Sports

Mikayla Linebaugh, right, The Daily News Volleyball Coach of the Year, once again led her Belding Redskins team to a district title with wins over Ithaca and Chippewa Hills. The team finished the season 24-10-2 overall. (File photo)

VOLLEYBALL COACH OF THE YEAR: Mikayla Linebaugh, Belding

In the 18 years Belding girls volleyball coach Mikayla Linebaugh has been coaching, a bar of expectation had been raised to a point to where winning a district title is always the goal, even in a year when it looks as though the team is rebuilding. As it turns out, the Redskins were able to retool. Belding finished with a 24-10-2 record and another district title, reaching the regionals yet again.

Simone D’Errico, a foreign exchange student from Turin, Italy, and a senior at Belding, played football for the first time with the Belding varsity football team. He’s now focused on playing with the basketball team this winter. (Daily News | Ryan Schlehuber)

Italian exchange student playing 3 sports for Belding

When Thaddeous Holbrook first saw Belding’s new exchange student trying out for football, he wasn’t impressed.
“He looked skinnier than the rest of us,” the Belding senior said of Simone D’Errico, of Turin, Italy, who is spending a year at Belding High School.
“I thought maybe he might get hurt.” But when the soft-spoken Italian put pads on and started practicing with the team, Holbrook’s thoughts about D’Errico’s ability completely changed.
“He blindsided me on a tackle and I was floored,” Holbrook laughed. “He was real fast, and is real good.”

Lloyd McMaster, left, of Elsie, arm wrestles with Danny Picola of LeRoy during an amateur match at the Rockwell Open arm wrestling tournament at The Horse’s Mouth in Belding Saturday. McMaster, who participated in the tournament with his brother, Steve McMaster (pictured in back with a hat), of Belding, hadn’t arm wrestled in nine years. Picola, who won the match, had broken his right arm in an arm wrestling match years ago, and learned to arm wrestling left-handed. He now arm wrestles with both. (Daily News | Ryan Schlehuber)

Arm wrestling event draws 30 pullers to Belding

An estimated 30 people competed in a Rockwell Open arm wrestling tournament Saturday at The Horse’s Mouth Tavern, which continues to expand ways to entertain its patrons and the community.

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If done right, Friday night football can be better — for everyone

With the Big Ten Conference (B1G) announcing it will schedule more games on Friday nights next year, one question remains: Will this really hurt high school football?

Belding’s Johanna McCully, right, attacks around the block of Saginaw Swan Valley’s Kristen Huebner, left, and Emily Buska during the teams’ Class B regional semifinal in Bay City Tuesday. (Daily News | Chip Burch)

Belding Redskins lose to Swan Valley in volleyball regionals for third time

The third time wasn’t a charm for the Belding volleyball team.

The Redskins lost to the Saginaw Swan Valley Vikings for the third time in four years Tuesday, losing 25-16, 25-17, 25-20.

Players from the Belding volleyball team react to clinching the district finals series against Chippewa Hills on Thursday at Redskin Arena. The Redskins earned their second consecutive district trophy with a 3-1 win over the Warriors. Pictured are, from left, Olivia Stephan, Johanna McCully, Avery German and Summer Eubank. (Daily News | Ryan Schlehuber)

Belding beats Chippewa Hills to win volleyball districts, advances to regionals

At Thursday’s district finals against Chippewa Hills, the Belding Redskins’ mental game was just as great as their physical game, beating the Warriors 25-21, 19-25, 25-17 and 25-14, earning a trip to the regionals at Bay City John Glenn to face Saginaw Swan Valley on Tuesday.

Professional arm wrestlers Brandon Sellers, left, of Greenville, and title holder Matt Bourdon, of Sand Lake, are expected to participate in the Rockwell Open arm wrestling tournament, which is tomorrow at the Horse's Mouth Tavern. The event will include professional, amateur and novice classes, which anyone can enter in the novice class.

Arm wrestling tournament set for Saturday at Horse’s Mouth

Arm wrestling is a test of strength and endurance and a showcase for those watching it.

All arm wrestlers alike — professional, amateur, novice, young, older, men, women — will be participating in Saturday’s Rockwell Open tournament at The Horse’s Mouth at 402 W. Main St., which begins with a weight-in for participants at 1 p.m. The tournament begins at 3:30 p.m.

Belding coach Mikayla Linebaugh (black shirt) and her team react to game four of the district semifinals against Ithaca Wedneday, in which the Redskins made a comeback to force a fifth and final match, which Belding won to advance to the district finals against Chippewa Hills, tonight at 6 p.m. at Redskins Arena.

Belding survives Ithaca in five-game set to advance to district finals

It took all five games to settle the winner between the Belding Redskins and Ithaca Yellowjackets in the Belding district semi-finals volleyball game Wednesday.

The Redskins won 15-11 over Ithaca in the rubber match to clinch a spot in the district finals against Chippewa Hills, which is today at 6 p.m. at Redskins Arena. Belding won 25-23, 23-25, 16-25 and 25-19 before winning the rubber match.

Belding’s Johanna McCully, bottom, digs a ball in front of teammates Olivia Stephan, middle, and Kyleigh Kazmerski during the first game of the Class B district match against Alma Monday night. (Daily News | Chip Burch)

Belding takes down Alma in district volleyball playoffs opener

Belding’s volleyball team got its Class B district tournament off to a good start Monday night.

The Redskins had little problem with the Alma Panthers, winning 25-16, 25-17, 26-24.

Belding’s James Daniel, middle, runs for a big gain while Ithaca’s Joey Bentley, left, and Triston Miller chase him in the second quarter of the Division 5 playoff game Friday night. (Daily News | Chip Burch)

Belding takes tough loss to reigning Division 5 champ Ithaca

Ithaca’s football team showed why it went to the Division 6 state finals six consecutive years.

The Yellowjackets mercied the Belding Redskins 61-7 on Friday in the first game of the Division 5 playoffs at Alma College.