Piqua baseball defends district title in 1965; Rick Grimes-Steve Wright advance to state tennis tourney in doubles


SPRING, 1965

Baseball, Tennis


“More than one scoring opportunity went down the drain in the second game as Piqua Central’s baseball team was forced to split Saturday afternoon’s doubleheader with Tecumseh at Fountain Park. Piqua managed but six hits all afternoon, but all it had to do in the first game was to wait out Tecumseh’s hurler Rogers. Thirteen bases on balls were issued by a pair of Arrow hurlers, 11 by Rogers. Rogers’ fast balls also figured in five wild pitches and four passed balls as only two of the Indians’ runs were earned as they won it 6-4. Coach Jim Hardman/s Tribe made several nice comebacks in the second game before losing in extra innings, 8-7.”

”It looked as though Monday afternoon’s batting practice in the rain got the message through to Piqua Central’s baseball team. The Indians shook off their hitting doldrums Tuesday at Fountain Park when their bats produced 19 hits that harvested 17 runs in thumping Miamisburg 17-6 in a Miami Valley League game. Third baseman Tom Lyman, shortstop Mike Leffel, outfielder Paul Collett and pitcher Mike Ostendorf scored a total of 14 Piqua runs.”

“Piqua Central reverted to Coach Jim Hardman’s pet play, the squeeze play, to take the first game from Colonel White, 4-3, and then whipped up a 16-hit attack in the second game to win easily 16-4. Steve Reed was the big hero in the first game with a squeeze bunt in the seventh inning, and pitcher Mike Leffel won both games in a relief role for the Indians. Piqua Central’s Miami Valley League defending champions suffered a severe jolt for a chance to gain back-to-back titles Tuesday at Fountain Park. Coach Jim Hardman’s boys committed three defensive mistakes, two on one play in the third inning as Troy scored two runs and went on to even Piqua’s MVL record at 1-1 with a 3-2 victory.”

“Piqua Central didn’t have too much difficulty clipping Tipp City in a doubleheader Saturday afternoon at Fountain Park, breaking a one-game losing ‘streak’ by the identical scores of 7-3. Piqua Central won a tight 2-1 victory in a pitching duel in the first game of a doubleheader with Fairborn here Monday and then kicked the ball around in the second game and lost it 6-1 as all six Flyer runs were unearned. Mike Ostenforf was the winning pitcher in the first game and had 10 strike outs, while eight errors led to Piqua’s downfall in the second contest.”

”Piqua Central came away from Greenville still very much alive for a chance to become Miami Valley League co-champions if Troy should stumble. The Indians, after falling behind three runs in the second inning, hitched up their belts and tightened the defense to score a come-from-behind 5-3 victory over Greenville Tuesday.”

“Piqua Central turned in its best defensive performance of the spring here yesterday, topping Chaminade 4-2 at Soldiers Home Field. The Indians, who lost to the Eagles in the finals of the state regional tournament last year, backed up the fine pitching of Mike Ostendorf as they handled 12 assists afield flawlessly. Ostendorf, the victim in last year’s loss to Chaminade, held the Eagles at bay with just five hits, striking out three and had good control, not walking a batter.”

“After a slow start Piqua’s Paul Collett seems to have found himself. Last night at Fountain Park the senior southpaw hit and pitched his way to a 3-2 win over Miami East. Collett, who struck out four in the last game he worked, seemed to find his strike out pitch Friday evening, striking out 12 and walking only two. He also wielded a strong bat with a winning single in the seventh inning.”

“Piqua Central got rid of one of the toughest teams it will have to face to win the district tournament by beating Greenville 5-4 here Monday afternoon in a game that took two hours and forty five minutes to play. Piqua Central could muster only one run but it was enough for the Indians to pull through a 1-0 victory over West Milton here Wednesday afternoon. Central’s lone run came in the sixth off losing pitcher Skip Dyson. After Dan Whitson made the first Tribe out, third baseman Tom Lyman singled, Collett stole second, and Mike Ostendorf got his second hit of the day, a single to score Lyman. The Indians are now 12-3 on the season.”

“Senior righthander Paul Collett threw a masterful no-hit gem here Friday afternoon at Fairfield Park as Piqua Central advanced into the semi-finals of the Springfield District Tournament with a 6-0 triumph over Springfield Catholic. Collett faced just 22 batters in seven innings, striking out six. The Indians gave Collett plenty of support with 11 hits off a pair of Catholic hurlers. The Indians got all the runs they needed in the first when they scored twice. They rallied for four more runs in the sixth.”

“Piqua came back last night at Fountain Park after defeating Springfield Catholic in the district to score its third straight shut-out, a 1-0 decision over Dayton Roth. Piqua got a three-hit performance from Mike Leffel. Leffel, who plays shortstop when not pitching, struck out five, while Piqua collected just five hits, three in the deciding second inning. Jerry Zeller tallied the game’s only run of the game on a double, wild pitch and a balk.”

“A three-run home run in the fifth inning propelled Piqua Central into the Springfield District baseball tournament finals here Tuesday afternoon at Evan Stadium with a 9-1 drubbing of Tecumseh. Putting the game practically out of Tecumseh’s reach was first baseman Jerry Zeller’s blast, the first of his varsity career. Teammates Mike Ostendorf and Mike Leffel were aboard when Zeller unloaded on a fast ball in the fifth that gave Piqua a 4-0 lead. Piqua went on to score four more runs in that inning.”

”Piqua Central successfully defended its Springfield District Class ‘AA’ championship with a 2-1 decision over Fairborn. The game was tension packed from start to finish as Piqua won in extra innings. Although there were several heroes in yesterday’s battle, the chief factor was the pitching of Paul Collett.

”Collett, the 6-3 ½ senior, forced to shoulder the burden of the pitching staff when Mike Ostendorf came up with an injury last Friday night. Pitching with just a day’s rest after beating Tecumseh on just four hits Tuesday, the righthander came back with another four-hitter Thursday.”

“District championship…Miami Valley League co-championship…What next? Coach Jim Hardman is hopes it’ll be a regional title and then the glorious state crown for his Piqua Central baseball team. Monday afternoon the Indians sent Sidney’s Yellow Jackets earthward with a 6-3 triumph which spelled MVL Co-Champ for Piqua. Paul Collett went the distance yesterday, striking out eight and walking two in notching his eighth straight win with no defeats.”

“Piqua Catholic pinned the first setback on Piqua Central’s district championship team in 12 games here last night at Fountain Park, 3-0.”

“Piqua Central started a new winning streak with hopes it will carry them to a state “AA” baseball championship with a 4-0 blanking of Piqua Catholic last night at Fountain Park. Ronnie Redman and Ronnie Carr pitched for the Indians and kept the Cavaliers scoreless. Redman twirled six innings, striking out five and walking one. Carr ‘mopped up’ in the seventh, needing only 10 pitches to strike out the side.”

“Piqua Central’s Springfield district baseball champions simply ran out of gas in the Cincinnati regional semi-final game here Monday afternoon at Roselawn Park and never got started. Coach Jim Hardman’s Indians, finishing 19-5, for the second consecutive year, lost to Meadowdale, the Dayton district winner. Yesterday, Meadowdale’s Lions built up a 9-1 lead after four and a half innings and then hung on for a 9-8 victory.”


Coach George Dearth’s 1965 tennis team enjoyed an exceptional campaign. They lost only one regular match while winning 13. They finished second in the Miami Valley League championships. Piqua’s doubles team of Rick Grimes and Steve Wright defeated Dayton Patterson, Troy, Lebanon, Springfield Catholic and Springfield North to win the district tourney and earned the right to play in the state tournament. This was the first Central High doubles team to play in the state meet in 29 years. Grimes and Wright won their first state match but lost their second challenge to Cincinnati Withrow. In addition to Wright and Grimes, other members of the tennis team included Steve Penrod, Jerry Maul, Jim Hiser, Larry Burt, Steve Wesco, Bill Bennett, Glenn Vickery and Bill Polhamus.