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Other Sports

Published September 13, 2011

C&G Newspapers

And the Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood boys tennis team enters the 2011 season facing both challenges, as the Cranes return just a handful of players from a squad that finished as Division 3 state champions a year ago.

“We lost seven seniors,” coach Jeff Etterbeek said. “We have doubles players we’re developing, and so far they’re working hard and showing great improvement. We’ve got to work hard, keep improving, and hopefully, we’ll be competitive for the (state) tournament.”

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Published September 7, 2011

TROY — Whenever a team loses one of its best players to injury, there is a period of initial shock.

So when Troy High’s boys tennis ace junior Brett Forman — last year’s Division 1 individual state champion — suffered a season-ending injury to his back in July, the Colts didn’t sit back and lament their loss.

In fact, Troy quickly adjusted to fill the No. 1 singles slot left by Forman showing that one player doesn't make the team.

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Published July 12, 2011

Birmingham Seaholm sophomore Francesco Ruffino was on a practice putting green in Oregon when he got the call.

“My coach called me and told me I was Mr. Golf,” Ruffino remembered. “I couldn’t believe it. I was so excited. It was just a great feeling.”

Board and Hall of Fame members of the Michigan Interscholastic Golf Coaches Association voted Ruffino Mr. Golf.

On the season, the lefty averaged 71.5 for 18 holes.

In tournament play, he was a force, winning the Pinckney Invite and the Division 1 district regional titles

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Published June 29, 2011

The North Farmington golf team won the Oakland Activities Association White Division, but to the dismay of the Raiders, only qualified one golfer for the Division 1 state final June 17-18 at Oakland University.

But for coach Bruce Sutton and the rest of the Raiders, junior Max Kollin made them forget all about it with one single putt.

Kollin won the individual tournament, birdying the first playoff hole to beat Davison High’s Kyle Kenkel.

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Published June 28, 2011

It’s almost fitting that Pontiac Notre Dame Prep junior Aaron Knutson won the Division 3 golf state championship with a clutch putt.

The Lake Orion resident said the short stick had been his biggest challenge all season long, but he found his stroke June 17-18 on the campus of Michigan State University.

Knutson sunk a 35-footer for birdie to beat Grand Rapids West Catholic’s Sam Weatherhead on the first playoff hole.

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Published June 28, 2011

At first, Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood junior Griffin Smith wouldn’t believe his teammates, who had been telling him that his score was good enough to win the Division 2 golf individual state title June 18 at Michigan State University.

“I didn’t want to believe it because I didn’t want to be let down,” he said.

With a handful of scores still left to be posted, Smith kept patient, until finally he had to look.

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Published June 27, 2011

Recent Clawson High graduates Kevin Cunningham and Emily Banules have put in the work, and it’s paid off in more than just victories.

The duo won the school’s Robert Herm Coaches Award and will have their names engraved on the trophy, which stays at the high school.The award is given based on the votes from all the varsity coaches in the school.

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Published June 15, 2011

West Bloomfield High throwing coach Rick Mickley remembers seeing Taylor Gunn and Louis Daranda walk into his clinic when they were just in middle school.

“They were both strong, very eager and wanted to learn,” Mickley remembered. “The three of us hit it off immediately. What is it exactly that I saw was more so the desire.”

That desire has taken the duo from interested kids to being among the best throwers the state has to offer as seniors.

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Published June 14, 2011

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Several local track and field athletes left the west side of the state with a solid impression of the east side after schools in Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties made their mark across the four state finals June 4.

There were plenty of record-setting accomplishments and All-State finishes throughout the finals — Division 1 was held at Rockford, D-2 at Houseman Field, D-3 at Comstock Park and D-4 at Jenison.

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Published June 7, 2011

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The best of the best met on the track and in the field to decide bragging rights.

The Oakland County Championships took place May 27 at Highland Milford. Novi Detroit Catholic Central won the boys competition, while Novi High won the girls title.
Beverly Hills Detroit Country Day, meanwhile, placed second in both the boys and the girls competitions.

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Published June 7, 2011

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The weather report said it all.

“Rainy and cold, then hot and windy.”

It took two days with two very different forecasts, but eventually all the medals were handed out at the Macomb County boys and girls track and field championships.

Inclement weather on May 26 forced some field events to be pushed back to May 31. When it was all said and done, Macomb Lutheran North’s boys and Warren Regina’s girls scored the most points.

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Published June 2, 2011

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The sun was shining, and so were some of the best local athletes at the MHSAA boys and girls track and field regional competitions May 20-21.

The top finishers claimed spots in the upcoming state finals on June 4 at Rockford for Division 1, at Houseman Field in Grand Rapids for D-2, at Comstock Park for D-3 and at Jenison for D-4.

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Published June 1, 2011

It’s fair to say Grosse Pointe South’s girls track and field season has already been a great one up to this point, and the state finals are still a few days away.

The Blue Devils, which as a program has enjoyed many successes over the years, have set new school records in 15 of 17 events this season, several times over.

“I am extremely proud of our team,” coach Steve Zaranek said. “We set numerous lofty goals and have accomplished them all.”

And the team isn’t done yet.

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Published May 25, 2011

The most spectacular part of Clinton Township Chippewa Valley senior Kelly Hartigan playing for the boys golf team is how seemingly unspectacular she’s made it.

It’s not that Hartigan’s game isn’t spectacular — she’ll continue her career with the Grand Valley State University golf team next fall — it’s how seamlessly she’s assimilated to competing in the boys golf season.

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Published May 25, 2011

A strong singles performance is just what the Utica Ford II girls tennis team needed to lead it to a divisional title during the Macomb Area Conference Blue Division tournament May 10.

The Falcons, who won three of the four singles flights, finished with 27 points. Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse was second with 25, followed by tournament host Fraser High at 23, Warren Cousino and Utica Stevenson tied with 19, and Fair Haven Anchor Bay with seven points.

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Published May 17, 2011

GROSSE POINTE FARMS — Despite losing seven seniors from last year’s team, Grosse Pointe South girls tennis hasn’t missed a beat.

The Blue Devils were ranked No. 6 in Division 1 by the Michigan High School Tennis Coaches Association’s May 9 poll and are playing some of their best tennis of the season as regionals approach.

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Published May 17, 2011

Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse golf coach Scott Opalewski has to like what he’s seen from his team this season, and it might get even better.

The Lancers took home top-10 finishes at the Evans Gill Tournament April 26 at Romeo Golf Club and at the Macomb County Invitational May 2, and did so without some of their best golfers.

“Going in, I thought we’d be a top-five team this year,” Opalewski said.

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Published May 11, 2011

TROY — For Troy High boys golf coach Towbey Kassa, the record doesn’t reflect the talent his team possesses.

The Colts were 3-8 at press time, but three of the losses were by three goals or less, and none of them were by double digits.

“These kids are playing really, really well right now,” Kassa said. “We just need to execute in the later stages of the game, and we’ll be fine. This is probably one of the best Troy teams since 2005.”

The execution Kassa refers to is simply scoring goals.

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Published May 11, 2011

LATHRUP VILLAGE — Sometimes it’s tough for athletes or teams to recover after coming up just short of winning a title.

But Southfield-Lathrup senior Jewel Thomas isn’t bitter about finishing in second place of the 100-meter dash at the MHSAA Division 1 girls track and field state finals last year — even if it was by less than a second.

“It feels good to know that I was up there,” Thomas said recently. “It makes me want to try harder.”

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Published May 11, 2011

SOUTHFIELD — They call him “freshman.”

“Pretty original, huh?” Southfield High golf coach Eric Ostdiek joked May 3 before practice began.

But Jordan Bohannon is playing like he’s been on the prep golf scene for more than just a few months.

Bohannon won the Oakland Activities Association Gold Division tournament after firing a 75. In the Oakland County Division 2 tournament, he finished ninth after carding a 76.

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