The spring sports season is a wrap, and there were several memorable highlights.

For most of the spring season Wayne County had the top-ranked 2A baseball team in the state, but at the end of the season, no Wayne County school advanced from the sectional round of the state tournament.

Tri-Eastern Conference conference champion Hagerstown spent most of the season ranked No. 1 in 2A. After opening the season with a school record 16-0 start, the Tigers went into a late-season slide. The Tigers graduated several players, but will return Tri-Eastern Conference Player of the Year Kaagen Kendall and eight other roster players to build around. 

Lincoln, under first year head coach Jeff Gwin, spent the season changing the culture of the program. Fan support soared and the progress the team made on the field was remarkable. With 12 of the 13 roster players returning for next season from their sectional runner-up team, the future looks bright for the Eagles. 

Northeastern won 16 games and the Wayne County Tournament before being upset in the semifinal round of the sectional. Every player who played in the sectional, and 23 of the 24 roster players, will return. The 2025 season has the potential to be special for the Knights. 

Centerville, winners of 11 games this season, moved to 3A the last two years, after advancing to the 2A state finals in 2022. The Bulldogs will return to 2A beginning next season. Head coach Corey Van Skyock will welcome back 14 roster players and will have an excellent chance of being a sectional host. 

Richmond, after an 0-2 start, went on to win 13 games including compiling a 6-0 record in the North Central Conference. The Red Devils return substantial talent, but will be playing for a new head coach next season for the fourth time in four years.

The Hagerstown softball team won the Tri-Eastern Conference for the first time in program history. It is probable that the other TEC teams will be chasing them again next season. Hagerstown will return 14 of their 15 roster players. 

The spring success Seton Catholic enjoyed came in track and field, most notably in girls track and field. The Cardinal roster was small and very efficient.  The Lady Cardinals were by far the smallest school entered in the Connersville sectional. They finished fifth in the 10-team field with 69 points. Six athletes — Kaydence Burkhardt, Jackie Clemente, Bella Cornell, Gwynie Falcone, Sara Swinney and Bryn Van Vleet — combined to score all 69 points in nine events. All six advanced to the regional and all six will return next season. 

The Richmond boys track team won the sectional for the first time since 2010; both Masson Heiny and Jacob Lindahl qualified at the regional a week later to advance to the state track meet in the shot put. Both Heiny and Lindahl will return. 

Centerville girls head track coach Mike Day has announced his decision to step down as the head coach after 29 years at the helm. Look for more in-depth information as he looks back on his career in an upcoming Western Wayne News story. 

Area golf teams were very competitive again this spring. Hagerstown won the Tri-Eastern Conference and the Wayne County tournament, but it was Centerville, led by two-time medalist Brady Moore, who advanced past the sectional, sliding past Hagerstown and Northeastern for the right to advance. All three teams will return substantial talent next season.

There will be three new athletic directors in place at Wayne County high schools for the next school year. Shane Osting has retired at Centerville. Clay Bolser resigned as the athletic director at Richmond High School to replace Osting at Centerville. 

Gerry Keesling, the athletic director at Northeastern, has also retired. Ryan Halloran has been hired to replace him. Richmond has not announced a replacement for Bolser. 

Coverage of high school sports is very intensive during the school year. There is only a small window between when one school year ends and the next school year begins. The sports department at Western Wayne News will be taking a break for the next two weeks. 

We will return with sports coverage beginning with the July 10 issue.

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A version of this article appeared in the June 19 2024 print edition of the Western Wayne News.

Dan Harney is a sports reporter at the Western Wayne News.