marked with paint (foul lines, batter’s box, etc.). We are blessed to have so many sports for our young people to play.
Dr. Mark Neighbors has been the superintendent during the worst of economic times. Dr. Neighbors, Ken Burton and Dr. Rickett along with our school board have been forced to make tough decisions because of the shortage of funding. So far, this group has been able to make the necessary decisions without cutting activities, such as sports.
I just wanted to thank the school board members, Dr. Mark Neighbors and his staff, the athletic directors and principals and Mayor Gary Fuller and the City Council for supporting both education and athletics in our school system.
The Opelika All-Sports Booster Club and its Corporate Sponsor Program have also helped our athletic programs to continue to exist by helping each sport financially. Last week the rain forced many sports to cancel the games or matches.
The OHS girls (4-0) and boys (2-1) tennis teams defeated Smiths Station 9-0 and 8-1.
The girls won every match. Meagan Wade, Meg Larson, Anna Lazenby, April Wade, Ashley Robertson, Kenadie Wilkerson and Sam Herring each won singles matches.
Meagan Wade/Larsen and Robertson/Carpenter won doubles matches.
The boys were led by Michael Bizilia, Winston Smith T, David Bazilia, Scott Carpenter, Ross Herring and J.T. Barron, who each won singles matches. Micheal Bazilia/ Winston Smith T and David Bazilia/ Scott Carpenter won doubles matches.
The OHS girls earned another win over Montgomery-Catholic, 9-0.
Meagan Wade, Meg Larsen, Anna Lazenby, April Wade, Ashley Robertson and Kelcie Carpenter won singles matches.
The OHS baseball team (3-4) defeated Dadeville 14-7. Justin Traylor pitched five innings to earn the win. Trevor Pigg pitched the final two innings, retiring six batters.
Garrett Brown went five for five at the plate with two singles, two doubles, a triple and scored five runs. Duncan Asbury added three hits while Tyler Jones, Quin Snipes and B.J. White added two hits apiece.
Opelika will host Valley in a double header at Bulldog Park today, March 9, at 4 p.m.
The OMS baseball team defeated Prattville 4-1 and 9-0 at West Ridge Park this week.
Tanner Blatt earned the win in game one while Chris Manley won game two.
The OHS varsity girls soccer team earned the team’s first ever victory this week, beating Central in a shootout, 3-2.
Shelly Campbell, Ashley Black and Savannah Jacobs scored goals. Sara Sosebee was the goalkeeper for the Lady Bulldogs.
Next Weeks Schedule
Tennis vs. Brookstone at home March 13 at 2:30 p.m., B & G. Tennis vs. Auburn on the road March 15 at 3 p.m.
Girls golf will play at Callaway Gardens March 12 and at Lakewood March 15. Boys golf will be at Callaway Gardens March 12.
Soccer will host Dothan today, March 9, girls at 5 p.m. and boys at 7 p.m. Softball will be in Wetumpka for a tournament March 9 through 10. Softball vs. Eufaula March 12 at 4:30 p.m. Baseball will host Valley today at 4 p.m. for two games. Baseball vs. Wetumpka on March 10 at 4 p.m., two games. Jayvee baseball will host Beaureguard and Central on March 10 at 1 p.m.
Opelika Dixie Boys
The Opelika Dixie Boys Baseball League is now holding registration through March 29 at the Opelika Sportsplex. The league is for anyone ages 13 or 14. The cost is $35. You can register from 8 a.m. through 6 p.m. Monday-Friday. If you have questions call Missy Martin or D.Mark Mitchell (334) 705-5560
The State Racquetball tournament was held the last weekend in February, in Tuscaloosa, with several Sportsplex players participating.
Opelika’s Leh and Eron Bass finished first in the Men’s B doubles.Leh and Jon Bass finished second in Men’s C doubles. Bruce Ward finished second in Men’s C singles. Leh Bass finished second in Men’s 60 singles.
And, last but not least, the group’s resident “pro,” Jim Hawkins, finished second in the Men’s 50 singles.
Congratulations to these graduate athletes!