Jeff Durbin has stepped down as the Lake High School football coach after 23 seasons.
Durbin guided Lake to 14 appearances in the state football playoffs and to three state championship games. The Blue Streaks won five regional titles and won the Federal League four times despite being the league’s smallest school.
“My 27 years as an employee at Lake Local have provided an extraordinary experience for me and my family,” Durbin said in a statement. “I have enjoyed an unwavering support of the administration, faculty and staff at Lake High School and Lake Middle School as I have pursued my greatest passion as a football coach and educator.
“I am deeply indebted to the many assistant coaches who have been instrumental to the success of Lake football.
‘‘I have been privileged to work with many of the finest young men our society has to offer, and I only hope that I have had as positive an impact on their lives as they have had on mine.”
Durbin, who retired three years ago as a Lake Local Schools administrator, posted a record of 163-98.
“Jeff was the textbook model for how a school-based interscholastic head coach should perform on and off the playing field every day with every one of his students,” Lake Athletics Director Bruce Brown said.
“I’ve told many others that even if Jeff was coaching Tiddly Winks as a sport, I would want my child to play for him. The lessons and relationships that he developed with all of those who were touched by his program and his efforts are reflective of his passion as an educator.”
TD club update
The annual Touchdown Club Winter Sports Banquet is set for April 22 at Guy’s Party Center in Akron.
Ed Kalail said the festivities will begin at 6:30 p.m. and more than 130 student-athletes and coaches will be honored. Tickets are $30 and can be ordered by contacting Jill Hanigofsky at 330-848-8946.
Athletes will be honored in basketball, wrestling, swimming, diving, bowling and gymnastics. Also being honored are the year’s four scholarship winners.
The following athletes were selected as Players of the Year:
Boys basketball — Bob Peters of Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy and Matt Knight of Windham.
Girls basketball — Ashley Morrissette of Twinsburg, Allison Howard of Aurora and Shayna White of Southeast.
Wrestling — Nathan Tomasello of Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy, J.J. Diven of Waterloo, Travis Linton of Rootstown, Aaron Adkins of St. Vincent-St. Mary and Jake Moore of Rootstown.
Swimming — Katie Miller and Mark Belanger of Firestone, Andrew Appleby of Cuyahoga Falls and Ross Palazzo of Hudson.
Diving — Stephen Romanik of Nordonia, Alex Obendorf of Hudson and Kailey Francetic of Walsh Jesuit.
Bowling — Anna Brigham of Garrettsville and Dylan Montgomery of Ravenna.
Gymnastics — Maddie Brandt of Cloverleaf.
The following were selected as Coaches of the Year:
Boys basketball — Jay Peters of Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy and Marty Hill of Windham.
Girls basketball — Julie Solis of Twinsburg and Bob Dunn of Southeast.
Wrestling — Anthony Gary of St. Vincent-St. Mary and Craig Wise of Rootstown.
Joe Chadbourne of Firestone, Nicole Hadler of Highland, Matthew Knight of Windham and Amanda Sollenberger of St. Vincent-St. Mary were selected as $1,000 scholarship winners.
OHSBCA announces rosters
The Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association announced its annual boys and girls North-South All-Star Game rosters.
The games will be played at Capital University in Columbus on April 21.
The game times are:
Noon: Girls Division III and IV.
1:45 p.m.: Girls Division I and II.
3:45 p.m.: Boys Division III and IV.
5:30 p.m.: Boys Division I and II.
Area girls players selected to play on the North Division I & II team are Ashley Morrissette of Twinsburg, McKenna Stephens of Lake and Kelsey Peare of North Canton Hoover.
Area girls players selected to play on the North Division III and IV team are Hannah Plybon of Orrville, Kylie Frizell of Smithville and Katlynn Dunlap of Tusky Valley.
Lucas Strouble of Marlington is the only area boys player selected to play on the North Division I and II team, which will also feature Canton Timken’s Rick Hairston as a coach.
Chase Moyer of Dalton is the only area boys player selected to play on the North Division III & IV team.
Michael Beaven can be reached at 330-996-3829 or email@example.com. Read the high school blog at http://www.ohio.com/preps. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MBeavenABJ and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sports.abj.