Area Sports...

June 19, 2002

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Banks County site of black bear sightings
Black bears have been on the prowl in Banks County.
Georgia Department of Natural Resources Ranger Winford Popphan said several sightings of black bears have occurred recently in Banks County.
One bear was run over and killed near Banks Crossing, and several have been sighted along Damascus Road, Yonah-Homer Road and in most all of the county he said.
“They are being run out of the mountains,” Popphan said. “There’s a good possibility we will acquire a resident population of last year’s yearnings.”
More than 2,000 bears live in Georgia, half of which reside in North Georgia.
“The bear population is healthy and continuously expanding,” Popphan said. “As the bear population expands, their range will also expand, meaning bears will more frequently enter counties not traditionally known for having bears like—Banks County.”
Killing a bear in Georgia is illegal except during bear season. However, Popphan warned that Banks County does not have an open bear season.
He said that killing a bear in Banks County, even to protect livestock or pets, is illegal.
“If you can call off your dog, the bear will leave,” Popphan said.
Popphan said black bears are not naturally aggressive. He said there had been only one documented case of a black bear attacking a human, which occurred last year. He added that officials were not sure why that bear attacked.
“Unless you feed them or get between them and their cubs, there’s not much of a problem,” Popphan said. “If you leave it alone, it will leave you alone.”
Popphan said residents can protect themselves by keeping food put away and by not feeding the bears. Bears will feed on birdseed, garbage, pet food and other items left outside.
“If they don’t have food they’ll move on,” he said.
Once home owners remove food sources, the bears may take several days to learn that they may no longer get free meals. Therefore, Popphan said, citizens experiencing bear problems should keep all food sources put away for at least two weeks to give the bear time to move on.
Should bears continue to be a nuisance and present a danger to human safety or commit major property damage, the DNR will trap and relocate them as a last resort. Relocated bears routinely are killed by motorists because they are away from their home range.
“A relocated bear’s health is negatively impacted due to competition with other territorial bears, stress of being trapped and lack of knowledge of the new area,” Popphan said.
To report a problem bear, call the DNR office in Gainesville at (770) 535-5700.

15-17 All-Star Team Hunts For Title
After a handful of second-place finishes in the past, the Commerce Recreation 15-17-year-old all star baseball team wants to be hoisting up a district championship trophy when all is said and done next week.
The team will try their luck at a title run when they host the District 7 tournament July 27-29 at Veterans Park in Commerce. The winner will advance to Harris County July 10-13 for the state tournament.
Commerce, which finished second to Banks County last year in the district tournament, comes into the event on the heels of four runner-up showings over the past eight years.
Eighth-year coach Gerald Jordan hopes this will be the breakout season.
“I sure would like to win one,” Jordan said.
Through a 15 game slate against only high school teams this summer, the Commerce team boasts an 8-7 record.
Jordan said the squad, which is made up of either varisty or JV players from the Tiger baseball team, had a particularly good run this past week, topping Jefferson, East Hall, Banks County and Franklin County
According to the coach, the strong suit of this year’s squad has been the pitching staff, achored by starters Casha Daniels, who hurled a complete game in the win over Jefferson, Chad Jordan, Josh Haynes and Caleb Jordan.
The coach added that the team also has some speed on the basepaths with Jesse Smith and Josh Haynes and said the defense has been “really strong.”
Offensively, Caleb Jordan leads the team with a .560 batting average while Chad Jordan has swatted five homers.
The team will have only one more contest before the district tournament, taking on Banks County this Monday night.
The team be off the remainder of this week due to the city lights festivities.
Team members include: Smith, Caleb Jordan, Adam Dills, Justin Beauchamp, Mitch Redmon, Dusty Vaughn, Hank Tiller, Daniel Taylor, Haynes, Richard Dailey, Daniels, Adam Weddington and Chad Jordan.
Gary Tiller and Terry Dills are the assistant coaches.

Jackson Co. and Jefferson Rec. Dept. all-stars announced
The Jackson County Recreation Department and Jefferson Recreation Department all-stars will begin postseason play next Thursday (June 27) with 10 of the combined 11 teams competing at Lamar Murphy Park in Jefferson.
Only the 13- and 14-year-old Jackson County boys squad will have to hit the road, traveling to Winder-Barrow for all- star tournament action.
Here’s a run down of team rosters and coaches for all the squads:
The 9- and 10-year-old girls all-star team will include Kegan Leissner, Devin Caudell, Heather Wells, Brittany Martin, Abby Woodall, Megan Logan, Ashlee Shapland, Carrie Casper, Paige Williams, C.J. Wilkes, Megan Dyer and Paige Reed.
The team is coached by Britt Martin and will start play June 28 at 6 p.m. agaist Forsyth II.
The 9- and 10-year-old boys red all-star squad will be made up of Klint Kesler, Lance Yates, Justin Colley, Beau Brissey, Cad Goff, Brady Brock, Evan Williamson, Austin Hanley, Luke Brookshire, John Robinson, Jake Hays and Devin Elliot.
Roger Brock will be the head coach, assisted by Steve Williamson and Steve Robinson. The team will begin play June 28 at at 6 p.m. after receiving a first-round bye in the district tournament.
Playing on the 9- and 10-year-old boys blue all-star team are Ray Jordan, Bert Carithers, Dusty Barrett, Brandon Banks, Kevin Duncan, Josh Chumley, Nicholas Keyros, Cody Grissom, Greg Blankinship, Nathan Germain, Ismael Carrilo and C.J. Warren.
Walter Folwer is the head coach of the team. Jeff Warren, Candi Grissom and Mike Garithers will assist.
The team is set to take on Hall County I June 27 at 6 p.m.
The 11- and 12-year-old boys red all-star team include: Tyler Thurmond, Matt Bolt, Josh Farmer, Chris Beck, Chase Crawford, Trevor Booth, Joseph Bridges, Patrick Allen, Caleb Satterfield, Zach Evanson, Zeke Cain and Taylor Boswell.
Ricky Farmer is the head coach and Michael Beck will assist.
The team will play June 28 at 6 p.m. after receiving a first-round bye.
The 11- and 12-year-old boys blue all-star squad will be made up of Jazz Hunt, Cory Williams, Hasting Coley, Ryan Smith, D.J. Waters, Taylor Kennedy, Brandon Smith, Joseph Smith, Chase Bowen, Thomas Garrett, Jeremy Ballew and Ryan Johnson.
Otis Colley will coach the team. Eddie Williams will assist.
The squad will begin play June 27 at 8 p.m. against Hall I.
Playing on the 11- and 12-year-old girls’ all star team will be Lindsey Tolbert, Alex Palmer, Hannah Wood, Briana Caudell, Pamela Faulkner, Hannah Allen, Marley Pulliam, Brittany Meeler, Brittany Gable, Kayla Tullis, Autumn Harris and Katherine Ledford.
Wyne Gable will coach the team and will be assisted by Chris Bennett.
The 11-and 12-year-old girls will begin play against Forsyth II Friday at 6 p.m.
The 13- and 14-year-old boys all star team will include: John Hays, Michael Maudlin, Justin Rampley, Kyle Baird, Dustin Campbell, Shane Rouse, Kyle Mooney, Trent Latty, Bryan Williams, Taylor Wood, Chris Foster, Tyler Massey and Keith Duncan.
The head coach of the team is Cary Foster who will be assistted by Michael Maudlin and Rick Rampley are the assistant coaches.
Playing on the 9- and 10-year-old girls all-star team are Emily Jacobs, Emily Ansley, Kassie Stephens, Hanna Randall, Haley Townsend, Callie Holloway, Cara Blenke, Marcayl Hester, Kayla Brown, Erin Roberts and Elizabeth Hunt.
Mitch Mullins will coach the team.
The 9- and 10-year-old girls’ will take on Forsyth I June 28 at 7:45 p.m.
The 9- and 10-year-old boys all-star team includes R.J. Ahern, Todd Cruce, Tyler Crumley, Jason Demos, Cain Finch, Cutler Finch, Wesley Gutherie, Kyle Hardy, Trey Healan, Lucas Redd, Jamie Sexton, Steven Smallwood and Cory Wilkins.
Keith Hardy is the head coach.
The team will take on Alpharetta June 27 at 8 p.m.
The 11- and 12-year-old girls all-star squad will be made up of Colby Fowler, Devan Stanley, Caroline Adams, Ashley Parks, Ashley Parks, Ashley Martin, Amber Digby, Tori Mims, Chessie Hacker, Katie Crawford, Brittany Hutchins, Melody Tanner and Breanna Povolny.
Steve Crawford and Lee Sikes will coach the team.
The 11- and 12-year-old girls will match up with Forsyth I June 28 at 7:45 p.m.
Playing on the 11- and 12-year-old boys all-star team are Brandon Arnold, Trey Beck, Josh Bohannon, Michael Breedlove, Hayden Burns, Kyle Carter, Sasser Conner, Jay Fowler, Jed Gurley, Jeremy Heckler, Sean Johnson and Michael Powell.
Eddie Johnson, David Bohannon and Robert Conner will coach the team.
The squad will play Alpharetta June 27 at 8 p.m. in the first round of action.

MCHS tennis players named to NE Ga. teams
Madison County had several players selected to the All-Northeast Georgia tennis teams chosen by The Athens Banner-Herald.
Named to the boys’ first team were Kenny Powers, senior leader of this year’s team; Paul Wildes (junior) and Colby Phillips (freshman), who won the 8-AAA doubles championship. Honorable mention went to Chad Coulter, who only lost two matches all year.
The girls’ first team included Abbi Osley, (sophomore) and Tiffany Ledford (junior), who went 12-2 and finished runnerup in the Region 8-AAA doubles tournament. Honorable mention went to Tegan Tonge (sophomore), Rochelle Comer (senior), Sallie Fitzpatrick (junior) and Laura Baird (freshman).
Here are some more facts about the 2002 MCHS tennis teams:
•Tegan Tonge - 12 wins, 3 losses this season as the No. 1 singles player. She led the Lady Red Raiders to a fifth straight state AAA tournament appearance and Elite Eight finish this year.
•The Lady Red Raiders also won the 2002 Region 8-AAA North subregion championship and the 2002 Region 8-AAA team championship for the second year in a row. They won first place in the P.J. Holcomb Tournament in Gainesville in the No. 1 singles division after winning the No. 3 singles title last year. They finished runner-up in the Region 8-AAA singles tournament.
•Rochelle Comer - 12-0 in the regular season. Her only loss of the season was in State AAA Tournament against Westminster High School. She was a four-year starter, who played in four state AAA tournaments and two elite eight matches.
•Sallie Fitzpatrick and Laura Baird — 6 wins, 2 losses at No. 2 doubles.
•Kenny Powers — “Northeast Georgia Player of the Week,” a four-year starter for the Red Raiders. He led the team to two consecutive state AAA tournament elite eight finishes. He was a major force in the Red Raiders winning the first region championship in the school’s history.
•Chad Coulter — 13-2 at No. 3 singles. He was recognized as the “most consistent player on the team.” He is a Governor’s Honor Program Participant this summer. Coulter played a “major role in the Red Raiders success the last two seasons.”
“Two Elite Eight finishes in two years of playing, Chad contributed as much as anybody in reaching the Final Eight both years,” said Raider head coach Cliff Craig.
•Paul Wildes and Colby Phillips — 11-3 playing at No. 1 doubles. 2002 Region 8-AAA Doubles Champions. “Very instrumental in Red Raiders Elite Eight finish this year,” said Craig.

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