A look at Orrville High School’s winter sports teams

A look at Orrville High School’s winter sports teams

Entering her fourth season as head coach of Orrville’s girls basketball team, Maggie Summers has seven letter winners back from a year ago.


The 2021-22 winter season was a struggle for Orrville’s basketball and wrestling teams. All return this year with high hopes of turning things around.

Boys basketball

For third-year boys basketballcoach Jim Frizell, that means relying on an inexperienced squad. Though just three letter winners (Tyler Schroer, Chris Smith and Ira Smith) moved on, only two — 5-foot-10 senior guard Brant Bescancon and 5-10 junior guard Greg Smiley — are back.

A quartet of seniors heads the newcomers. That group features Daniel Malcuit (5-8 guard), Asiah Smith (5-10 guard), Caden Winston (6-3 wing/post) and Damon Tarpley (5-10 guard).

A pair of wings — 6-1 Nick Amstutz and 5-11 Matthew Smotherman — moves up as juniors while the young foursome of 6-3 sophomore post Alex Schroer, 5-10 sophomore guard Michael Diehl, 5-9 sophomore guard Jax Haley and 5-11 freshman guard Kodah Allen will get their first varsity experience.

The Red Riders struggled a year ago, posting a 4-19 overall record and a 1-11 mark in the Principals Athletic Conference.

“We believe we will be very competitive this year,” Frizell said. “We expect to be in position to win in the fourth quarter as long as we are playing with discipline.”

Frizell said his team will need to be disciplined on both ends of the floor and learn to play together in order to be successful.

“We have seniors through freshmen that are going to contribute, so unity in this preseason has been a major focus,” he said. “I believe if we play together and unselfish, good things could happen.”

Girls basketball

OHScoach Maggie Summers heads into her fourth year of a 3-18 overall campaign. The Red Riders did not record a conference victory. Just three players graduated from that team.

Returning is a trio of seniors in guard Averi Haley, forward Sophie Pertee and post Annie Ayers. Also back are junior post Abby Ankenman, sophomore post Britney Butzer and sophomore guard Abby Gonzales.

Joining the quad this season are junior guards Natalie Dalton, Ellie White and Madie White and freshman guard Cadence Wilson.

“We hope to be competitive in the league and throughout our schedule this year,” Summers said.

For that to happen, she said her team will have to be unselfish, have team unity, stay aggressive defensively and compete each game.


If wrestlingcoach Jamie Keeney didn’t know anybody last year as a rookie head coach, he’ll know just about everyone this time around. While the Red Riders placed sixth in the PAC a year ago, they did it with a young team and return all but one wrestler from that group, Alberto Gray.

Five district qualifiers lead the returnees, none of them seniors. Juniors Jack Waldson (190 pounds), Connor Choreson (138) and Skiler Veemara (138) are back, along with sophomores Seth Kinser (132) and Paul Hostetler (157), all with district experience.

Others returning are the team’s lone senior Alex Dalessandro (190), juniors Isaac Kitchen (215) and Drew Caskey (175), and sophomore Brenden Betts (285). They will be joined by newcomers Landon Grimes (freshman, 106), Vincent Perego (sophomore, 113), Connor Endsley (freshman, 126), Andrew Lewis (junior, 150) and Brahm Hostetler (freshman, 215), a PAC middle school champ a year ago.

“This season, with filling many holes in our lineup, we will do better in duals and tournaments by having the opportunity to score more points,” Keeney said. “We are still young as a team with only having one senior. We were able to add 10 freshmen to the team and add a few more wrestlers that have come back after taking a season or two off. I expect Orrville wrestling to do better in the PAC than last year. It is hard to say for sure because there are some quality teams in the PAC that will be hard to beat, such as Tuslaw, CVCA and Fairless.”

Note: The Orrville High swim preview will run in the Dec. 3 edition.

Loading next article...

End of content

No more pages to load