Lakewood High School
Bulldogs top Rangers, advance to district tourney|
Through the first five innings, it was anybody\'s ballgame as Lakewood and Olmsted Falls battled for a Division I sectional championship.
With one swing of the bat, Collin Romel changed all that.
Romel belted a grand slam home run in the top of the sixth inning, his third hit of the game, to power the visiting Bulldogs to a 9-2 win over the Rangers. It was his second home run of the season and pushed his RBI total to 22 on the season.
Nate Krogh added a 2-run double and...
Jaguars claim runner-up honors at Ranger Relays|
The St. Joseph Academy Jaguars finished a strong second, while the Rocky River girls and boys squads both took third place honors at the Ranger Relays Friday night at First Federal Lakewood Stadium.
SJA scored 106 team points, but got edged out by North Royalton\'s 112 for the championship. The Rocky River girls scored 77 points, while Bay (57) and Westlake (55) were fourth and fifth, respectively.
The Rocky River boys scored 69 team points to finish behind runner-up North Royalton\'s 86. Berea-Midpark dominated the meet and won the boys team title going away with 142 points.
SJA took the shot put and discus relays. In the shot put, the Jaguars went one-two-three in their flight behind senior Brittany Morrison (38-02)...,
Demons do it with defense in DI win over Rangers|
It was an 11-minute stretch of tournament basketball that neither the Lakewood Rangers or Westlake Demons will soon forget.
The Monday night memories will no doubt be fond ones for the Demons.
Westlake, clinging to a two-point halftime lead, held the high-powered Rangers to just two points over the first 11:41 of the second half. The Demons combined that with a string of 3-point shots and came away with a hard-fought 42-36 win over Lakewood in a Division I district semifinal game at the Elyria Catholic Coliseum.
The Demons, now 20-5, advance to Friday night\'s district championship game at EC. They\'ll face Westshore rival Magnificat, which defeated Medina, 47-27, in Monday\'s second semifinal matchup...
Rangers take care of business in win over Patriots|
Throughout Ohio, the OHSAA girls basketball tournament officially got underway on Saturday afternoon.
Teams went into their second seasons with a wide variety of goals, ranging from winning a state championship to working toward the future. In Lakewood\'s opening round game with Valley Forge, the Rangers faced a Patriots squad that had won just four games during the regular season.
Playing the game with an eye fixed on future games might have been an easy thing to do for Lakewood. But as the game got underway, the Rangers instead went to work.
An intense defense, forcing numbers turnovers, smoothed over some early rough moments on offense as the Rangers rolled past Valley Forge, 62-28, at Harding Middle School gym.
With the win, Lakewood advanced...
River rolls Rangers, helps cause logjam atop WSC|
After a slow start to their 2014-15 season, the Rocky River Pirates will have a tough time winning the final West Shore Conference championship.
But if Friday night\'s game with WSC contender Lakewood was any indication, they could have a big say in who does.
The Pirates jumped out to a big lead early and pulled off a 12-0 run in the third quarter to stun the Rangers, 71-60, on a night that threw the WSC race into a logjam. River\'s second conference win played a big part in sending the conference race into a four-way tie.
Bay and Lakewood, which came into Friday night tied for first, both lost. Bay, which had won...
Lakewood spoils the party with a win over Pirates|
It was to have been a festive occasion at Rocky River High School Friday night.
A Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place honoring some of the school\'s great student athletes from the past, and a special Pirate post-game party was planned.
On the basketball court, it was a rare girls-boys varsity doubleheader. The Lady Pirates, in the role of \"opening act\" for the evening, were hoping to avenge an early-season 56-52 loss to Lakewood and get the party started on the right foot.
The home team could accomplish neither as the Rangers made it a two-game sweep this winter in West Shore Conference action over Rocky River, 47-35, in front of a relatively large crowd inside the Pirates\' Cove.
\"When you play Rocky River, everything regarding...
Aggressive Rangers send Eagles to their first loss|
The North Olmsted Eagles were off to one of their best starts in recent memory. They took a 7-0 record into Saturday night\'s game with Lakewood and were looking for that streak to continue.
The Rangers, however, were waiting in ambush.
In the first half, Lakewood\'s aggressiveness on defense and under the boards seemed to catch the Eagles off guard. Then a 25-point outburst in the third quarter put the Rangers in control as they went on to score a 78-61 win over North Olmsted before a large crowd at Harding Middle School gym.
Lakewood, paying special attention defensively to the Eagle duo of Andy Lucien and Matt Starcovic, jumped out to a 6-0 lead. The Rangers held North Olmsted scoreless for the game\'s first two and a half minutes before Kyle Wapshott broke the ice with a 3-pointer...
Rangers, Rockets battle to draw in holiday tourney|
It was a busy weekend for the Bay and Lakewood hockey teams as they participated in the Avon Holiday Classic.
The Rockets and the Rangers, along weigh North Olmsted, Olmsted Falls and Avon, all participated in the weekend tournament at the North Olmsted Recreation Center. Bay, which entered the tournament at 9-3, opened with a 5-1 loss to Avon before taking on Lakewood Friday afternoon. The Rockets trailed early, 1-0, before tying things up...
Sharp shooting Rockets rattle Rangers for first win|
In their first three games of the season, the Bay Rockets found victory to be elusive in a number of different ways.
But on Friday night, all facets of their game seemed to all come together against the Lakewood Rangers.
The Rockets jumped on Lakewood early with a 20-4 run to start the game. In the meantime, the defense put the clamps on the Rangers\' potent offense just enough to come away with a 96-80 win over the defending West Shore Conference champs at The Launch Pad...
Titans start out fast, hold on late to topple Rangers|
The first season of the Berea-Midpark girls basketball program was one to remember. The Titans won the 2013-14 Southwestern Conference championship and advanced to the Sweet 16 in the Division I tournament.
Lakewood had a solid year as well as the Rangers won their second-straight West Shore Conference crown. They also fared well in tournament play, advancing all the way to the Medina District title game.
What would be in store for the two teams in 2014-15? Fans from both schools got a good look Wednesday night at Bob Purdy Gymnasium.
Berea-Midpark, playing in its season opener...
Lakewood falls in the 'Battle of the Rangers' finale|
In Friday night\'s Battle of the Rangers, neither Lakewood or North Ridgeville had a shot at an OHSAA playoff berth. A light, steady rain fell as the two teams prepared to close out the 2014 season and their final chapter in the history of the West Shore Conference.
Lakewood, in the midst of a 6-game losing streak, was looking to end its season on a high note. Down 31-17, the Rangers drove all the way down to the North Ridgeville 5-yard line as the final seconds of the first half ticked away.
A touchdown would substantially close the gap, with the visitors getting the second half kickoff.
But as it has been all season, it was another case of so close, yet so far for the Rangers. The drive stalled, and North Ridgeville put the first touchdown on the board in the second half on its way to a 45-26 win. Friday night\'s game also featured the final edition of the DeMario McCall Show for 2014...
Momentum shift hurts Rangers in loss to Midview|
Lakewood head coach Mike Ribar probably couldn\'t have asked for a better first half Friday night against Midview.
The Rangers trailed the West Shore Conference champions by two scores at halftime, but they had held the offensive powerhouse Middies to 14 points. And, they were right in the game with the ball to start the second half.
However, things quickly unraveled with a failed fourth down conversion in their own territory. The Rangers couldn\'t recover during their 37-7 loss on Senior Night at First Federal Lakewood Stadium.
The Middies, ranked eighth in the latest Division II state poll, improved to a perfect 9-0. That being said, Ribar knew his team, which was in the midst of a five-game losing streak, had its hands full...
Special teams play sparks Bees' win over Rangers|
In their Friday night matchup at First Federal Lakewood Stadium, the Brecksville-Broadview Heights and Lakewood football teams both got a lesson on just how important special teams are.
Chances are the Bees enjoyed that class a bit more than the Rangers.
After taking an early 7-3, Brecksville took advantage of two costly Lakewood kicking game miscues in the first half. That ignited a 28-0 run that led to a 34-18 win over the Rangers and kept their Division II playoff hopes within reach.
\"Our special teams have been one of those things that have kept us in games this year,\" lamented Lakewood head coach Mike Ribar, whose team fell to 2-6 on the season. \"You just can\'t have mistakes like that against good teams.
\"When those two plays happened, they jumped on it...
Rangers fall short again as Panthers prevail, 41-31|
Ground Hogs Day. Deja vu. Recurring nightmares.
These days, they\'re all the same for the Lakewood Rangers football team.
For the sixth time in seven games, the Rangers found themselves in a position to win the football game. But for the third-straight game, they fell short as Elyria Catholic made some big plays in the final minutes Friday night to beat Lakewood, 41-31, in a West Shore Conference game at Knights of Columbus Field.
\"A play here, and a play there. That\'s the difference between us winning and losing...
Pirates edge Rangers in final Battle for the Bridge|
In Friday night\'s final Battle for the Bridge, both Rocky River and host Lakewood came into the game needing a win.
Both teams were coming off back-to-back West Shore Conference losses, and both were looking at this neighborhood rivalry game to point them back in the right direction. As the wind and rain picked up, it was obvious the game would transform into a defensive struggle.
Ironically, that trend wound up favoring the Pirates.
Rocky River, which had surrendered a total of 138 points in their previous two games, was able to hold Lakewood\'s running attack in check just enough to come away with a 14-12 win at First Federal Lakewood Stadium. The win raised the Pirates\' record to 4-2 on the season and gave them final bragging rights in the series...
Football '14: Rockets roar into state playoff chase|
Don\'t look now, but the Bay Rockets are in a playoff chase.
With half the season in the books, Bay is tied for first with Perry in Division IV, Region 11 in this week\'s OHSAA Computer Ratings. The 4-1 Rockets have been bolstered by wins over Division II Westlake and Division I Lakewood in the first half of the season.
They\'ll travel to North Olmsted, another Division II school, this Friday night. A bevy of computer points will be on the line, and a win over the 3-2 Eagles would go a long way in getting Bay into postseason play.
Bay and Perry each have a computer point average of 8.75, with Jefferson Area close behind with an 8.45. In fourth is Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin at 8.2, with Mantua Crestwood in fifth at 7.9. The top eight teams at the end of the regular season qualify for the tournament...
Rockets save their Best for last to topple Rangers|
For the better part of three quarters, the Lakewood defense had shut down Bay\'s leading rusher, Nick Best. As a result, the Rangers held a slim 14-10 lead heading into the game\'s final 12 minutes.
But as it turned out, the junior running back saved his \"best\" for last.
Best churned out 130 back-breaking yards in the final quarter, including a 33-yard touchdown run that gave the Rockets a 17-14 win Friday night in a West Shore Conference game at Memorial Stadium.
With the win, the Rockets moved to 4-1 overall, quadrupling their win total...
Rockets rounding into form with win over Rangers|
Just about this time last season, the Bay volleyball team began putting things together and played some of its best volleyball down the stretch.
Don\'t look now, but here come the Rockets again.
Bay, despite a rough spot to end the third set, used a strong defense and a diverse offensive attack to down visiting Lakewood 25-17, 25-23, 23-25, 25-15 Tuesday night at The Launch Pad. The win evened the Rockets\' season record at 7-7 and moved them past the Rangers in the West Shore Conference standings at 4-5.
\"For whatever reason, the second time through the conference is where we start to shine,\" said Bay head coach Katie McCarthy. \"We\'re really jelling together as a team and working out...
Fast start gets Avon past Rangers in WSC opener|
This wasn\'t exactly what Lakewood had in mind to start West Shore Conference play.
The Rangers opened league play Friday night, but couldn\'t keep up with Avon\'s high-powered offense during a 35-0 loss at Joe Firment Stadium.
The host Eagles, unbeaten on the season at 4-0, jumped out to a 21-0 first quarter lead and never looked back.
\"Yeah, it was tough,\" admitted Lakewood head coach Michael Ribar, whose team fell to 2-2 on the season. \"We came out, and we knew what we had to do...
Rangers dominate in convincing win over Invaders|
Lakewood football fans hadn\'t seen a game like this in quite awhile.
Their Rangers dominated from start to finish Friday night, shutting out Normandy, 35-0, at First Federal Lakewood Stadium in nonconference action.
First year head coach Michael Ribar\'s squad jumped out to a 21-0 first quarter lead and didn\'t give the visiting Invaders much of a chance the rest of the way. After a disappointing 1-9 season last season, a convincing 35-point victory and 2-1 record is certainly a welcomed and refreshing sight, according to Ribar. \"We were...
Fourth quarter rally pushes Eagles past Lakewood|
With the momentum turned in their favor, the Lakewood Rangers had a chance to salt the game away as the third quarter clock ticked away.
A goal line stand to close out the first half, along with 12 unanswered points in the third quarter, had the home team up 25-21. A second-straight win to open the 2014 season was within the Rangers\' grasp.
North Olmsted, however, had other ideas.
The Eagles, behind the 191-yard rushing effort of sophomore Joshua Hofstetler, came up...
Bay cranks up its offense in WSC win at Lakewood|
For the first 12-plus minutes of the match, the undefeated Lakewood girls soccer team had visiting Bay on the ropes. The Rangers\' offense was controlling the ball and putting pressure on the young Rocket defense.
And when junior forward Mallory Shaw was fouled in the box, her ensuing penalty kick had the home team sporting an early 1-0 lead.
But less than eight minutes later, Bay\'s speed up front struck like lightning. The Rockets scored a pair of quick-strike goals in the first half and tacked on another early in the second in a 4-2 West Shore Conference win Wednesday night at First Federal Lakewood Stadium.
It was the first win of the season for Bay...
Rangers hold on to defeat Parma in Ribar's debut|
The thrill of victory and the agony of defeat. Parma had a glimpse of both in just a matter of seconds.
After scoring a touchdown to potentially tie Lakewood in the final minute of their season opener, the Redmen had their extra point blocked and their hopes dashed. The visiting Rangers pulled out a nailbiter and held on for a 14-13 road win over Parma Friday night at Byers Field in Mike Ribar\'s head coaching debut.
Ribar could barely get his thoughts together and digest the feeling of his first win as head football coach.
\"The whole summer all we\'ve been saying is that we want to compete...
Ribar brings 'The Ranger Way' back to Lakewood|
As June turned into July, all was quiet at First Federal Lakewood Stadium.
But it was anything but quiet inside the world of new Lakewood head football coach Mike Ribar.
The former Lakewood quarterback, who led the Rangers to their second of back-to-back Lake Erie League championships 30 years ago, had come full circle. He was now the man in charge of bringing some of that luster back to a program that had fallen on hard times.
\"I still don\'t think it\'s hit me yet...