The final week is ticking off the regular-season calendar for baseball
and softball as the Central District held tournament drawings last
As it has for most of the season, Division I softball stands out for its depth.
The final week is ticking off the regular-season calendar for baseball and softball as the Central District held tournament drawings last weekend.
As it has for most of the season, Division I softball stands out for its depth. Defending district and regional champion Grove City took the top-seed, followed by Gahanna, Upper Arlington, Pickerington North, Pickerington Central, Westerville North, Central Crossing, Marysville, Teays Valley and Hilliard Davidson rounding out the top 10 seeds. Four of the teams were ranked in the Ohio softball coaches association poll, led by Gahanna taking top billing, followed by Grove City fifth, Arlington sixth and Pickerington North nine.
Other top softball seeds included Licking Valley in Division II, defending state champion Hebron Lakewood in Division III and Berne Union in Division IV.
Baseball is also solid in Division I, led by top-seed Pickerington North. Gahanna, Olentangy Liberty, Dublin Scioto and Hilliard Davidson complete the top five seeds. In Division II, 2008 state runner-up Canal Winchester has the top-seed, followed by a resurgent Hebron Lakewood with the No. 2 seed. Marion Pleasant is the top-seed in Division III, as is Newark Catholic in Division IV.
TEAM OF THE WEEK
Olentangy Liberty, boys volleyball: The Patriots sailed into a first-place tie in the Ohio Capital Conference Cardinal Division, defeating Westerville North 3-0 and Dublin Jerome 3-0.
Liberty disposed of Jerome 25-18, 25-16 and 25-18, led by Aaron Capretta with a team-high nine kills while Cody Persinger added seven. Brandon Kready helped to fuel the passing game with 11 assists and Tyler Yazrombek and Tyler Conard each added two blocks.
The Patriots defeated Westerville North 25-15, 25-12 and 25-13. Conard paced Liberty with 14 kills and four blocks. Persinger chipped in 10 kills and three blocks, and Steve Gress led the defense with 10 digs.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Austin Wright, Worthington Kilbourne: Wright scored three goals for the Wolves in a 10-8 win over Upper Arlington in a battle of nationally-ranked boys lacrosse programs. The performance by Wright helped to clinch Kilbourne’s first win over defending five-time state champion Arlington.
Wright also chipped in two goals in a 21-7 win over Westerville Central.
NEWS, NOTES AND NUGGETS
New hoops coaches: Fairfield County has two new basketball coaches. Berne Union hired former Fisher Catholic coach Tracy Blevins as its new boys coach. Fairfield Union hired former Fisher Catholic coach Steve Petros for its girls team.
Blevins was 88-52 in six seasons at Fisher, including winning Division IV co-coach of the year award from the Associated Press in 2006. Blevins was an assistant at Logan this past season.
Petros compiled a 43-25 record in four seasons at Fisher, including leading the Lady Irish to its first district title in more than three decades in 2008.
Just say no: A pair of Canal Winchester Indians threw no-hitters over the last six days, helping to clinch the outright Mid-State League Buckeye baseball title. Wes White threw a no-hitter last Friday against Logan Elm, fanning 11 batters and walking six. Drew Rosch matched the feat three days later against archrival Bloom-Carroll, walking two and striking out four batters.
No cracking: The Big Walnut softball team prevailed over Mount Vernon on Monday in a key Ohio Capital Conference Capital Division game 3-2 in eight innings.
The Golden Eagles, which improved to 15-7 and 8-1 in league play), tied the game in the seventh when Taylor Nance walked, advanced to third on a single by Tabatha Piper and scored on a error. In the eighth, Shelby Fink hit a sacrifice fly to score Morgan Stephens for the winning run.
Kylee Marcum took the tough loss for Mount Vernon (12-7, 8-2), fanning 13 batters. In the first meeting between the two schools, Marcum sat down 16 batters.
Gilead rolling: Mount Gilead softball continued on its pace in the Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference with a 2-1 victory over Sparta Highland, marking their 17th win of the season.
The Lady Indians were led by Caylor Arnold with a pair of singles and Natalie Graham accounted for a double.
Baylee Smith earned the win.
Stacking some runs: The Buckeye Valley baseball team began the present week by handing a nine-run fifth inning on Ridgedale in 15-3 romp in Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference play.
Newark Catholic on pace: The Green Wave look to close in on the Mid-State League Ohio Division baseball championship this week. Newark Catholic got the week off to a good start on Monday, holding off a Columbus Academy rally for a 8-7 win, led by Xavier Cook contributing two hits and a pair of RBIs. Matt Lewis and Chris Leibold also contributed two hits apiece as the Wave improved to 14-6 overall and 10-1 in league play.
Ross Heath led Valley (13-6, 7-2) with three hits.
Twice as nine: Cameron Schwalbach and Andew Jones each struckout nine batters and earned wins as Circleville handed Grove City Christian its second and third losses of the season, 11-1 and 10-0. The Tigers also had plenty of offense, connecting on 27 hits. David Cydrus and Drew Mace each had five knocks.
Westerville South boys volleyball at Olentangy Liberty, Thursday at 7 p.m.: A key game to help decide the winner of the Ohio Capital Conference Cardinal Division.
Circleville track-and-field Invitational, Friday at 4 p.m.: Meet includes Bexley, Chillicothe, Gallipolis, London, Circleville, Logan Elm and Sheridan.
Hebron Lakewood softball at Granville, Friday at 5 p.m.: The Blue Aces end Lakewood’s Mid-State League Ohio Division championship domination last year, upsetting the Lancers at home. Granville, which still has a shot at the league title, will try to pull the feat again.
Dublin Scioto baseball at Olentangy Liberty, Friday at 5 p.m.: Two of the top five seeds in the Division I Central District tournament and Ohio Capital Conference Cardinal Division rivals battle for a possible league title. Liberty defeated Scioto 5-3 in the first meeting last month.
Cincinnati Moeller boys lacrosse at Worthington Kilbourne, Friday at 7:30 p.m.: Kilbourne gets an out-of-area test against Moeller before the tournament kicks off.