Braves’ Cross Country to host SWOC Championships
OXFORD — Talawanda will host the Southwest Ohio Conference cross country championships on Saturday, Oct. 15. The girls’ high school race will start at 9:30 a.m. with the boys’ race to follow at 10:15 a.m.
“We are happy and excited to host the SWOC for the first time this year,” Talawanda coach Paul Stiver said. “Several of the SWOC teams came to our first-time invitational earlier in the year to get on the course. It is flat and should offer up much faster times than earlier in the year when the temperatures were in the 90s.”
On the boys’ side, the Braves’ Connor Schlade, David Krausher and Josh Ferneding have three of the top 15 times recorded this season (according to www.swocsports.com). Little Miami has a strong group as well, with the top two times of the year, Paul Dawson and Ryan Honkomp — along with five other runners in the top 20.
The Lady Braves also look to fare well at the meet. Lizzie Sawdai, Ashley Baxter, Jazz Bennett and Nina Stahr are among the top ten times recorded this season.
“Ross is the heavy girls favorite. Little Miami and Ross are the favorites in the boys race.” Stiver added.
“We hope to be top 3 in both races. We feel like we are peaking at the right time. Both teams have put up some personal records in the last few weeks so we believe we are ready.”
“Our runners always get up for the SWOC Meet and perform well so we don’t expect anything different this year. Lizzie Sawdai, a senior, has been our top runner all year and should lead us in the girls race. Connor Schlade (Junior) and David Kraushar (Sophomore) have been our top boys all year.”
“We are also very excited about our middle school teams. Our participation is way up this year and we have some great talent. We are hoping for both teams to be in the top two.”
The Braves will compete at the District meet on Saturday, Oct. 22, at Cedarville University. The varsity girls’ race is set for 10 a.m., with the boys to follow at 10:45 a.m. The top seven finishers will advance to the Regionals in Troy on October 29.
The SWOC will also include middle school races — girls at 11:15 a.m. and boys at 11:45 a.m.
Volleyball team looking for SWOC title
The top spot in the SWOC volleyball standings came down to the final week, and then the final game as the Talawanda Lady Braves defeated Northwest on Tuesday, Oct. 11. The win upped the Lady Braves record to 10-1 in Southwest Ohio Conference play with one game to play.
Talawanda defeated Northwest in three games (25+14, 25-17, 25-11).
THS entered the week with a half-game advantage over Little Miami, who also won on Tuesday. Little Miami defeated Edgewood to finish their SWOC schedule at 10-2.
Talawanda was scheduled to play their final conference match on Thursday against Ross with a chance to win the title outright. (Results from Thursday’s match will be available in the Wednesday, Oct. 19 edition of The Register-Herald.)
Talawanda entered Thursday’s game at 18-3 overall.
Braves’ seniors to play final home game
It does not get any easier for the Talawanda Braves’ football team as they take on yet another opponent unbeaten in Southwest Ohio Conference play. In their final home game of the season, the Braves will host Edgewood (5-2 overall, 3-0 SWOC).
Talawanda travelled to Mount Healthy last week, playing an Owls team that had not been beaten through six games. The Braves were defeated 35-10. On Friday, the Braves seniors will play in front of the home crowd for the final time against a good Edgewood team.
“This group of seniors is a very special group for me,” coach J.D. Vonderheide commented. “They have been a part of some of the highest moments — playoffs in 2014 — and some tough moments but through it all they have remained positive and worked extremely hard.
“Their last game at home for them will be special for many reasons, but it will be a huge game for us. It is their last game at home against a rival in Edgewood. It will be a challenge because Edgewood is a good team, but I know this group of seniors will be up for the challenge and will play their Hearts out on Friday night.
“Great moments are born out of great opportunities and that is what will have on Senior Night. I love each and every one of them like they are my own and want nothing more than to help them finish off their senior year the right way with some victories.”
Edgewood is 5-2 overall. Their losses came against St. Francis DeSales and Franklin, two teams that are unbeaten this season. They have scored 40+ points in four of their five wins.
The Talawanda boys’ soccer team defeated Western Hills, 3-0, on Tuesday, Oct. 11. The win pushed their overall record to 9-4-1 with their regular season finale scheduled for Thursday (results not available).
Going into the match on Thursday against Ross, the Braves were 3-0-1 in conference play, just ahead of Ross, 3-1, in the standings. The SWOC season finale would determine the top spot in the conference. (Results of that match will be available in the Wednesday, Oct. 19, edition of The Register-Herald.)
(Some information provided by the Southwest Ohio Conference website)