Bethany Bogantz of the Big Walnut High School girls cross country team earned her second trip to the regional meet.
The senior led the Golden Eagles in the 14-team Division I, district 1 meet Oct. 20 at Watkins Memorial, finishing 15th of 97 runners in 20 minutes, 30.57 seconds as the top five teams and top 20 individuals advanced to regional Oct. 27 at Pickerington North.
The top 16 individuals at regional advanced to the state meet Saturday, Nov. 3, at National Trail Raceway.
"It was a very nerve-wracking day," Bogantz said. "There were a lot of good runners in the (district) race. It was kind of an emotional thing, like this could be my last race. I didn't think I was going to make it out. But I did, so it was a good day."
Bogantz finished 28th (20:58.6) in the Division II regional in 2010. That season, Big Walnut qualified as a team and placed fifth with 161 points, as St. Clairsville (141) secured the fourth and final state-qualifying berth.
"This was the first time I've ever (qualified) individually," Bogantz said. "For me, it's about breaking my best time. I've never gone under 20 minutes. That's my goal, to get into 19 minutes."
The girls team finished 11th (275) in district 1, behind regional-qualifiers Hilliard Davidson (35), New Albany (84), Westerville North (98), Teays Valley (103) and Pickerington Central (135).
Also competing for the Golden Eagles were senior Stephanie Keller (35th, 21:31.53), sophomore Makenna Hemming (65th, 22:55.30), sophomore Hannah Seabrook (80th, 23:32.62), sophomore Addison Shawver (83rd, 23:47.21), junior Catie Craig-Bowden (85th, 24:07.27) and senior Leah Viertel (88th, 25:04.92).
The boys team finished 10th (280) in the 12-team district 2 meet, behind regional-qualifiers Davidson (39), Lancaster (64), Dublin Coffman (100), Hilliard Bradley (104) and Hilliard Darby (136).
Senior A.J. Barber led the Golden Eagles, placing 37th (18:05.18) of 88 runners.
Also competing were sophomore Jonathan Kahrmann (49th, 18:24.37), junior Jacob Oppenheimer (60th, 18:37.21), sophomore Bobby Bogantz (61st, 18:37.54), sophomore Jared Boseker (73rd, 19:24.33), senior Colton Shidaker (74th, 19:28.51) and junior Logan Perry (77th, 19:42.42).
Football team fails to make playoffs
The football team was eliminated from contention for the Division II, Region 7 playoffs with a 10-0 loss to visiting Olentangy Orange on Oct. 19.
Big Walnut, which had qualified for the playoffs the past two seasons and five of the past six years, was 5-4 overall and 3-3 in the OCC-Capital Division before concluding the regular season Oct. 26 at Franklin Heights.
In the first quarter against Orange, senior quarterback Carson Chatterton was intercepted by defensive back Josh Parker, who returned the ball 32 yards to the Big Walnut 22. Three plays later, running back Larry Rode scored on an 8-yard run, giving the Pioneers a 7-0 lead.
Mitchell Hopkins extended Orange's advantage to 10-0 in the fourth quarter with a 34-yard field goal.
Big Walnut was limited to 117 total yards, including just 46 yards rushing on 26 carries.
"We didn't play our game," Chatterton said. "We didn't play Big Walnut football. We didn't need to do anything special. We just didn't play our game."
Chatterton was 9-for-23 passing for 71 yards with two interceptions and rushed for 13 yards on 14 carries. Sophomore running back Christian Johnson had 37 yards rushing on 10 carries and senior wide receiver Adam Shaheen had three receptions for 27 yards.
Orange picked up 214 of its 221 total yards on the ground, with Rode rushing for 136 yards on 28 carries and fullback Mike Forbes running for 74 yards.
The loss to the Pioneers was Big Walnut's first in five meetings. The Golden Eagles had beaten Orange 35-34 in 2011, 23-21 in 2010, 31-15 in 2009 and 28-7 in 2008.
Boys soccer team reaches district final
The boys soccer team played second-seeded Watterson in a Division II district final Oct. 27 at Westerville Central, marking its seventh district final appearance in the last eight seasons and its second in a row.
The district champion plays Cincinnati Indian Hill or Tipp City Tippecanoe in a regional semifinal at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 31, at a site to be determined.
The semifinal winner will face Bellbrook, Cincinnati McNicholas, Dayton Carroll or Springfield Kenton Ridge in the regional final at noon Saturday, Nov. 3, at site to be determined.
The regional champion advances to a state semifinal Nov. 7.
Big Walnut, whose last district championship came in 2008, improved to 12-6-1 with a 2-1 overtime win over ninth-seeded Granville in a district semifinal on Oct. 23.
Trailing 1-0 in the first half, the seventh-seeded Golden Eagles lost their leading scorer, senior forward Austin Foor, after he received two yellow cards during the set up of a corner kick. Sophomore defender Noah Gibson tied the game eight minutes later on a shot from about 25 yards out.
By game's end, Big Walnut and Granville both were down two players on the field, as 11 yellow cards and two red cards were issued between the two teams. Granville received both red cards.
Senior midfielder Ethan Green received two yellow cards and joined Foor on the bench in the second half. Despite their ejections, Green and Foor were eligible to play against Watterson. According to the Ohio High School Athletic Association, players who receive a red card must sit out the next two games.
Sophomore midfielder Adam Carifa scored the winning goal 4:15 into overtime off a pass from junior midfielder Nick Herbert.