Lewises watch grandson give DeSales state championship

Published 1:19 am Tuesday, November 18, 2014

It’s not uncommon to see Ralph and Joyce Lewis playing golf at the Ironton Country Club.

But they also have another hobby and that is watching their grandchildren play sports.

Not only did they watch Chris Lewis play soccer at St. Joseph, they also got a chance to watch their grandson Ryan Cannon play for Columbus St. Francis DeSales in the Division II state championship game at Crew Stadium.

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Cannon, a senior midfielder, scored off a pass from Antonio Romanelli with 11:43 left in overtime.

Not only did they watch Ryan play, they celebrated with him after he scored the game’s only goal in overtime to give DeSales the state championship.

Ironically, DeSales beat Bay Village Bay who happens to be the alma mater of his father.

News from Newman

So, if you donate $100 to the Newman University Jets’ volleyball program, you get a team T-shirt and a signed team photo.

If you donate $250, you get the shirt, signed team photo and an action photo of your favorite player.

With $500 you get all of the above plus your company’s name in a game day program.

And the platinum donation of $1,000 you get all of the afore mentioned items plus a one-nigh stay at a downtown Wichita hotel as a “guest coach.”

Wait, Wichita? What does Wichita have to do with Ironton and the Tri-State area?

Well, former Ironton three-sport standout Rachel Walker is an assistant volleyball coach for the Newman Jets’ in Wichita, Kansas.

The team just finished a 15-14 season and advanced to the Heartland Conference tournament semifinals. The Jets lost in four tough sets to St. Edwards after splitting their regular season series.

It was the team’s second straight 15-win season but its first tournament appearance since 2010. It was the first back-to-back winnings seasons since jumping up to the NCAA Division II level in 2007 and matched its largest win total since moving to D-II.

Rachel was a three-year starter in volleyball at the University of Rio Grande and a four-year letter winner in track. She pointed in four events in the league track meet her senior year as she placed in the discus, hammer throw, high jump and as the anchor leg on the 4×100 relay team.

She was an assistant coach at Oak Hill for one season and spent the past two years as graduate assistant at Rio Grande for Billina Donaldson who was an All-American at Rio Grande and was invited to tryout for the USA Olympic volleyball team in 1996.

And there is another connection between the Jets and Ohio.

One of the team’s top players is Lexi Kuharich. Her father worked in Kansas last year but took a job in Ohio this year. Bill Kuharich is the executive chief of staff for the Cleveland Browns. He worked for the Kansas City Chiefs last season.

By the way, if you really would like to make a donation to the program, the address for Newman University — a Catholic university named for Cardinal John Henry Newman — is 3100 McCormick, Wichita, KS 67213-2097.


Jim Walker is sports editor of The Ironton Tribune.