In just its second season, the Gahanna Christian Academy track and field program continues to set new standards.

In just its second season, the Gahanna Christian Academy track and field program continues to set new standards.

Before competing against Newark Catholic on April 23, the boys team had broken five program records this season. Leading the way was Connor Maclellan, who had set new marks in the 1,600 meters (4 minutes, 58 seconds) and 800 (2:16).

Also setting records were Jared Haugen in the 300 hurdles (51.04), Joseph Schoen in the 3,200 (11:37.97) and Michael Ramsey in the long jump (17 feet, 9 inches).

"I'm very satisfied with where we are right now," boys coach Jeremy Reeves said. "I didn't expect to be as fast as we are right now. Our sprinters have some work to do, but that's OK."

The Eagles' schedule includes competing in the Millersport Invitational on Saturday, April 28, in preparation for the MOCAL meet May 12 at Worthington Christian.

"Our boys will do pretty well in that meet," Reeves said of the Millersport Invitational. "A lot of teams in our league will be there, so we're looking to turn some heads and see what's out there."

The Eagles competed in a five-team meet April 17 at Columbus Academy, finishing fifth (13) behind champion Academy (118). The 400 relay of Michael Schoen, Chase Broady, Zack Buckles and Caleb Haugen finished second (48.9).

"That was a really good meet," Reeves said. "Our boys ran a lot faster because there was a lot more competition."

Last season, 2011 graduate Paris Jenkins became the school's first state qualifier in the sport, finishing 12th (12.8) in the 100 in the Division III meet at Ohio State. She is competing at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla.

Reeves is hoping to have more athletes qualify for state this season.

"We're just at midseason," he said. "We're still going to get better. We're still going to get faster and, hopefully, by the time our league championship comes around and we're heading to that district meet, we're going to be doing well."

Reeves said freshmen sprinters Cassie Miller and Alex Grubich have been the top performers on the girls team.

Softball team improved over last season

The softball team equaled its win total from a year ago when it defeated Independence 26-6 in five innings on April 20.

Gahanna Christian surpassed that total by beating Tree of Life 8-2 on April 23 to improve to 4-5 overall. The team finished 3-7 last season.

The Eagles were competitive in three of their losses: 2-0 to Tree of Life on April 2, and 4-3 on March 29 and 6-4 on April 17 to Madison Christian.

"The two games against Madison Christian could have gone either way," coach Dan McGrath said. "We lost two very tough battles to Madison."

Tree of Life was tied with Millersport for fourth in the Division IV area coaches poll last week. Delaware Christian was sixth and Berne Union was third.

Gahanna Christian was swept in MOCAL play by Delaware Christian, losing 7-3 on March 26 and 19-9 in six innings on April 16. The Eagles play a doubleheader Saturday, April 28, at Berne Union.

The Eagles will look to sweep Grove City Christian in MOCAL play when the teams meet Thursday, April 26, at Gahanna Christian. Gahanna Christian won the first meeting, 9-8 on April 5.

"The girls are playing hard and showing tremendous improvement just on the basics of softball," McGrath said. "We have a very cohesive team.

The girls are a close-knit group. We work well together and have shown a lot of improvement from last year."

Baseball coach looking for more consistency

Baseball coach Scott Jemson wants to see more consistent play from his team as the Division IV district tournament approaches.

"We have a history of playing good one night and then the wheels come off the next night," he said. "We're still trying to work on fundamentals. We start four freshmen and they just make freshmen mistakes. They're playing against kids that are 18 years old. It's four years difference; it's the physicality of it. It's a learning experience for our young kids. We're trying to get through that and give them some seasoning and some experience. They'll get better."

Through eight games, senior Anthony Dowden was leading the team with a .318 batting average and was tied with senior Keegan Parsons for the team lead in runs with seven.

Gahanna Christian defeated Torah Academy 12-2 in five innings on April 27 and beat Delaware Christian 15-5 in five innings on April 16. The Eagles had lost to Delaware Christian 13-2 in five innings on March 26.

Jemson likes the senior leadership he has seen from Dowden, Parsons, Jeremy Lee and Tony Maston.

"Those seniors really help the younger kids out," Jemson said. "They work with them every day. They're good encouragers. Without those seniors on our team, I know we would be much worse off. They're trying to make them better."