Dublin Villager

Girls Cross Country

Success of boys team motivates Jerome

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Members of the Dublin Jerome High School girls cross country team are striving to reach the level of success that their friends on the boys team achieved last season.

According to 11th-year coach Kenny Schuster, watching the boys team win a regional title and place second in the state meet last year inspired his runners to elevate their level of training during the offseason.

“Our girls got to see firsthand how the boys team’s hard work paid off for them, and that gave them incentive to work harder so they can experience that kind of success themselves,” Schuster said. “This team has real good leadership from its senior captains, who pushed the girls hard over the summer and all of them have come back in the best shape of their lives.”

Jerome has returned four runners who competed in the postseason last season, including its lone qualifier for the Division I state meet at National Trail Raceway in Carly Davis. The junior finished 22nd (19 minutes, 1.06 seconds) of 154 runners, earning all-state honors by placing in the top 25, in her first state appearance.

The Celtics have returned three other runners who competed in the postseason a year ago in senior Maggie Arnold, junior Tiffany Hill and sophomore Emily Chen.

Davis placed third (18:59.98) in the regional meet last year at Pickerington North. Hill finished 37th (20:17.98), with Arnold and Chen placing 122nd (23:52.19) and 123rd (23:59.77), respectively.

Jerome finished fifth (202) of 16 teams at regional, behind the four state-qualifiers in Gahanna (90), Upper Arlington (104), Hilliard Davidson (118) and Thomas Worthington (143), and placed second (112) in the 17-team district 3 meet at Watkins Memorial behind UA (64).

“We were so close to making it to state (as a team) last year,” Schuster said. “The girls really want to take the next step and do something special by making state as a team for the first time.”

Arnold, Davis and junior Emily Rings are team captains. Also on the team are junior Lexi Grace and freshmen Jessica Blake and Cat Willette.

The Celtics opened Aug. 23, placing second (80) in the 12-team Panther Division of the Pickerington Classic at Pickerington North behind Olentangy Liberty (52).

“I feel like we have more talent as a whole this year, and the girls are impressing me more every day with their work ethic,” Schuster said.

Jerome placed fourth (89) in the OCC-Cardinal Division meet last year, behind Scioto (54), Hilliard Bradley (72) and Westerville North (83).

“The OCC is always tough with Scioto and all three Westervilles to contend with, but this is probably our best shot at winning it,” Schuster said.

Qamar among top

returnees for ’Rocks

Coffman has returned six of its seven runners who competed in the Division I regional meet last season.

The top returnee is junior Sana Qamar, who finished 25th (19:58.75) at regional. Also competing at regional were senior Saydi Mangelson (64th, 20:46.32), senior Piper Hayward (76th, 21:03.4), senior Kaylen Chang (97th, 21:47.06), senior Anna Weber (100th, 21:55.9) and junior Kelly Pan (117th, 22:53.66).

Also back is senior Shannon Phillips. According to first-year coach Greg King, freshmen Delaney Marsela and Ellie Weber also are making an impact.

“We’re definitely a little faster than we were last year, but we have some key runners who are young and unproven,” King said. “We could be pretty strong because we’ve added some freshmen who are legitimate, solid athletes.”

Last year, Coffman finished 14th (289) at regional, sixth (148) in the district 3 meet and fifth (119) in the OCC-Central meet behind champion UA (39).

“Our division of the OCC is murderous,” King said. “It’s highly possible that a team could finish fifth in our league meet and then finish second or third in a district meet. We’re looking at qualifying for regional as our first major goal and, if we do that, we’ll go from there.”

Coffman opened Aug. 23, finishing third (90) in the Panther Division of the Pickerington Classic.

Irish counting on

senior leadership

Scioto has returned six of its seven runners who competed in the Division I regional meet a year ago, including senior Vanessa Robinson, who fell one spot shy of advancing to state.

Robinson placed 17th (19:39.19) at regional, finishing .13 of a second behind the final state qualifier, Dresden Tri-Valley's Alaina Spears (19:39.06).

Also back after competing at regional are senior Rebecca Groh (72nd, 20:57.57), junior Kayla Rowand (74th, 20:58.8), senior Ariel Arellano (85th, 21:20.47), senior Shayla Wigand (90th, 21:29.98) and junior Brittany Hinkle (115th, 22:45.72).

“We’re very senior-heavy, which bodes well for us,” 12th-year coach Matt Suttle said. “We've never had this many seniors on varsity together before and their leadership has been outstanding. We had a great summer and the kids are still working hard during the season.”

Scioto finished 13th (272) at regional a year ago after placing second (78) in the 14-team district 2 meet at Watkins Memorial behind Gahanna (39).

The Irish also cruised to their sixth consecutive league title, finishing 18 points ahead of runner-up Bradley in the OCC-Cardinal meet.

“We’d like to win our seventh OCC title in a row and make it to state,” Suttle said. “In our league meet, Jerome and Hilliard Bradley both will be solid competition and Westerville North is always in the mix.

“Gahanna’s the top team back in our region, but Upper Arlington and Thomas Worthington are good, too. Jerome and Coffman also are going to be in the mix, competing to make it to state.”

Scioto opened Aug. 23, placing third (113) in the 17-team Saturday Night Lights at Centerville behind champion Centerville (40).

Robinson placed ninth (20:09.06) to lead the Irish, followed by Groh (12th, 20:17.6), Ariel Arellano (13th, 20:21.13), freshman Meredith Billman (25th, 20:53.86) and senior Raven Arellano (54th, 22:06.54).

SCHEDULES

COFFMAN

Aug. 23 – Pickerington Classic at Pickerington North

Aug. 30 – Hot Summer Bash at Hilliard Davidson

Sept. 13 – Central Ohio Invitational at Three Creeks Metro Park

Sept. 27 – Midwest Meet of Champions at Hilliard Bradley

Oct. 4 – Les Eisenhart Invitational at Thomas Worthington

Oct. 11 – OCC-Central meet at Hilliard Darby

JEROME

Aug. 23 – Pickerington Classic at Pickerington North

Aug. 30 – Hot Summer Bash at Hilliard Davidson

Sept. 6 – Tiffin Carnival at Hedges-Boyer Park

Sept. 20 – Valkyrie Invitational in Louisville, Ky.

Sept. 27 – Erin Nance Invitational at London Country Club

Oct. 4 – Darby Dash at Hilliard Darby

Oct. 11 – OCC-Cardinal meet at Hilliard Darby

SCIOTO

Aug. 23 – Saturday Night Lights at Centerville

Aug. 30 – Ashland Invitational

Sept. 6 – McGowan Invitational at Watkins Memorial

Sept. 13 – Central Ohio Invitational at Three Creeks Metro Park

Oct. 4 – Les Eisenhart Invitational at Thomas Worthington

Oct. 11 – OCC-Cardinal meet at Hilliard Darby

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