Spring fever

By on March 14, 2012

Todd Ruth

Ephrata Review

Sports Editor With the mercury expected to teeter around the 70 degree mark Wednesday, think it’s time to dust off the clubs and see if they’ve improved at all since the fall…

I think I know the answer already but hey, it’s worth a shot!

Amazing that it’s mid-March already, pitchers and catchers have been settled in for over a month, and another high school winter sports season has all but been put to bed (State swimming will wrap up Thursday and bowling will do the same Friday).

Spent this past weekend at the State Wrestling Championships in Hershey, and I must say that never gets old. What amazes me each year is you watch guys wrestle all season locally, and you know how good they are. Then you get to Hershey and the stiff competition turns them into mere mortals.

What I’m saying is everyone is good there, which makes for quite a tournament. The best part for me this year was to have the opportunity to watch two legends in the making, Chance Marstellar of Kennard-Dale and Solanco’s Thomas Haines. Only sophomores, both now are half way to winning four Pennsylvania State titles.

Marstellar has never lost a high school match while Haines continues to make it look easy at a weight (220) usually dominated by upperclassmen.

It has been a treat to see them, and I look forward to another two years.

As for this year’s local participant, Kam Mueller of Cocalico, he put together quite a season which unfortunately ended with an 0-2 performance at States. However, just getting there to compete in that tournament is an honor not too many wrestlers get to experience. It probably hurts a little now but years from now he’ll be able to look back on it with fond memories.

Great season, Kam!

Shelley’s Staff: New Ephrata football Coach Scott Shelley is putting together quite an all-star staff as he gets set for his first season at the helm.

Heading that list is former longtime Cocalico Coach Phil Kauffman, who has enjoyed the Cable-11 booth since retiring from the Nest about a decade ago. Kauffman, who will run the offense (emphasis on run), will give the program instant credibility, although it sure will be strange seeing him in purple and gold.

Former Ephrata great running back Eric Frees is also expected to be part of the staff, as well as ex-Eagle standout QB and former professional pitcher Eric Ackerman, and Shelley’s son Adrian, who has turned the Ephrata baseball program into one of most successful in the L-L League.

I also understand former Ephrata Coach Merv Witmer, who led the Mounts to their lone Section Two title in 1987, will help out in some capacity.

With all that "know how" lined up, it’s hard to imagine this thing not turning around. Looking forward to the fall already.

Now excuse me…I have a date with the first tee. More RUTH, page B-2

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