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Prep Sports Notebook: Award-winning Dixie Heights football lineman will start college in January

By Terry Boehmker
NKyTribune sports reporter

Dixie Heights football player Evan Wibberley plans to sign a letter of intent with Western Kentucky University on Wednesday, one week after receiving the John Schlarman Lineman of the Year Award from the Northern Kentucky Football Coaches Association.

Wibberley, a 6-foot-5, 275-pound offensive tackle, made his commitment with WKU before his senior season. He’s an outstanding student who will finish high school this month and plans to start college in January.

Dixie Heights senior Evan Wibberley received the Lineman of the Year Award from local coaches. (Photo provided)

The award he received from the coaches association is given to the best offensive lineman who also demonstrates excellence in academics and community service.

It’s named in honor of John Schlarman, a lineman at Highlands High School who went on to play and coach at the University of Kentucky. He passed away last November after a two-year battle with cancer.

There is a $2,500 scholarship attached to the award, but Wibberley won’t be eligible for the money since he received an athletic scholarship to attend WKU.

Dixie Heights averaged 330 yards per game this season behind an offensive line that included Wibberley. He was named to the All-Northern Kentucky Team by local coaches for the second straight year and he’s expected to get all-state honors.

“He can drive block, trap, pull and pass protect at high levels,” said Dixie Heights coach Dave Brossart. “I think he can fit into any offensive scheme.  He is a very physical and aggressive blocker, and if you asked any coach in Northern Kentucky they would tell you the same.”

Wibberley is the second recipient of the John Schlarman Lineman of the Year Award. The inaugural award was given to Ben Dickhaus of Covington Catholic at the Northern Kentucky East-West All-Star Game last summer.

CovCath will take 5-1 record into King of the Bluegrass

The Covington Catholic boys basketball team that was ranked No. 1 in the Northern Kentucky preseason coaches poll will take a 5-1 record into the King of the Bluegrass that begins Friday at Louisville Fairdale High School.

Evan Ipsaro

After winning their first four games, the Colonels lost to Indianapolis Cathedral, 91-81, last Saturday. They got back on track Tuesday with an 87-45 victory at Holy Cross and are now averaging 78 points per game. The team’s scoring leader is junior guard Evan Ipsaro with a 20.0 average.

In the district seeding win over Holy Cross, senior forward Mekhi Wilson and Ipsaro each scored 19 points for CovCath. Holy Cross junior guard Jacob Meyer, who entered the game with a 43.5 scoring average, was limited to 15 points.

CovCath’s first opponent in the King of the Bluegrass will be Louisville Trinity (2-4) at 7:30 p.m. Friday. They are two of the 13 in-state teams in the double-elimination tournament that also includes teams from Florida, South Carolina and Tennessee that have a combined record of 21-0.

Two days after Christmas, the CovCath team will be playing in the Battle of Villages tournament in Florida. Two years ago, the Colonels won three games against Florida teams in that tournament, but it was cancelled last year due to the pandemic.

Campbell County looking for new head football coach

Campbell County is looking for a new head football coach to replace Mike Woolf, who is stepping down after four seasons in charge of the program.

After posting a 6-5 record in Woolf’s first season, the Camels finished 1-10, 2-6 and 1-10 the next three years and went 0-3 in Class 6A playoff games. This year’s team averaged 12.2 points per game and allowed its opponents 34.1.

Campbell County’s offensive leaders this year were mostly underclassmen, including sophomore quarterback Nathan Smith, who had 817 yards passing, 338 yards rushing and scored a team-high seven touchdowns. The Camels’ leading tackler on defense was junior Mitch McElroy, who had 71 stops (38 solo, 33 assisted).

Simon Kenton is the other local Class 6A team that will have a new head coach next season. The Pioneers promoted assistant coach Roy Lucas Jr. to head coach to replace Jeff Marksberry, who is retiring after leading the program for 22 years.

Ryle graduate averaged 10.2 assists as Purdue’s setter

Ryle graduate Haylee Bush completed her redshirt senior season as setter on the Purdue University volleyball team with 1,278 assists in 125 sets for a 10.2 average and was a first-team selection on the All Big 10 Conference team for the second straight year.

Purdue made it to the Elite Eight in the NCAA Division I playoffs and finished with a 26-7 record. The season ended with a 3-1 loss to Pittsburgh in the region finals. Bush had 39 assists and 14 digs in that match to record her 16th double-double of the season.

Bush has 4,846 career assists, the third highest total on the Purdue record books. She also became the second setter in the history of the program to surpass the 1,000 mark in career digs.

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