Category: Sports

Boys’ Lacrosse and Baseball Spotlight

Words: Shawn Kruhm 

Photos Contributed By: Darian Avery, Caleb McClatchey, and Zach Grable

On the week of April 20, Centennial celebrated their seniors on the boys’ lacrosse and baseball teams.

The Eagles highlighted baseball’s four seniors: Sean Cutick, Caleb McClatchey, Liam Wood, and Zack Steen. 

Despite the boys’ season being cut short, they are all grateful for the time they had with the team over the past four years. The senior parents brought them together one last time to have a small and safe celebration on the baseball field. 

Steen will continue his baseball career in college as he has committed to play Varsity baseball at Bloomsburg University. 

“The baseball team meant quite a bit to me,” said Steen. “We all got along well and we just had fun playing baseball together.” 

Along with the baseball team, Centennial honored the 13 seniors on the boys’ lacrosse team: Darian Avery, Connor Carpenter, Jackson Decarlo, Zach Grable, Chris Guerra, Evan Keller, David Kim, Shawn Kruhm, Jake Rower, Ty Sams, Kieran Senisi, Liam Sullivan, and Zeyu Zhong. Each senior received a decorated sign which included their name and number. 

Sams and Senisi will both be taking their talent to college as they both committed to play lacrosse for their college Varsity team. Sams will be attending Holy Cross this fall and Senisi will be attending St. Mary’s. 

“It was devastating to have the last chance to play on that field stripped away without our control,” said Sams. “The lacrosse team was one of my favorite memories from high school, if not my favorite.”

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How COVID-19 Has Affected the NCAA Recruitment Process

Words: Jeramy Stavlas

Through the midst of the pandemic that is sweeping over our country, high school athletes across the nation are worried about their futures in their respective sport. The National Collegiate Athletic Association, otherwise known as the NCAA, has taken many precautions to ensure the safety of athletes while doing what they can to continue the recruiting process.

The NCAA Division I and Division II programs are halting all in-person recruiting activity until May 31 in what they are referring to as a “dead period.” The Division III program will extend their “dead period” through June 15. However, recruits may still be contacted through video-chats and calls for all three divisions.

Another year of eligibility will be granted to NCAA spring-season athletes but not for winter sports, as the majority of their season was wrapped up before the COVID-19 outbreak. The extra year of eligibility will affect athletes in sports such as baseball, softball, lacrosse, golf, track and field, tennis, rowing, men’s volleyball, and women’s water polo.

These changes are very hard for high school spring-season athletes, as the extra year of eligibility for the college athletes can affect the recruitment of the incoming class of ‘24. As many of the seniors are returning for another year, the class of ‘24 may not have as many available spots. However, coaches and teams across the country are looking to give out more scholarships this year to make up for as much of the problem as they can. This may not guarantee that there will be a typical number of available spots on teams, but it will be increased from previous years.

Centennial senior Zack Steen, who is committed to Bloomsburg University to play baseball, believes that this change could end up benefiting younger athletes.

“I think the extra eligibility for seniors will definitely make it tougher, but in the end I feel like it’s best for me, because it’ll make me work harder to earn playing time,” expressed Steen. 

The loss in revenue from this lost spring sports season may cause complications for teams looking to give out extra scholarships next season. There is a possibility that some smaller sports programs may have to be cut, and some programs will be forced to give out fewer scholarships than usual, which could result in more walk-ons and smaller roster sizes.  

As far as it goes for high school athletes, the best way students can secure a spot on the team would be to keep in contact with the coaching staff, keep their grades up through online schooling, and of course, stay healthy.

“I have been keeping in touch with the coach on what I can do to keep preparing for next year,” stated Olivia Reese, a Centennial senior committed to Shepherd University for softball.

One thing that’s not being affected by the virus is the players’ motivation to work hard towards their respective sports. “I actually want to play more than ever,” explained Steen, motivated for next year’s season.

For updates on how the NCAA will manage through the COVID-19 breakout, visit their website at ncaa.org. They also post frequent updates on their Twitter, @NCAA.

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For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

This Week’s Senior Spotlight: Girls Lacrosse and Softball

Words: Shawn Kruhm

Photos Contributed By: Jordan Hinz, Curry Hinz and Rasa Welsh

This week, Centennial’s Senior Spotlight highlighted the girls’ lacrosse and softball teams. School Athletic Director, Jeannie Prevosto, has been posting daily spotlights on the Centennial Athletics Twitter account. 

Centennial honored softball’s seven seniors: Jordan Hinz, Esther Kim, Lauren Marcotte, Erin McGuire, Sarah Phelps, Olivia Reese, and Sarah Sopchick.

Each of the girls received their own decorated sign which included their name and pictures from their high school careers. 

Hinz, Marcotte, and Reese have all committed to play for their college Varsity team. 

Along with the softball team, Centennial celebrated the 11 seniors on the girls’ lacrosse team: Leah Alkire, Brook Anderson, Eliza Andrew, Hannah Boodin, Melissa Notti, Kristin Parisi, Carolina Pelligrini, Samantha Suhrcke, Sarah Thorman, Sarah Toth, and Rasa Welsh. Welsh and Thorman have decided to take their lacrosse careers to the next level as both girls will play Varsity lacrosse in college. 

Despite the cancellation of their final spring season, many of the girls will never forget their time together. 

“The lacrosse team was a really big part of my high school experience, and I honestly have the fondest memories from it,” said Boodin. “I am so grateful that I gained my best friends from that experience, and I will forever cherish those memories.”

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All Good Things Must Come to an End

Words: Shawn Kruhm

Photos: Adithi Soogoor

On Tuesday, March 3, the Centennial boys’ basketball team traveled to Marriotts Ridge High School for the second round of playoffs. Centennial defeated Marriotts Ridge by a final score of 79-57 in the 3A East Region semifinals. 

Despite an early 16-5 run from Marriotts Ridge, Centennial led by eight points at halftime.

The Eagles took the momentum into the third quarter and never let up. Centennial went on a 19-4 run to open up the second half. They led by as many as 24 points as they sealed the game. 

Junior Bryson Baker led the team with 25 points, followed by seniors Joey Sedlacko and Jeong Hwang who combined for 28 as the team advanced to Regionals. 

Centennial hosted Wilde Lake in the 3A East Region finals on Thursday, March 5. Despite defeating Wilde Lake twice in the regular season, Centennial was unable to win on Thursday night. The Eagles were defeated by a final score of 66-63.

“It was heartbreaking,” said Sedlacko. “We gave it our all, but unfortunately came up short.” 

Centennial fell to an early deficit that they were unable to recover from. Despite never holding the lead, they fought until the final seconds.

The Eagles were down by as many as 14 points in the fourth quarter and nearly completed a comeback. With under three minutes remaining, Wilde Lake held a 12-point lead, but Centennial began to chip away.

With less than 10 seconds left, the Eagles trailed by six points. Baker received the inbound as Sedlacko set a pick. Baker nailed a three-point shot from downtown and drew the foul. 

“I knew we were down by six so we needed a three and I knew if I could get a clean shot off I could draw a foul,” said Baker. “Luckily, my defender got caught on Joey’s screen and it gave me a clean look as I drew the contact and sunk the shot.”

Unfortunately, Baker’s efforts were not enough, as Centennial was unable to ultimately send the game into overtime. The Eagles lost by just three points as Baker and senior Brandon Bonner each finished with a team high of 15 points.

Student section leader Zach Grable said “the entire team put forth their best effort every game. It was a sad ending to a great season and I will definitely miss it next year.”

A great season for Centennial will forever leave its mark on both players and fans. 

“This team will always have a special place in my heart,” said Sedlacko. “Our bond was so close and it truly felt like a family.” 

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Centennial’s Chris Lee Wins Big at the Wrestling County Championships

Words: Joey Sedlacko

Photo contributed by: Jeannie Prevosto

At the 51st annual Howard County wrestling tournament on Saturday, February 22, Centennial placed eighth in the standings, but junior Chris Lee shined for the Eagles.

In the finals for the 120-pound division, Lee won by decision 7-3 over Griffin Ordowski from Mount Hebron High School to take home the championship. The victory for Lee marks his first county championship. It was a significant improvement after last season when Lee finished third in the tournament.

“It was a lot of weight lifted off my shoulders, I knew being a county champion was very possible and I only had my junior and senior year left,” said Lee. “Getting the job done made me feel accomplished and made the sacrifices I made through the season all worth it.”

Lee was the only wrestler from Centennial to make it to the finals, but many placed in the top five in the tournament. Junior Ibaad Shaikh placed third in the 113-pound division. In the 132-pound division, sophomore Nick Shapiro finished fourth, and junior Matt Harris also achieved fourth in the 160-pound division.

As a team, Centennial placed eighth in the tournament after scoring 100 points.

Following counties, Centennial wrestlers Lee, Shaikh, Harris, and Shapiro all competed in the regional tournament on Saturday, February 29. Unfortunately for the Eagles, none were champions, but many made it far in the tournament.

In the 120-pound division, Lee was defeated in the third place match of the tournament, while Shaikh placed fifth in the 113 pound-division after defeating Nick Bakhtiar from River Hill High School.

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Centennial Basketball Hosts First Round of Playoffs

Words: Shawn Kruhm

Photos: Sara Ferrara

On Friday, February 28, the Centennial boys’ and girls’ basketball teams played in their first playoff games of the season.

Unfortunately, the girls lost to Manchester Valley by a final score of 42-33. 

Centennial was off to a hot start as they led by seven at the end of the first quarter. A breakout performance from sophomore Lauren Pellegrini gave the Eagles an early 21-17 lead entering halftime. 

Despite a near-flawless first half on both sides of the ball, Centennial was unable to hold off Manchester Valley in the final two quarters. 

The Eagles scored just 12 total points in the second half, and let up nine points in the fourth quarter alone. The defensive struggles for Centennial emerged as the team grew tired.

Pellegrini and senior Brook Anderson combined for 20 points, four steals, and 11 rebounds as Centennial suffered a season-ending loss to Manchester Valley.

Directly following the girls’ game, the boys’ basketball team hosted county rival Mount Hebron. The Eagles dismantled Mount Hebron, ultimately winning by a final score of 59-40. 

After back-to-back three-point buckets from seniors Jeong Hwang and Matt Schickner, Centennial started the game on an 11-0 run. 

The Eagles did not look back and led by as many as 24 points. Senior Joey Sedlacko led the team with 16 points.

The boys will travel to Marriotts Ridge on Tuesday, March 3, for the following round of playoffs. 

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Six More Sign off on the Next Four

Words: Shawn Kruhm

Photos: Eliza Andrew

On Tuesday, February 26, six Centennial student-athletes came together for their official signing day. 

Anthony Matthews committed to play football at Bridgewater College. Jordan Hinz and Olivia Reese committed to play softball at Washington and Jefferson College and Shepherd University, respectively. Casey Stratton committed to play field hockey at Keystone College. Ty Sams and Kieran Senisi committed to play lacrosse at the College of Holy Cross and Saint Mary’s College of Maryland, respectively.

All athletes have made countless sacrifices to get to where they are now. 

“Signing to play Division One lacrosse was so surreal,” said Sams. “Ever since I started playing lacrosse my goal was to play on Saturdays for a D1 program; Words cannot describe the feeling I had when I put the pen to paper on my National Letter of Intent after the countless hours of practice had finally paid off.” 

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For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan