Belcastro captain of AA 2nd-team all-state
The Associated Press

    Justin Belcastro was named second-team captain of the Class AA all-state team released Thursday by the West Virginia Sports Writers Association. Belcastro, a 6-foot-1 senior guard, led Bridgeport with 22.6 points per game.
    Also, Tucker County’s Jim Aliff was named to first-team all-state. Aliff averaged 15.7 points in making the
first team for the second straight season. Tug Valley’s Greg Davis was named first-team captain.
    Other first-team selections:Seniors Pat Caufield of Richwood; Philip Godfrey of East Bank; Jacob Tolley of Braxton County; Jamaal Crenshaw of Bluefield and Jason Blankenship of Wyoming East; and junior Jay Hewitt of Richwood.
Davis,  a 5-8 junior, averaged 28 points, eight assists and four steals this season in leading Tug Valley to a 24-2 record and the school’s first Class AA state title. Davis also earned first-team honors as a sophomore.
    The 6-7 Hewitt averaged 20.3 points and eight rebounds for Richwood.
Godfrey finished the season with 598 points, the second-highest single-season total in East Bank history behind Jerry West’s 926 points in 1956.
    Braxton County’s Tolley scored 25 points, dished out four assists and grabbed 7.8 rebounds a game.
Oceana’s Morgan averaged 17 points and 13 rebounds. And Wyoming East’s Blankenship scored 26 points per game and shot 83 percent from the line.
    Belcastro was joined on the second team by Weir’s Ryan Jeter, Oceana’s Seth Morgan, Tug Valley’s Kyle Gillam, DuPont’s Rick Fout, East Bank’s Rodney Terry, Berkeley Springs’ Keith Davis and Ravenswood’s Seth McGoskey.



Cohen hurls Hawks to victory
From Staff Reports

    Alanna Cohen pitched South Harrison to a 12-4 win over Lincoln in high school softball action on Thursday at Clarksburg’s Summit Park. “I really feel she’s one of the better pitchers in the (Big 10)Conference,” said South Harrison coach Gennie Reesman. “Today,  she seemed to be relaxed and got into  a zone.  When she does that, the whole team seems to pick it up.” Bobbi Jo Devericks added a two-run triple in the third for SH(2-2).
    Karson Richards had a triple and two RBIs for South Harrison, while Desiree Evans and Carrie Fenstermacher each added two hits. Jennifer Gore had two hits for Lincoln (3-4), and Stephanie Vanscoy doubled.

Baseball

    ROBERTC. BYRD8, Lincoln 2:Robert C. Byrd scored four runs in the second inning and cruised to the win.
Andy Wilhelm, batting eighth, hit a three-run home run to highlight the outburst for RCB (6-1, 3-1 Big 10).
Byrd added two more runs in the fifth and seventh innings.
    R.J. Coleman and pitcher Joe Moore added homers for RCB. Moore picked up the victory, going the distance and striking out nine.
    Roy Sampson and Josh Cunningham homered for Lincoln (1-7, 0-2), while Eli Fleese was 3-for-3 and Jesse Pill was 2-for-3. Lincoln’s Jack Williams took the loss.
 
    NOTRE DAME 15, Cameron 7: Notre Dame scored six runs in the sixth inning to blow open a close game.
Notre Dame (4-2, 2-0 Mason Dixon) held an 8-7 lead going into the deciding inning.
    “We started out pretty slow with the long bus ride,” ND coach Mark Starkey said. “But once we got our feet under us we were O.K.”
    Aaron Barberio went 3-for-3 with a home run, four RBIs and four runs to lead ND. Jeremy Wright went 3-for-5 with a home run and four RBIs, while Brian Rokisky was 3-for-4 and Mike Nicholas was 2-for-3 with a home run and three RBIs.
Reliever Frank DeFazio picked up the win. He pitched three innings of no-hit ball, fanning three.
 
    PRESTON 11-7, Bridgeport 5-18: Bridgeport, using freshmen as its starting pitchers, split the doubleheader with Preston.
Mike Honce started the opener, giving up four hits, nine runs and four walks over four innings. Honce struck out seven.
In the second game, Brian Kemmerer went the first three innings to get his first career victory as BHS pounded out an 18-7 win over Preston (3-5) in five innings. Kemmerer allowed four hits and four runs while walking two.
    Reliever Chris Liebig gave up three runs, three hits and three walks over the final two innings. Chris Cunanan went 3-for-6 for the doubleheader, homering and driving in five runs. Justin Belcastro added two doubles and three RBIs for Bridgeport (3-2), while Adam Belcastro scored four runs. Pinch hitter Vince Veltri knocked in three runs in the second game on a triple.

    SOUTHHARRISON 2, Philip Barbour 1:Jeff Kyle scattered four hits over five innings and Justin Wright came on in relief to earn the save to lead South Harrison. Craig Nutter was 2-for-4 for SH(3-1), while Wright added a double. Despite surrendering just three hits, Tino Medina suffered the loss for Philip Barbour.

    WIRT 9, Doddridge 1: Rick Gray was 3-for-4 and BenJo McKinney added two hits for Doddridge County (2-5).
Matt Bartlett started and took the loss.



Despite quick start, Brown stays humble
by Joedy McCreary
SPORTSWRITER
    MORGANTOWN — Expectations? Antonio Brown scoffs at the suggestion. After all, Brown came to Morgantown last year as a true  freshman receiver on a West Virginia team full of them. He expected to be redshirted, and he wound up playing.
    Enough, in fact, to catch 21 passes for 270 yards. In the process, he ended last season as the team’s fifth-leading receiver.
“I (didn’t) expect to play,” Brown said. “I did the things that had to be done. I mean, as a freshman, you expect to be redshirted.”
    Expectations? Brown laughs. “I have expectations and goals for life,” Brown said. “I’d like to graduate first. However, everything else goes. I’ll take it as it comes.” Brown has no expectations for this season. You won’t find him proclaiming himself to be the second coming of Shawn Foreman or David Saunders.
    He doesn’t even expect to be one of Marc Bulger’s top two targets. “We’ve got Khori Ivy and Pat Greene this time,” Brown said. “They’re the leaders right now. They’re in the driver’s seat. I’m in the back seat. I’ll take the leftovers from them.” All Brown wants is a chance, to simply get on the field and try to make some excitement happen.
    Just as a meteorologist can’t predict where lightning will strike, no sportswriter or fan can predict where Brown will strike, either. “I can just anticipate being used as anything," Brown said. “You should just anticipate to play (this season), that’s all."  Mountaineer fans shouldn’t expect this year’s receivers to outshine the 1998 duo of Foreman and Saunders, the school’s career receptions leader. “They left a good memory, and the fans are going to be wanting
the best,"Brown said. But make no mistake, Brown and his receiving cohorts have the inner confidence to make plays.
    They just have to prove it to the skeptics. On the field, not in the newspapers. “We feel we can be as good as them," Brown said. “To the media and the fans, we have to prove something to them. “(Pass distribution) might be even better this year because everyone had to give (Foreman and Saunders) their respect," Brown said. “Now is the time to prove that we’re superstars."
    Just as long as nobody expects it from them.
 


Funk belts 2 homers, Bartos whiffs 18 to lead RCB
From Staff Reports
    James Funk provided the offense and Brandon Bartos did the rest to lead Robert C. Byrd over Grafton 8-1 Thursday night.
Funk homered twice and Bartos pitched a complete game, striking out 18 and allowing just four hits while not allowing a walk.
    “James is swinging the bat real well right now,” Robert C. Byrd coach Felix Veltri said. “And Brandon pitched an excellent game for us. “(Bartos) kept them off balance all night. He and Anthony Gianettino have given us a lot of leadership that’s really been the spark for us so far.”
    Grafton jumped to a 1-0 lead after the first inning, but Funk led off the second with a  home run to left to highlight a three-run second. Freshman R.J. Coleman added three hits, including a double and triple, for Robert C. Byrd  (2-0).
RCB teammates Joe Moore and Craig Kelley each had two hits. Jeremy Steenstra led Grafton (0-2) with two hits, while Sam Gerkin suffered the loss.
 
    PRESTON 12, Lincoln 5: A six-run fourth inning by Preston (1-2) doomed Lincoln (1-3). Danny Hardesty and Mike Moschella each homered for Lincoln, while Josh Cunningham added a double. Preston broke the game open by scoring twice in the fifth and three times in the sixth. Lincoln plays at 1 p.m. Monday at Bridgeport.
 
    DODDRIDGE COUNTY 16, Wirt 5: Jake Juliano had a grand slam and knocked in five runs for Doddridge County in a game shortened to five innings.
BenJo McKinney also added a solo homer and was 2-for-2 with two runs scored for Doddridge (2-1). Doddridge was coming off a 6-1 loss to Clay-Battelle on Wednesday in which it had managed just two hits. “Tonight we just really made  solid contact,” coach David Mires said.  “We really played well, hit the ball hard.”
    Rick Grey, McKinney, Chris Gum and Tim Bailey doubled for Doddridge, which had 12 hits. Also, Darren Swisher tripled. Doddridge’s Jody Griffin went 4 2/3 innings to get his second win in as many decisions.  He  gave up three hits and all five runs, striking out nine while walking four.

    TYGARTS VALLEY 13, Notre Dame 9: Tygarts Valley rallied with seven runs in the top of the seventh inning to defeat Notre Dame late Wednesday. Morgan O’Brien suffered the loss for Notre Dame.



Liberty opens with easy win
Defending Class AA champs too much for PB in 13-3 victory
by Eric Stoneking
CORRESPONDENT
    Liberty began defense of its Class AA state title with a convincing 13-3 victory over Philip Barbour in Big 10 Conference action Thursday.
    Mike Schlicker, Matt Coberly and Trey Adams each homered for Liberty, which had 10 hits.
Liberty coach Pete Iquinto saw the easy win as an excellent way to start a season in which his squad plays 10 games in a five-day span next week.
    “It is a long season and I am glad the kids played hard because we have a lot of tough games next week,” Iquinto said. “It’s nice when you can come out and get a win in the first game of the season.” Liberty jumped all over Philip Barbour early, scoring five runs in the first inning.
    Philip Barbour starting pitcher Derek Shomo got two outs in the first inning before he was relieved by David Freeman, who surrendered Liberty’s three homers.
    Shomo walked in two runs before giving up a two-out, three-run double to Scott Morris. “That was a big clutch hit for us,” Iquinto said. “Scotty hit real well for us, turned a big double play and played great defense.” Schlicker’s homer in the second padded Liberty’s lead to 7-2.
    Then, senior ace Josh Matheny (1-0) — who had allowed two runs and three hits in the first inning —took control to win his 18th straight game spanning his high school career.
    Matheny allowed only one run through the final five innings of the game, shortened to six innings via the 10-run rule.
“Josh battled well for us,” Iquinto said. “We put the ball in his hands and that is what we need to do.”
    Morris and Adams led Liberty (1-0) with two hits each. Travis Martin and Josh Freeman each had two hits for Philip Barbour (0-1).


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