Friday, November 17th, 2023

Three Cardinals sign

By Gary R. Rasberry
Photo by Gary R. Rasberry/The Daily Standard

New Bremen seniors Jonny Heitkamp (Wright State University-Lake Campus for baseball), Abbie Burden (Anderson University for golf) and Olivia Heitkamp (Toledo for volleyball) made their college commitments official on Thursday.

NEW BREMEN - A trio of New Bremen Cardinals made their college choices public on Thursday.

Fresh off helping the Cardinals win a second straight Division IV state title, Olivia Heitkamp will go from one MAC (Midwest Athletic Conference) to another (Mid-American Conference) as the senior signed with NCAA Division I Toledo.

Abbie Burden will head west to Anderson University in Indiana to continue her education and her golf career.

Baseball standout Jonny Heitkamp will stay close to home after committing to Wright State University-Lake Campus.

For Olivia Heitkamp, making the trek north on I-75 was the culmination of a lengthy courtship.

"The recruiting process was really long and hard," said Olivia Heitkamp, who is leaning toward a major in management. "There's something about Toledo. It's close to home, the coaches (and players) are really nice. It felt like home."

The Rockets, coached by Jason Oliver, are 13-16, but went 11-7 in the MAC and earned a spot in the conference tournament. Toledo takes on Ohio in Kalamazoo, Michigan on Saturday.

Olivia Heitkamp was a key contributor to the Cardinals' state titles in 2022 and 2023. Playing outside, right side and middle hitter, Heitkamp led the team with 433 kills (4.98 per set) to go with 33 aces, 43 blocks and 178 digs. Olivia Heitkamp was a first-team All-MAC, District 8 and Ohio selection.

When asked what she'll take from her years at New Bremen onto Toledo, one thing stuck out in Heitkamp's mind.

"The competitiveness from the MAC here going to the MAC there," she said.

Hard work pays off for Burden

With only four years in the sport under her belt, Burden has worked her way into earning a spot with the NCAA Division III program.

"They were my last email I sent out," Burden, who will major in high school math education. "Their campus is amazing, their coach (Morgan Douglass) is amazing. I went for two visits and met the team on the second visit. They're amazing."

The Ravens, playing in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference, wrapped up the fall season in October. Last season, Anderson finished 10th at the HCAC tournament held at Moose Landing in Ottawa.

Burden was the top golfer for the New Bremen girls this season. Burden finished third in the MAC golf tournament with an 86 and was runner-up to Versailles' Ella Porter for Golfer of the Year honors, as Porter ended with a 137 1/2 to 134 margin in the points standings with both earning first team All-MAC.

Burden was the medalist at the Division II sectional tournament at Moose Landing after shooting an 85. At the district at Sycamore Springs in Arlington, Burden wrapped up her season by finishing 14th with a 91.

"I've only been golfing for four years, so it's been kind of crazy how much I have grown," said Burden. "The coaches here are pretty good."

Jonny Heitkamp becomes a Laker

Staying close to home, Jonny Heitkamp felt the Lake Campus was a solid choice.

"It's a local place. I toured the campus and loved it," said Heitkamp, a mechanical engineering major. "I love the baseball team. It's a really good place to be at."

The Lake Campus has had a string of success since starting the program several years ago, having played in the United States Collegiate Athletic Association's Small School World Series the previous few seasons.

Last season, the Lakers went 19-19.

"I just love the competition," said Heitkamp. "Love the players and culture on the team. I just love everything about it."

Jonny Heitkamp was a clutch hitter for New Bremen this spring. The catcher batted .439 and hit 12 doubles and two home runs with 18 RBI and 23 runs scored for the Cardinals, earning first-team All-MAC and second-team All-Ohio honors.

Subscribe for $16/month

"One hundred percent, the work ethic," was his answer when asked what he'll take from his years at New Bremen. "Just the winning culture we have around the area that we built recently."

Additional online stories on this date
ROCKFORD - Parkway school board members on Thursday night voted 4-0 to accept Jake Circle's resignation as a teaching aide, head varsity football coach and weight room coordinator. [More]
ST. HENRY - After four years playing for the St. Henry volleyball team, Chloe Gels will take the court for Ohio Dominican next season.
On Thursday, Gels signed with the Panthers, for whom she will play outside hitter next year in the Great Midwest Athletic Conference. [More]
Subscriber and paid stories on this date
Volunteers behind free holiday meals
CELINA - Family, fellowship and food are the cornerstones of Thanksgiving.
However, with ever-rising food and travel expenses, not all Mercer County residents can afford to enjoy a Thanksgiving meal with their loved ones.
MONTEZUMA - Village councilors at this week's regular meeting moved to purchase an exterior sign for village hall.
The sign will include the villa
The University of Dayton fell behind early and could not recover in dropping to 1-2 on the college women's basketball season with a 67-61 loss to Ohio University on Thursday at the Convocation Center in Athens.
CELINA - The 2023-24 season was a learning year for the Celina boys basketball team.
The program won just four games, but three of the wins came in
CELINA - It was an up-and-down season for the Celina girls basketball season in 2022-23.
One up came in winning the OVISCO Classic, but injuries,
COLDWATER - Coach Nick Fisher is busily getting his Coldwater boys basketball team ready for the upcoming season even with the majority of the team still playing football.
COLDWATER - The Coldwater girls basketball team brings back three letterwinners, but has to replace two of its top players from last season.
FORT RECOVERY - Bob Leverette looks to keep the upward swing going for the Fort Recovery boys basketball team as he starts his second season coaching his alma mater.
FORT RECOVERY - The Indian girls bring back four players for new coach Tyler Deitsch, who takes over after serving as an assistant for Parkway.
MARIA STEIN - After coming up one point short of a state tournament berth last season, the Marion Local boys basketball team brings back two of its stars but will need to replace its entire backcourt.
MARIA STEIN - Coming off its first Midwest Athletic Conference title since 2020 and its first district championship since 2015, Marion Local will have to rely on several new faces.
MINSTER - Coming off a 3-20 campaign, Minster coach Michael McClurg welcomes back six letterwinners from last year and two juniors who missed their sophomore year with injury.
MINSTER - The 2022-23 season was a bit of an aberration for the Minster girls basketball program.
The team went 14-11 and reached the district finals, the second straight season the team had been unable to reach the regionals.
NEW BREMEN - The New Bremen boys basketball team brings back two letterwinners as it looks to return to the district tournament in 2023.
Seniors Aa
NEW BREMEN - New Bremen returns two first-team All-Midwest Athletic Conference players from a team that peaked late in the year and took the MAC co-champions to overtime in the district semifinals last season.
NEW KNOXVILLE - Although the team finished with just two wins last season, New Knoxville showed signs of improvement.
As he starts his third season as coach, Carson Manger returns almost his entire squad, which is deep enough to field 12 players on varsity and 10 on junior varsity this season.
NEW KNOXVILLE - Second-year New Knoxville girls basketball coach Alivia Koenig has experience back this season as the Rangers look to improve on last season's 1-22 campaign.
ROCKFORD - Experience and depth will be key for the Parkway boys basketball team this season.
After going 7-16 a season ago, Doug Hughes returns nearly his entire team, with just one senior graduated from the squad.
ROCKFORD - After winning the program's first MAC title last season, the Parkway girls basketball team will look to keep the momentum going.
The Panthers finished 20-3, but took an unexpectedly quick exit out of the postseason in the first round of sectional play.
ST. HENRY - After a 14-12 campaign a season ago, the St. Henry boys basketball team has four starters and seven total letterwinners returning to look to get the team to build on reaching the district semifinals last season.
ST. HENRY - The St. Henry girls basketball team brings back eight letterwinners this year, looking to build on a 16-win season and its first district tournament appearance since 2009.
ST. MARYS - While the Skyline has been trimmed, St. Marys looks ready to make another run this season in boys basketball.
The Roughriders went 18-
ST. MARYS - After a 14-11 season in 2022-23, Scott Jordan will look to help the St. Marys girls basketball team continue a strong run that included some recent trips to the district final.