Senior athletes honored at Athletic Banquet
Attendees of the annual Pocahontas County High School athletic banquet were brought to their feet Wednesday night as Spanish teacher Mali Minter and basketball coach Bob Sheets presented the William Dilley Memorial Scholarship to three recipients.
ﾓIt is truly my honor to present the following award,ﾔ Minter said. ﾓIn the fall of 2008, we lost a neighbor, a father and long-time supporter of PCHS. William Dilley was a very strong athlete in his time at PCHS. This award honors not only his accomplishments in track, but the kind of man that William was.
ﾓThe three words we have engraved on the plaque are dedication, sportsmanship and teamwork,ﾔ she continued. ﾓWe feel that these three words describe William, not only with regard to track, but with regards to his life. The male and female athletes we have chosen to receive this scholarship exemplify Williamﾒs dedication, sportsmanship and teamwork. It is my pleasure to announce the recipients of the $500 William Dilley Scholarship to be Abe Rittenhouse and Joy Walkup.ﾔ
After presenting the award to the two track players, Minter had another presentation to make.
ﾓIn addition to these fine athletes, thereﾒs definitely another track member who exemplifies Williamﾒs dedication, sportsmanship and teamwork,ﾔ she said, choking up.
Sheets continued the presentation.
ﾓThis athlete's name was not considered for the scholarship at the request of her mother, however, an anonymous donation to match that of the scholarship has been made and it is truly my pleasure and an honor to present the William Dilley Scholarship to Ms. Toni Dilley.ﾔ
Two more awards were presented to outstanding athletes.
Volleyball coach Melvin Lindsey awarded Toni Dilley and Abe Rittenhouse with the Arch Wooddell Sportsman Award. Baseball coach Mike DiPasquale presented Toni Dilley and Jesse Bolyard with the June Riley Award.
Soccer coach Mike Burns reviewed the boys and girls season. The girls finished with a 14-8-1 record and were finalists in the state playoffs. Erin White made first-team Coalfield Conference, Erica Rebinski achieved honorable mention Coalfield Conference and Lindsey Barlow was selected honorable mention all-state.
Senior members Joy Walkup and Adrienne Nottingham were recognized for their dedication to the team. Walkup was first team Coalfield Conference, Wendyﾒs Hiesman Athlete and co-captain. Nottingham was second team all-state, first team Coalfield Conference, co-captain and nominated to play in the all-star game, although she was unable to play due to shoulder surgery.
The boys team finished the season with an 18-2-2 record and placed second at the state playoffs. Dalton Walker was honorable mention Coalfield Conference and Jed Sheets was first team Coalfield Conference.
Seniors Jairus Morton, Josh Alderman, Jimmy Wiley, Jerry Simonin, Jesse Bolyard, Abe Rittenhouse and Martin Lockman made several accomplishments on the team.
Morton was second team Coalfield Conference. Wiley was honorable mention all-state, first team Coalfield Conference, elected to the all star game and co-captain. Simonin was West Virginia goalie of the year, first team all-state for the second year in a row, first team Coalfield Conference and played in the all-star game. Bolyard was West Virginia defender of the year for the second year, first team all-state for the second year in a row, first team Coalfield Conference, played in the all-star game and co-captain. Rittenhouse was first team all-state for the second year, first team Coalfield Conference, played in the all-star game and co-captain.
Before handing over the podium, Burns took a moment to speak on his retirement.
ﾓI would just like to thank everybody that has been behind me, not only with my soccer teams in the past but also with my forestry teams,ﾔ he said. ﾓI truly appreciate your support in this community and after 31 years, a lot of people have said ﾑwhy are you retiring?ﾒ and Iﾒve thought about it and Iﾒve decided, thereﾒs a whole lot of fish out there and I might as well be the one catching them.
ﾓI want to thank all you guys for your support,ﾔ he continued. ﾓThank you for everything youﾒve done for me and I donﾒt think I would have spent my time any better anywhere else than right here in Pocahontas County.ﾔ
Lindsey presented Burns and his wife/co-coach Mary Sue, with a plaque for their work with the soccer teams.
Lindsey recapped the volleyball teamﾒs season and an interesting event that occurred on a road trip to an away game.
ﾓOur biggest thrill was going to Fayetteville,ﾔ he said. ﾓI was half asleep and I heard someone say ﾑdeer,ﾒ and I thought we had hit a deer, but we hit a bear. I get out to look and one of them hung out the window and said, ﾑpoke it with a stick.ﾒ Chloe hollered out, ﾑstrap it to the hood because itﾒs bigger than the one my brother killed.ﾒ We ended up going on down the road and we swept Fayetteville that night. I said they were playing with the spirit of the bear in them.ﾔ
Senior members of the volleyball team are Brittany Ramos, Jannessa Turner, Danielle Gooding, Toni Dilley and Amanda Nottingham. Ramos was first-team Coalfield Conference, Turner was first-team Coalfield Conference, Danielle Gooding was honorable mention all-state and Chloe Bland was second-team Coalfield Conference.
Lindsey also spoke about the golf teamﾒs successful year, winning the Coalfield Conference, sectionals, regionals and playing at the state playoffs in Wheeling. Senior Reid Harpers was recognized for his time on the team.
Football coach Mike Knisely said, despite the 3-7 season, the team put in a huge effort this year. Throughout their four-year career, the seniors had 27 wins and were part of the 2008 undefeated season and played in two state playoffs.
Senior members of the team are Jesse Walker, Dan Richardson, Gus Willis, Josh Arbogast, Patrick Moats, Chris Kopriva, Matthew Faulknier, Coy Beverage and Zack Jarrett.
Jesse Walker, Jesse Hoke and Seth Doss were first-team offense all conference; Dan Richardson, Tanner Graham and Josh Arbogast were second-team offense all conference; and Evan Rose was honorable mention offense all conference.
Jesse Walker, Seth Doss and Evan Rose were first-team defense all conference; and Dan Richardson and Gus Willis were second-team defense all conference.
Selected for all-state were: Seth Doss, honorable mention; Jesse Hoke and Jesse Walker, special honorable mention; and Evan Rose, first-team punter.
Doug Burns, coach for seventh and eighth grade football had a good year with a 5-3 winning season. He said having a team of 18 players going against teams with 50 players was similar to a David and Goliath pairing, but the team was up for the challenge.
He mentioned that Devan Rose had 1,375 yards and scored 22 touchdowns in eight games.
Middle school cheerleading coach Melodi Knisely spoke on behalf of cheerleading coach Darlene Arbogast. She recognized varsity cheerleaders Santana Beck, Summer Chestnut, Samantha Hefner and Chasten Taylor for a great season. She also mentioned the middle school team had 16 members.
Girls basketball assistant coach Kenny Lehman recapped the season, which concluded at the state tournament. Shelby Snead made the all-tournament team at the Allegheny Mountain Radio tournament, Summers County tournament, all PVC team, first-team Coalfield Conference and was third-team all-state. Miranda McNabb was honorable mention all-state.
Chloe Bland made the all-tournament team at the Allegheny Mountain Radio tournament, Summers County tournament, Pocahontas County tournament, The Inter-Mountainﾒs all-star team, second-team Coalfield Conference and captain second-team all-state. Bland was the youngest player in the history of PCHS to be selected as captain of an all-state team. Lyndsey Barlow was second-team Coalfield Conference.
Lehman said in the first semester of school, the team had a combined GPA of 3.75. The team didnﾒt have any seniors.
Despite the interruption of winter, Sheets said the boys basketball team still managed to have a 10-7 season. He recognized seniors Nathanial Lash, Jerry Simonin and Jimmy Wiley. He also thanked senior Cody Perkins for taping all the games.
DiPasquale spoke about a successful baseball season which led them to sectionals. The team had four seniors, Reid Harper, Dan Richardson, Harley Kinder and Gus Willis. Harper set records for hits in a season with 43, singles in a season with 30 and a career record for batting average. Steven Halterman set a record for doubles in a season with 13.
Harper was also selected first-team Coalfield Conference and second-team all PVC.
Softball coach Jerry Ramos said the team of 12 finished the season with 10 wins and 10 losses. He highlighted Miranda McNabb who pitched a no-hitter.
He recognized seniors Brittany Ramos and Emily Brown, who was first team PVC.
Kay Wiley, girls track coach, had 28 team members with 17 competing in the state track meet. She recognized senior members Joy Walkup, Jannessa Turner, Amanda Nottingham, Mandy Lester, Kailey Gibson and Toni Dilley.
Boys track coach Knisely recapped the season which included placing second at the Nicholas County Invitational, third at the Charleston Gazette Relays, third at Coalfield Conference, second at Fayetteville Lionﾒs Club Invitational, second at regionals and fifth overall at the state track meet.
Abe Rittenhouse twice broke the 1,600 meter school record. In preparation for track season, Rittenhouse ran 700 miles in the snow.
Tanner Graham was Coalfield Conference champion in the 200 meter and 400 meter. Evan Rose was conference champion in discus. The 4x400 meter team and 4x800 meter team were both conference champions.
State meet qualifiers were Abe Rittenhouse, Jess Bolyard, Josh Arbogast, Tanner Graham, Jesse Taylor, Noah Pugh, Evan Rose, Chris Kopriva, Jerry Simonin, Curtis Bennett, Curtis Pyles, Bill Kelley, Alex Rodriguez, Jairus Morton, Seth Doss, Seth Painter and Kyler Doss.
Placing at the state track meet were: the 4x200 meter team, Jess Bolyard, Josh Arbogast, Noah Pugh and Tanner Graham, sixth place; Abe Rittenhouse finished fifth in the 800 meter; Evan Rose finished fifth in the discus; Jesse Bolyard was fifth in 300 meter hurdles; Evan Rose placed fourth in shotput with a personal best of 44 feet, 10 inches; Tanner Graham finished third in the 200 meter and second in the 400 meter; Abe Rittenhouse finished second in the 3,200 meter; and the 4x400 meter relay team of Josh Arbogast, Abe Rittenhouse, Jesse Bolyard and Tanner Graham finished second in that competition.
Abe Rittenhouse was also state champion in the 3,200 meter.
Sheets recognized Erica Rebinski for singing the national anthem at the boys' state basketball tournament in Charleston.
Lindsey announced that PCHS won the spirit award at the girls' state basketball championship. Representing PCHS at the Coalfield Conference are Joy Walkup and Jimmy Wiley.