Awards, baseball, basketball, bulldogs, chelsea, chelsea high school, football, high school, high school basketball, high school football, mhsaa, mhsaa championship football, sports

Chelsea Student-Athletes Make History

jackbball

Senior Jack Bush poses with the Chelsea basketball district championship trophy

Chelsea High School is known for its academics. It was recently listed by the U.S. News as the 7th ranked school in the state of Michigan, the only public school to crack the top 10. That’s an excellent ranking since there are over 1,500 high schools in Michigan. Nationally it was listed number 554 out of almost 40,000 high schools! The student body of Chelsea have a 56% ranking in Advanced Placement classes and have very high test scores. Not too shabby for a town of just over 5,000 people.

But academics isn’t all Chelsea is about. They put a good focus on athletics and encourage all students to participate and many of the students will play more than 1 sport. The athletic department is strong and solid and many students go on to earn sports scholarships for Division 1 schools,  and some even have gone on to play professional sports.

This year, a few students have done something that hasn’t been done in quite a while and is very rare for most student athletes. Jack Bush, Hunter Neff, Quinn Starkey, Thomas Steele, and Alex Vasquez have all etched their names in the Chelsea record books as they are among the few student-athletes in the long history of Chelsea sports that have won 3 district championships in one year!

Bush was the starting quarterback for Chelsea the past couple seasons and was a key element of leading the Bulldogs to the MHSAA Class B state championship in 2015. He also started for the basketball team and this year’s baseball team which just clinched a district title last Saturday. Bush will attend Hope College in the fall where he will look to carry on his illustrious football career.

Neff was a part of this years football, and baseball team, and was called up for the districts in basketball.

Starkey played on the basketball team, the baseball team, and was called up for the Districts in football.

Steele was the Bulldogs leading rusher in football last season as well as winning a district championship with the Bulldogs hockey team. He also will be on the field looking for a regional title in baseball, after sealing up a district championship last weekend.

Vasquez starred at end for the Bulldogs football team this past season and was also a part of the state championship runner-ups in 2015. He used his size and strength to help the Bulldogs win districts not only on the gridiron, but on the basketball court, and for this year’s baseball team. Vasquez will be taking his talents to Michigan State University in the fall.

The Bulldogs baseball team will head to Carleton-Airport on June 10th where they will be taking on the South Lyon East Cougars and will be looking to win the regional playoff and help bring more hardware to Chelsea, the city of champions.

 

Standard
Buckeyes, bulldogs, chelsea, chelsea high school, college, hockey, ohio state, OSU, sports

Hockey’s Ronnie Hein, From Bulldog To Buckeye

 

rh4

 Chelsea Michigan & Ohio State’s Ronnie Hein    

Ronnie Hein takes a pass from his new teammates Miguel Fidler and Josh Healey in only his second regular season game for his new college team, the Ohio State Buckeyes.  His team is down by a goal against Air Force as they play in the Icebreaker tournament in Denver Colorado. Hein takes the pass and buries it past Air Force first team all-star netminder Shane Starrett. The crowd erupts, especially his parents and grandparents who are in attendance. Hein pumps his fist in celebration and hugs his linemates as he takes it all in, his first goal in Division one hockey, the first of many more to come.

“That was definitely the best moment of my college career,” Hein stated. “It was definitely a very cool moment.”

Hein has been playing hockey since he was 4 years old. He tried other sports but hockey was and is his first love. Before he came to Ohio State he was committed to Ferris State and played two seasons with the Waterloo Iowa Black Hawks in the USHL where he had 49 points, with 14 goals and 35 assists, in 57 regular season games. His squad reached the USHL Clark Cup conference finals where he had seven points (3g, 4a) in nine playoff games.

Hein grew up in Chelsea, Michigan, a really close, tight-knit community located only 15 minutes from the OSU Buckeyes biggest rivals, the Michigan Wolverines. When asked about becoming a Buckeye coming from Wolverine territory Hein says, “it’s not that bad.”

“I got a few jokes here and there when I first signed with Ohio State but not so much anymore,” Hein said. “I think most everyone is just happy with what I’ve accomplished so far and are very proud of me playing for a Big 10 school, even if it is the Buckeyes.”

Hein had 5 goals and 6 assist in 16 games and was seeing lots of ice time and winning a high percentage of faceoffs his freshman year before a season-ending injury occurred against the Buckeyes arch-rivals in Ann Arbor. In the second period, he tore his hip flexor.

“My freshman year experience has been bittersweet for sure,” says Hein. “The first half of the season was great for me and the team! We were having a very successful season and it was hard to have to sit out the rest of the way.  As tough as it was not playing, it was still nice to be around the guys and the rink everyday. Now that I’ve gotten past both surgeries, my only goal is to be back by the start of next season and be better than I was this previous year. I have a lot of rehab and work to do this summer.”

The Buckeyes had a very successful season, making it to the Regional Semi-finals but then fell to Minnesota-Duluth 3-2 in overtime. Minnesota-Duluth is a very tough team, making it to the Frozen Four where they will face off against Harvard on April 6th in search of their second title.

The Buckeyes will be graduating 7 seniors next season but will be bringing back many underclassmen including leading scorer Mason Jobst and of course Hein, who will hopefully be healed in time to show off his speed and great two-way forward skills.

Hein hasn’t picked a college major yet but is leaning towards real estate or sports industry. As a freshman, he still has plenty of time to decide on that.  Hein plans to spend his summer back home in Chelsea and do a lot of golfing and just laying around on the lake mostly. Ronnie is the son of Larry and Tracy and has two younger siblings Ryan, and Rachel.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

 

 

Standard
bulldogs, chelsea, chelsea high school, defense, high school, hockey, mhsaa, sports

Chelsea Edges Skyline For SEC Hockey Championship

 

dsc_5240

Cooper Mattson celebrates scoring the go-ahead goal for Chelsea

 

Chelsea and Ann arbor Skyline squared off tonight at the Arctic Coliseum in Chelsea for the Southeast Conference Championship. Chelsea came into the game with an edge in points with 1 but Skyline had been on a roll as of late. But it was the Bulldogs who would take the victory and the SEC championship in a 5-4 battle.

Skyline started fast as they scored about the 10-minute mark. But then less than a minute later Chelsea went on the power play and would tie it up an unassisted goal by Braden Steele. The score would remain tied as Chelsea goalie Aidan Boote made several great saves behind his stingy, hard-hitting defense.

Then with 2 and a half minutes left to go, it was Cooper Mattson taking a rebound and putting the puck in the back of the net for a Chelsea lead going into the break.

With only a minute and a half gone in the second period, it was Chelsea senior defenseman Nate Bero taking a beautiful pass from Brennen Wright and burying the puck in the back of the net for a 2 goal Chelsea lead. This goal led Skyline to swap goalies. But it didn’t make much of a difference because less than 2 minutes later it was defenseman Thomas Steele scoring to help increase the Bulldogs lead.

But Skyline wasn’t rolling over and playing dead. They didn’t get as far as they did this season through luck. The ever battling Eagles came back with a big splurge of their own scoring 2 goals to cut the Bulldogs lead to 4-3 heading into the final stanza of the game.

At the 13:08 mark of the third the Bulldogs increased their lead with a score from Brad Sullivan, with Mattson assisting as he put the puck over the right shoulder of the Skyline netminder, top shelf for a 5-4 Chelsea lead.

But Skyline kept battling and with just 5 minutes to go in the game, Skyline struck from the right faceoff circle in Chelsea’s zone to cut the deficit. Skyline battled hard getting several opportunities but Boote stood tall down the stretch making save after save.

With just a minute and 53 seconds to go, Skyline went on the power play and with a minute left to go pulled their goalie giving Chelsea a 4 on 6 disadvantage but Skyline couldn’t corral the puck or get set up and as the clock sounded sealing the Chelsea victory in the history books, the loyal Bulldog fans erupted in cheers and breathed a sigh of relief as the players dogpiled and slammed into the boards in front of the Bulldogs student section in celebration.

It was a hard fought battle and both teams played their hearts out and left it all on the ice. Now Chelsea awaits to see who it plays next.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Standard
bulldogs, chelsea, chelsea high school, college, high school, intent, letter, mhsaa, sports

Two More Chelsea Student Athletes Sign Letters Of Intent

Recently two more students signed their letters of intent to attend college in the fall. Lily Francisco, all state diver, has signed on with Saginaw Valley State. She will be diving in the fall for the Cardinals. She is the daughter of Marie Vollmer and Todd Francisco.

Gwen Lansky has signed on with Post University to play ice hockey. She is the daughter of Christy and Aaron Lansky.

We wish them all the best of luck in their future endeavors.

Standard
Buckeyes, chelsea, chelsea high school, college, hockey, ohio state, OSU, sports

Ohio State Hockey Gets Split In Ann Arbor

dsc_1948

Buckeyes forward John Witala celebrates his team’s first goal of the game by Tanner Lacyznski in the second period. 

Yost Ice Arena, Ann Arbor, Michigan: On Friday night the 11th ranked Ohio State Buckeyes hockey team rolled into Ann Arbor to take on their bitter rivals. Michigan has been having an off year in hockey this season having only won 1 game in conference play, and only 8 overall. The Buckeyes are the second best scoring team in the nation averaging 4 goals a game, only trailing Penn State in that category. They are the only two teams in the nation averaging 4 goals a game or above.

Michigan was well rested coming off a bye week while the Buckeyes just lost two tough games to Wisconsin, one in overtime at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

Both teams came strong out of the gate trading several hits in front of a raucous crowd. At the 8:21 mark it was Michigan’s Evan Allen who was able to beat Buckeye netminder Christian Frey. The 1-0 lead held up until, with  33 seconds left in the period, the Wolverines Adam Winborg was able to score his 5th goal of the season, helping the Wolverines go into the break with a 2-0 lead.

Michigan came out strong in the second period keeping the Buckeyes shots to a minimum and at the 6:47 mark local boy Cooper Marody scored his first goal of the year. But The Buckeyes are a tenacious team with a never say die attitude and fought back drawing a penalty to the Wolverines  catching them on a big mistake with too many men on the ice. The Buckeyes were able to take advantage as near the end of the power play Tanner Laczynski was able to net his 7th of the year with help from his teammates Matt Miller & Matt Joyaux. Lazcynski, from Shorewood, Illinois is having an outstanding freshman season.

But things got bad fast as Marody scored two more goals in the period for the hat trick and a big 5-1 Michigan lead going into the third. The Buckeyes were getting badly outshot at this point and their Head Coach Steve Rohlik would have to make some serious adjustments.

Whatever Rohlik told his boys in the locker room worked because before you couldn’t even blink after the referee dropped the puck in the faceoff,  it was the captain Nick Schilkey getting the big goal only 6 seconds in! He was assisted by Mason Jobst, who with that point kept his 11 consecutive game point streak alive.

After the faceoff, it was the Buckeyes Miguel Fidler putting the puck in the back of the net giving the Buckeyes 2 goals in just 23 seconds!!! The Florida Panther prospect was assisted by Schilkey and Jobst.

The Buckeyes played more aggressively in the third and were able to beat the Wolverine netminder once more on the power play, silencing the crowd and cutting the lead to only 5-4,  after Dearborn Michigan native Dakota Joshua picked up his 5th goal of the season assisted by defenseman Gordi Myer and Schilkey.

The teams went back and forth with the Buckeyes getting good chances, but the comeback stalled out there giving Michigan the 5-4 victory. Both teams had 7 penalties on the night while the Buckeyes were outshot 38-29 while they dominated in the faceoff circle with Jobst winning 15 and Joshua winning 9.  Local Buckeye from Chelsea Ronnie Hein won 2 faceoffs and had 2 big shots on goal in limited playing time as he was injured during the game.

Game 2: On Saturday the two teams squared off again. This time it was the Buckeyes striking first on the power play as Schilkey netted his 19th goal of the season assisted by Jobst and Myer. Schilkey’s great play is why many people have him in the conversation for the Hobey Baker award.

But Michigan came back 4 minutes later with Marody scoring unassisted. Dakota Joshua answered back 2 minutes later assisted by David Gust & Sasha Laroocque. But then the Wolverines went on a tear scoring 3 goals in a row and with the early part of the second period had a big 4-1 lead. But the Buckeyes were in this very predicament the night before and didn’t roll over and weren’t about to tonight either.

Halfway through the period with Michigan’s James Sanchez off for a cross check, Jobst scored his 11th of the season assisted by Myer and Gubst. There were plenty of penalties to this point and the game was getting very chippy. There were several slashes and trips from the U of M players and at the 7:18 mark of the second period 4 players went off for unsportsmanlike conduct calls. Let’s face it, these two schools are bitter rivals and it shows.

Michigan added another goal to take a 5-2 lead but from the end of the second period on it was all Buckeyes as they skated away from Michigan defenders, laid out great hits, and were able to entice the Wolverines to take dumb penalties leading to Buckeye goals, as they took advantage of the power play. John Wiitala got his 9th goal of the year to cut into the lead then Jobst scored his 12th of the season the power play to tie it up.

Both teams went back and forth as Ohio State netminder Matt Tomkins, who subbed in for Frey in the 2nd, stood tall, making many outstanding saves. It looked like the regulation time was going to expire in a tie until the Captain Schilkey blasted a shot past the Wolverine goaltender Hayden Lavigne for the go ahead goal with only 30 seconds left! The Wolverines pulled Lavigne but couldn’t get a handle on the puck as the Buckeyes took a huge 6-5 victory over their rivals.

Mason Jobst was the first star of the game as the Speedway Indiana native finished he night with 2 goals and 2 assist. The Captain Nick Schilkey received the third star for 2 goals and 1 assist on the night, including the big game winning goal, his 20th of the season.

The Buckeyes are 13-7-6 overall on the season and 4-5-1v in conference play. They will play again  Friday and Saturday, February 10th and 11th, when they host the Minnesota Golden Gophers.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Standard
bulldogs, chelsea, chelsea field hockey, chelsea high school, Dexter, field hockey, girls, high school, mhsaa, sports, Uncategorized

Chelsea Field Hockey Ends Regular Season, Honors Seniors

dsc_8919

Kyle Bragg tries to get past a Dexter defender

The Chelsea Field Hockey team finished off their regular season for 2016 with a couple close losses. On Wednesday they traveled to undefeated and top-ranked Dexter to face the Dreadnaughts on their senior night, and as soon as the game got underway, the Heavens exploded  with a cold, hard rain drenching both teams almost instantly. Both teams struggled on the soggy, slippery field as it was hard to find their grip. At one point in the game, it was so wet that Chelsea’s  Gabbie Noble’s stick slipped out of her hands and flew about 15 yards downfield to her left. Fortunately, no one was injured.

Dexter was able to take advantage of their home field advantage though and keep their unbeaten streak alive as they defeated the Bulldogs 5-0.

On Friday Chelsea played host to Ann Arbor Pioneer in their last regular season game. Chelsea honored their 6 seniors before the game. Madalyn Allen, Kathryn Beauchamp, Jackie Busch, Shaunna Caffrey, Taylor Freyre, and Gabbie Noble all were honored for their hard work, dedication, and commitment to the game and team before the game. Each girl was given a handcrafted blanket designed just for them individually.

The Senior-laden and experienced Pioneer team were able to capitalize in the first half with two goals scored and added another in the second half as the 1 loss team edged Chelsea 3-0.

As the season ends on Tuesday, the 18th, Chelsea will have to wait to see who their competition will be in the first round of the playoffs.

Standard
Awards, chelsea, chelsea field hockey, chelsea high school, field hockey, high school, sports, Uncategorized

Chelsea Field Hockey’s Freshman Phenom Goalkeeper Payton Doan

Chelsea Field Hockey's Freshman Phenom Goalkeeper Payton Doan

All-State Freshman Goalkeeper Payton Doan smiles and poses for a picture before a game
By Al Wright
on February 05, 2016 6:54 AM

On a crisp, fall afternoon at the Jerry Niehaus Field in Chelsea, the Chelsea Field Hockey team is up against the state champions, Ann Arbor Pioneer. It’s a 0-0 game late in the first half and a Pioneer player has somehow got open and is on a one on one with the Chelsea goalie. The 14-year-old freshman Chelsea goalkeeper in her lime green jersey knows how big this game is. She knows Chelsea, formerly the Washtenaw Whippets, has never beaten Pioneer let alone even scored a goal on them. She has to react with split-second timing to keep her team in the game. Without hesitation, she instantly challenges and uses her pads to stop the shooter and then deflects the ball away to her defense who then turns it up field in the other direction. She confidently returns to her position and would stop 10 shots that day, allowing only one to get past her, as she backstopped her team to the historic 2-1 victory over Pioneer.

Although only in her third year in competitive field hockey, and 2 as goalkeeper, Payton Doan has made a name for herself. Payton, or Moosk as her family calls her, was one of the youngest players on the Chelsea team that won the Division 1 Regular Season Championship and went to the State Finals. She was only one of two freshman on the team, the other being Georgie Reynolds. Being so young and on such a great team with lots of experience could cause most people to crack under the pressure. But not Payton.

“I think my position added a lot of pressure, and I’m naturally hard on myself, so I felt stressed throughout the season, and the amount tripled around playoffs,” said Doan. “But my team, my coaches, and especially my amazing defense, all helped eliminate that feeling completely so we could focus on the main goal, which was having fun playing the game we love.”

Although only a freshman on a senior-laden team, she felt like she belonged right away. ” I sound like a typical freshman, but it was an amazing feeling having upperclassmen I didn’t even know telling me great job, or “hey you’re a pretty good goalie” in the hallways,” said Doan. “My goal for the past 2 years was to make it on varsity as a freshman, so it really was a dream come true.”

Chelsea went on a tear after that Pioneer game and went on to defeat their rivals Dexter on the Dreadnaughts home turf and giving them their first defeat of the season in a thrilling 1-0 game. “I think that beating Dexter was the start of our winning streak. During pre-season, we all knew we would be successful, but we never knew how good we were as a team until we beat Dexter,” stated Doan. “And beating Pioneer in the regular season was the icing on the cake. We made history so we were all happy with what we had achieved.”

Chelsea did their part taking care of foes but needed other schools to do there’s. To win the Division Title it would take a victory from rivals Dexter over Skyline. Some of the team went to the game to see if they would win the division but Payton just couldn’t do it.
“I remember Sarah Mesko went to the Skyline/Dexter game. I didn’t want to go, I was afraid I’d jinx it, but she kept us updated the entire game and I was completely glued to my phone and jumping at every notification,” Doan said. “When Sarah texted “Congrats we are number 1!!!” I broke down crying. I can’t express how proud I was of our team at that moment, and I still am. It totally was worth all of our long practices and 6 am lifting’s.”

Chelsea made it to the Division 1 State Championship game where they lost 1-0 in a hard fought battle against defending State Champions Ann Arbor Pioneer. In that game, Doan played hard making great stops and stepping up big to keep her team within chance of a victory. But a bad break, in what Doan calls her worst moment ever, put Chelsea behind and they couldn’t get the chance they needed to score that tying goal.
“I watched the 2 on 1 develop before me in the Championship game and then having the Pioneer player slip the ball past me, was just horrible,” said Doan reflecting on that moment. “I can still remember my heart dropping. Sarah Mesko came up to me, grabbed the cage of my helmet and screamed, “it’s not over”. I knew it wasn’t, but it was so heartbreaking hearing the panic in her voice and knowing that it was in all my teammates voices at that moment too. And I have been in many of those situations at practices and other games and stopped it before, but this was much different, I was really disappointed in myself for not stopping that shot when it counted.”

“To lose that championship game was utterly depressing. To know what was at stake, and to lose the biggest title in the state was such a terrible feeling,” Doan continued. “We all did realize however that we should be proud of all we had achieved because it’s a big amount of success. To be a part of the Regular Season Championship though, it was really an honor. I was proud of myself and of my team, and it was great being a major part of spreading the sport throughout Chelsea and Michigan. At times it was extremely nerve racking, I remember sitting in school before some of the big games like Pioneer or Skyline, playoffs or not, and just that’s all I would think about. It was a healthy nervousness but sometimes it was overwhelming. But it was all worth it.”

And indeed, it was well worth it as Chelsea had 4 players receive First Team All-State honors, more than any other team. Payton was one of those selected as she led the team and league with 15 wins, 11 shutouts, and a .60 goals against average.

” I remember when (Chelsea Head Coach) Leslie (Fry) called my name at the awards banquet, and walking up there and standing next to so many of my teammates that I look up to so much, it was an honor to be among them,” Doan reflects on being chosen First Team All-State. “Coach Leslie said  it’s rare for a Freshman and a goalkeeper to make that, and so I was really happy with what I had achieved. I remember first hearing about the First Team Award and just setting that as my goal for the rest of the season.”

Chelsea Field Hockey will graduate 11 seniors this year so it will be a new looking team next year. Many underclassmen gained valuable playing time and playoff experience, including Doan. But it will be a very young team. Doan feels it will be a year focused on advertising the sport, and overall just being as positive throughout the team as possible.

“I do feel that honestly though, it won’t be the same without all the seniors,” Doan states. “They all have extremely diverse personalities and I will miss all of them for different reasons. I have never been so excited going to practice than I have with this team because I always knew they’d make it fun and especially interesting. I’m proud of every one of them and excited to see them go far with their talents, I’ll just miss them immensely.”

Doan will be her same old self though, wearing her bright lime green jersey and shouting out directions to her teammates and not being afraid to get out there and challenge when she has to. And when she’s not on the field she’ll be reading, shopping, hanging out with friends, and thinking and talking about field hockey.
Payton is the daughter of Matt and Miki Doan. Her older brother Parker is a Sophomore at Chelsea High School and helps to manage the Boys Varsity Golf Team where he helped cheer the team on during their championship run this last season.

Payton Doan assesses the situation in a game(Al Wright)

Payton makes a big stop against Ann Arbor Pioneer(Al Wright)

Payton takes a minute pre-game to pose for a picture(Al Wright)

First Team All-State Goalkeeper Payton Doan makes a huge save in the State Championship game versus Pioneer(Al Wright)

Doan makes a huge save to help Chelsea defeat Pioneer(Al Wright)

Doan comes out to make a big stop under the lights in Chelsea(Al Wright)
Standard