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Fans of high school sports will remember 2005 as the year of streaks — extended and ended — and championship sweeps by boys and girls teams of the same school.

Here, in a somewhat subjective order of magnitude, are the top stories of the past year.

¶ Ansbach sets football record: The Ansbach Cougars, shrugging off the loss of 15 seniors — seven of them All-Europeans — extended their four-year winning streak to a DODDS-Europe record 28 straight games with a 45-6 home victory over Giessen on Oct. 8.

The victory run surpassed the 26 wins in a row by Ramstein from 1994-97. The streak ended the following week when the Hohenfels Tigers mounted a fourth-quarter rally to defeat the visiting Cougars 25-24.

¶ Hohenfels supplants Ansbach: Not content with snapping Ansbach’s consecutive-game win steak, the Tigers returned to a neutral field in Baumholder on Nov. 5 to deny the Cougars what would have been a record fourth-straight European crown with a 37-20 Division III title game victory.

The championship capped a triumphant return to the Hohenfels sidelines for head coach Shawn Rodman, who took a break from coaching after guiding the Tigers to European crowns in 2000 and 2001, just before the Ansbach run.

¶ Heidelberg soccer streak ends at 8: Division I rival Lakenheath snapped the Heidelberg boys’ run of eight straight European soccer championships on May 19, downing the Lions 1-0 in the semifinals of the tournament at Ramstein.

Chris Perez scored the historic goal for Lakenheath, which fell 2-0 to Ramstein in the championship game the following day.

¶ Heidelberg’s hoop run ends: Kaiserslautern and eventual champion Würzburg snapped Heidelberg’s drive for a record sixth straight European Division I boys basketball championship with opening-day pool-play victories over the Lions on Feb. 23.

Würzburg, which would go on to win the tournament 41-40 over Ramstein on a pair of free throws by Sal Mena, stopped Heidelberg 44-43. K-town then thumped the Lions 45-32.

¶ Hanau, Rota, Ramstein pull off sweeps: Boys and girls basketball teams from Hanau and Rota and the Ramstein’s boys and girls soccer teams claimed European titles in the first half of 2005.

Hanau’s boys, led by All-Europeans Malcolm Lane and Marcus Fontanez, the tournament MVP, downed Aviano 50-37 Feb. 26 for their second straight D-II crown. That same day, the Hanau girls, behind All-Europeans Katisha Fauntleroy and Kyri Bye-Nagel, stopped Naples 33-27.

Hanau’s sweep was the second of the day. Earlier, Rota’s boys and girls defeated Ansbach’s Cougars and Lady Cougars for the 2005 European Division III championships. Gilbert Mendez scored 19 points in the boys’ 50-36 victory, while Rota’s girls snapped Ansbach’s 33-game winning streak with a 41-33 victory in their title game. Ansbach, snowed out of a game the week before the European tournament, fell one game short of Ramstein’s 34-game steak compiled from 1998-2000.

Ramstein’s boys and girls soccer teams showed perfect pitch May 20 on their home field. The boys downed Lakenheath 2-0 for one title, while the girls edged Heidelberg 2-1 in overtime on Melissa Hirzel’s penalty kick.

¶ The “A” teams repeat in volleyball: Division II champion Aviano and Division IV champion Alconbury, both missing many of the key players who led them to 2004 championships, overcame the personnel losses to retain their European volleyball championships Nov. 5.

All-European Aja Brown led Alconbury over Milan 3-1 for the Dragons’ title; Ramstein leaned on All-European Rachel Rust in a 3-0 sweep of Frankfurt International School the same day.

¶ Ramstein boys run away again: Led by a 2-6-7-9-11 finish by its top five runners, Ramstein’s boys collected an unprecedented sixth straight European Big Schools cross country team title Oct. 29 in Schwetzingen. Ramstein beat runner-up Mannheim by a whopping 44 points.

Lakenheath’s Greg Billington took the boys individual crown in a course record 15 minutes and 52 seconds over Heidelberg’s 5,000-meter layout, besting former record holder Danny Edwards of Ramstein by 17 seconds.

Kaiserslautern’s girls, led by freshman champion Colleen Smith, romped to the Big Schools girls crown by 20 points over runner-up Patch. Smith ran 20:26 to lead a 1-2-3 K-town sweep. Her teammates Joy and Anna Hrushka were second and third in 20:31 and 20:33, respectively.

In the Small Schools division, the Brussels boys and Sigonella girls emerged with the team crowns. Alconbury’s Landon Kemp won the boys race in 17:16; Ericka Anderson of Sig was the girls champ with a time of 20:51.

¶ Patch girls reclaim soccer throne: A year after a season that saw the end of the Lady Panthers’ 48-game winning streak, Patch regained the top rung of the Division II ladder with a 1-0 victory over Naples in the May 21 title game.

Laura Ingold scored the game-winner as Patch secured the title it held from 1999-2003.

¶ Ramstein, Rota rule softball: Paced by freshman pitching star Jessica Apodaca, the Ramstein Lady Royals turned back archrival Lakenheath 8-3 May 21 at Ramstein to win their fourth European Big Schools softball title in six tries.

Rota took the Small Schools crown, outslugging Alconbury 13-6 the same day. Rota’s Tasha Carlucci homered in the contest.

¶ Williams leads Naples to track title: Charity Williams scored 30 of her team’s 88 points May 20-21 to lead Naples to the girls European track title. On May 20, Williams won the 800-meter run in 2:19.05, holding off Ansbach’s Brittney Britton by .28 seconds and the 1,500 in 4:48.45, well ahead of Lorraine Tucker of Ramstein. On May 21, she completed the sweep with a 16-second victory in the 3,000. She beat Tucker in that race with a clocking of 11:14.94.

Ramstein won the boys team title, 95-84.5 over Ansbach. James Hamlett earned 20 points for Ramstein with victories in the 400 and 800.

¶ Ramstein crowns four wrestling champs: Freshman Coty Reinhart, junior Noah Sheppard and seniors Cole Maxey and James Horst claimed individual championships to lead Ramstein to the Big Schools team title at the European wrestling championships Feb. 20 at Wiesbaden.

All four champs were the only Ramstein wrestlers in the finals, and three of them proved particularly crucial to the Royals’ narrow 227-220.5 victory over Heidelberg.

Reinhart defeated a defending champion for his crown, Sheppard scored major-decision points in his final; and Maxey picked up fall points by pinning his opponent at 5:25 while trailing in the match.


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