The Dublin Coffman High School boys cross country team already ended one long drought this season, winning its first league title since 1999.

The Dublin Coffman High School boys cross country team already ended one long drought this season, winning its first league title since 1999.

The Shamrocks will have the opportunity to end another Saturday when they compete in the Division I regional meet at Pickerington North.

The top four teams and those individuals not on a qualifying team who finish in the top 16 in the boys and girls regionals advance to the state meet Nov. 7 at Scioto Downs.

Coffman hasn't won a regional title since 1997 and hasn't qualified to state as a team since 2000.

Coach Chad Biegler is confident the Shamrocks will advance to state if they run well, but said Pickerington North will be difficult to topple in the race for first after the Panthers won three of four regular-season meetings.

"If we have everyone healthy and we run well, it could come down to a one-point difference between Pickerington North and us again, because we've been very close to each other," Biegler said. "Pickerington North's top three are great, and if they can get good races from their fourth and fifth runners, they can give us fits."

At the 2006 regional, when the Panthers scored 144 points to edge the Shamrocks (145) for the fourth and final state-qualifying spot.

The Shamrocks finished seventh (187) last year, behind state qualifiers Hilliard Davidson (76), Hilliard Darby (87), Reynoldsburg (99) and Lexington (135), as well as Sylvania Northview (155) and Jerome (169).

In last week's Division I state poll, North was ranked eighth and Coffman was ninth.

"As long as we have everyone healthy for this race, I'm confident in our kids' ability to finish in the top four and make it to state, and that's what matters the most," Biegler said. "All it takes to knock you out of the state meet is one guy having a bad race at regional, though, so we've got to run well."

The Shamrocks scored 73 points to finish second in the 12-team district 2 meet last Saturday at Watkins Memorial, behind Westerville North (68). John Kieffer was third, (16 minutes, 55.05 seconds), followed by Adam Davidson (eighth, 17:19.69), Robbie Daulton (13th, 17:38.84), Mark Ruf (19th, 17:53.93) and Ricky Feria-Arias (30th, 18:23.22).

Coffman's No. 2 runner, Grant Onken, was unable to compete for a second-consecutive week because of a back injury.

•The Scioto girls team scored 23 points to easily win the 13-squad district 2 meet, last Saturday ahead of Coffman (63).

The Irish won their first district title, despite resting one of their top runners, Katie Papesh, who had a sore foot.

Keelin Gorman (20:15.38), Minori Minagawa (20:15.68) and Sakiko Minagawa (20:16.0) finished first through third. Lindsay Keeran (sixth, 20:45.25) and Kimberly Wedinger (11th, 21:01.63) scored for Scioto as well.

"It's kind of cool to get our first district title out of the way," coach Matt Suttle said. "We didn't have to run real hard to win it. I had our girls hold back and pick it up in the second half of the race to win."

The Irish haven't lost to another central Ohio team this season, but Suttle said they will face a stern challenge at the regional from Sylvania Northview and Toledo Notre Dame Academy.

In last week's state poll, Northview was fifth, Scioto was sixth and Notre Dame Academy was eighth.

Last year, the Irish placed 10th (275) in the regional, well behind state qualifiers Cincinnati Oak Hills (61), Kings Mills Kings (72), UA (79) and Mason (108).

•The Jerome boys team finished third (89) in the 13-squad district 1 meet last Saturday behind Pickerington North (38) and Hilliard Darby (69) and ahead of Westerville Central (92) as the top five teams advanced.

Nick Schneider placed third (16:20.54), behind North's Daniel Garleb (16:14.61) and North's Nick Hissrich (16:19.69).

Jack Crawford (10th, 17:28.11), Stephen King (12th, 17:35.48), Spencer King (22nd, 17:49.18) and Ben Crawford (42nd, 18:22.85) rounded out the scoring.

"We hadn't been within 40 points of Westerville Central all year, so it felt good to finally beat them," coach John Wilhelm said. "Nick has been consistent all year and Jack ran a great race, too."

Jerome finished sixth (169) at the regional last year, behind state qualifiers Davidson (76), Darby (87), Reynoldsburg (99) and Lexington (135), as well as Sylvania Northview (155).

Schneider finished 17th (16:32.91), just one spot away from qualifying for state. Celina's Andrew Goodwin (16:30.91) passed Schneider right before the finish line to secure the 16th and final state-qualifying spot.


At a glance

Below are the recent results and coming schedules for the Coffman girls, Jerome girls and Scioto boys cross country teams:

COFFMAN GIRLS

Last Saturday -- Finished second (63) in 13-team Division I district 2 meet behind Scioto (23). Megan Collins (eighth, 20:53.36), Mechelle DeNoble (10th, 20:58.57), Clarissa Bons (14th, 21:16.38), Kelly Greenzalis (15th, 21:27.22) and Claire Grace (16th, 21:31.08) scored. Saturday -- Regional at Pickerington North

JEROME GIRLS

Last Saturday -- Finished fifth (114) in nine-team Division I district 1 meet behind regional qualifiers Upper Arlington (45), Hilliard Davidson (51), Thomas Worthington (88) and Olentangy Orange (101). Abbey Dunnan (12th, 20:48.44), Kaitlyn Willette (15th, 21:03.54), Audrey White (25th, 21:54.74), Aleeya Ossoli (27th, 21:57.25) and Rebecca Rings (36th, 22:26.2) scored. Saturday -- Regional at North

SCIOTO BOYS

Last Saturday -- Finished seventh (196) in 13-team Division I district 1 meet behind champion Pickerington North (38). Luis Carbajal (fifth, 16:58.95), Patrick Moore (eighth, 17:26.72), Taylor Talentino (37th, 18:18.39), Tyler Bruney (70th, 19:13.0) and Zach Gerrasch (76th, 19:31.73) scored; Saturday -- Regional at North