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Madonna outscores Lady Eagles in first soccer match of 2015 season

Coach Whitford optimistic about the season

“I think they may have had first-game jitters,” Braxton soccer coach Justin Whitford remarked after Madonna defeated his team 2-0 in Saturday’s home match. “They’ve always struggled in the first game. We had two scrimmages, and I thought that would help, but they just didn’t seem to be comfortable out there.”
The coach, along with assistant coach Jarren Morlan, plans to work in two areas this week.
“We’re going to work on communication,” Whitford said. “That’s probably one of the most difficult things to work on in practice,” he added. “The other thing is vision, being able to picture the field a little better,” he explained.
This year’s soccer squad includes five seniors, four of whom have been with the team since Whitford began soccer three years ago. Those returnees include Caroline Nicholas, Makila Carr, and Jessica Beckett. Another, Laurel Lloyd, had to sit out last season because of injury but, the coach said, has healed and worked hard to return to top playing position.
The fifth senior, Sarah Skidmore, is in her first year on the high school team.
The juniors on the team make up the biggest group. In their third year are Leslee Coffman, Quinn Hopen, Hannah Dittman, Mallory Nicholson, Hollis Skidmore, and Kendra Houghton.
One junior, Julia Foster, will be out for the season because of an injury and surgery.
Coach Whitford noted that she “is still part of the team and will travel with them.” Transferring from Charleston, Lindsey Fowler is also a junior.
Abby Liston, the only sophomore on the team, is a returnee. Other members include freshmen Bethany Riffle and Elizabeth Dittman.
Coach Whitford, in discussing his team, pointed out that his defense is strong in Hopen, Nicholson, and Beckett. “They complement Leslee {Coffman, the goalie} back there. Lindsey (Fowler) is also back there and is equal to what the other girls offer.”
“On the attacking side,” the coach said, “we have Kendra and Makila. I moved Kendra back a bit to provide help with the defense. Along with Hollis, these two did most of the scoring for the team last year.“ He continued to note, in light of Saturday’s loss, “The offense didn’t look well Saturday, but I am sure it will be dominating this season. Other than three new girls, we’re returning a veteran team. I have high expectations, and I think we have a really good chance of making a strong run in the playoffs.”

Golfers improve during the week

After coming in third out of three teams in their first match of last week, the Eagles’ golf team finished second out of four teams in their second. In addition, at the second match, the team broke 200, something they had been unable to accomplish last season.
Coach Jerry Frame, looking at both the improvement and the fact that his players accomplished something they hadn’t last year, said, “I’m definitely happy with what the players did last week.” The coach added, “I’m really pleased with the efforts the golfers are making to improve, too.” He explained that, when they have team practice, they work at the driving range or “try to find a course where they will let us practice.” He noted that some of his team had gone to Richwood to play at Cherry Hill Golf Course. “They let players practice there free after church,” he explained.
The improvement from Wednesday’s match to Thursday’s was actually a big one. At Gilmer, the team finished at 213 strokes. At Summersville, they shot 192, 21 strokes better than their first outing.
Gilmer placed first in Wednesday’s match, followed by Ritchie County and then Braxton. Individually for the Eagles, Cam Long shot a 47, Clay Vincent 45, Gavin Triplett 50, and Hunter Drake 61.
In the Nicholas match, Greenbrier East finished first, Braxton second, Nicholas third, and Clay fourth. There Long had a 42, Clay Vincent 43, Gage Vincent 51, and Drake 56.
This week the Eagles have three outings. Yesterday they played Gilmer and Webster at Glenville. Wednesday, they go to Clarksburg to take on Notre Dame, and Thursday they play at Grafton.

Braxton Eagles to open football season Friday at Lincoln

Under new coach Bill Haddox, Braxton’s football squad opens the 2015 season Friday night at Lincoln, and assistant coach J.D. Drake feels the team is ready.
Coach Drake, who discussed the improvements he sees in this year’s squad, noted that the offensive line “is much better than it was last year.” Drake estimated that the Eagles linemen “average around 200 pounds” and have some experience. Here he mentioned center John Smith along with Drew Taylor, Justin Hudnall, Isaiah Cumberledge, and Dustin Barker.
The three quarterbacks, Drake commented, “all look good.” They include junior Levi Jarvis and sophomores Heath Cottrill and Tayton Stout. “These guys are all different, but they all have plenty to offer the team,” he said. It appears that the coaches may rotate their quarterbacks depending upon the situation.
At running back, the Eagles have Seth Arnold at fullback, Bruce Wayne, Luke Bonnett, Ben Fincham, and freshman Blake Withrow as halfbacks. “We have a lot of depth here,” Drake said, “and we will be rotating.”
Defensively, the team has looked good in scrimmages, and that may well be attributed to the fact that the team returns seven out of eleven defensive starters. The Eagles lost a tackle, a defensive end, and two corners. They have, however, been successfully replaced.
Here Coach Drake noted, “This will be the first time in two years that we aren’t starting any freshmen on defense.” The coaching staff is happy that “the majority know the defense well because they’ve been there,” and Drake said, “We’re actually putting more things into our defense.”
Braxton’s opponent Friday night lost their starting quarterback, but they still have a good quarterback. “He’s fast and throws the ball well,” Drake said. Lincoln did beat Ravenswood in a scrimmage. “They should be a tough team. The game will be a good test right off the bat,” Drake said.

Braxton County Redskins youth football play first game of the season at Ohio

Braxton County Redskins Youth Football and Cheerleading organization is excited to begin the 2015 season when they traveled to Frontier Ohio. The Redskins are associated with the American Youth Football League, also known as AYF and belong to the Little Kanawha Conference. The LKC is made of 6 teams in the north and 6 teams in the south. The northern teams include: Doddridge, Frontier, Ritchie, St. Mary’s, Tyler and Williamstown, and southern teams include: Braxton, Calhoun, Clay, Gilmer, Roane, and Wirt.
On Saturday, August 22, Braxton’s C, B, and A teams played their first game against Frontier, Ohio. C-team won 30-6, B-team lost 14-24, and A-team won 28-12.
Braxton will host their first home game at Flint Field next Saturday, August 29, against Roane County. Flag will begin at 11:00, C-team will start at 12:00, B-team will play at 2:00 and A-team will start at 4:00. The players and cheerleaders would like to invite everyone to come out and support approximately 150 Braxton County Redskins youth football players and cheerleaders. Admission is $3.00 and concessions will be available.
The league would like to thank their sponsors: City National Bank, Go-Mart, Weyerhaeuser, Michael Motors, Breakaway Inc., Appalachian Timber Services LLC, Vicky L. Murphy State Farm, Bi-Con, Dairy Queen and Flint Construction.
For a game schedule, additional information, and pictures visit us on Facebook at Braxton County Redskins Youth Football.

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