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Trio of Indians in state tennis tournament

From Staff Reports

Bridgeport's Andrew Waske, Steven Turner and Manoel DePaula qualified for next week's state tennis tournament with solid performances in Class AAA regional tournament action at Robert C. Byrd High School on Thursday.

DePaula qualified by capturing the No. 4 seed championship, while Waske earned a berth by reaching the regional semifinals in the No. 1 seedings.

Turner was defeated 8-0 by Wheeling Park's Matt Cunningham in the No. 2 seedings final.

"Our seniors have been working hard to improve their games all summer," said Indians coach Rich Bailey. "For them this is really the icing on the cake."

Waske and Turner will also represent Bridgeport in doubles competition after finishing second at the regionals.

"I think that they have a good chance of winning," said Bailey. "We had an extremely strong regional, and by looking at some of the players that were here, I think that they can do it."

Locally, Buckhannon-Upshur's Jon Novota qualified in the boys No. 1 seedings, and will also team up with Mike Hawkins in the No. 1 seed doubles draw.

The doubles team of Josh Zorger and Ryan Merriam of Elkins also qualified.

Tonja Thumm of Philip Barbour captured the No. 1 girls title, while Elkins' Maria Kostakos qualified in that seeding as well.

Philip Barbour's Devon Smith earned a berth in the No. 3 seeds.

Prep softball

· ROBERT C. BYRD 1, Bridgeport 0: Robert C. Byrd held off top seed Bridgeport in Class AAA sectional action.

The teams meet again today at 5 p.m. in Bridgeport for the title.

Byrd tallied its only run in the sixth as Shawna Elder hit a double, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on a fly ball to the outfield that was misplayed.

Elder and Bridgeport's Beth Guzzi hooked up in a pitcher's duel as each went the distance. Elder surrendered seven hits while striking out four. Guzzi was impressive, pitching four-hit ball while striking out 11.

"This is a great feeling," Elder said. "I've wanted to beat Bridgeport since I was a freshman and the whole team pulled together and played a great game."

"RCB came out here to play tonight," Bridgeport coach Lois Pratt said.

"They played smart ball. We just made some costly mistakes."

Byrd reached the championship round by beating Philip Barbour 9-8 earlier in the day.

Elder's single in the bottom of the seventh scored Juanita Farnsworth and Julie Carder as the Eagles rallied to win.

· LEWIS COUNTY 9, Buckhannon-Upshur 7: Misty Workman and Alexis Williams combined for five hits and six RBIs to lead Lewis County past Buckhannon-Upshur in the Class AAA Region III, Section 2 softball tournament on Thursday.

Workman had two hits and four RBIs while Williams added three hits and two RBIs.

· RITCHIE COUNTY 19, Lincoln 0: Tracy Vanscoy went 2-for-2 with a double and a triple for the Cougars. However, that was the two lone hits Lincoln mustered against the Rebels.

The Rebels now await the winner of today's Liberty-Lincoln matchup.

Prep baseball

· FAIRMONT SENIOR 4, Bridgeport 0: At the expense of the Bridgeport batters, Fairmont senior's John Gouzd showed why he is considered one of the state's premier players.

The senior hurler tossed a three-hitter, while striking out 14.

Gouzd, whose fastball was clocked as high as 89 mph, improved his record to a perfect 11-0 on the season, and Fairmont Senior raised its record to 19-2.

"When he pitches, he is definitely in command," said Polar Bears coach Steve Naternicola. "At times it looks like the King and His Court (softball legend Eddie Feigner and his three-man team) out there.

"We try to play for one or two runs when he pitches, because a lot of times that is all he needs."

Bridgeport (16-6) committed an uncharacteristic six errors, which led to two of the Polar Bears' runs.

Later in the day, the Indians snapped their three-game losing with a 7-2 win over Notre Dame.

Travis Kight earned the win while Neil DeFazio was credited with a save.

· LINCOLN 12, Robert C. Byrd 2: Lincoln pounded out 12 hits as the Cougars downed visiting Robert C. Byrd in a game shortened to five innings because of the 10-run rule.

The Cougars (14-11) used the long ball as its main supply of offense as the hosts pounded out five home runs led by Chris Feathers, who hit two and drove in four runs.

Danny Hardesty, Roy Sampson and Clarence Fiber each homered in the contest.

· SOUTH HARRISON 8, Philip Barbour 1: The Hawks scored five times in the second inning to cruise to a Big 10 win over the visiting Colts.

Calvin Castillo picked up his fifth win of the season.

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