Champion ball players winners, no matter what

There’s a reason we call this small Trumbull County township “Champion.”

This weekend, both the boys baseball and girls softball teams from Champion High School will take the waning steps to what hopefully results in state titles for each.

Saturday, the boys baseball team will compete in the Division III state title game.

Today, the girls softball team will play the Division III state semifinal game with the hopes of also advancing to Saturday’s title game.

What a spectacular feat it has been to get this far!

Before Thursday’s semi-final game, Champion baseball coach Rick Yauger said he hoped his Golden Flashes wouldn’t be fazed by the size and aura of the 10,000-seat Huntington Park, the Columbus diamond where the semi final game was played and the home to the Cleveland Indians’ minor league affiliate, Columbus Clippers.

Apparently, they weren’t. The Golden Flashes, now 26-3 on the season, defeated their opponents from Clear Fork in Bellville, Ohio in a pitching duel by a score of 2-1.

Today, the 30-2 girls take their turn, facing off against Springfield Northwestern at Firestone Park in Akron. It will be the team’s sixth appearance in the state semifinal game since 2004. In their pursuit of what some might call a “dynasty,” a state championship would be the team’s fourth in the last seven years.

It’s an amazing story, and we all wish them well.

Win or lose, these kids have played their hearts out for the last several months — some for the last four years of their high school careers. We hope they are able to capitalize on the hard work and efforts each team member has invested into this championship season.

Undoubtedly, they are all winners, no matter what the result. Congratulations on well-earned statewide recognition. We are proud of you.