Sports Chatter: Blair Grad Makes Pro Football History, Plus Streaks’ Basketball, Local Wrestling

Andy Loigu, local sports extraordinaire, brings Inside Warren's readers the Sports Chatter.


Former Blair Academy running back Dion Lewis made pro football history this month.

He helped the New England Patriots reach the AFC championship game with an iconic performance in a 34-16 win over the Houston Texans.

Lewis became the first player in the Super Bowl era to score on a run, a catch, and a kick return in a playoff game. The former Philadelphia Eagle and University of Pittsburgh Panther scored on a 13-yard catch, a 98-yard kickoff return, and a one-yard rush.

They were his first touchdowns of the season. He missed the first half of the season recovering from surgery on his left knee.

“The past is the past,” he told the Associated Press after his big game against Houston. He added that practicing, preparation, and staying focused, together with his teammates, are “all that matters” as New England seeks a Super Bowl berth. The Patriots then reached the Super Bowl with a win against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.

Blue Streaks’ girls’ basketball is on fire

The Warren Hills girls’ basketball team boasted a 10-2 record following a 47-41 victory over visiting Delaware Valley on Jan. 19. Even after trailing 19-5 in the early going, and missing starters Stephanie Veneziano and Heather Laffan, the Blue Streaks maintained their mojo and dominated the second half in earning their seventh consecutive win.

Shawnn Flaherty canned a three-point bonus bomb from behind the arc, to even the score at 30-30 late in the third period. After the visitors (5-7) regained the lead at 41-39 with 4:05 left in regulation time, the running Blue Streaks scored the final eight points of the game.

Nicole Mallard tied the score with a bucket and a pair of free throws from Mini Ajayi put Warren Hills in front to stay.

Devyn Gara led Warren Hills with 14 points and yet another marvelous performance on the defensive end of the floor. Ajayi contributed 12 points.

Phillipsburg vs. Warren Hills wrestling

Sometimes, sports turns friendships into rivalries.

On Jan. 19, in Lopatcong, Phillipsburg’s Cody Harrison started off the Stateliners’ 37-24 wrestling win over visiting Warren Hills by winning a 10-0 major decision over the Blue Streaks’ Codey O’Rourke in the 126-pound bout. Harrison transferred to PHS from Warren Hills last year. “He was one of my better friends from Warren Hills,” Harrison said of O’Rourke. “When the ref blows the whistle, you aren’t friends anymore.”

Perennial power Phillipsburg is now 6-1 in dual matches. The wrestlers certainly may remain friends, in the off-season.

From the Archives: Catching up with Megan Springmeyer

Ten years ago, Warren Hills field hockey forward Megan Springmeyer was a two-time high school All-American and the Warren Reporter’s choice for Field Hockey Player of the Year.

A four-year varsity letter winner, she graduated from Warren Hills with school career records for goals (55), total points (126), and game-winning goals with an astounding 22. That’s clutch.

She was a two-time National Amateur Athletics Union Junior Olympics player and four-time United States Field Hockey Association National Indoor Tournament player. Also, she was chosen to play in the National Outdoor Festival four times.

She led Warren Hills to four straight state tournament appearances. She was honored as a three-time Skylands Conference first team player and was named first team All-State Group 3 and All-West Jersey as a senior.

By the time she headed to the University of Albany, she’d played a lot of field hockey.

While playing for the Great Danes, she majored in business administration. She transferred to Fairleigh Dickinson University–Florham, earning a bachelor’s degree in 2013 and a master’s degree in 2014, both in hospitality and tourism management.

Springmeyer worked as a staffing manager with Accountemps in Parsippany for two and a half years and recently was hired to be a director of client development by Cint, a privately-owned software company which develops innovative technology that is helpful to market research professionals.

Ladies and gentlemen, Elvis has left the building.  

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