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Published: Thursday, 5/14/2009

Sidelines: St. Francis wrestling coach Janke decides to step down

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Janke Janke
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Stating the time was right for a change, Carl Janke has stepped down from his longtime position as varsity wrestling coach at St. Francis de Sales, a stint that spanned 31 seasons, including 27 as head coach.

Janke, 54, who arrived at St. Francis as a teacher and coach back in 1978 after graduating from Ohio Northern University, will retain his post as athletic director. He is in his 24th year in that capacity.

The time seemed right to step back a little and give more focus to my family, which is first and foremost to me, Janke said. I am grateful to all the coaches, wrestlers and their families over the many years that have contributed to the success of the wrestling program here at St. Francis.

Janke began as a wrestling assistant in 1978-79, served his first stint (eight seasons) as head coach from 1979-1987 and, after three more years as an assistant, began his second run (19 seasons) as head coach in 1990.

His teams were City League champions in 1991, 1992, 1994 and 2001, and posted a 203-93-2 overall record in dual meets. During his tenure Janke has 35 state qualifiers and 13 state placers, including one state champion.

With only four seniors included among his 32 wrestlers this past season, and two returning state qualifiers, Janke judged that it was a good time for a coaching transition.

I just felt it was time to step aside and bring someone else into the program, he said. The biggest thing I ll miss is the opportunity to work with the students outside the classroom and watching them progress through the years. I ll also miss working with all of our staff, and with the coaches from other schools.

Applicants for the position of head varsity wrestling coach at St. Francis can send their resumes to the school in care of principal Eric Smola.

The young yet powerful St. John s Jesuit tennis team has yet to lose a match this season.

The Titans have compiled a 20-0 team record and are just two matches away from qualifying for the Division I state team tournament semifinals sponsored by the Ohio Tennis Coaches Association.

St. John s, which has 2 freshmen, 2 sophomores, 2 juniors and a senior in its lineup plays Lexington Tuesday in a regional semifinal.

It s been an exciting run, St. John s coach Jim Davis said. This is a very close knit group of guys. Their work ethic is very, very good. They re very committed.

The Titans captured their sixth straight City League championship by winning all the singles and doubles titles.

Sophomore Ryan Jorgensen is the team s No. 1 singles player. Junior Devon Sbrocchi has moved up from No. 3 to No. 2 singles. The No. 3 spot is held by freshman Bobby Adusumilli. Both won City titles.

At No. 1 doubles are junior Josef Pontasch and seniorJacob Kuhn. The second doubles team is sophomore Connor Majdalani and freshman Maedev Mehta.

St. John s is currently ranked No. 4 in the D-I state poll.

The Titans beat University School, ranked No. 3 in D-II, and Maumee Valley, No. 7 in D-III, last week. They defeated Sandusky and Wapakoneta to reach the regional semifinals.

The Titans have reached the team state semifinals four straight years, but they have never won it. They ve finished second three times and third once.

I think these guys are really great about the team doing well, Davis said. We re very excited about getting a chance to go back to Columbus and win a state team title. But of course each also would love to do well individually.

St. John s also will begin play in the state s individual tournament, beginning with the sectional at Jermain Park today and Saturday.

Other schools at the site will be Rogers, Springfield, Start, Northview, Southview and Woodward. At the D-I site at Ohio Northern, individuals from Bowling Green, Findlay, and Perrysburg will look to advance.

Also in Division I at Jermain Park, Anthony Wayne, Bowsher, Central Catholic, Maumee, St. Francis de Sales, Scott, Whitmer and Waite will compete.

The Division II site at Archbold includes top teams Ottawa Hills and Maumee Valley.

The top four singles and top four doubles teams will qualify for the districts.

League track and field championships will be contested around weekend with district meets set for May 22-23.

In the City League, St. John s Jesuit bids for its third straight boys championship, while the Bowsher girls try to make it five CL crowns in a row. That task will be difficult with the graduation of Meshawn Graham, a state champion sprinter who is now at the University of Michigan.

This year s CL meet opened yesterday at Rogers with many preliminary heats in the running events, as well as finals in the 3200 relay for boys and girls. Also concluded yesterday were the boys pole vault, discus and long jump, and the girls shot put and high jump.

Tomorrow s finals at Rogers begin with the remainder of the field event competition at 4:30 p.m. The running event finals start at 5 p.m.

Many eyes are expected to be trained on Rogers senior high jumper Erik Kynard, the state record holder in that event.

Also opening with prelims yesterday was the Northern Lakes League meet at Maumee. That meet concludes tomorrow, with field events at 5:30 and the running finals at 7 p.m.

Northview s boys and Perrysburg s girls are the defending champions.

The Suburban Lakes League meet is a one-day competition Saturday at Woodmore, where field event competition opens at 10 a.m., and running finals at 12:30 p.m.

Eastwood has been dominant for nearly the entire decade in both the boys and girls meets. The two Eagles squads have each captured eight straight SLL team titles, with the boys winning 11 of the last 12 league meets, and the girls collecting 12 of the last 13 crowns, and 17 total championships since the SLL was formed.

Competition in the Northwest Ohio Athletic League began on Tuesday at Archbold, where all of the boys and girls field events were concluded along with both 3200 relay finals. The running finals are set to start tomorrow at 7 p.m. The Delta boys and Wauseon girls are each gunning for their fourth straight NWOAL championships.

Northwood is the site for tomorrow s Toledo Area Athletic Conference meet, with kicks off with preliminaries at 4:30 p.m. Toledo Christian swept last year s boys and girls team titles.

Depending on the status of makeup games, the City League softball playoffs are scheduled for Saturday and Sunday at Scott Park.

Top-seeded Clay (18-5, 9-0 CL) is expected to face fourth-seeded Whitmer (14-9, 7-3) in Saturday s 1 p.m. semifinal, and second seed St. Ursula (19-4, 10-1) is set to play third seed Central Catholic (15-7, 7-2) in the 3 p.m. semi. The final is set for 3 p.m. Sunday.

A dedication ceremony for the new Springfield athletic facility will be tomorrow.

The 39-acre athletic complex on Albon Road near Angola Road includes five diamonds and two soccer fields. The dedication is scheduled for Senior Night prior to the varsity baseball and softball games.

The baseball team is scheduled to play its first home game of the season tomorrow. The Blue Devils have played all of their games on the road after the grass on the new diamond did not take root as quickly as officials had hoped.



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