It was a record-setting season for the Dublin Jerome High School softball team.
Under second-year coach Jim Muessig, the Celtics finished 14-13 overall, breaking the program record for victories in a season that was set last spring when the team went 12-12. Prior to last year, the Celtics' high mark for wins came in 2008, when they finished 11-16.
This season also marks the first time Jerome has finished with a winning record.
"That's definitely a positive and I hope the girls take it that way," Muessig said of the winning season. "I hope they continue to build on that. It was a pretty solid season."
Seeded 20th of 42 teams, Jerome opened the Division I district tournament May 14 with a 4-1 win over 15th-seeded Chillicothe before losing to 11th-seeded Westerville Central 8-5 in the second round May 16 to close the season.
The Celtics went 4-9 in the OCC-Cardinal Division to finish sixth, behind Worthington Kilbourne (13-1), Westerville Central (11-3), Westerville South (10-4), Westerville North (8-6) and Hilliard Bradley (6-7) and ahead of Hilliard Darby (3-11) and Scioto (0-14).
A league contest between Jerome and Bradley was canceled after being postponed three times because of bad weather.
Among the highlights this season, the Celtics won both games in the inaugural Dublin Classic on April 13, defeating Scioto 6-1 and Coffman 3-2.
Jerome loses five seniors, including outfielders Kaitlin Beebe and Caitlin Clancy. Beebe had a .423 batting average in limited playing time because of a concussion, and Clancy hit .299 and was named second-team all-league.
Among those expected to return are juniors Brittney Berberick (utility), Abby Haab (P), Kylie Huesman (3B) and Katie Kendall (SS) and freshman Lauren Watts (2B).
Haab, who hit .472 with 24 RBI and a team-high 23 runs and went 12-13 in the circle with a 1.43 ERA, made first-team all-league. Kendall hit .452 with 22 runs and a team-high 30 RBI and was second-team all-league, and Huesman hit .347 and was honorable mention all-league.
Watts and Berberick batted .304 and .273, respectively. Berberick was special mention all-league.
Also expected to return are juniors Lauren Daugherty (OF/3B), Emma Frazier (INF) and Katie Zimlich (OF), sophomores Leslie Boothe (1B/3B), Katie Burke (OF), Natalie Christman (OF), McKenzie Ciminillo (P/OF), Megan Longbrake (C/3B) and Taylor Porter (2B) and freshmen Sadie Gearhart (INF) and Madison Miller (1B/3B).
"What's kind of nice this year is we went into every game thinking we could win every game, which is a change and a nice positive," Muessig said. "I wish the seniors well. I hope that everybody had a good experience playing."
Shamrocks looking to build on season
Coffman finished 9-18 overall after losing to 31st-seeded Franklin Heights 16-3 in five innings in the first round of the Division I district tournament May 14.
The Shamrocks were the 26th seed.
"We had a disappointing end to our season, our final game, but I don't think that reflects the successes that we had throughout the season," coach Leah Howard said. "We were young and we grew a lot with some of our very young players, so that is promising for the future."
The Shamrocks went 5-9 in the OCC-Central to finish seventh, behind co-champions Marysville (11-3) and Olentangy Liberty (11-3), Thomas Worthington (9-5), Upper Arlington (8-6), Central Crossing (6-8) and Hilliard Davidson (6-8) and ahead of Westland (0-14).
According to Howard, among the season highlights were league wins over Central Crossing (8-5 on May 1), Davidson (8-4 on April 8) and UA (9-6 on May 8).
The game against UA was tied at 5 until the Shamrocks scored four runs in the top of the seventh inning.
Coffman loses six seniors, including outfielder Meredith Mockler, who hit .372.
"The seniors were good kids," Howard said. "They worked hard and they did what I asked them to do."
Among the key players expected to return are juniors Maddie Darby (1B), Haley Marshall (P) and Hannah Sabatino (OF) and freshmen Sam Isaly (C) and Jennifer Pietrusik (3B).
Isaly batted .419 with a team-high 28 RBI and was first-team all-league and Sabatino hit .415 with 16 RBI and was second-team all-league. Pietrusik, who batted .362, was special mention all-league and Darby, who hit .348, was honorable mention all-league.
Marshall was 6-6 with a 4.56 ERA.
Also expected to return are sophomores Lizzie Colchin (INF), Brooke Durthaler (C/3B), Jordan Mathias (P), Megan Paolini (3B), Amelia Sagun (1B), Sammie Skuce (OF) and Megan Stevens (P) and freshmen Lauren Blair (SS/2B), Caroline Carney (2B), Jessica Flynn (P), Elizabeth Fraas (C), Megan Miller (OF) and Jamie Rhodes (P).
Young Irish losing three seniors
Scioto finished 4-22 overall after losing to 17th-seeded Westerville South 11-0 in five innings in the first round of the Division I district tournament May 14.
The Irish, who were seeded 35th, went 0-14 in the OCC-Cardinal.
"I'm somewhat disappointed," coach Larry Howell said. "I didn't go (into the season) in the win-loss category with super expectations. But I thought we would better last year's record (6-18), so I'm a little disappointed with that. We knew going in that we were young."
Scioto's wins came against Briggs (2-1 on April 4), Westland (6-2 on April 27), Whetstone (3-2 on April 27) and Bexley (4-3 on May 11).
The Irish lose three seniors, including pitcher/shortstop Mackenzie Nelsen and shortstop Taylor Martin.
Nelsen, who hit .333 and was 4-13 in the circle with a 2.57 ERA, was named first-team all-league and Martin was honorable mention all-league.
Expected to return are juniors Kaitlyn Cameron (OF), Kelsey Esterline (OF/SS), Andi Smith (1B/OF), Abby Willman (2B) and Abby Wittenauer (OF), sophomores Erica Harrigan (OF/P), Bailey Loew (OF), Logan McKeever (C/3B) and Kathleen O'Brien (1B) and freshmen Jade Bortz (C) and Kelsie Heasley (P/SS).
"We're still young, we're still growing, we're still trying to learn the game, which is probably the hardest part to understand," Howell said. "We are still trying to work toward the right strides."