The Twinsburg girls basketball team will have a different look this year, but the Tigers still boast talent.
Malina Howard led the Tigers to two consecutive Division I state titles, but is now a freshman playing at the University of Maryland.
Also gone are graduates LaShawna Gatewood (Appalachian State), Nichole Mabry (Rio Grande in Ohio) and Leah Fechko (St. Francis in New York). Even with those four starters gone, the cupboard is not bare for Twinsburg coach Julie Solis.
Twinsburg announced Tuesday that seniors Ashley Morrissette, Char-dell Dunnigan and Brooke Thompson-Smith have committed to colleges to continue their academic and basketball careers.
Morrissette is going to Purdue, Dunnigan is headed to George Mason and Thompson- Smith is bound for Cleveland State.
Morrissette plans on studying clinical psychology, Dunnigan nursing and Thompson-Smith psychology.
Twinsburg, which posted a 52-3 record the past two years, has won 46 games in a row against opponents from Ohio.
Brebant to kick at NIU
Copley football coach Ron Viscounte said senior Joshua Brebant will continue his academic and athletic careers at Northern Illinois University.
Brebant is a kicker and punter. As a senior, he converted 25-of-27 extra points, 6-of-10 field goals with a long of 47-yards and had 31 touchbacks on kickoffs. He also averaged 43.1 yards on 28 punts, with 11 inside the 20.
Babbin to swim at Vandy
Western Reserve Academy senior Kathryn Babbin signed a national letter of intent to swim at Vanderbilt University.
“I am really interested in the Human and Organizational Development program at the school,” Babbin said. “I also believe I will be able to contribute to the swim team, but the team is also strong enough that it will still be a challenge. I wanted to attend an SEC [Southeastern Conference] school because my mom went to Georgia and swimming in the SEC is a real achievement.”
A Hudson resident, Babbin is the WRA school record-holder in the 500 freestyle and a two-time team MVP.
“I come from a high-yardage background and once I combined that with coach [Michael] Bonomo’s short program, I was able to widen my range of events,” Babbin said. “I really like the challenge of pushing myself mentally and physically, just working every day to improve. I’m very goal-oriented — both in the pool and in school.”
Babbin competes in the 500 freestyle and the 200 freestyle at WRA. She plans to add the 1,650 freestyle at Vanderbilt.
Highland senior catcher Kaitlin Krajcik signed a national letter of intent to play softball on scholarship for Ursuline College.
Krajcik, who will be a four-year starter in the spring, compiled a batting average of .329 in 2012. She scored 29 on the ACT and plans to double major in art education and intervention specialist.
Highland senior golfers Jessica Porvasnik and Jessica McRae signed to play at Ohio State University and Ohio University, respectively.
The following seniors also signed to continue their academic and athletic careers:
• MaryJane Horth of Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy, gymnastics, Illinois.
• Hannah Boesinger of Hudson, basketball, Youngstown State University.
All-star football game
The third annual FBC Thanks4giving Summit County All-Star Football Game will kickoff at 10:30 a.m. Thursday at St. Vincent-St. Mary.
About 90 senior high school football players will be participating. There are two teams — the East and West. Proceeds from the game are donated to the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank. Admission to the game is $5 with a canned food item.
The game rosters will appear in the Akron Beacon Journal and on ohio.com Thursday.
Michael Beaven can be reached at 330-996-3829 or firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.