Tri-City Area Sports

COLOMA’S ALL-STAR CHAMPIONS… The Coloma All-Stars won the 12U cham-pionship on Sunday, June 19 in a thrilling 14-4 victory over Watervliet. Teammates pictured front row (from the left): Addy Kimmerly, Madison McQuillan, Taryn Blazier, and Taylor Brown. Second row (from the left): Coach April Brown, Kylie Prisk, Adian Allmon, Head Coach Mike Brown, Chloe Wil-liams, Gracie Whitaker, Chloe Mathis, Alyssa Birmele, Haley Antio, and Coach Lindsey McQuillan.

Youth All-Star Tournament action kicks off;Coloma up first

 The Coloma Youth Baseball and Softball Association opened up All-Star action Thursday, June 16. The three-day, single elimination tournament was held at the youth fields on The three Tri-City teams fared well in the 8U, 10U, and 12U divisions.  In 8U, the Coloma All-Star defeated Hartford on Saturday, but then lost to Dowagiac. The Watervliet All-Star team was topped by North Lincoln.  Niles-Brandywine defeated River Valley, North Lincoln, and Harris Heat for the 8U championship.  In 10U competition, Hartford All-Stars were defeated by Harris Heat Sparks.

WHAT A WALLOP!… Mirys-sa Nelson of the 10U Coloma All-Stars team crushed a double in the second inning against Lakeshore Sunday. The Coloma Youth Baseball Softball Asso-ciation held their girls’ tourna-ment this past weekend. Colo-ma would go on and take the 10U trophy after topping Lake-shore, Harris Heat, and Harris Heat Sparks. (TCR photo by Kristy Noack)

Watervliet All-Stars beat Harris Heat Fusion to move on in the bracket. However, they ran into Harris Heat Sparks and lost.  Coloma All-Stars notched a victory over Lakeshore and Harris Heat to move into the championship game against Harris Heat Sparks. The Comets avenged Watervliet and Hartford’s losses with a victory and hoisted the championship trophy.  The 12U division also had a homegrown champion, as Coloma All-Stars met up with Watervliet All-Stars in the final game on Sunday.  Earlier in the day, Coloma trounced North Lincoln and beat Hartford to get to the championship.  Watervliet bested River Valley and Harris Heat to earn their berth in the big game.  In the end, Coloma All-Stars earned the championship victory.  Additional teams participating in the tournament included Buchanan, OC Crush, and South Haven.

LITTLE LADIES ON THE DIAMOND… Local softball and baseball tournament seasons begin! The girls’ All-Star tournament in Coloma kicked off on Thursday and ran through Sunday. Here, Coloma 8U player Callie Crisenbery watches the ball scoot past her in the pitcher’s mound as Sava-nah Follman stands ready at second base in their game against Dowagiac. (TCR photo by Kristy Noack)

Coloma’s Alex Castillo Competes in State Finals for Golf

 Coloma’s Alex Castillo competed in the Michigan High School Athletic Association’s Division 3 boys’ golf state finals on Saturday and Sunday, June 10 and 11 at Forest Akers East on the campus of Michigan State University.  During the two-day competition, Castillo shot rounds of 90 and 86 for a total score of 176.  Scott Sparks of Macomb Lutheran North took the individual championship by shooting a 67 and 74 for a two-day total of 141.  Congratulations, Alex, on representing Coloma High School and the golf program so well.

Watervliet Baseball named to 2016 Academic All-State list

 Watervliet Varsity Baseball Coach Josh Tremblay is feeling exceptionally proud of his team. The Panther squad was recently named the number one school in Division 3 for academics and earned an Academic All-State award.  The team averaged a 3.81 grade point average, which was not only tops in their division but also in Divisions 1, 2, and 4.  Five schools in each division are named to the 2016 Team Academic All-State list, and Watervliet outperformed all of them in the classroom.  Tremblay commented, “We had six players with a GPA of 4.0 or better.” 2016 Southwestern Athletic Conference All Division winners announced for

Baseball and Softball

 The Southwestern Athletic Conference recently named the 2016 All Division winners. Coloma, Hartford, and Watervliet Varsity Baseball Teams play in the SAC’s Lakeshore Division.  Earning First Team All Division honors were Coloma’s Chase Potter, Justin Pullins, and Danny Najacht; Hartford’s Michael Heinisch, Devin Oldham, and Lincoln Gendron; and Watervliet’s Tyler Brant.  Coloma’s Mathew Kelley, Calvin Starnes, Elliot Danneffel, Anthony Abbott, and Grant Kroschel earned Honorable Mentions.  Earning Honorable Mention awards from Hartford were Joe Cleary, Matt Kemp, and Tyler Gendron.  Watervliet’s Zack Pickens, Cam Rendo, and Bryant Kieft were also given Honorable Mention nods.  First Team awards in softball were earned by Coloma’s Nicolle Larson, Morgan Wagner, and Skylar Crisenbery; Hartford’s Ally Sinclair; and Watervliet’s Mercede Daugherty, Karlee Liles, and Kailee Cheek.  Honorable Mention awards were given to Kayla Yore, Alyssa Dillenbeck, and Mya Potter of Coloma. Madisyn Earl was the lone Indian to win an Honorable Mention award for Hartford. Watervliet’s Logan Mizwicki, Arianna Rowe, Lexi Kieft, Kara Liles, and Taylor Shafer all won Honorable Mention awards.

Paw Paw Lake Yacht Club fitness news

 The Paw Paw Lake Yacht Club is offering some exciting opportunities to get fit this summer.  The Club is hosting Lakeside Yoga beginning at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 24 and July 2.  The PPLYC will also host their annual triathlon set for Saturday, July 9. Registration takes place the day of the event from 8:45 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. Participants will hit the lake for the swim portion of the event at 10 a.m.  If you want to flex your muscles and stretch your arms, sign up for the bocce ball tournaments that begin Sunday, June 26. Tournaments will run every Sunday through August 21 except for August 14. That day, skip the bocce ball and snuggle up to the water’s edge as the Grand City Skiers return for a waterskiing exhibition. The skiers will leap, twist, and launch themselves from the waters of Paw Paw Lake. The show is free, open to the public, and will begin at 2:00 p.m.

THRILL OF HER LIFE… Avery Openneer, daughter of Michele Cole and Steve Open-neer had the thrill of her life. She was surprised when given a meet and greet pass to meet NASCAR Driver Dale Earn-hardt Jr. at the Michigan Inter-national Speedway on June 11. Avery was able to get pictures and autographs of Dale Jr., Jeff-rey Earnhardt, Martin Truex and David Ragan.

Girls’ Soccer stars win SAC Awards

 Members of the Coloma, Hartford, and Watervliet Girls’ Varsity Soccer Teams were recently honored by the Southwestern Athletic Conference.  As previously reported, Coloma’s Tristen Howard was named to the SAC First Team as a keeper. Teammate Tristin Hicks was named First Team as a fielder.  Mariah Mireles was the sole Hartford Indian to receive First Team recognition. Hannah Armstrong, of Watervliet, also received First Team honors.  Alyssa Bahr, Paige Derrick and Hannah Palmer, all of Coloma, were given Honorable Mention nods.  Hartford’s Cheyenne Findlay and Marissa Beraza and Watervliet’s Victoria Smith received Honorable Mention awards as well.

Hartford All-Star Softball Invitational begins June 23; All-Star Baseball Tournament of Champions start July 7

 Indian Pride Park, located at 130 Lincoln Street in Hartford, will be the place to be Thursday, June 23 through Tuesday, June 28, as the Hartford Council for Recreation hosts their annual All-Star softball invitational.  Five divisions of softball including 8U, 10U live pitch, 10U machine pitch, 12U, and 14U will take the diamond during the six-day competition.  Last year, Ventra Evart/Big Rapids won the 8U division. Lakeshore was tops in the 10U live pitch division, while Watervliet won the 10U machine pitch division.  Hartford took the championship in the 12U division, and Gobles won the 14U division.

The Hartford All-Star Baseball Tournament of Champions will take to the diamonds beginning Thursday, July 7.

 The tourney will feature teams playing in four divisions: instructional, minor, major, and pony league. Last year’s champions included Bridgman (instructional and minor leagues), Hartford (major league), and Watervliet (pony league).

Still time to register for the Inaugural Golf Scramble to benefit the Hartford Indians Boys Basketball and Baseball Programs  Boys’ varsity baseball coach Danny Brininstool is accepting registrations for Hartford’s inaugural golf scramble. The outing will be held Saturday, August 6 at Lake Cora Hills Golf Club, located at 56640 County Road 671 in Paw Paw.  The cost for a four-player team is $240, and the scramble will kick off with an 8:00 a.m. shotgun start.  Lunch, refreshments, and desserts are included in the cost. Each team will also participate in plenty of side games, including closest to the pin, a skins challenge for an extra $40 per team, longest putt, longest drive, and much more. Cash prizes as well as prize giveaways will be awarded. Be sure to sign up for this first-year event.  All monies raised will go to both the boys’ basketball and boys’ baseball programs at Hartford High School.  To sign up, contact Brininstool at (269) 317-0620 or email him at

Coloma Football Program Fundraiser tees off at Blossom Trails Golf Club

 Coloma Varsity Football Coach Joe Stephens is heading up a fundraiser for the school’s football program in the form of a golf scramble.  The 2016 Comet Classic will be held Saturday, July 9 at Blossom Trails Golf Club located at 1565 East Britain Avenue in Benton Harbor. Shotgun start at 9:00 a.m.  Registration is now underway for the event. The cost is $260 for a four-person team.  There are also additional opportunities for businesses to sponsor the event. A contest sponsorship is available for $250 and includes a sponsor sign at the contest site as well as the business name being listed as part of the event.  Sponsor signs will also be displayed at all Coloma Varsity Football games during the upcoming 2016 season which begins in August.  Hole sponsorships are also available for $100 and will also be on display at home games.  Contact Joe Stephens via email at to get your business set up or your team registered. Monies raised during the event will be used to help support the Coloma football program.  And, mark your calendars now. The varsity football squad opens their season on Thursday, August 25 on the road at Schoolcraft. The Comets host their home opener on Thursday, September 1 at 7:00 against Gobles.

Watervliet fundraiser monies to help Football Teams

 The Watervliet Trivia Night fundraiser that was held on Friday, June 10 raised $2,500 for the football programs at the school. Varsity head coach Jeremy Andrews has plans to put that money to good use.  The football program, which encompasses grades seven through 12, will get new wristbands; the wristbands are essential for play calling. The program will also invest in HUDL, a football analysis tool that will allow the teams to review practices and games. The program can also create videos for individual athletes as well as allow scouting opportunities between teams.  New tripods, game socks, and incentive helmet decals are also included in the wish list for the program.

Register now for Gene Bednarowski 5k Run/Walk

 There’s still time to lace up your sneakers and register for the 2016 Gene Bednarowski Cherry 5k Walk and Run. The races will be held Saturday, June as part of Watervliet’s 4th of July festivities.  Held last year on the grounds of Watervliet High and Middle Schools, this year’s race reverts to its previous location which threads along Paw Paw Lake. The race kicks off at 287 Baldwin Avenue, the site of North Elementary school.  Registration is available online now at Bednarowski5kRun through July 1 at 4:00 p.m. Eastern time. The cost to participate is just $20.00.  Event organizer Tim Lynch is looking for a few volunteers. If you are able to help Mr. Lynch, please contact him at 269-449-8735 or email him at

Eight Lake Michigan Admirals set sail for new basketball clubs

 Lake Michigan Admirals owner Chris Glisson reports that seven Lake Michigan Admirals have found landed new basketball contracts overseas following the 2016 season.  Rob Woodson has joined a team in the Ukraine. Nicholas Waddell will play for Uruguay. Marcus Tarrance heads to the Dominican Republic, while Anthony Brown and Stan Simpson will suit up for El Salvador teams.  Ian Walcott and Darren Washington were picked up by teams in Mexico.  Glisson also reported that the Admirals have set their overseas tour for 2016. The team will visit Beijing, China; Girona, Spain; Bexhill, England; and Jamaica. The Admirals participate in the good will tour to introduce the game of basketball to schools overseas and act as ambassadors of the game and the United States.

Golf results for June 20

 Ladies Monday Night Happy Hour Golf League June 20, 2016, weekly winner report: Event winner –Low Gross: Colleen McKeown with 50, Low Net:  Katherine Rodriguez with 30, Low Putts: Ursela Bansen with 15, Pars: Maureen McGrath #4, Colleen McKeown #1 and#6, and Carol Klass #3 and #5: Chip in:  Maureen McGrath #2: Longest Drive on Hole #1 – Colleen McKeown.

Kevin Harvick leads NASCAR driver standings fifteenraces into season

 The drivers on NASCAR’s Sprint Cup circuit took Father’s Day weekend off to spend time at home. Since there was no action at the track, we’ll review the Sprint Cup driver standings. With fifteen races in the bag, Kevin Harvick leads the drivers with 526 points. Harvick has won one race and collected seven top five and 12 top 10 finishes. Harvick drives for Stewart-Haas Racing, a team co-owned by fellow driver Tony Stewart and Haas Automation’s Gene Haas. Kurt Busch is 30 points behind Harvick in second place in the driver standings. Busch has one win this year. He also has five top five and 13 top 10 finishes. Busch is a Stewart- Haas driver as well. Brad Keselowski, with his two wins, six top five and 10 top 10 finishes, has driven himself into third place in the overall standings. He is 46 points behind Harvick and 16 back from Busch. Keselowski is the top-ranked driver for Team Penske. Carl Edwards has hustled his way into fourth place. With two wins, five top five and 10 top 10 finishes, he is 54 points behind Harvick and trails Keselowski by nine. Edwards drives for Joe Gibbs Racing. Team Penske driver Joey Logan is in fifth place in the driver standings. He has one win under his belt as well as five top five and nine top 10 finishes this season. He’s 71 points behind Harvick. Chase Elliott is the top Hendrick Motorsports driver. The rookie rolls into fifth place, 73 points behind Harvick. Elliott may be winless so far this season, but he has six top five and 11 top 10 finishes. Teammate Jimmie Johnson has two wins to his name this season and holds seventh place in the standings. He also has six top five and seven top 10 finishes.  Johnson is 85 points behind Harvick and 12 behind Elliott. Eighth place is held by Martin Truex Jr. Truex Jr. has one victory this season, two top five, and six top 10 finishes. The Furniture Row Racing driver is just eight points behind Johnson. Kyle Busch is 109 points behind Harvick in ninth place. The Joe Gibbs Racing driver has three wins, the most on the circuit so far this year.  He also has nine top five and nine top 10 finishes. Rounding out the top 10 NASCAR driver standings is JGR’s Matt Kenseth.  Kenseth has won collected one trophy this season and accumulated two top five and six top 10 finishes. He is 177 points out of first place. The only other driver to have won a race but who is not listed in the top 10 is Denny Hamlin in 13th place. Racing returns on Sunday for the Toyota-Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway. The 110-lap race will kick off at 3 p.m.

HARTFORD SPEEDWAY… Billy Moyer Jr. would be a sur-prise that would delight the Hartford faithful with his driv-ing clinic taking the $4,000 top prize in the American Ethanol Late Model Tour Friday night, June 17.

Moyer Jr.  dominates Hartford competition; Peek, Freed and Spalding win

 The American Ethanol Late Model Tour made its inaugural visit to Hartford Speedway Friday night with 32 entrants traveling from as far away as Missouri to tackle the Wicked Half Mile. Billy Moyer Jr. would be a surprise that would delight the Hartford faithful with his driving clinic taking the $4,000 top prize over Dona Marcoullier, John Henry, Rusty Schlenk and Tom Bell. Hartford locals JR Hotovy and Curt Spalding would see their bids ended after a hard crash in the first turn. Jacks Hauling & Excavating UMP Modifieds would have Steven Pena starting from the pole and getting the early hole shot over Curt Spalding. Spalding’s #111 would overhaul Pena on lap four and would hold off a late race charge by Brian Shaw would settle for second. Pena would take third, Bob Baldwin fourth and Erny Gingerich fifth. Puhrman Hauling & Excavating UMP Stock Cars would see a first time winner emerge as Calvin Peek would park his #88 in the winner’s circle over Josh Frye, Jerrad Krick, Caleb Bisacky and David Hurst. Federated Auto Parts Cyber Stocks for the first time since the inception of the division would see a six cylinder take the checker flags in first place with Chad Freed behind the wheel. Brian Gage would claim second, Brooke Derrick third, Riley Goss fourth and Jacob Ferguson fifth. Next Friday June 24 Hartford Speedway will be hosting the second Hartford Hustle where Federated Auto Parts Cyber Stocks will participate in a triple feature event, plus the exciting Jacks Hauling & Excavating Modifieds, Puhrman Hauling & Excavating Stock Cars and Mini Wedges will be action. Racing gets under way at 8 p.m. General admission is $12 with kids 10 & under FREE. For more information visit our website at or check in with us on Facebook.


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