All-Gazette Fall Sports Athletes of the Year

·6 min read

CHILLICOTHE — While it seems that football is king during the fall, that does not mean that it is the only sport that has produced noteworthy athletes.

Local athletes had a lot of success this season in a wide range of sports such as volleyball, cross country, golf, tennis, and soccer.

Here, we will pay homage to these talented athletes and the legacy that they have helped to set at their respective schools.

Senior Marissa Mullins, No. 11, celebrates with her team during Westfall's win against Wheelersburg on Nov. 5, 2021. Mullins had 479 kills and 100 digs this season.
Senior Marissa Mullins, No. 11, celebrates with her team during Westfall's win against Wheelersburg on Nov. 5, 2021. Mullins had 479 kills and 100 digs this season.

Volleyball: Marissa Mullins, Westfall, Sr.

As amazing of a year as this was for so many players, it is difficult to find one who took over a game as often as Marissa Mullins did. As she helped lead her Mustangs to a Regional finals appearance, Mullins was a dominating presence, earning 479 kills and 100 digs, the most among SVC players.

After earning yet another honor for her performance this season, Mullins was quick to pay respects to her loved ones for their undying support.

"I am super thankful for what I achieved this year, Mullins said. "It would not have been possible without my teammates, coaches, family, and friends. I am very grateful to have had them by my side."

Unioto sophomore Lucas Hanes, No. 11, dribbles during his team’s victory against Athens on Nov. 6, 2021. Hanes led the league with 37 goals.
Unioto sophomore Lucas Hanes, No. 11, dribbles during his team’s victory against Athens on Nov. 6, 2021. Hanes led the league with 37 goals.

Boys' Soccer: Lucas Hanes, Unioto, So.

After a historic boys' soccer season for the Sherman Tanks which ended with a Final Four appearance, it would be difficult to not acknowledge the play of Lucas Hanes. Hanes was one of the biggest driving forces for the Shermans season, especially with him leading the SVC in goals with 37 as well as getting 18 assists.

Hanes admitted that he had his worries to begin the year, but as the season went on, he realized that Unioto was going to be a tough team to beat.

"I couldn’t have accomplished anything this season without the love and support from my team, family, and friends," Hanes said. "I’m not gonna lie at the beginning of the season I didn’t hold much hope for our team and how this season was going to go. But, once we all gained a little bit of chemistry we became a whole different team, we became a family for each other. Our defense was unstoppable, our midfield was immaculate, and all of us just took care of business. It’s truly amazing when you have a team that works as hard as this one and will push you towards your goals. Our seniors were phenomenal role models for each and every one of us and to help them go out with an unforgettable season was just part of the fun."

Unioto Senior Karlee Renner prepares to kick the ball in a win against Westfall on Sept. 20, 2021. Renner was named the Gazette's female soccer player of the year.
Unioto Senior Karlee Renner prepares to kick the ball in a win against Westfall on Sept. 20, 2021. Renner was named the Gazette's female soccer player of the year.

Girls' Soccer: Karlee Renner, Unioto, Sr.

Sometimes when players change their positions, it can take a long time to adjust. In the case of Karlee Renner, she proved to be a natural as an offensive player. In fact, she did so well that she was named to the All-SVC Team and was Division II All-District second-team selection.

When Renner found about being nominated as the top girls' soccer player, she said that it was all due to the belief of her coaches and teammates.

"I really owe it to my coaches, Jeremy [Clark], Lauren [McKell], and my fellow teammates," Renner said. "Coach Clark put me on offense, which was a first for me, and the position worked out great because of my speed. My team also made great passes to me which helped in scoring. I felt our season started a little slow but we kept working and it showed in every game and our defensive line was amazing. Unfortunately, tournaments didn't go the way all of us seniors wanted it to but we worked hard, improved, and had a lot of fun doing it."

Unioto’s Corey Schobelock, right, and Gabe Lynch took first and second place respectively at the 2021 Southeast District Cross Country met on Oct. 23, 2021. Schobelock, a senior, was named the Gazette's cross country runner of the year.
Unioto’s Corey Schobelock, right, and Gabe Lynch took first and second place respectively at the 2021 Southeast District Cross Country met on Oct. 23, 2021. Schobelock, a senior, was named the Gazette's cross country runner of the year.

Boys' Cross Country: Corey Schobelock, Unioto, Sr.

En route to the Sherman Tanks second straight season where they finished third at the State meet, Corey Schobelock put together the best season of his high school career. In addition to helping his team win several regular-season meets, Schobelock finished in fifth place or higher in SVC, District, Regional, and State meets.

When asked about his senior season, Schobelock said that his favorite moment came at the biggest event of the season.

"I think the season went really well," Schobelock said. "From the start to the finish it went great. I broke my old personal record and finally got down to finishing races in 15 minutes, even getting to 15:46 at the state meet and finishing in fifth place."

Zane Trace’s Marie Souther (247) took All-Ohio honors after placing 12th with a time of 18:53.8 in the DIII girls 2021 OHSAA High School State Cross Country Championships at Fortress Obetz on Nov. 6, 2021. She was named the Gazette's female cross country runner of the year.
Zane Trace’s Marie Souther (247) took All-Ohio honors after placing 12th with a time of 18:53.8 in the DIII girls 2021 OHSAA High School State Cross Country Championships at Fortress Obetz on Nov. 6, 2021. She was named the Gazette's female cross country runner of the year.

Girls' Cross Country: Marie Souther, Zane Trace, So.

Despite being an underclassman, Marie Souther has been on a meteoric rise since joining the Zane Trace Pioneers. In her second season on the cross country team, she racked up several high-profile meet wins and even came in 12th place at the Division III state meet.

While Souther is well-known to let her performance do the talking for her, she did open up to thank her supporters.

"I am really grateful for this turning out to be such a great season," Souther said. "I am thankful for everyone who was there for me, supported me, and just anyone else who I don't know, but were rooting for me."

Abbey Sims-Clark, a senior with the Chillicothe Cavaliers girls tennis team, strikes the ball in a match against Jackson on Aug. 24, 2021. She was the league's player of the year for the third straight year.
Abbey Sims-Clark, a senior with the Chillicothe Cavaliers girls tennis team, strikes the ball in a match against Jackson on Aug. 24, 2021. She was the league's player of the year for the third straight year.

Tennis: Abbey Sims-Clark, Chillicothe, Sr.

Despite the Lady Cavaliers having a very young team this season, Abbey Sims-Clark did an excellent job of helping to lead them. As the team's lone senior, she was a role model to her younger teammates and a consistent performer on the court. In addition to her consistency, she was terrific against fellow FAC opponents, remaining undefeated in all four seasons and being named the league's Player of the year for the third straight year.

When told of her nomination, Sims-Clark talked about her leadership role and praised the people who helped to mold her into the player that she has become.

"I think that I worked very hard this season to not only push myself but to also push my teammates to be our very best," Sims-Clark said. "I really would like to thank my Coach Aaron Koch for being there for me since I started playing tennis when I was 7. He taught me everything that I know about the sport and I could not be more grateful to learn from him."

Unioto golf team celebrating after winning the Unioto Military Invite on August 7th.
Unioto golf team celebrating after winning the Unioto Military Invite on August 7th.

Golf: Charlie Lewis, Unioto, So.

While it was clear that Unioto had one of the top golf teams in Southern Ohio, one of the players who stood out the most was promising sophomore, Charlie Lewis. He was named the SVC's Player of the Year after averaging 39.57 points per match and was selected for the Division II All-District second team.

Of his impressive season, Lewis said that his team puts a lot of expectations on themselves, which made the year all the more gratifying when they achieved them.

"Before the start of the season, our goals were to win the SVC, have several players make all-league, and to make it to state," Lewis said. "Although we did not make it to state, we did win the SVC, made it to the districts, and four of our golfers made all-league. I am very thankful for my coaches and teammates who have pushed me this season. I am most happy with the way I finished the season. I had three scores in the 70's in the final SVC match, sectionals, and districts. I am also looking to improve even more for next year."

This article originally appeared on Chillicothe Gazette: All-Gazette Fall Sports Athletes of the Year

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