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Four losses for McKinney boys

Both seventh- and eighth-grade Bulldogs experienced losses on Dec. 6 and 8.

During conference games at Middletown Christian on Dec. 6, seventh-grade boys lost 18–54 and eighth-grade boys lost 13–58.

On Dec. 8, both teams played non-conference games at Bethel Middle School and again suffered losses, with seventh-grade 10–42 and eighth-grade 22–32.

The next game is at Miami Valley on Dec. 14 at 5:30 p.m. — Coach Steven Harshaw

Smith breaks own scoring high

The girls basketball team won their Dec. 6 home game against Middletown Christian with a score of 43–35. Angie Smith led the charge with 21 points, 11 steals and eight rebounds; Annlyn Foster put in a great effort, with seven points and 14 rebounds.

The win was followed by a loss against Ponitz on Dec. 8, 66–63, and another loss against Legacy Christian Academy on Dec. 10, 61–21. Despite the loss against Ponitz, Smith broke her career scoring high during the game, bringing in 38 points, with 12 rebounds and nine steals. Aaliyah Longshaw followed with 12 points, and Foster brought in 10 points, with 10 rebounds. 

“This is a young team that plays hard and always gives me effort,” said Coach Tim Minnich. “They want to get better every day, and we are building for the future.”

The team’s record is currently 3–3, and 1–1 in the conference. — Coach Nick Minnich

YSHS boys split week’s games

The Bulldogs struggled to find their footing at the Tuesday, Dec. 4, game at Greenon. Senior Andrew Clark led the scoring with 14 points. Senior Trey Anderson contributed five points scored and six defensive rebounds, while senior Kevin Wagner and junior Sean Adams added to the defensive effort with five and four rebounds, respectively. Freshman Demetri Wallace made his presence known with two field goals, four rebounds and a steal. Senior Tariq Muhammad added two points, and Adams added a field goal as well, but the Bulldogs ultimately fell short as Greenon won the game 28–52.

The YSHS Boys JV team started strong in their home opener against Middletown Christian on Friday, Dec. 7, scoring a quick six unanswered points, four from junior Kaden Bryan and the first two of sophomore Sam Lewis’ five points. But the Bulldogs’ shooting success cooled as Middletown Christian put the defensive pressure on in the second and third quarters. Joseph Minde-Berman fired up the team in the second half by scoring three field goals and a free throw, but the rally came a little too late as the Bulldogs fell to the Eagles, 41–22. Sophomore Ibrahim Chappelle and senior Mateus Cussioli added four points and two points, respectively.

The Bulldog boys varsity team played a thriller from start to finish Friday with a 57–44 win over the Eagles. From Anderson’s opening three pointer to Clark’s dominant 31 points scored, the Bulldogs led the entire game right up until the clock ran out. Clark would finish with nine rebounds, six assists and three steals, and Anderson contributed 15 points, six rebounds and two assists. The Bulldogs were especially adept at rebounding — Wagner had seven, Wallace had five, senior Teymour Fultz had four, and Bryan had two. Wagner added two three-point shots and a steal to the team’s effort, while Wallace made three out of four foul shots and snagged two steals. — YS News staff


Top-10 finishes for swimmers

On Friday, Dec. 7, the YSHS Bulldogs swim team had their first swim meet facing off against eight other familiar foes, including Xenia, Fairborn, Beavercreek, Oakwood and Dayton Carroll. Despite being the smallest team in attendance, the girls placed fourth and the boys fifth overall. 

Every swimmer had at least one top-10 finish, with at least 30 competitors in each event. Eden Spriggs placed first in the 100 Back and second in the 100 Fly. Trystan Burch and William Gregor also placed first in the 50 Back and 50 Breaststroke, respectively. David Walker notched thirds in the 100 Fly and 100 IM. Natalie Galarza also placed third in the highly competitive 50 Free. 

Lifetime best swims were had by the rest of the team, which included Devyn Deal, Jude Meekin, Avery Reeder, Sara Zendlovitz, Harper Mesure and Tariq Muhammad.

The Bulldogs swim team will be back in action on Saturday, Dec. 15, at the Piqua YMCA. The meet begins around 4:45 p.m. —Coach Brad Martin

Kay Liane (Brown) Webster, of Beavercreek, passed away on Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018.  She was 61.

Kay was born on May 13, 1957, to Marvin and Vivian Brown (Anderson) in Lafayette, Ind. She grew up in South Bend, Ind., and Bellbrook, Ohio. Kay graduated from Bellbrook High School in 1975 and went on to study English at Miami University. She was a resident assistant while at Miami and graduated in 1979. She then attended Indiana University for graduate school, obtaining her master’s degree in library science in 1980. She and her husband, Neil Webster, were married on July 3, 1993.  

Kay worked at Greene County Public Libraries for 38 years, most recently as the youth services coordinator. One of her biggest accomplishments was the implementation of the Dolly Parton Imagination Library in Greene County to increase early literacy. She was active in library professional groups, Altrusa Club of Dayton, holding several offices, and the Ohio Auctioneers Association Auxiliary. 

Kay was a long-time story reader at Books & Co. and had regular children’s programs at the Xenia library. She loved reading, travel, collecting Hall china and attending auctions.  

Kay was preceded in death by her parents. She leaves behind her husband; two brothers, David (Becky) Brown and Nathan (Michele) Brown; nieces, Emily Brown and Abigale Brown; nephews, Andy (Jenn) Johnson, Aric Brown and Andreas Brown; great-nephews, Jace and Jax Johnson; and numerous cousins, aunts, uncles and many dear friends.  

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Greene County Library Foundation, P.O. Box 520, Xenia, Ohio 45385. The family is being served by Littleton and Rue Funeral Home in Springfield. Online expressions of sympathy may be made through

Malawi Lee Huntington, 15, passed away on Monday afternoon, Dec. 10, of unknown causes. 

No funeral service will be held; a memorial service will be held at a later date. A full obituary will appear in a future issue of the News.

The Chicago four-piece band the Claudettes are returning once again to play at The Emporium this Friday, and they couldn’t be happier.

‘It’s a great group of people there. Always a lot of musicians there, always such a fun time,” says Johnny Iguana, pianist and songwriter for the band. 

The Claudettes’ sound is focused on Iguana’s piano in various styles — blues, barrelhouse blues, boogie-woogie, New Orleans jazz and beyond. The strong combination of bass (Zach Verdoorn) and drums (Michael Caskey) recalls Ben Folds Five, Counterfeit Madison or even Joe Jackson, but it’s distinctly their own original recipe.

Floating above are Berit Ulseth’s silky lead vocals, a recent addition to the band. Their first album was instrumental, their second featured Yana, a chanteuse singing in French, who has since left the group.

Ulseth had been singing backup in a country band along with drummer Caskey, who recognized a unique quality to her voice and invited her to meet the rest of the band. 

The quartet recorded an “unplugged” album live in Iguana’s piano room in 2017, released a studio album “Dance Scandal at the Gymnasium!” in March of this year, and just recently finished recording their next album in Chicago with producer Ted Hutt. 

A founding member of Flogging Molly, Hutt now concentrates on producing bands such as Dropkick Murphys and Gaslight Anthem, and won a Best Folk Album Grammy for his production of Old Crow Medicine Show’s “Remedy.” 

“A lot of really successful stuff,” says Iguana of Hutt. “A lot of it really resides on the punkier fringes of roots music, which is why it was such a good match for us to work with him.”

The new album is being prepared for release in early 2019, and they’ll be playing quite a few of the new songs at the Emporium show. 

“We mix it up during our shows and I think that makes it really entertaining and unique. There’s a lot of instrumental fireworks. It’s a cool action-packed set,” Iguana promises.

“At the Emporium we do two sets,” says Iguana. “Our usual shows are like 80 minutes, but here we’ll be doing two 60-minute sets.” The Emporium show is an unusual one for the band, which plays mainly clubs, halls and festivals. 

“Playing at the wine tasting is a very unusual gig,” Iguana says. “But it’s always a really cool vibe in there.”

So what brings the band to Yellow Springs?

“Niki Dakota at WYSO was one of our first really big champions,” recalls Iguana. “She had contacted our record label and ordered 60 CDs of our first album for a pledge drive way back when.”

Dakota suggested the band contact Emporium co-owner Kurt Miyazaki about setting up a show, and it’s become a regular event every few months.

The posted showtime is 6:30 p.m. at the Emporium, and it will likely be a full house, so fans should consider showing up early.

“I much prefer to play a 7:30 or 8 o’clock show,” Iguana admits. “the main reason is I’ve been writing a wide range of songs and the lyrics are really important. Berit’s voice is so beautiful and so expressive and there’s so much emotion that it’s a drag when everyone’s just drinking and talking while you’re playing.”

In addition to their original songs, they also throw in a mix of cover songs from the ’20s through the ’70s in their own style to spice things up. 

Iguana notes, “we’ll do ‘There’s No Business like Show Business’ and ‘California Here I Come’ — old Tin Pan Alley stuff — but then we do Grandmaster Flash, Neil Young, Marvin Gaye, Santo & Johnny and Link Wray and all kinds of good stuff — we just do them our own way.”

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Two weeks ago, at the grand opening of the Riverside Senior Lofts, a senior affordable rental project in Dayton, this reporter asked several Senior Loft residents, chosen at random, to weigh in on the apartments.

“I can’t say a bad thing,” said Lois Mathews, who moved to the new project in September after leaving the Trotwood house she had shared with her husband, following his death.

Mathews said she’s impressed with the quality of construction of the two-bedroom cottage she lives in. She’s new to living in close quarters with others and was worried about the noise level, since the cottage walls are attached. But her fears were unfounded.

“It’s so quiet,” she said. 

She’s also impressed by the responsiveness of the maintenance crew.

“Yesterday there was all that ice,” she said. “They were right out here, taking care of it.”

The Dayton project is relevant to Yellow Springs residents because the Riverside Senior Lofts were developed, and are managed, by St. Mary Development Corporation, the Dayton nonprofit that will develop and manage the proposed Yellow Springs senior affordable rental project if the local project moves ahead. Riverside Lofts is a two-story structure with 48 units, while the local apartment would be a four-story, 54-unit building to be located on 1.8 acres behind the new fire station on Xenia Avenue, between Marshall and Herman streets.

Robert and Heather Albright, who have lived in the Riverside apartments for several months, also gave the project favorable marks. Robert, who is wheelchair-bound, said he couldn’t reach the shelf in their bathroom, so the maintenance man installed a lower one, at no cost. They are set to get a lower shelf in their walk-in closet as well, again at no cost.

Robert did have a complaint, however; the mailboxes to be placed out front of the units have been promised, but are not yet installed.

Living in the apartments since June, Mary Dieringer has been so pleased that she spoke at the opening ceremony. In an interview afterward, she said she’s been impressed by the design of the apartments, the quality of construction and the responsiveness of the maintenance crew.

“They come the same day you call them,” she said.

Overall, she said, she and her husband, who had looked all over Dayton for a place to live, “had a hard time finding something this nice, and also affordable.”

That responsiveness to residents and attention to quality are among the reasons that Home, Inc. chose St. Mary as its development partner, according to Home, Inc. Executive Director Emily Siebel in a recent interview.

“We were looking for an organization with integrity, that has a reputation of putting its clients first,” Siebel said. “St. Mary has that reputation of going above and beyond.”

In interviews this month, leaders at two Dayton nonprofits that regularly partner with St. Mary in providing client services were asked to describe their experience with the nonprofit.

“They’re always trying to do what’s in the best interest of the client. Their mission is to help people, not make money,” said Natalie Storms, director of social services at Senior Resource Connection in Dayton, which provides home care services. “They have an excellent reputation.”

Having partnered with St. Mary for five years, Samantha Brown of Home Products Health Care, an agency that provides products for those who are incontinent, also gave the nonprofit a high ranking.

“I would recommend them to anyone,” she said. “They’re wonderful at what they do, and they do it with passion and care.”

How it will work

Created in 1989, St. Mary Development Corporation grew from a partnership between a Catholic nun and a Centerville parishioner who met as members of a social justice committee of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, according to the St. Mary website at Within a few years, the two, eager to make something happen, had purchased their first site for affordable housing. Later, due to perceived need, they moved their work to the Dayton area.

Since then, the nonprofit has grown considerably, as St. Mary has developed 60 affordable housing developments in nine states and more than 4,000 units. The original founders led the organization for decades, until 2013, when Tim Bete, who had worked at St. Mary for seven years, assumed leadership.

In an interview last week, Bete talked about what makes St. Mary projects different from other affordable housing senior rental projects.

Like most affordable housing developers, St. Mary provides property and financial management for its housing projects. But unlike the others, it also offers a third component, service coordination. While St. Mary does not provide direct services to its residents, it does connect residents with local, state or federal services for which they qualify. Doing so may provide seniors with resources they didn’t know they had, such as free meals delivered to the home or veterans’ benefits. The services free up more income for budget-squeezed seniors, and also allows them to live independently longer, Bete said.

“We’re unique in this,” he said. “It’s at the heart of our mission.”

For the Yellow Springs project, Home, Inc. will provide most of the service component of the new project, according to Bete and Siebel. It’s a new direction for Home, Inc., Siebel said, although the nonprofit is currently gearing up to provide service coordination for its first affordable rental project, the six-unit Forest Village Homes currently being constructed on Dayton Street.

Home, Inc. will be guided by St. Mary’s experience in coordinating services, she said.

“St. Mary has a strong track record in providing senior services,” she said. “They have the capacity and expertise to coach us.”

While Home, Inc. provides the social service component, St. Mary will provide financial and property management of the local 54-unit project if it moves forward. That will likely mean two people on site during the week, a property manager and a maintenance worker, according to Bete. The nonprofit uses a team approach in property management, he said, meaning that St. Mary will contract with another faith-based nonprofit, National Church Residences of Columbus, for the property manager and maintenance worker -positions.

Most funding for the project, estimated to cost about $9 million, will come from the Low Income Housing Tax Credit program, a federal program administered by the Ohio Housing Finance Agency, if the project is successful in winning the funding. About 90 percent of affordable housing projects nationwide are funded by the tax credit program, in which private businesses purchase tax credits in exchange for funding. 

Because of the tax credit program funding, the actual ownership of the project is complex, according to Bete and Siebel. For the first 15 years, the project will be legally owned by its investors, although few if any of them will ever show up on site. Rather, St. Mary will oversee development and provide management once the project is complete.

“We’re intimately involved,” Bete said of St. Mary’s role.

The private/public partnership yields a higher level of quality, according to Siebel, because the private investors provide an oversight structure.

“This is a tested program that works well,” Siebel said. “It brings the rigor of private business to the public good.”

The local project will also receive extra funding for partnering with St. Mary because the Dayton nonprofit is an official Community Housing Development Organization, or CHDO, a designated community-based nonprofit identified as having the capacity to develop affordable housing projects. According to Bete, there “are only a handful” of CHDOs in Ohio, and the partnership will bring in an extra $300,000 to the project.

Because the state oversees the tax credit program, the local project would adhere to state-approved building standards, Bete said. While the state requires that the project remain affordable for 30 years, that time period only relates to the project’s affordability, which organizers hope to maintain far longer. But that 30-year span does not relate to building construction, according to Bete, who said the aim for building longevity is far longer.

“Construction quality is high,” he said. “This construction will be around a long time, we hope 70 or 80 or 100 years.”

The project must also adhere to state environmental sustainability standards, Bete said. According to Home Inc.’s application to the Yellow Springs Planning Commission for a Planned Unit Development, or PUD, zoning overlay, the project intends to use high-performing equipment for heating and cooling, provide individualized controls in apartments for greater efficiency, and use enhanced insulation materials, among other sustainability strategies.

It’s too soon to know the exact figures for rental costs for the apartments, according to Bete, because total costs for the project are not yet clear. But typically, St. Mary affordable housing rental projects produce rentals that are 20 percent to 40 percent below market rates. In Yellow Springs, where rental rates are higher than in surrounding communities, the percentage of savings may be greater, he said. 

According to the PUD application submitted by Home, Inc. to the Planning Commission, the rents for similar tax credit program projects in Greene County range from about $500 to $670 for a one-bedroom unit, and $600 to $800 for a two-bedroom unit. According to the application, after the initial rent is set, rents would likely increase about 2 percent per year.

Most of the residents will be those whose income is 60 percent of Area Median Income (AMI), or about $27,600 a year for a single person and $31,560 for a couple, with spaces for some whose income is 80 percent of AMI, or $36,800 for a single and $42,080 for a couple, along with some of lower income, up to 30 percent of AMI, or $13,800 a year for a single and $16,460 for a couple.

Project organizers will submit their application for the tax credit program to the Ohio Housing Finance Agency in February 2019, according to documents, and receive word of whether they won funding in May. If the project goes forward, they hope to begin construction in spring of 2020, with residents moving in a year later.