2013 - 2011
Rocky River High School
Warriors turn away Pirates in state lax title game|
Jun 11, 2013 - The Rocky River lacrosse team had faced many challenges throughout the 2013 season. And the Pirates had battled through most of them with successful outcomes.
But in Saturday’s OHSLA Division II state championship game, Mariemont’s first-half onslaught proved too much to overcome.
The Warriors, behind the four-goal effort of junior attacker Macko Saffin, scored the first five goals of the game. That proved to be just enough to hold off the Pirates’ second-half charge and come away with a 10-6 win at Upper Arlington High School.
Rocky River closed out the season with a 15-3 record, coming into the state title game with a five-game win streak. But on this day...
Pirates take down Preppers, title goal within reach|
Jun 06, 2013 - Their goal is finally within reach.
The Rocky River lacrosse team, driven by their loss in last year’s Division II state championship game, now has its shot at redemption. On Wednesday, the Pirates earned a return trip to Upper Arlington with a convincing 11-8 win over University School in a state semifinal game at Medina’s Ken Dukes stadium.
On Saturday, Rocky River will take on Mariemont, a 16-9 winner over Columbus DeSales in the other state semifinal game. The Warriors are 14-6, champions of the OHSLA Southwest Division and ranked No. 19 in the Laxpower.com state rankings.
For Rocky River, it was the second straight win over its east side rivals in a state semifinal game.
“Getting off to that early lead was huge,” admitted senior co-captain Eric Sperli, who scored a hat trick goal that sparked a three-goal run late...
Wilhelmy's goal in OT sends Pirates to state semis|
Jun 04, 2013 - With both teams’ goalies making clutch save after clutch save, it seemed like Monday’s OHSLA Division II lacrosse regional final between Rocky River and Toledo St. Francis DeSales would go on forever.
That all changed just 1:23 into the overtime period when Rocky River’s Mason Wilhelmy took the ball.
Wilhelmy, who got possession from about 10 yards out, rolled to his right past a defender up top and saw an opening. He whipped the ball past Knights goalie Nick Wagner for the game-winner as the Pirates claimed a 9-8 thriller at River Stadium.
The win allowed Rocky River to repeat as Northwest Region champions and put the Pirates back in the state semifinals Wednesday against tournament nemesis University School. Game time is 7 p.m. at Medina’s Ken Dukes Stadium. But that trip may not have been possible...
Riemenschneider goes off, Pirates banish Bengals|
May 30, 2013 - With 9:16 left in the third quarter, Rocky River’s Brock Riemenschneider scored his hat trick goal to give the Pirates a solid 7-0 lead over visiting Benedictine.
As it turned out, the Rocky River junior was just warming up.
Riemenschneider exploded for four consecutive goals in the first 4:14 of the fourth quarter as the Pirates demolished the Bengals, 14-2, in a Division II regional lacrosse semifinal at...
Pirates put it together, defeat Bruins in DII opener|
May 25, 2013 - Throughout the regular season, the Rocky River defense played a huge role in many of the Pirates’ wins. In their Division II lacrosse tournament opener Friday night against Padua, the offense got into the act as well as the Pirates took their game to another level.
Rocky River held the visiting Bruins to just 13 shots on goal for the game and put together a dominating third quarter in a convincing 14-2 win at River Stadium.
With the win, the Pirates moved on to the Wednesday’s second round. River, the top seed in the Northwest Division, will host No. 5 Benedictine, an 8-6 winner over Toledo Central Catholic Friday night...
River lax rolls past Westlake, tournament up next|
May 18, 2013 - In their final regular season games of 2013, both Rocky River and Westlake were looking to build up some momentum with the tournament draw on the horizon.
When the final gun sounded, all that momentum was clearly in the Pirates’ favor.
Senior middie Eric Sperli scored four goals wirth a pair of assists as Rocky River rolled past the visiting Demons, 12-1, last Friday night at River Stadium.
Rocky River bounced back from a narrow 10-9 loss to Chagrin Falls earlier in the week. The Pirates closed out the regular season at 11-2 and began to look ahead toward their goal...
O'Brien's late goals get Chagrin Falls past Pirates|
May 15, 2013 - After a pair of narrow back-to-back wins, the Rocky River Pirates found themselves in another close encounter Tuesday night. But on this night, they couldn’t quite catch the Tiger by the tail.
Chagrin Falls made the trek out west and made the long trip count. The Tigers withstood a second-half River rally, getting a pair of Tyler O’Brien goals in the final 3:02 for a 10-9 win that spoiled the Pirates’ Senior Night at River Stadium.
Rocky River, the No. 1 team in the Division II Northwest Division, fell to...
Rockets break out the lumber against Rocky River|
May 08, 2013 - Putting all the pieces together can be easier said than done for any baseball team. For both Bay and Rocky River, it has been a season-long struggle.
The Rockets, who have found consistent hitting hard to come by in 2013, managed to put together two big innings in earning a 10-6 win over the Pirates Tuesday afternoon in West Shore Conference action.
Bay, now 4-17 overall, upped its conference record to 3-9 as its offense showed some signs of life. Wednesday, however, the Rockets fell behind...
River girls top the field, win Avon Reynolds Relays|
May 05, 2013 - The Rocky River girls track and field team won four events to take the team title in the annual Avon Reynolds Relays Saturday. Host Avon took runner-up honors in the boys’ competition.
Rocky River scored 94 points to top the girls’ 11-team field, with Highland taking second with 77 points and Avon third with 72. Wadsworth amassed 118 points to claim the boys’ title, with Avon winning three events and scoring 106. Avon Lake finished third in the 10-team field with 67 points.
For the Pirates, senior Madi Connelly won the 1600 with a time of 5:18.49 then ran the first leg of the 4x800 relay. She joined Clara Sandu...
Second-half explosion powers Hudson past River|
May 01, 2013 - With one quarter in the books and Rocky River leading 4-1, Hudson went on a 3-0 run early in the second quarter to tie the game. The run took just two and a half minutes...
...and proved to be a preview of things to come.
The visiting Explorers, ranked No. 4 in Ohio, exploded for a 6-0 run late in the third quarter to blow the game open and leave town with an 11-7 win over the No. 16 Pirates Tuesday night at River Stadium. In the process, they also handed the Pirates their first...
River moving in right direction in win over Hawks|
Apr 27, 2013 - Scoring goals has not been an easy task of late for the Rocky River boys lacrosse team. But despite scoring just over six goals a game over their last three outings, the Pirates have managed to keep their unbeaten streak intact.
As of now, the Pirates are doing it with defense. And a guy named Sperli.
Friday night, Rocky River got a four-goal performance from senior attacker Eric Sperli and a near-shutout performance from its defense in a 7-1 win over visiting Hawken on Youth Lacrosse Night. The Pirates, ranked No. 13 overall in Ohio, moved to 7-0 on the season in a tough matchup with the Hawks. “We’re moving forward. We’re finding a way to win...
Defense, big second half pushes Pirates past Bay|
Apr 18, 2013 - In the first 24 minutes of play, Bay was giving Rocky River all it could handle.
The Rockets, off to a 3-1 start to their season, blanked the visiting Pirates in the second quarter. They pulled to within two, 4-2, when Steve Burns found freshman Nick Best for a goal early in the quarter.
But in the third quarter, the tide turned at Memorial Stadium...
Rockets win WSC opener on Wisner's RBI in 7th|
Apr 14, 2013 - The Bay softball team waited right until the very end to get its West Shore Conference season off on the right foot.
With the score tied at 8-8, Laura Wilson ripped a triple deep into the outfield. Lowry Wisner stepped up to the plate and brought her home with the game-winning RBI in the bottom of the seventh inning for a 9-8 win over Rocky River Saturday afternoon.
The win raised the Rockets’ overall record to 3-4, while Rocky River fell to 0-5...
River lacrosse looking to improve despite 3-0 start|
Apr 10, 2013 - After reaching the Division II state championship game in 2012, the bar has been raised a bit for the Rocky River boys lacrosse program.
The 2013 season has started off well enough for the Pirates, who rattled off wins over Padua, McDowell (Pa.) and North Canton Hoover in their first three games. But according to head coach Steve Anderson, there’s still plenty of room for improvement as the new season moves forward.
“It’s the beginning of the season,” Anderson said after Tuesday night’s 11-6 win over McDowell...
Pioneers' big inning dooms Pirates in 2013 opener|
Apr 05, 2013 - This certainly wasn’t the way the Rocky River baseball team wanted to open up it’s 2013 campaign.
But hey...its early.
Visiting Elyria exploded for seven runs in the top of the second inning and rolled on to an 11-0 win in six innings over the Pirates Thursday afternoon. The Pioneers used a combination of five hits, two walks, an error and a wild pitch to take their big lead and move to 2-0 on the season.
“They’re a pretty good team with a lot of...
Physical Shaker ends Rocky River's state title run|
Mar 10, 2013 - As the second period was coming to a close, Rocky River looked to get to the intermission with a 2-1 lead against state-ranked Shaker Heights.
To that point, the Pirates and goalie Jake Nicholson had survived a relentless barrage of 31 shots by the Red Raider offense. The 32nd one, however, found its mark.
Senior forward Connor Siwik used a rebound opportunity to his advantage, zipping the puck past Nicholson for the tying goal with just :38.9 seconds left. In the third period, Shaker Heights kept the pressure on and came away with a 4-2 win over the Pirates in the semifinals of the OHSAA Hockey Championships Friday afternoon at Nationwide Arena.
The Red Raiders, ranked fourth in the final state poll, went on the next day to defeat defending state champion Sylvania Northview, 3-1, to win...
Pirates earn district berth with win over Vermilion|
Mar 04, 2013 - For the third time this season, Rocky River managed to fight off a strong challenge from West Shore Conference foe Vermilion. And for the third straight year, the Pirates find themselves in the Division II district tournament.
Their reward? A rematch with defending district champion Benedictine.
Rocky River, behind the 22-point performance of Ryan McCrone, broke open a tight game in the fourth quarter and defeated the Sailors, 56-46, Saturday night. The Pirates will now tangle with the Bengals Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Westlake High School gym.
Last year, the two teams met in the district championship game, with Benedictine coming out on top 57-24. The Bengals, seeded second in this year’s tournament, easily got past Cleveland Max Hayes, 75-43, in Saturday’s first sectional final.
“They’re a very good team,” said Pirates head coach Michael Murray of the 8-16 Bengals. “You look at their record...
CHAMPIONS! River tops Namers for district crown|
Mar 03, 2013 - It was not the ideal start, and things did not look pretty early on for the Pirates of Rocky River.
The fourth-seeded Pirates fell behind, 2-0 to third-seeded Holy Name in the Final of the Brooklyn District. Rocky River had trouble penetrating the zone, and defensive breakdowns cost them.
“Going down 2-0 in this game is obviously not the way you want to start,” said Rocky River head coach Chris Cogan. “But I kept telling the guys, there’s tons of time left. Battle back because there’s a lot of hockey left\"...
CHAMPIONS! Pirates top Rangers to clinch title tie|
Feb 22, 2013 - Early in the 2012-13 season, Rocky River head coach Michael Murray felt his team’s offense was going to be a work in progress.
“I think this is a group that will get better each and every game,” he said after the Pirates’ West Shore Conference opener against Bay.
The Pirates indeed got better, and now they have the hardware to prove it.
Rocky River jumped out to a 10-0 start Thursday night and held off a late Lakewood rally to top the Rangers, 55-43, and clinch a share of the WSC championship. Avon defeated Midview, 54-50, the following night to claim its share of the conference crown.
“This is a testament to the confidence of our seniors,” said Murray, whose program won its second WSC title in three years.
“This guy right here said before the season how much confidence he had in us winning a conference championship,” said Murray...
Rangers top River to cap off championship season|
Feb 14, 2013 - The first time the Lakewood and Rocky River girls met on the hardwood, defense dominated the first half as the Rangers managed to pull away in the second half.
In Wednesday night’s rematch, Lakewood still struggled at times against the Pirates’ defensive effort. But the West Shore Conference champions got some breathing room early and finished the 2012-13 regular season with a 43-30 win over their across-the-bridge rivals.
With the win, Lakewood finished its first WSC season at 13-1 in the conference and 19-3 overall under rookie head coach Mike Harper. The Rangers now turn their attention to the Division I Sectional Tournament at Valley Forge where they take on Berea Saturday.
Rocky River closed out its regular season at 8-14 overall and 8-6 in the WSC. The Pirates begin Division II Sectional Tournament play Monday...
Poyle powers Eagles past Pirates, into WSC lead|
Feb 06, 2013 - There’s a new leader in the West Shore Conference boys basketball race.
Avon, behind the play of senior guard Jack Poyle, stunned Rocky River with a 20-0 second-half run and closed out a 52-41 win over the Pirates in a pivotal WSC contest Tuesday night.
With the win, the Eagles take a half-game lead on Rocky River and Lakewood with a 9-2 conference record. Avon has three WSC games remaining, starting this Friday night when it hosts Bay.
River falls out of first place and into a tie with Lakewood with four games remaining due to cancelled games last Friday night. The Pirates and Rangers are both 8-2.
“We were playing River’s tempo in the first half,” said Avon head coach Kevin Sapara, whose team...
Rocky River fights off pesky Patriots for 54-44 win|
Jan 30, 2013 - Throughout the first three quarters, Rocky River had its hands full with visiting Valley Forge.
The Patriots, winners of just three games this season, came into the Pirates’ gym determined to pull off the upset. It wasn’t until the fourth quarter that the Pirates were able to pull away and earn a 54-44 win Tuesday night in a non-conference basketball game.
With the win, Rocky River improved to 9-6 overall and won its first non-conference game of the season. But getting there wasn’t nearly as easy for the Pirates as the final scored indicated.
“I think you have to credit them,” said River head coach Michael Murray of the Patriots’ performance.
“In the first half, they shot the ball very well,” Murray said. “They stretched our defense a little bit, got some threes and got rolling. They were pretty physical too. They play a great schedule, so our kids had to grind there a little bit...
Rocky River dominates, claims WSC swim crowns|
Jan 27, 2013 - It was a new pool for the West Shore Conference Swimming and Diving Championships at a new school to the conference in Lakewood. With all that newness, it seemed an appropriate time for new records, and there were six swimming and one diving records set over the weekend.
Lakewood\'s Jim McMahan set a new mark in diving at 419.1. Bay and Rocky River swimmers set the rest. 50 & 100 freestyle: Trevor Lake, Bay, 22.7 & 50.13; 100 butterfly: Elizabeth Auckley, Bay at 58.91 and Sam Stankiwicz, Rocky River at 58.39; 200 freestyle: Lauren Devorace, Rocky River, 1:57.94; 200 Individual Medley: Emma Flynn, Rocky River, 2:14.52.
Video: River ends marathon with another WSC title|
Jan 21, 2013 - Last weekend wasn’t just another tournament weekend for the Rocky River hockey team. It was a marathon on ice.
The Pirates played eight games in just under 88 hours last weekend, culminating in an 8-2 win over Midview Monday morning that clinched yet another West Shore Conference championship. As they raised the championship trophy as noon approached, no one could blame them for being a happy, but tired bunch.
The journey started Thursday at 8:30 p.m. when the Pirates opened WSC play...
Pirates prevail in defensive struggle with Rockets|
Jan 19, 2013 - After eight straight losses to Rocky River, Bay had its chance.
With the two teams locked in a hard-fought defensive struggle, the Rockets were within a point of their arch rivals as the final minute ticked off the scoreboard clock. But for the ninth straight time, the Pirates managed to pull out the win, taking a 44-40 decision Friday night at the Launch Pad.
Rocky River improved to 7-5 overall and 7-1 in the West Shore Conference. The win also put the Pirates all alone in first place as Lakewood lost to Avon 57-38 Friday night.
“First of all, you’ve got to credit Bay’s defense,” said Pirate head coach Michael Murray, whose team committed eight turnovers and shot just one of five from the floor in the fourth quarter. Those problems allowed the Rockets to rally from a 10-point deficit in the final 3:47.
“They did a great job staying in front of us and they really...
Video: Pirate girls hold off Rockets for WSC win|
Jan 19, 2013 - While their offense continues to struggle, there’s no denying the defense being played by the Rocky River girls basketball team this season.
Friday night, the Pirates traveled to arch-rival Bay and held the Rockets to nine first-half points on their way to a 36-28 win in the first game of a girls-boys doubleheader. The win improved River’s record in the West Shore Conference to 5-2, while the Rockets fell to 3-4. In the nightcap, the River boys prevailed in a defensive struggle as well...
Lakewood uses big third quarter to get past River|
Jan 13, 2013 - With the first half in the books, Rocky River seemed poised for the upset.
The Pirates’ defense was clicking on all cylinders, holding Lakewood’s potent offense to just 10 first-half points. And with Rangers starting guard Maggie Rowell out with an injury, River’s opportunity was knocking on the door.
But after the Pirates took the lead early in the second half, that opportunity fled. Lakewood went on a 19-2 run and never looked back on its way to a 42-27 win Saturday afternoon in West Shore Conference action.
The Rangers, now 12-1 overall, have won 12 straight after a season-opening loss to St. Joseph Academy. They also finished the first half of the WSC season all alone in first place at 7-0. River fell to 6-5 overall and 4-3 in the conference. “We watched them play Magnificat,” said Rangers first-year head coach Mike Harper, whose team shot 58 percent...
Pirates rally in second half, stun Lakewood 53-49|
Jan 12, 2013 - As the first half came to a close, Zach Fehrenbach’s shot inside went through the net and gave visiting Lakewood a 28-17 lead at Rocky River.
At that point, the Rangers could seemingly do no wrong. They had used an early 12-0 run to build up their lead, their defense was forcing turnover after turnover and Pete Nelson was draining NBA-range 3-pointers like there was no tomorrow.
That all changed in the second half.
The Pirates turned the tables and blitzed Lakewood with a 23-5 run to start the second half. The Rangers recovered, but River outshot them at the free throw line down the stretch to come away with a 53-49 win in a thrilling basketball version of the Battle for the Bridge Friday night.
But there was more than bragging rights on the line in this game. The win allowed River to move back into a tie for first place...
Eagles take advantage of Pirates' offensive woes|
Dec 19, 2012 - With 5:34 left in the second quarter, Rocky River post player Tom McNamara got the ball inside and scored.
That fact alone wasn’t the big news. The fact that it was the Pirates’ first basket of the game was.
In the previous first 10:25 of the game, a Ricky Bremkamp free throw was all River was able to put on the scoreboard. Avon, despite some offensive challenges of its own, took full advantage and came away with a 36-28 West Shore Conference win Tuesday night.
“I was as puzzled as anybody,” admitted Pirates head coach Michael Murray, whose team...
River skates past Mentor, keeps pace in division|
Dec 16, 2012 - After a shutout win over Padua Friday night, the Rocky River hockey team was back on the ice less than 24 hours later for an important Red North East Division game with Mentor.
Eric Sperli and the Pirates, however, proved up to the task. Sperli, River’s leading scorer, scored a hat trick to help push his team to a 6-1 win at Hamilton Ice Arena Saturday afternoon. That made the Pirates 8-1 overall heading into this week’s Thornton Park Tournament.
“It was a big weekend for us with two division games,” said Pirates head coach Chris Cogan, whose team moved into first place in the East Division with a 3-1 record. Walsh Jesuit...
Defenses dominate as Pirates hold on against Bay|
Dec 08, 2012 - As the first quarter ended, it was evident that Friday night’s Hoops For Hunger game between Bay and Rocky River was going to be a defensive struggle.
But despite the lack of offense on either side, the hotly-contested game still came down to the final minute. The Pirates, who had led since early in the second quarter, held on and escaped with a narrow 42-35 win in the West Shore Conference opener for both teams.
The teams saw their early-season records even out at 1-1 in a game where neither team could muster much offense. Bay managed just 10 field goals in the contest and didn’t score in the second quarter as River turned a 7-6 first quarter deficit into an 18-7 halftime lead.
The Rockets would recover and rally to within two points in the second half, but could never get over the hump as the Pirate defense proved equal to the task.
“The key was that we got off to a good start...
Fast start, defense powers Pirates past Rockets|
Dec 08, 2012 - After going through three losses to open the 2012-13 season, the Rocky River girls finally broke into the win column on Wednesday night in Vermilion using a simple formula:
Get off to a good start and let the defense finish the job.
That formula resulted in a 41-25 win, and the Pirates continued that trend Friday night as arch rival Bay came to town. River opened with a 7-0 run and never looked back in defeating the Rockets, 49-35, in the first game of the annual Hoops For Hunger doubleheader.
With the win, Rocky River moved to 2-3 overall and stayed on top of the West Shore Conference with Lakewood at 2-0. The Rangers went to 2-0 Friday night as well with a 55-48 win over Avon. The Rockets fell to 0-4 overall and 0-2 in the league as the Rockets’ problems with shooting and...
Video: Rocket wrestling team off to a strong start|
Dec 07, 2012 - Don’t look now, but the Bay wrestling program has gotten off to one of its best starts in recent memory.
The Rockets opened with a strong second-place finish at the always-tough Knights of Columbus Invitational at Avon Lake. Vince Zitiello won an individual championship at 106 for Bay, which finished behind Amherst in the team standings.
The dual season opened last Thursday night at Rocky River, with the Rockets defeating both the Pirates and Fairview. Bay scored a 58-24 win over host River, then beat...
Westlake defense, intensity yields win over River|
Dec 05, 2012 - Westlake head coach Shawn Hood made no bones about what he expected from his Westlake basketball season early on this season.
One of those expectations was for his Demons to play with intensity. If Tuesday night was any indication, that intensity could be a big problem for future opponents to handle.
“I wanted to see another game - back-to-back games - of high-level intensity,” Hood said after his Demons got off to a hot start and took out visiting Rocky River, 68-45, to move to 2-0 on the 2012-13 season.
“I didn’t talk about strategy. I didn’t talk about our pressure,” Hood said. “I wasn’t really specific in terms of scouting. I just wanted to see...
River swims way to Rocket Relay championships|
Dec 02, 2012 - The Rocky River swim and dive team continued its hot start to the 2012-13 season by winning both the girls and boys team championships at the seventh annual Rocket Relays at Lakewood High School.
The Pirate girls won three of the eight events and finished second in two more to score 92 points. Fellow West Shore Conference member Avon was second with 66 points, while host Bay took third with 62 points. Magnificat came in fourth with 57 points. In the boys competition, River...
Pirates swim past Westlake to open new season|
Nov 28, 2012 - The Rocky River swim and dive team opened the 2012-13 season this week by hosting Westlake. The Pirates got off to a solid start, as the girls team won 122-64 and the boys came out of the pool with a 100-83 decision.
In the girls meet, River won 11 of the 12 events. Emma Flynn had a strong performance, competing on the winning 200 medley and 400 free relays while winning the 50 freestyle in 26.07 and the 100 butterfly in 1:02.57. Haley Rosiak also had four wins, competing in two winning relays and taking the 500 free and 200 free. Flynn, along with Hallie McCue, Lauren Devorace and anchor Megan Jaite...
Sperli's goal in second OT gives River tourney title|
Nov 27, 2012 - Through 53 minutes of hockey, visiting Hudson had matched Rocky River shot for shot, goal for goal. With the game heading into a second overtime period, the large Monday night crowd at Hamilton Ice Area was on the edge of their seats.
It took just 47 more seconds for a majority of those fans to go home happy.
That’s when the senior duo of Kyle Kopecheck and Eric Sperli teamed up for the game winner. Kopecheck’s pass found Sperli out on the right wing for the deciding goal as the Pirates edged the Explorers...
Demons' pressure leads to 51-39 win over Pirates|
Nov 24, 2012 - With 6:13 left in the first half, things were looking pretty good for the Rocky River basketball team.
The young Pirates, with two freshmen in their starting lineup, held a 17-15 lead and were more than holding their own against visiting Westlake. But for the next 13-plus minutes of the game, it was as if somebody had pulled the plug on River’s offense.
The Demons, sporting a new-look roster of their own, went on a 17-4 run during that stretch. That proved to be the difference as they held off the Pirates down the stretch and left town with a 51-39 win Friday night...
CHAMPIONS! Elinsky's OT goal gives title to River|
Oct 26, 2012 - When opportunity knocked for Rocky River, the Pirates’ Abby Elinsky couldn’t get to the door fast enough.
After surviving a late Holy Name surge in the 79th minute, the Pirates battled the speedy Green Wave to a draw through the first overtime period. But with just 1:49 gone off clock in the second OT, the Pirates’ persistence paid off.
That’s when Elinsky’s header off a Jill Krebs corner kick found the back of the net, sending Rocky River back to the regional tournament with a 3-2 win Thursday night before a large crowd at Rocky River Stadium.
The Pirates not ony avenged a 2-1 regular season loss to Holy Name, but more importantly earned their second-straight Division II District Championship...
Rockets top Pirates, soar back into district finals|
Oct 25, 2012 - Midway through the second minute, Bay senior Chris Eaton lined up the ball for a free kick just outside the box and to the left of the Rocky River goal.
Pirates head coach Kevin Zerbey had seen similar scenarios unfold several times throughout the season. The fact that this was a district semifinal game made what happened next a little tougher to take.
Eaton sent the ball into the box, and it found it’s way to fellow senior Matt Toth just to the right of center. Toth, unmarked, zipped the ball past River keeper Dominic Liva for a 1-0 Rocket lead with just 1:30 gone off the Memorial Stadium...
Second half comeback gets Pirates past Firelands|
Oct 21, 2012 - When Firelands sophomore Joshua Mallett scored to give his Falcons a 2-1 first-half lead, it seemed another chapter was being written in Rocky River’s season of frustrating losses.
But in the second half, the Pirates’ tale of woe took a big turn for the better.
River scored three unanswered goals in the second half and won it’s fourth straight sectional championship in a 4-3 win over the Falcons Saturday in Division II tournament soccer action at Rocky River Stadium.
The win upper the Pirates’ record to 8-8-1 and sent them into Wednesday night’s district semifinal game at Bay. The top-seeded Rockets advanced Saturday as well, taking out Benedictine, 8-0, in a sectional final at Memorial Stadium.
“At halftime, I told them this was their season,” said Pirates head coach Kevin Zerbey, whose team...
Give me five: Douglas' TD outburst thwarts Pirates|
Oct 20, 2012 - With 11:12 left and the game hanging in the balance, Rocky River’s Keelan Boettcher ran a quarterback sneak from two yards out. Xhuljo Harunaj nailed the conversion kick, and the Pirates were all tied up at 21-all with West Shore Conference leader Avon.
What happened next could be summed up in two words:
The University of Michigan recruit, who had already scored three...
Bennett goal allows Pirates to sneak past Streaks|
Oct 14, 2012 - Twice in the first half, Rocky River forward Grace Bennett had a breakaway opportunity in the Magnificat backfield. And both times, Blue Streak defender Alyssa Baumbick moved in to successfully stop the threat.
A similar scenario occurred in the 47th minute, but this time with a much different result.
Bennett managed to get a step ahead and went on to score the only goal of the game to give the Pirates a hard-fought 1-0 win over the Blue Streaks in a battle of state-ranked and top-seeded tournament teams.
The Saturday night win, most of which was played in windy and rainy conditions, moved River to 14-2-0 on the season. The Pirates, ranked fourth...
River ground game leads to 19-7 win over Rockets|
Oct 13, 2012 - Down 7-6 at halftime, Rocky River head coach Rick Adams stuck to a game plan that had worked to perfection during the Pirates’ three-game win streak.
“We knew what we had to do,” Adams said.
And that plan was to run the ball.
The Pirates, behind the efforts of running backs Michael Dickey, Martin Finnegan and Jesse Singler, controlled the ball nearly 18 minutes of the second half on their way to a 19-7 win over...
CHAMPIONS! Rockets blank Pirates, reclaim WSC|
Oct 11, 2012 - The age old adage in sports is that defense wins championships.
On Wednesday night, the Bay girls soccer team showed why that axiom still stands in 2012.
The Rockets, after a two-year absence, reclaimed the West Shore Conference championship trophy by blanking defending champion Rocky River on it’s home turf, 2-0. The second-ranked team in Ohio Division II finished the league season at 7-0, while the fourth-ranked Pirates closed out at 6-1. Combined with the boys team’s 2-0 win over...
River spikers outlast Rangers in five-set marathon|
Oct 10, 2012 - With the regular season winding down and Elyria Catholic clinching the West Shore Conference championship, it was time to switch gears for the Lakewood and Rocky River volleyball teams.
Both the Rangers and Pirates enter tournament play next week, and Tuesday night’s match had a playoff atmosphere to it as River prevailed 23-25, 25-16, 25-20, 19-25, 15-11 in a WSC barn burner at Lakewood High.
Rocky River, which closes out the regular season Thursday night at Bay, edged it’s way over the .500 mark at 11-10. The Pirates also moved to 8-5 in the WSC with a third-place finish still within reach.
Lakewood, coming off a 2-1 performance at the Mayfield Tournament over the weekend, fell to 10-11 overall and 6-7 in league...
Week Seven: River rolls; Eagles ground Meteors|
Oct 06, 2012 - Friday night’s wet and windy weather was the perfect climate for a defense-oriented football team with a good running attack.
A team, for example, like Rocky River.
The Pirates, behind a stout defense and the 169-yard rushing performance of Marty Finnegan, disposed of North Ridgeville, 33-16, Friday night at Rocky River Stadium. It was the third win in a row for the Pirates, who now find themselves tied with Midview for second place in the West Shore Conference.
The previously undefeated Middies were unbeaten no longer after visiting Avon dished out a 28-0 decision in Grafton. The Eagles moved to 6-1 overall and 4-0 in the WSC, with River and Midview both a game back at 3-1.
“Our kids did a great job tonight,” said...
Curri's hat trick allows Rangers to rally past River|
Oct 04, 2012 - With 8:05 left in the first half, Rocky River’s Spencer Klodnick ripped a rebounded ball off a corner kick into the back of the net for a 2-0 lead over Lakewood.
While the Pirates rode that momentum well into the second half, one could sense a shift as the second 40 minutes ticked away at Lakewood Stadium.
The Rangers, behind a three-goal explosion from Mirsad Curri, managed to rally for a 3-2 West Shore Conference win Wednesday night. The victory moved Lakewood to 8-4-1 on the season and ensured the Rangers of finishing with a winning record in their first year of WSC play at 4-2 with one league game remaining.
Rocky River, on the other hand, fell to 5-7-1 on the season in losing it’s seventh game in the last eight. The Pirates also saw their WSC mark even out at 3-3, with their final league encounter coming Oct. 10 at Bay...
Rocky River wins first bridge battle with Lakewood|
Sep 29, 2012 - During the preseason, Rocky River head coach Rick Adams felt his defense and running game would set the tone in 2012. Six games in, the Pirates have started to throw some big-yardage plays into that mix.
The result? The Pirates have won two in a row and are hungry for more.
Friday night, River scored on a pair of 60-plus yard plays and kept Lakewood out of the end zone in the second half in a 21-13 West Shore Conference win at Lakewood Stadium. The win evened the Pirates’ record at 3-3 and gave them bragging rights in the first-ever ...
Week Five: Rangers, River get much-needed wins|
Sep 22, 2012 - With both teams in the throngs of three-game losing streaks, Lakewood and Rocky River were looking for the tide to turn in Week Five of the high school football season.
While they took startling different paths to get there, both the Rangers and Pirates accomplished their goals.
Lakewood, after building a 22-0 halftime lead at North Ridgeville, had to hold on for dear life in the final seconds to come away with the 22-21 road win. It was Lakewood’s first-ever win in football as a member of the West Shore Conference. At Rocky River, the Pirate defense...
Magnificat puts things together in win over Pirates|
Sep 18, 2012 - With both teams hovering around the halfway point of their respective seasons, the Magnificat and Rocky River volleyball teams went into Monday night’s match still looking to piece things together in 2012.
When it was all said and done, is was the Blue Streaks who took a big step into the second half of the season.
Magnificat, struggling to get over the .500 mark, got back to even with a 25-16, 25-12, 25-18 road win over the Pirates. River, now 7-4, had it’s chances throughout the match but couldn’t get past the inconsistent play that has plagued them throughout the first half of the season. “We’re still inconsistent. We didn’t do quite enough...
Opportunity knocks, River answers in four-set win|
Sep 14, 2012 - Thursday night’s volleyball match between Lakewood and Rocky River was one filled with opportunity for both teams.
In the end, it was the Pirates who took managed to take advantage.
Despite stumbling in the third set, they managed to come back strong enough in the fourth and came away with a 25-14, 25-19, 12-25, 25-18 win over the Rangers in an important West Shore Conference matchup. The Pirates, coming off a loss to first-place Elyria Catholic, needed the win...
Demons break through in second half, top Pirates|
Sep 11, 2012 - With both teams coming off a loss on Saturday, the Rocky River and Westlake boys soccer teams had plenty to play for as the two teams renewed their old Southwestern Conference rivalry Monday night.
With both teams coming into the game tied for first place in their respective conferences, some big-time bragging rights were on the line.
And with 55-plus minutes of scoreless soccer in the books, something had to give.
With the Pirates playing tough defensively, Westlake tried a more direct approach offensively, and it paid off. In the 56th minute...
Video: River spikers take third at own invitational|
Sep 10, 2012 - The Rocky River volleyball team finished third at it’s 33rd annual Rocky River Volleyball Invitational Saturday. The Pirates defeated Keystone, 25-23, 25-11 to finish 2-1 on the day.
In the championship match, Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin won the event with a 25-19, 20-25, 25-14 win over Brookside.
North Olmsted also went 2-1 on the day, but dropped out of contention with an opening 25-22, 17-25, 25-13 loss to River. The Eagles bounced back with a 25-14, 24-26, 25-18 win over Trinity and a 21-25, 25-16, 25-23 victory over Cuyahoga Heights.
Lakewood had rough day, but finished things off with a 26-24, 25-17 win over Trinity. The Rangers opened their day with a 22-25, 25-21, 27-25...
Westlake remains unbeaten, rolls past River 29-13|
Sep 08, 2012 - Before the season started, Westlake head coach Mark Campo knew he had a slew of offensive weapons at his disposal. Rocky River head coach Rick Adams felt his team’s defense was the core his Pirates would build around in 2012.
Something had to give Friday night at Rocky River Stadium.
Westlake took the opening kickoff and drove down field for a touchdown. The Demons would build a 20-0 halftime lead, then hold off the Pirates in the second half on the way to a 29-13 win that kept them undefeated...
Bennett, Pirates strike early in win over Midview|
Sep 06, 2012 - After not scoring in last week’s win against Vermilion, the first couple of minutes against Midview Wednesday night must have been a moment of deja vu for Rocky River\'s Grace Bennett.
In the opening minutes, Bennett stole the ball and found herself one-on-one with Midview keeper Taylor Ceh, who made a great diving save. In the sixth minute, the River tri-captain was fouled in the box, but her penalty kick hit the left post.
Not to worry. Bennett broke her mini scoring drought six minutes later and went on to score a hat trick as the Pirates rolled...
Eagles take control early in 3-set sweep at River|
Sep 05, 2012 - After a big win last week at Midview, Rocky River head coach Kelly Bennett was looking for more of the same Tuesday night as Avon paid a visit.
As it turned out, the Eagles had other ideas.
Avon took advantage of numerous Pirate mistakes in the first set and left town with a three-set sweep in handing River its first loss of the season. The 25-13, 25-17, 25-22 Eagle win put both teams at 2-1 in the West Shore Conference, one game behind front-running Lakewood and Elyria Catholic.
“Our offense has really picked up a lot,” said Avon head coach Jenn Larrick...
A new era begins for River in 6-2 win over Eagles|
Aug 28, 2012 - While most teams had already played a game during the season’s opening week, the Rocky River girls team waited.
The Pirates, coming off the program’s best season ever in 2011, finally got out of the starting gate this past Saturday night. They scored four goals in the first half and fought off a determined rally by host North Olmsted in the second half to come away with a 6-2 win to start off the 2012 campaign. “Being the first game of the season, I’m always...
River rolls in three set win over youthful Westlake|
Aug 27, 2012 - A three-set loss in the season opener probably wasn’t what first-year head coach Meghan Mental and her Westlake Demons were looking for Saturday afternoon.
But from Mental’s perspective, brighter days are ahead despite a 25-11, 25-17, 25-21 loss to visiting Rocky River that officially opened the 2012 volleyball season in the Westshore.
“Since were so young, I’m trying to get the girls to stay positive and move on to the next play,” Mental said after the match. “Sometimes we tend to let our mistakes get to us,” she said. “We’re getting better, though, at shaking those off...
Video: Britton, Connelly off and running at Mastick|
Aug 09, 2012 - Local cross country athletes got a chance to get warmed up for their upcoming season by participating in Wednesday’s annual Classic at Mastick.
It was a good night at the Cleveland Metroparks’ Rocky River Reservation for two of the Westshore’s top girls cross country runners. Bay junior Maddie Britton, who led the Rockets to the West Shore Conference championship last season, won the Female 15-16 age bracket. She finished her 5K run with a time of 20:09.3
Rocky River senior Madi Connelly also fared well in winning the Female 17-18 bracket with a time of 20:41.2. Britton and Connelly finished...
Video: St. Marie takes runner-up honors at Mastick|
Aug 09, 2012 - It was a homecoming of sorts for Westlake’s Jack St. Marie.
The former Westlake distance ace competed in the annual Classic at Mastick 5K Wednesday and nearly came away with a win. St. Marie took second overall in the Men’s 5K with a time of 16:06.6, just seconds behind the winner, Andrew Cranes and his time of 15:56.9.
Many of the area’s high school cross country runners competed in the race. Jonathan Albaugh won the Male 15-16 bracket with a time of 17:12.3, while Rocky River’s Ryan Gallagher...
Senior class, run attack to bolster Pirates' hopes|
Aug 07, 2012 - Despite a narrow 10-6 loss at Westlake, the 2011 football season was looking good early on for Rocky River.
The Pirates bounced back the following Friday and opened West Shore Conference play with a 14-6 win at Vermilion. They were 3-1 heading into the Midview game and had allowed less than six points per game at that point in the season.
That’s when the bottom dropped out of the Pirates’ season.
River allowed 34, 42, 42 and 44 points in the next four outings and lost the final six games...
Lacrosse: River boys have season to remember|
Jun 14, 2012 - In the days after his team’s 8-6 loss to Columbus DeSales in the Division II state lacrosse title game, Rocky River head coach Steve Anderson looked back at his Pirates’ historic season.
“We were ready to play. It’s a different experience,” said Anderson, who in his third season led River to its first state semifinal win and a berth in the championship game.
“DeSales is a very good team,” Anderson said, whose team trailed 8-2 before rallying in the fourth quarter. “We really didn’t touch the ball much in the third quarter. We finally got things going on the offensive side in the fourth.
“The kids gave it their all, and that’s all you can ask for as a coach,” he added...