Football squad snaps streak
Whitehall-Yearling's Shaquille Alexander (left) tries to get past Central Crossing's Kyle Farris during the third quarter of the Rams' 40-7 win Aug. 24 at Bexley. Buy This Photo
Whitehall-Yearling High School football coach Jake Kuhner was pleased to see his team's dedication pay off with a win.
Senior Isaiah Turner rushed for 154 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Rams to a 24-6 victory over Lakewood on Oct. 5 at Bexley.
Whitehall snapped a five-game losing streak and improved to 2-5 overall and 1-3 in the MSL-Ohio Division. The Rams opened the season with a 40-7 win over Central Crossing on Aug. 24.
"The kids were pretty focused all week," Kuhner said. "We actually had a great week of putting work in. The kids are getting there and I'm glad they tasted a little bit of victory. We haven't had one since our first game and this is good for them, especially going into the last three games of the season."
Lakewood fell to 1-6 overall and 0-4 in the league.
Turner had touchdown runs of 63 and 1 yard, and junior Shaquille Alexander added a 23-yard touchdown run.
"We have four guys that we could put in the backfield," Kuhner said. "They're all shifty. We have two big boys (Alexander and Turner) and two little guys (Paulus Thomas and Barry Upchurch)."
Whitehall will face Newark Catholic on Friday, Oct. 12, at Gahanna.
Last season, Newark Catholic defeated the Rams 21-3.
The Green Wave is 6-1 overall and first in the league at 4-0. Columbus Academy, Granville and Licking Valley are tied for second at 3-1.
"Newark Catholic is good. They're a tough team," Kuhner said. "They have a good running back (Kevin Bourne), good quarterback (Chayce Crouch) and, like always, they're a real disciplined team offensively and defensively."
Toure boosting boys soccer team
The boys soccer team had some success in preparation for the Division II district tournament, as it defeated Licking Valley 7-1 on Oct. 1.
Senior forward Mohamed Toure, who also is the kicker on the football team, scored three goals.
Toure, who plays soccer at the club level, recently joined the high school team. He scored four goals in a 5-2 win over Wellington on Sept. 24.
"I knew he was going to help out right away because I'd seen him play in practice," coach Dan Ensign said of Toure. "He was with us for a little bit in preseason and I knew his past club experience."
Ensign said Toure didn't join the team until late in the season because of other commitments.
Ensign, who is in his first season, has seen improvement in the Rams as the season has progressed.
"Our ability to move the soccer ball has increased and our defense has been getting better in terms of efficiency against teams at our level," Ensign said. "They have definitely progressed."
Tennis team closes season
The girls tennis team concluded its season by competing in the Division II sectional Oct. 4 at Columbus Academy.
Senior Samantha Gogol opened with a 6-0, 6-0 win over Fisher Catholic's Julia Taylor before losing to second-seeded Charlotte Purnode of Granville 6-0, 6-0.
In doubles, Courtney Price and Angela Li won their first-round match 6-1, 6-0 before losing to top-seeded Andrea Ballinger and Hannah Wexner of Academy 6-0, 6-0 in the second round.
Zi Wong and Claudia Fuentes in singles and Manalee Patel and Ariana Oldman in doubles lost their first-round matches.
The top four finishers in singles and doubles advanced to district Friday, Oct. 12, and Saturday, Oct. 13, at Columbus School for Girls.
The Rams finished 3-12 overall and 0-5 in the MSL-Cardinal/Ohio.
Whitehall finished sixth (1 point) in the MSL-Cardinal/Ohio tournament Sept. 22 behind host Academy (45), Bexley (34), Granville (21), Grandview (18) and Fisher Catholic (4).
"These girls were fantastic to coach," coach Chris Kondracke said. "They represented the Whitehall schools and community very well. The school, community and each girl's parents should be very proud of these wonderful kids."
The Rams will lose Gogol and Jessica Butler to graduation.
"Both will be greatly missed next year and they will be very successful in life," Kondracke said.