School & Sports Roundup for Jan. 13

Wakefield yearbook wins first-place award

Wakefield Country Day School’s 2010 yearbook, Virtus et Sapientia, received a first-place award in the annual competition of the American Scholastic Press Association in College Point, N.Y. The award was presented at the school’s weekly assembly Jan. 5 to Head of School Kathleen Grove.

Grove recognized yearbook adviser and faculty member Marcy Lauben, as well as student editorial assistant Luke Dumont, a sophomore from Winchester. “Their leadership made this award possible,” she said.

The yearbook was evaluated and judged among the best in the competition in the categories of content presentation, page design, photography, publication structure and creativity.

Lady Panthers lose to Clarke

Last Thursday (Jan. 6), the Lady Panthers took their game to Clarke County. They fell to the Eagles, 49-32.

With one player, Lauren Settle, unable to play, the already small team was shorthanded. The reduced numbers of players, however, did not have the expected impact. “Both teams were cold in the first half,” coach Robbie Thornhill recounted. By halftime, the Panthers trailed by only six points. “The refs seemed to be calling all fouls in the first half, and that’s what kept us so close.

“In the third quarter, the refs swallowed their whistles, and the game became physical.” Rappahannock was outscored, 17-3. Coach Thornhill said: “I challenged the girls to win the fourth quarter, and they did . . . 14-11.”

What haunted the Ladies was losing their third quarter by 14, because they lost the game by only 17 points.

“We stayed up for three quarters with a deep, talented team,” coach Thornhill said. “We are still learning how to protect the ball. The girls are getting better. With another ball handler, we will give Clarke a better game when they come here [Jan. 26].”

Two Panther players logged bragging rights as high scorers for the game. Joslyn Smith scored 12, Brittani Dodson 11.

The next opportunity to see the Lady Panthers on their home court is tonight (Jan. 13) at 7 as they challenge their long-time rivals, the Strasburg Rams.
— Melissa Delcour

Boys basketball still looking for a win

Rappahannock County High School’s varsity boys basketball team hoped that the new year would bring positive results.

So far, that has not happened.

Back-to-back losses to Warren County and Bull Run District rival Clarke County over a week left the Panthers with an 0-8 overall record (0-1 in the district).

“I tell the kids that if we give up, we lose,” Rappahannock County head coach Terrence Johnson said. “If we don’t give up, we’re always winners. Right now, this is tough on us. We’re playing with just six kids.”

Those six players, Isaac Berry, Brian Baumgardner, Billy Hogan, David Williams, D’Angelo Robinson and Tim Ridgeway, find competing against opponents difficult, because often they do not have the size, quickness or experience the others offer.

Friday night, Clarke County had four players in double figures as the Eagles rolled to a 79-19 win over the Panthers in the district opener.

Robinson led all Rappahannock County scorers with six points. Hogan had five. Berry and Williams each had four points.

In Tuesday night’s game, Hogan and Berry each had eight points, but Warren County got 18 points from Matt Nicholson and 16 from Nate Almarode as the Wildcats scored a 74-23 win over the Panthers.

Warren County led, 36-10, at intermission.

Friday night (Jan. 14), Rappahannock County will host Strasburg. They will be at Madison County next Wednesday (Jan. 19).
— Christine Krapf

Greg Czekaj

Wakefield announces athletes of the month

Wakefield Country Day School honored Greg Czekaj and Isabelle Eastham as the school’s Athletes of the Month for November-December last week.

Czekaj, of Amissville, has been a major factor in the varsity boys basketball team starting the season 2-1. His three-point shooting has given the team an additional outside scoring threat. He hit five three-point baskets during a 17-point performance in the team’s opening loss to Fresta Valley and four three-pointers in a Dec. 7 win over the Front Royal Flames. He has tallied 11 three-point baskets on the season, and is the second leading scorer on the team, averaging 12 points a game.

“It’s every coach’s dream to have a player like Greg on their team, both for his ability and his intangibles,” said Czekaj’s coach, Rob Griffin. “In this, his first year with the team, I have already come to rely on Greg for his excellent ball handling, crisp passing and timely shooting. In addition, Greg’s steady, never-rattled demeanor has a calming influence on his teammates. When the game gets frantic, Greg never does.”

Czekaj also has contributed to the varsity swim team. Swim coach Brad Boelter said: “Greg demonstrates consistent effort in his desire to help the team and improve his technique. Greg is an excellent team swimmer.”

Isabelle Eastham

Eastham, of Flint Hill, is co-captain of the varsity girls basketball team. She averaged a double/double, 18 points and 11 rebounds, in the team’s two wins to open the season. She scored 14 of 22 first-half points in a come-from-behind win over the Front Royal Flames. Her defense and rebounding led the team to shut out the Flames in the fourth quarter to complete the victory. “Without good team defense and Isabelle, we would not have come back to beat the Flames,” said coach Mike Brown said. “She scored 22 of our 33 points in the victory.”

She too has done double duty by swimming with the varsity team. Coach Boelter praised Isabelle: “She brings a high level of energy to the team and had a great start at the Delaney Athletic Conference meet Dec. 11.”
— Jim Hart

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