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Chelsea Lacrosse Stomps Huron River Rats 19-2

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Chelsea’s Nick Childress (no. 26) scores for his Bulldogs

Temperatures were brisk on Friday night at Jerry Niehaus football field in Chelsea as the Bulldog lacrosse team looked to snap a 4 game losing streak against the Ann Arbor River Rats. In the 4 game losing streak, Chelsea was up against some state-ranked competition and it was a rough stretch of their schedule and goals were hard to come by.

Looking to get back on track, it looked a bit grim in the beginning as Huron jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead. But Chelsea Head Coach Joe Koengeter called his boys over and gave them a pep talk and whatever he said worked because the Bulldogs caught fire quick as Doug Zarinnia got the Bulldogs on the board. Two quick goals by Cam Breining And Mikal Nelson put the Bulldogs ahead for good.

The Bulldogs opened it up and took a big 10-2 lead at the half. In the second half, it was more of the same as Senior netminder Josh Ciaccio stopped everything that was thrown his way with the help of his stingy defense. In the 4th quarter, a midi stayed back as Ciaccio took the ball all the way down the field and was able to get a shot off on goal, just slightly missing the net.

“It was the first time I’ve ever been able to do that,” said a thrilled Ciaccio. “It was exciting, I really wanted to get a goal. But I’m happy with the big win for the team and I hope I get to do that again someday.”

The Bulldogs were led in scoring by senior Nate Bero with a hat trick. Breining, Nelson, and Aidan Boote each chipped in 2 goals apiece. The Bulldogs will look for another goal fest in their favor Monday night as they play host to the Lincoln.

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Chelsea Softball Splits Series With Dexter

 

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Alise Hale makes the tag on a Dreadnaught trying to steal second base

 

On a beautiful sunny afternoon, the Chelsea Bulldogs played host to their arch-rivals Dexter from just down the road in a doubleheader. Game 1 was a pitchers duel between Chelsea’s Peighton Root and Dexter’s Katelyn Niswonger. Dexter came out victorious 1-0. In game 2 Dexter’s strategy was to keep Niswonger in but it backfired big time as Chelsea stomped the Dreadnaughts 13-2!

Dexter took an early 1-0 lead in the first inning and it would hold up for the entire game as Niswonger gave up only 3 hits while striking out 11. Chelsea’s young sophomore pitcher Root gave up only 3 hits also while fanning 6. Chelsea just couldn’t get the bats going and Root was backed up by her outstanding fielders including senior second baseman Olivia Leonard who made a great diving catch in the 4th inning and Sydney Hines who ran all the way to the wall in right field and made a spectacular catch. But the Bulldogs till came up short in only their third loss on the year and second in conference play.

Dexter thought since Niswonger kept the Bulldogs bats mostly silent in game one that they would let her pitch game two. But the strategy backfired as Chelsea jumped out fast in the first inning scoring 5 quick runs behind big hits by Hines, Grace Bush, and Alise Hale. Maddie Vasquez cleared the bases as the young sophomore multi-sport star turned a single into a triple through good heads up base running, good coaching,  and a Dexter error.

In the second inning, the Bulldogs tacked on another run as Hines singled and Root drove her to third with a single of her own. Then as Root stole second base beating the throw Hines took off for home and dove head first safely at the plate to give the Bulldogs a comfortable 6-0 lead thanks to a perfectly executed double steal.

Young sophomore pitcher Maddie Kemp kept the Dreadnaught bats silent until the fourth inning when Niswonger was able to score from first on a double hit by her teammate. The Bulldogs came back with a run of their own as Sara Stribe scored off a Hannah Kahler single.

Dexter would tack on another run in the sixth only to have the Bulldogs explode in the bottom of the inning for 5 more runs behind big hits by Kahler, Root, Vasquez, and Allie Heinen giving the Bulldogs a huge victory and running their record to 10-3 on the season.

Kemp went the distance for the Bulldogs going 6 innings and only allowing 2 runs on four hits and 6 strikeouts. Vasquez, Hines, Kahler, and Root all had 2 hits apiece for the Bulldogs who had 12 hits on the nights.

Chelsea will travel to Ann Arbor Huron on Tuesday the 25th for a makeup doubleheader against the River Rats. Gametime is at 4 p.m.

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Chelsea Softball Takes All 3 Games Again

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Win, repeat, sweep. That’s what the Chelsea Bulldogs seem to be doing in their round robin tournament play this year and the players and their fans couldn’t be happier with the results. In today’s games, the Bulldogs defeated Grass Lake 2-1, run-ruled Holt 11-0, and finished the day off with a well-earned victory over Livonia Churchill 6-3.

In the first game against the Warriors, Grass Lake took an early 1-0 lead in the first inning and then it became a pitchers duel with Chelsea’s Peighton Root coming out on top thanks to a walk-off hit by Hannah Kahler in the bottom of the seventh to give the Bulldogs the exciting victory. Root went the distance for the Bulldogs only allowing 3 hits with her solid defense behind her.

In game 2, it seemed to flow a lot easier for the Bulldogs and their big bats as they mercied Holt in 5 innings. The Bulldogs scored 10 runs in the first 2 innings of the game led by a 3 run home run by Alise Hale. Almost every Bulldog reached base in the first inning alone.

The second inning went just as well for the Bulldogs as they piled up another 5 runs with senior third baseman Autumn Johnson starting things off with a double, her second hit on the night. Root brought her around with a big blast over the outfield fence for a two-run homer. 2 batters later it was sophomore catcher Maddie Vasquez getting her second home run of the year, as she went yard for a two-run shot.  Sophomore Maddie Kemp picked up the shutout victory with a 6 strikeout performance while only allowing 3 hits.

The sun was bright and the air just a bit crisp as the Bulldogs started their third game against a very tough Livonia Churchill team.  Root got the ball again on the mound for the Bulldogs and runs were a bit tougher to come by, like in the Grass Lake game. But Sydney Hines was able to clear the bases in the bottom of the fourth inning with a 2 rbi double and then would score herself off a single by Hale giving the Bulldogs a 3-0 lead.

The Chargers tacked on a run in the top of the 5th but the bulldogs established a bigger lead and more breathing room in the 6th inning by adding 3 runs, behind the bats of Root, Hale, and Sydnee Liedel, who went 3 for 4 in the game.

The Chargers had a brief rally in the 7th adding two more runs but it wasn’t enough as Root got the Charger to ground out to third to Maddie Kemp who made the throw to first baseman Grace Bush for the out and the victory and the sweep on the day. Root gave up only 7 hits to go with her 7 strikeouts.

The Bulldogs are now 9-2 on the season and will be hosting their arch rivals Dexter on Monday at 4. p.m.

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Chelsea Opens Softball Season With Sweep Of Western

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The Bulldogs celebrate Autumn Johnson’s walk-off home run in the second game of their sweep

On a very brisk afternoon with a rapidly swirling wind chilling to the bone, the Chelsea Bulldogs hosted Parma Western to open their Softball season in front of many loyal fans that braved the elements. But it was well worth the climate battle as the Bulldogs fought back in game 1 to take an 8-6 victory and shutout Western in the second game 11-0 to complete the sweep.

The Bulldogs first inning did not go as planned as Western was able to rack up a big 4-0 lead after their first at-bat, fueled by Western’s starting pitcher Taylor Nichols 2 run home run.  But the Bulldogs came right back and scored two runs of their own behind solid hitting and alert base running by Sydnee Liedel and Hannah Kahler.

Western added two more runs in the second and although down by 4 runs the Bulldogs did not give up, whittling away, hit by hit, to try to take the lead and achieve victory.  In the fifth inning they scored two runs to pull within one but in the 6th they exploded for 3 runs, led by Liedel, Kahler, and Sydney Hines who all scored for the Bulldogs.

With an 8-6 lead, Bulldogs pitcher Peighton Root retired the side for the huge come from behind victory.  The sophomore Root started out a bit slow but after two shaky innings went on to keep Western from scoring anymore, along with a solid defense behind her. Root finished with the win and 7 strikeouts of Western.

After a brief intermission and warming up period for many of the players and fans, it was sophomore pitcher Maddie Kemp getting the call to start in her very first varsity game also. The cold didn’t stand a chance and neither did Western as the red hot pitcher found her mark and came away with a complete game shutout, only giving up 2 hits and getting 11 strikeouts!

“I’m just happy I was able to help my team sweep the double header”, an elated Kemp said.

Kemp helped her own cause out with a big bat, getting a big double and then scoring on hits by Phoebe Kahler and Liedel. An inning later it Was Grace Bush blasting a triple to the opposite field and then Kemp singling her home to increase the Bulldog lead. Up 9-0 going into the 6th and hoping for the mercy rule, Kahler was walked making her way on to base for the 4th time in the nightcap. Then it was Autumn Johnson taking her turn at the plate. Her bat had been unstoppable in game two and she didn’t let up at all as she blasted a huge walk-off home run over the left centerfield fence to mercy Western and take the series.

“I’m so proud of our team,” Head Coach Jeff Connelly said with a big smile on his face. “They never gave up in the first game. They kept their spirits up and kept battling back. ”

Chelsea will play host Thursday to Milan at 5 o’clock.

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Williamston Edged In Class B Quarterfinals

 

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Williamston Freshman Mitchell Cook drives the lane in the first

 

The Williamston Hornets had made it to the semi-finals at the Breslin Center in East Lansing last year, but this year came up just 1 basket short ending their great season. With the game tied at 51 against the River Rouge Panthers and the clock winding down, it was the Panthers Darian Owens-White hitting a 3 point shot with what would be the go-ahead game-winning basket, edging out the Hornets 54-51.

It was a very good game right from the tip-off. River Rouge came out strong and fast but the Hornets of Williamston didn’t panic and got right back into the game when Sophomore Sean Cobb hit 2 back to back 3-pointers to cut the Panthers lead to 1 after the first.

The Hornets defense was strong in the second giving River Rouge fits and keeping the Hornets within stinging distance. With the score tied at 20, with two and a half minutes left to go in the first half, Junior Cole Kleiver hit a huge 3 -point bucket to give the Hornets their first lead of the game. In front of a huge green and white-clad crowd, the Hornets took a 27-27 tie into the half, something the 25-1 Panthers have not had to deal with all season.

After the half, the Panthers scored early and held the Hornets to just two field goals while outscoring them 13-4 over the first 7:58 of the quarter until a Kleiver layup at the buzzer made it 40-33 entering the fourth.

“I warned them at halftime and said, ‘We really need to win the first four minutes coming out,'” Williamston coach Tom Lewis said. “I just had a feeling they were going to come with a different level. A lot of seniors on the other side of the floor and they did that, we struggled to score, had some messy possessions, they hit some shots … (Owens-White) just killed us with a lot of big baskets.”

In the 4th, the Hornets defense was swarming forcing turnovers and bad shots. The Panthers started to panic as the relentless Hornets fought back and with just over a minute left Cobb drove to the basket for 2 and was fouled. He hit the free throw giving the Hornets a 51-49 lead with time running out. The Panthers were able to tie it up and with the Hornets playing for the last shot, what happened next will be talked about for quite a while.

Freshman Mitchell Cook took a pass and drove the baseline and put up a beautiful underhanded shot that went in as he was knocked hard to the floor. But instead of a Hornet lead, the possibility of a 3-point play, and quite possible certain victory was snatched away as the official called Cook for a charge, even though his defender had never established position and was not set.

It was then that Owens-White hit his 3 point shot and with only 3 seconds left, the Hornets launched a deep 3 as time expired that just missed bringing their excellent season to a very sad end.

The Hornets finish the season with a great 21-5 record. They will graduate 5 seniors but will be bringing back a bevy of young talent.  Kleiver led the Hornets with 21 points, Cobb finished with 17 and 5 rebounds and 2 big blocked shots, while Sy Barnett finished with 11 points. Cook played an outstanding defensive game with 3 steals, 5 assist, and a big shot made in the 3rd to help keep his team in the game.

River Rouge will travel to the Breslin Center in East Lansing where they will take on the 24-2 Ludington Orioles who defeated Lake Fenton tonight.

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Chelsea Wins District Championship

 

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Chelsea Bulldogs, 2017 Class B District Champs 

 

Just like their girl counterparts did a week to the day, the Chelsea boys basketball team entered hostile territory and were able to fight and scrap to a come from behind victory over Onsted, 57-45. Unlike the girls who played near Onsted, this game was on Onsted’s home court in front of a mostly purple and white laden crowd.

Both teams were evenly matched and came out strong and matched each other basket to basket. Just as the buzzer sounded before the half ended, Onsted hit a long 2 point shot to take a 29-27 lead going into the break.

The Bulldogs were not fazed as first-year Head Coach Mark Moundros gave his team a good talk at the half and made some great adjustments. Moundros was very strategic in his substitutions all night long, knowing who to match up with and when.

Chelsea came out strong in the third and took an early lead forcing lots of turnovers and crashing the boards at both ends of the court. Chelsea’s Ronnie Buford came through with some big offense and Chelsea never looked back as they kept increasing their lead. Chelsea held Onsted’s team to only two points in the third as they took a 5 point lead into the fourth.

With 4 minutes left to go Onsted’s star player and top scorer Skyler Lipinski picked up his 5th foul on the night and had to watch from the bench as Chelsea skillfully increased its lead. With his last shot of the night, it was Buford putting the exclamation point on the game with a huge slam dunk in front of the huge,  loyal Bulldog student section.

As the clock wound down to zero the Chelsea players cleared the bench and hugged one another & celebrated their district championship, their first in ten years.

“I’m proud of our seniors, they led us all year and they worked hard for this and I’m proud of them,” Chelsea’s coach Moundros stated as he watched his players celebrate and pose for pictures with the trophy.

“This is a great group of players and we worked incredibly hard this last year,” Matt Klink stated. “As a group, we have faced a lot of adversity but like tonight, we always managed to fight and win. This truly is a family.”

All SEC selection Ryan Mitchel who finished the night with 9 points, 5 rebounds, and several steals was just speechless after the game. “I don’t know what to say, I’ve wanted this since I started playing, it’s a heck of a team.”

“All the way back to last year, I remember our first tournament, I thought nothing could top that, but this honestly has me speechless, coming back from last year, to this, we wanted this more than ever and I’m glad I got to get this w with my boys,” Bryce Jubenville said.

“5 of us got pulled up our sophomore year,” said Al Vazquez. “It’s a great group of guys, this feels pretty good, we worked together and it paid off.”

“This was a great team win, we were down 10 early and we knew that we had to wear them out because their bench was a lot thinner than ours,” Jack Bush stated. “We have 10 guys that we rotate and we did just a great job sticking together and not giving up to compete and finish that game.”

“I’d like to thank the community for all its support,” Ben Kaemming, who hit a couple big 3 point shots, said. “As the senior class, the program was not where we wanted it to be as freshman, but we’ve really turned it around, getting our first district championship in ten years.”

“We came into this team our first year 3-17 but we worked it out and trusted the system year in and year out,” a happy Brady Friss stated. “10 years but we got the district title.”

“It’s so great to be on this team,” an elated Ronnie Buford exclaimed. “To come back and beat Adrian who beat us last year, and this, Onsted is a tough team, we started a bit slow but came back strong in the second half. When Ben (Kaemming) hit the 3 to tie the game up, that was the turning point to me, that was a great 3 in the corner, great leadership by Ben.”  Buford led the Bulldogs with 16 points and 12 rebounds.

Chelsea gets the weekend to rest up then travels to Milan to take on River Rouge Monday at 5:30 P.M.

 

 

 

 

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Chelsea comes From Behind To Defeat Tecumseh

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Chelsea’s Jesse Jacobusse drives the lane in the first quarter

The drive began in the girls district tournament for Chelsea tonight, as they took on the Tecumseh Indians at Columbia Central High School in Brooklyn. Chelsea came from behind and battled back strong in the fourth quarter scoring the last 9 points of the game to defeat the Indians 32-29.

Both teams started slow, possibly nervous it seemed as in the first quarter there was not much scoring at all. Tecumseh played a stifling defense not allowing Chelsea to get their inside game rolling. At the half, it was a very low scoring 13-11 lead for the Bulldogs. In the third, the Indians exploded right away to take the lead on several inside shots. While Chelsea was getting good reads and shots, they just couldn’t get them to fall.

Bulldog senior Jesse Jacobusse hit a big three point shot to keep the Bulldogs close but then the Indians built their lead back up as they hit a shot at the buzzer to take a 6 point lead into the final stanza.

But the Bulldogs played their normal style of strong defense and forced several turnovers and bad shots and they took advantage of them. With 25 seconds left in the game, the Bulldogs sophomore Helena Schultz scored inside and was fouled to give the Bulldogs their first lead of the game since the very beginning. After she hit her free throw Chelsea forced another turnover and Tecumseh had no choice but to foul to send the Bulldogs to the line in hopes of getting a missed free throw and rebound.

And that happened as with 5 seconds left the Indians quickly moved the ball upcourt but the long distance 3 was short giving the Bulldogs the hard fought for victory.

Jacobusse led the Bulldogs in scoring with 11 points while Schultz finished the night with 8. Nicole Bareis played a solid defensive game forcing errant passes and shots and finished the night with 8 rebounds.

The Bulldogs will play Columbia Central in round 2 Wednesday at 5:30 in Brooklyn.

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