The Westside Classic trophy had been inside a room behind the dugout at Ready High School collecting dust since the baseball team won the four-team event a year ago.

The Westside Classic trophy had been inside a room behind the dugout at Ready High School collecting dust since the baseball team won the four-team event a year ago.

It was brought out last Saturday, but that didn't mean hanging onto it for another year wasn't a special feeling. When a couple of children nearly knocked it to the ground while tossing a dodgeball around the field as members of the host Silver Knights did postgame cleanup, senior Adam Rood was quick to move it so it would incur no damage.

"It means everything to us," Rood said. "It's the Westside, and we own it."

Possibly as big is that Ready earned back some momentum entering one of its busiest stretches of the season with victories over West 8-7 in a semifinal and Briggs 9-5 in the championship.

Those wins came after the Silver Knights got blasted by St. Charles (8-2 on April 23) and DeSales (20-3 last Friday) and before they began a stretch of five consecutive CCL games last Monday against Worthington Christian.

A year ago, Ready might not have been able to bounce back so quickly from a pair of losses such as the ones it suffered last week.

The Silver Knights are 11-2 in non-league play and are likely to earn one of the district's top four seeds in Division III at the tournament drawing, which is Sunday at Gahanna.

"It's been about our attitude and the character we have every day," said Rood, who has been relegated to designated hitter all season because of a shoulder injury he suffered in football last fall. "We always pick each other up and help one another out."

Ready also has a lineup from top to bottom that consistently has put pressure on opponents, according to coach Herb Sharfenaker.

Against Briggs, Rood went 3-for-4 batting third, Jamie Buzard was 3-for-4 with three runs in the No. 5 spot and Joey Kulp was 2-for-3 with a walk and two runs batting sixth. Ready took advantage of four errors.

"Moving (Shea Brintlinger) to leadoff has been a key for us," Sharfenaker said. "We moved Rood from No. 4 to third and Philippe Dumont is now our four-hole hitter. We've been playing very well.

"We've got to dictate the game to be successful. We like to bunt and run and we like to squeeze when we can."

•The softball team also has set itself up to be one of the district's highest seeds at the tournament drawing Sunday at Pickerington North.

One of the biggest factors has been the play of freshmen Kate Ardrey, Dani Pugh and Haley Widner.

In mid-April, coach Nick Joseph moved Sam Macioce to leadoff and Widner to second, and that had a positive effect on the whole lineup. Pugh and No. 3 hitter Sarah Gabel had 13 RBI through 14 games.

After Erica Townley suffered a fracture in her right (pitching) arm -- possibly during the Lancaster Classic on April 12 -- Ardrey has taken over as the No. 1 pitcher. She threw three shutouts over the first five games after Townley's injury and likely will remain at the position with Townley expected to be gone for the season.

"None of our three freshmen have played like freshmen," Joseph said. "I truly like where we're at. We knew this year would be different from years past and we've taken it one game at a time. We've not had trouble getting people on base, although we've had some trouble getting them around. When we moved the two young kids, Sammy Macioce and Haley Widner, to the top of the lineup, that helped us. Macioce is hitting .350."

Widner, who is the younger sister of 2007 graduate Heather Widner (now at Morehead, Ky., State), has played extensively at the travel level.

"Dani doesn't surprise me one bit," Joseph said. "Haley played for me last year as a 14-year-old in the summer and I knew she was always capable of doing a lot. She's done an outstanding job. We stuck her in the lineup because we wanted to get her bat in the lineup and she's actually become more and more important because of her play in right field.

"Kate settled in as our pitcher as soon as we found out Erica broke her arm. The night we played Jonathan Alder (April 14) was when we noticed it was really hurting (Townley). She won't get the cast off for another 10 days, but I think it'll get well for the summer."

At a glance

Below are the recent results and coming schedules for the Ready baseball team:

*April 15 -- Lost to Worthington Christian 7-5

April 17 -- Defeated West 14-3

*April 18 -- Lost to Hartley 15-2

April 19 -- Def. Highland 13-2; def. Chillicothe Zane Trace 9-8

*April 21 -- Def. Watterson 6-5

*April 23 -- Lost to St. Charles 8-2

*Last Friday -- Lost to DeSales 20-3

Last Saturday -- Def. West 8-7; def. Briggs 9-5

*Last Monday -- Game against Worthington Christian suspended. It was completed last Tuesday.

*Last Wednesday -- Played Hartley

*Friday -- At Watterson

*Monday -- At St. Charles

*Wednesday -- At DeSales

Of note: The Silver Knights were 12-6 overall and 1-4 in the CCL before last Tuesday.

*CCL game

At a glance

Below are the recent results and coming schedules for the Ready softball, boys tennis and boys and girls track and field teams:

SOFTBALL

*April 16 -- Def. Watterson 1-0

*April 18 -- Def. DeSales 2-1

April 19 -- Def. Granville 5-2

*April 21 -- Def. Worthington Christian 14-0

*April 23 -- Def. Hartley 4-2

Last Friday -- Def. Northmor 11-1 in Centennial Stellar Classic

Last Saturday -- Def. West Jefferson 1-0; def. Lancaster 14-2 in Stellar Classic

*Last Monday -- Lost to Watterson 2-1

*Last Wednesday -- Played DeSales

Today -- Home vs. Jonathan Alder. Ready won 5-0 on April 14.

Friday -- Home vs. Thomas Worthington

Tuesday -- At Canal Winchester

Of note: The Silver Knights were 15-3 overall and 5-1 in the CCL before last Wednesday.

TENNIS

April 15 -- Lost to Granville 4-1

*April 22 -- Lost to Watterson 5-0

April 23 -- Lost to Westland 3-2

*April 24 -- Lost to St. Charles 4-1

Last Monday -- Def. Franklin Heights 5-0

*Last Tuesday -- Played Hartley

*Today -- At Worthington Christian

*Tuesday -- Home vs. DeSales

Wednesday -- At Village Academy

Of note: The Silver Knights were 1-9 overall and 0-2 in the CCL before last Tuesday.

TRACK & FIELD

April 15 -- Boys: Finished third (19.5) behind New Albany (104.5) and Franklin Heights (40); Girls: Finished third (34) behind New Albany (93) and Franklin Heights (38)

April 19 -- Boys: Finished last (12.5) in eight-team Hornet Invitational at Licking Heights behind champion DeSales (149.5); Girls: Finished fourth (77.5) in Hornet Invitational behind champion DeSales (128)

Last Saturday -- Boys: Finished last (31.5) in seven-team Bloom-Carroll Invitational behind champion Whetstone (158); Girls: Finished first (147)

Last Tuesday -- Competed at Franklin Heights

Saturday -- At Franklin Heights Invitational

Tuesday -- Boys: At Columbus Academy; Girls: At Columbus School for Girls

*CCL contest