Plenty of Schools Have Won OVAC Titles
OHIO VALLEY ATHLETIC CONFERENCE.
The OVAC has been around since 1943 and the nation’s largest functional high school sports conference has had 82 member schools win championships.
Currently, the OVAC crowns champions in 19 boys or girls competitions.
So, who’s won the most OVAC titles?
Executive Secretary TOM RATAICZAK has compiled a breakdown of the 87 schools who have been members over the years and the results are revealing.
Two current schools, Linsly and Wheeling Park, lead the overall title charts with 162 and 161 titles, respectively, entering the current spring season.
Linsly, a charter member of the OVAC, has been the dominating swimming program in the conference with 53 boys swimming championships – far more than any other school in any sport. The Cadets also have won the most boys soccer crowns – 10, and boys tennis-18.
Wheeling Park, meanwhile, has, by far, the most OVAC titles since it joined the OVAC in 1975-76. The Patriots have won titles in 18 of the 19 sports – none in volleyball, and leads the way in three sports -10 girls soccer crowns, 17 girls’ tennis and 15 in cheerleading.
After Linsly and Park, the next four schools in the overall title charts all have won more than 90 championships.
They include St. Clairsville with 95, Wheeling Central and Bellaire 94 each, and Steubenville 91.
St. Clairsville leads the way with 22 golf titles. Bellaire and Wheeling Central are tied with the most football crowns with 13 while Central leads the pack with 20 boys’ basketball brass rings. Steubenville is No. 1 in baseball crowns with 18 and in girls’ swimming with 10.
The remainder of the Top 15 title-winning schools are: Shadyside 87, John Marshall and Steubenville Central 82, Bellaire St. John 79, Martins Ferry 67, Brooke 55, Barnesville 52, and Magnolia and Weir, 50.
Among other individual sport championships, here’s the leaders:
Shadyside – 28 boys’ track and 12 boys’ cross country.
John Marshall – 10 girls’ cross country.
St. John – 14 girls’ basketball and 12 girls’ track (tie)
Barnesville – 12 girls’ track (tie).
Bishop Donahue – 13 softball.
Buckeye Trail – 13 volleyball.
A former member, Cadiz, has won the most titles in wrestling with 19. While in the OVAC, the Cardinals pocketed 47 crowns, the most of any former member.
With such diversity, in sports and school programs, it’s easy to see why the OVAC is not only the largest high school conference but ranks high in any quality comparisons.
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(1) Cameron’s junior softball pitcher, TARA PACZEWSKI, is on a tear. She has hurled three straight no-hitters, including a perfect game, in tournament competition. Her efforts have resulted in her being selected East Region Softball Athlete of the Week by ESPN Rise.com.
(2) In answer to a query. Yes, there are some NCAA BCS Conferences which don’t allow public beer sales inside their football stadiums. They include the Southeastern Conference and the Atlantic Coast Conference. There are only a few Division 1 colleges, with on-campus stadiums, which permit public beer sales inside the venue.
(3) The Wheeling Nailers can wrap up the ECHL Eastern Conference Finals this weekend with two games scheduled against Kalamazoo at WesBanco Arena. Reaching the Kelly Cup Finals would be most rewarding for a team which has battled injuries, and roster moves, this season.
(4) Enjoy the Mother’s Day weekend.