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With the opening of the baseball season for Pleasant Valley, officials held a special day for former coach Ed Merritt before the Spartans' game against Dubuque Senior on Tuesday.

Merritt was honored with a sign to be placed beneath Pleasant Valley's scoreboard. It reads, "Ed Merritt, 2001 IHSBCA Hall of Fame and PV baseball coach 1975-1997."

Merritt was inducted into the Iowa High School Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame last year. A former pitcher in the New York Yankees organization, he became PV's first baseball coach in 1975 and directed the Spartans until retiring five years ago.

Team tennis pairings announced

Pairings have been announced for the Saturday's Iowa girls state team tennis tournament, involving teams from Bettendorf and Camanche.

Bettendorf will square off against West Des Moines Valley in a semifinal match at Birdland Park's courts in Des Moines. The other Class 2A semifinal has Urbandale and Cedar Rapids Kennedy.

Valley was the team that snapped Bettendorf's state team championship run last spring. The Bulldogs dropped a 5-4 decision to Valley in the 2A, snapping their string at six straight titles.

In Class 1A, Camanche meets Red Oak in one semifinal, with Decorah and Waterloo Columbus colliding in the other semifinal at Johnston High School. Camanche, which finished fourth in the tourney a year ago, will be making its ninth consecutive state appearance.

Semifinals are scheduled at 9 a.m., and finals are at 1 p.m.

Iowa baseball player of year

The Iowa Gatorade high school baseball player of the year is catcher Jeff Clement of Marshalltown.

A graduated senior this season, he batted .547 with 16 doubles, 17 home runs, 58 RBIs and 28 stolen bases in 43 games. He also was 3-0 as a pitcher. He will be attending Southern California on a baseball scholarship in the fall.

Fulton hires girls cage coach

Charles Wiebenga, a 1989 Fulton High School graduate, has been hired as girls varsity basketball coach at his alma mater.

Wiebenga has been a teacher at the high school the past two years and previously served as a coach at Savanna Junior/Senior High School from 1997-1999. Also at Fulton, Erie graduate Amanda Milem has been hired as girls sophomore head coach.

Lehenbauer wins scholarship

Bettendorf senior Adam Lehenbauer is the recipient of the 2002 Stewart Lounsberry Scholarship.

The award is given annually to the member of the boys swimming team voted most valuable by his teammates. Mr. and Mrs. Harold Lounsberry established the fund to provide the scholarship as a memorial to their son Stewart, who died in 1977.

Lehenbauer won the 500-yard freestyle event at the state meet as a junior. This past season he was third in the 500 and fourth in the 200 freestyle and swam legs on the Bulldogs' sixth-place 400 freestyle relay and ninth-place 200 freestyle relay.

He will attend Columbia University in New York City in the fall and plans to join the swimming team.

Weller to Indianapolis

Lyndsey Weller, who helped Central DeWitt win the Class 2A girls state track championship last week, has decided to continue her track and cross country career in the fall at the University of Indianapolis.

Weller was a two-time Big Bend Conference cross country champion and qualified for the state meet three years in a row. In track she was a state qualifier in 13 events over her four-year career, and she was a starter on the Sabers' back-to-back state qualifying volleyball teams coached by her father, Greg.

— Staff reports