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Vote for top high school sports happening from January 2014: Who Won the …

CLEVELAND, Ohio – In sports it’s pretty simple to figure out who won and who lost.

In most cases, all you need to do is look at a final score, a final time or whose hand is raised in the air.

Today, we launch a “Who Won the Month?” feature on cleveland.com by asking our readers to measure the winners in a new way.

Each month we’ll compile a list of candidates from the teams, athletes, events and other happenings that shaped the high school sports landscape over the previous 30-odd days. Then, we’ll ask you to vote in a poll for the one you think was the most significant.

The poll will be open for one week of voting. Watch for a post on Feb. 10 the week announcing the month’s winner.

The top vote getter each month will be entered into a year-end competition to determine who won the year.

Here’s a look at January’s contenders, followed by this month’s poll:

Brecksville-Broadview Heights wrestling won a sixth consecutive Bill Dies Memorial Tournament, then stormed to a second straight team dual tournament regional title. The Bees also clinched another Southwestern Conference regular-season title by completing a sweep of SWC dual meets.

While at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, Glenville football players Marshon Lattimore and Erick Smith, two of the top defensive recruits in the country, both made oral commitments to join teammate Marcelys Jones at Ohio State University, ending a season-long recruiting dance.

Holy Name ice hockey ruled over Northeast Ohio for much of January. The Green Wave beat Lake Catholic and St. Ignatius (No. 1 in the state poll), and helped create a logjam atop the Great Lakes Hockey League before a loss to Walsh Jesuit.

Magnificat gymnastics halted Brecksville-Broadview Heights’ winning streak at 777 consecutive victories. Whether or not you agree with the Bees’ method of counting victories, the fact remains they hadn’t failed to win an event since 2003. That includes a run of 10 state championships.

Olmsted Falls boys basketball had perhaps the most impressive week of the boys basketball season when it beat undefeated Berea-Midpark and undefeated Westlake, back-to-back. The wins vaulted the Bulldogs into the top half of the cleveland.com boys basketball Top 25.

Rootstown senior wrestler Travis Linton went undefeated in January. He beat fellow state champ Aaron Adkins of St. Vincent-St. Mary in a dual match, won a title at the Bill Dies Memorial Tournament, helped Rootstown win a Division III dual team tournament regional title and also became the team’s career leader in wins.

St. Edward boys basketball was No. 1 in the cleveland.com boys basketball Top 25 throughout January, and played like it. The Eagles beat St. Ignatius, 61-34, and Mentor, 91-49, on their way to an 8-0 month. The Eagles also topped the Division I Associated Press state poll.

St. Vincent-St. Mary football player Dante Booker, Ohio’s 2013 Mr. Football and cleveland.com defensive player of the year, closed the book on his senior season by winning the American Family Insurance Defensive Player of the Year award prior to participating in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

Wadsworth girls basketball continued to pile up wins. The Grizzlies, No. 1 in the cleveland.com poll and No. 2 in the AP state poll, were undefeated and added to their 70-plus game win streak in the Suburban League. In January, they beat a Toledo Rogers team that features six Division I college recruits.

Winter weather didn’t go undefeated in January, but it had a couple decisive wins. Consecutive days of school closings threw a wrench into athletic schedules twice during the month. Many high schools had an extended holiday break due to severe weather the week of Jan. 6. The end of the month was similar, as many events between Jan. 24 and 29 were postponed due to extreme weather.

Those are your candidates. Now you tell us: Who Won January?

January 2014 – Who Won the Month?

Contact high school sports reporter Scott Patsko by email (spatsko@cleveland.com) or Twitter (@ScottPatsko). Or log in and leave a message in the comments section below.

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