Groveport Madison Roundup
Softball squad could not clear Grove City hurdle
The Groveport Madison High School softball team wasn't able to find a way to beat Grove City this season.
The Cruisers lost all three games against the Greyhounds, including a 6-0 loss in a Division I district semifinal May 21 at Pickerington Central.
Groveport finished 16-10 overall and went 9-5 in the OCC-Ohio Division to tie Pickerington Central for third, behind Grove City (13-1) and Gahanna (11-3) and ahead of Lancaster (7-7), Pickerington North (5-9), Newark (2-12) and Reynoldsburg (0-14).
"We let a couple games get away from us this season, but we played well in stretches and we'll return next year with a better mental part of the game," coach Steve Cunningham said. "We had some ups and downs with our assistant coach (Kristine Ensign) passing away (April 21) in the middle of the season and with some tough (OCC-Ohio) games."
Seeded 13th of 42 teams, Groveport opened the district tournament with a 6-2 win over 37th-seeded Watkins Memorial on May 14 and defeated 16th-seeded Thomas Worthington 4-3 in the second round May 16 to reach a district semifinal for the fifth consecutive season.
In addition to the tournament loss, Groveport lost to Grove City in both of league contests, falling 16-7 on April 10 and 1-0 on April 26.
"Grove City beat us three times this season, so they were the better team," Cunningham said. "They scored three (runs) in the first (inning) against us (in the district semifinal game), but we still felt like we were in the game until they got two in the fifth. At that point, it wasn't a great feeling. It's hard to score multiple runs against them, especially down 5-0 when you have six outs left.
"We had the first two runners on in the first and we had runners on second and third with one out in the third. If we push across a couple of those runs in either of those innings, it changes the entire game."
Groveport loses six seniors in Brooklyn Bartok (INF), Amy Castle (3B), Katie Fellure (1B), Molly Fraley (RF), Cortney Husch (2B) and Paige Shoemaker (INF).
Castle had a .430 batting average and was named second-team all-league. Fellure batted .465 and was special mention all-league and Husch was honorable mention.
"We need to replace two good bats, but we have a lot returning and they overcame some bumps and bruises and ups and downs this year," Cunningham said. "They learned how to handle adversity and they jelled, so next year we want to start on a higher plane and be more consistent."
Expected to return are juniors Destiny Bishop (LF), Tisha Lane (CF), Sam Maddy (designated player) and Kaysea Smith (C) and sophomores Shianne Curry (OF), Emilee Downing (P), Brittany Kern (SS).
Downing hit .440 and went 16-8 in the circle with a 2.82 ERA and was named first-team all-league. Lane batted .323 and Maddy hit .312. According to Cunningham, Bishop, Kern and Smith batted around .300.
Baldwin competes in district tennis meet
Forrest Baldwin of the boys tennis team competed in the Division I district tournament May 24 and 25 at Hilliard Davidson.
The senior had qualified for district in singles by going 4-1 and placing second in the sectional May 16 and 18 at Pickerington Central. The top four finishers at district advanced to the state tournament Friday, May 31, and Saturday, June 1, at Ohio State.
Wilson, Napier advance in track
Senior Eddie Wilson and junior D'Marious Napier both advanced to the Division I regional track and field championships in the high jump.
Competing in the district 1 meet on May 23 at Hilliard Darby, Wilson finished second (6 feet, three inches) and Napier was fourth (6-1).
The top four in each event advanced to the regional, which is Wednesday, May 29 and Friday, May 31 at Pickerington North, where the top four will qualify for the state meet June 7 and 8 at Ohio State.
The three-day district 1 meet concluded May 25. Because of bad weather, only a portion of the field events were completed May 23.
The running finals were May 25.