By Tom Nader
Publisher and Editor
The fall 2023 curtain has not officially dropped all the way.
The Mogadore football team is the only fall team still alive in postseason play, with the Wildcats set for their showdown with the Kirtland Hornets on Friday night in a regional championship between two Division VI powers.
Like the Cats, the 2023 fall season has been special in so many ways for so many student-athletes and so many programs.
Here is a look at all of the individual and team records and milestones that were set throughout the fall season.
- Football head coach Bob Mihahlik won the 200th game of his career during the Greenmen’s 30-27 victory over Gilmour Academy in a Division III regional quarterfinal game on Nov. 3. Mihalik completed his 23rd season coaching at Aurora this season and his career record now stands at 200-69 (.744 win percentage). He is just the third football coach in Portage County history to reach the wins milestone, joining retired Kent Roosevelt Hall of Fame coach John Nemec and current Mogadore coach Matt Adorni.
- Place kicker Dominic Trivisonno set two new career records for the Greenmen, who have had a history of great kickers in the program over the last decade. One of those kickers was Robby Albrecht, who had previously owned the program’s records for career extra points (134 — a record previously shared with Joey Melchiori) and career points (173). Both of those records are now Trivisonno’s. Trivisonno, who also was a contributing member of Aurora’s offense and defense, finished his career with 161 made extra points and 188 career points.
- Lucas Manderbach also hit the record book this season, setting a new single-season record with his 11 sacks.
- The Greenmen celebrated the greatest season in school history, winning the first-ever league championship for the program. As part of that, the team posted the best regular-season record in school history at 17-5 and best overall record in school history at 19-6. In the postseason, the team advanced to its first-ever district-championship game.
- Brooke Gecina established a new single-match record with 28 kills in a victory over West Geauga. It was part of a new single-season record for Gecina for kills with 346.
- Gecina also set a new single-season record for aces with 62.
- Ollie Salgado set a new career record for assists with 1,621.
AURORA GIRLS TENNIS
- Sisters Gracie Milano and Kamy Milano were the first doubles state qualifiers in school history. Kamy Milano also did not lose a set the entire regular season and finished the regular season with an undefeated 22-0 record.
- The G-Men rolled through the first 12 weeks of the season as nothing short of dominant. Prior to the team’s loss to Perry in the Division V regional semifinal, the G-Men had won their first 12 games of the year by an average margin of victory of 39.5 points.
- The team’s offense averaged 50.4 points per game, scoring 655 total points. The points-per-game average ranks as the 23rd-best for a single season in Ohio high school football history. The G-Men had 13 different players score a touchdown this season.
- Garfield’s 12 wins tied a school record, joining the 2021 team.
- Senior standout Keegan Sell set a number of new program records, closing out an incredible four-year career. Sell set records for single-season tackles (210), career tackles (588), career tackles for loss (89), career sacks (14), career forced fumbles (11) and career fumbles recovered (9).
- Ethan Bittence set a new single-season record with 77 made extra points.
- Head coach Matt Adorni, who is in his 20th season, won the 200th game of his career on Oct. 27 when the Wildcats were triumphant in their opening-round playoff game against LaBrae. Adorni became the second coach in Portage County history to reach the milestone — and now third overall in the county after Aurora coach Bob Mihalik joined the club the week following Adorni. Portage County’s 200-win football coaching list now includes retired Kent Roosevelt Hall of Fame coach John Nemec (231 wins), Aurora’s Mihalik and Adorni. Mogadore’s football program boasts three coaches that have 100 or more wins, including Norm Lingle (150) and Scott Pollock (118), in addition to Adorni.
MOGADORE CROSS COUNTRY
- Senior Ryan Keren became the fourth-fastest boys runner in school history. He set a new personal-record time of 17:26.2, which fell short of only three other Wildcat runners ever. Andy Graham ran 16:18.0 in 1998, Kevin Somerville ran 16:19.0 in 2004 and Reilly Schrock ran 17:06.0 in 2016.
- Senior Austin Marshall tied a single-game record on Oct. 6 during the Ravens’ 48-0 victory over Springfield. Marshall, a 5-foot-9, 190-pound running back, scored seven touchdowns in the win, tying the single-game touchdowns and single-game rushing touchdowns record at the same time. Marshall shares the slot in the record book with Blayre Davis (2008).
- The Ravens had a number of new records that were set this season, including career aces by Shyanna Dillbeck (80), career kills by Dillbeck (109), career serve percentage by Lillian Schofield (90.0), single-game team aces (32 vs. Bloomfield), single-game blocks (7 vs. Springfield).
- Team single-season records include aces (186), assists (224), blocks (38), digs(698) and kills (280).
- The Rovers became the sixth football program in Portage County history to reach the 400-win milestone as a team. The team accomplished the feat in their opening-round playoff victory over the Southeast Pirates.
- Senior running back Dawson Morgan became fourth runner in school history — and second in as many years — to run to a 2,000-yard single season. Morgan totaled 2,195 yards on the season behind a standout offensive line. Morgan averaged 7.2 yards per carry throughout the season and scored 23 touchdowns. The Rovers’ other three 2,000-yard runners include Cody Coontz (2,322 yards in 2022), Caleb Kaut (2,105 yards in 2017) and Aaron Urchek (2,071 yards in 2005).
SOUTHEAST GIRLS GOLF
- Taylor Blazek became the first to qualify for the state tournament in school history. She placed 14th overall in Division II in a field of 72 golfers. She scored a two-day total of 159.
- The Pirates set a new single-season wins record with 13, guiding the program to its third consecutive Portage Trail Conference championship in a row.
SOUTHEAST GIRLS CROSS COUNTRY
• Standout runner Julia Wheeler qualified for the state championship, but didn’t stop her remarkable season there. She earned All-Ohio status with her 28th-place finish in the Division-II race.
- Shemayah Stevens celebrated a milestone by posting more than 1,000 assists for the season.
STREETSBORO GIRLS SOCCER
- The Rockets set a new single-season school record for shutouts in a season with 12. Goalkeeper Laney Klein is credited with the single-season record for those 12 shutouts and she tied the career record for goalkeeper shutouts with 18.
- The historic career of Preston Hopperton includes many single-season and career records, concluding one of the best careers in Portage County history. Hopperton’s accolades include new records set for career receptions (125), career receiving yards (2,480), single-season receiving yards (1,014), single-season receiving touchdowns (13), single-season rushing touchdowns (31), career rushing touchdowns (62), single-season total points (264), career points (584).
- Hopperton’s 3,230 career rushing yards rank him 23rd all-time in Portage County history.
WATERLOO GIRLS SOCCER
- Kaira English, who did not play a single game during her senior season after undergoing surgery to repair a torn ACL, finished her career with 147 goals. The total ranks ninth all-time in Ohio history and No. 1 in Portage County history.
- Sydney Jackson set a new single-season school record with 30 assists. The single-season total is the 10th-best in Ohio history.
- Jackson’s 86 career assists are also a new school record and that total ranks fifth-best in Ohio history and the most single-season assists in Portage County history.
- Goalkeeper Sophia Wood set a new single-season record with 166 saves.