Coach Chad Davis continues to see marked improvement from his Grandview Heights High School wrestling team.
Case in point, the Bobcats finished fourth (177.5 points) in the home Bobcat Classic on Jan. 18 and 19. Grandview finished behind Buckeye Valley (271.5), Logan Elm (250.5) and Fairfield Union (241.5) and ahead of Marion-Franklin (155.5), Groveport (141), Zanesville West Muskingum (129), Columbus East (84), Northland (76.5), Africentric (63.5), Watterson (61) and Bexley (31).
"These kids have been working hard in the practice room and they are seeing the results," Davis said. "We had seven guys on the podium, which is a good start."
Grandview also had four wrestlers in championship matches, with freshman Brendan Fitzgerald pinning his way through the 120-pound class for the title. Last year, the Bobcats had only three participants in the event.
"It's definitely great to win here at home," said Fitzgerald, who went 6-0 to improve to 20-2 overall and pinned Buckeye Valley's Chance Haynes in 45 seconds in the final. "But one thing I will have to work on is my conditioning for a whole match. Of my 20 wins, 18 have been by pin, but things are going to be tougher from here on out."
Three juniors were runners-up for the Bobcats. Anthony Sagstetter was second at 160, losing to Fairfield Union's Chad Burge 7-2 in the final. Sam Callison lost 18-8 to Jhulyius Monroe of Marion-Franklin in the 182 final.
Heavyweight A.J. Pinyerd lost to Deante Gray of Marion-Franklin 1-0 in double overtime in his title match. Sophomore Ben Jump (138) and freshman Thomas Stanley (170) both placed fourth and freshman Preston Robson (195) was fifth.
"We had some guys come out and exceed expectations, but I think they are still hungry," Davis said. "I don't believe we are satisfied."
The Bobcats compete Friday, Jan. 25, and Saturday, Jan. 26, in the Sally George Invitational at Marion Pleasant. On Feb. 2, they will be the host team for the MSL-Cardinal Division duals.
"We only had one meet at home last year (the Bobcat Classic) and now we have four," Davis said. "It's great to come out and see the support from family and friends and the community. Hopefully, that will continue for the league meet."
Girls basketball team making strides
The girls basketball team is 8-8 overall and 2-7 in the MSL-Cardinal entering its home game Friday, Jan. 25, against Millersport.
Coach Michelle Chavanne said the Bobcats are making strides in the second half of the season.
"We're still making progress, but we have yet to put together a complete game," she said. "We lost a couple games to Licking Heights (57-52 on Jan. 15) and Berne Union (40-35 on Jan. 19), but we played well in those losses."
The Bobcats trailed Berne Union 21-9 at halftime but outscored the Rockets 26-19 in the second half. Senior center Connor Skeen scored 12 points and sophomore guards Ali Lachey and Megan McCauley scored eight apiece.
"We had a bad start against Berne Union that was difficult to overcome," Chavanne said. "We played a phenomenal second half, but we dug ourselves in too big of a hole early."
Against Licking Heights, sophomore forward Grace Palmer scored 11 points, sophomore guard Emma Bulla had nine on three 3-pointers and McCauley also scored nine.
"We had good focus for the whole game and probably played our most complete game," Chavanne said. "We were in the right spot 95 percent of the time, but we just had five or six breakdowns that you can't have against an athletic team like that."
The Bobcats are looking for a sweep against Millersport after defeating the Lakers 41-26 on Dec. 15 as Palmer scored 15 points and Skeen added nine.
Grandview also plays a home league game Tuesday, Jan. 29, against Liberty Union. The Bobcats lost 47-26 in the first matchup Dec. 21 as Skeen had seven points and sophomore forward Allison Voelker added six.
With Harvest Prep canceling its season in mid-November, the Bobcats were left with 20 of a possible 22 games. Since the second meeting with the Warriors was the team's senior night, Chavanne said her team has replaced that with a home game Feb. 1 against Horizon Science.
Boys basketball team remains in MSL hunt
The boys basketball team was 11-2 overall and 7-1 in the MSL-Cardinal before playing Jan. 22 against Licking Heights.
Before games of Jan. 22, the Bobcats were second in the league, behind Licking Heights (8-0) and ahead of West Jefferson (6-2), Harvest Prep (3-5), Liberty Union (3-5), Berne Union (2-6), Fisher Catholic (2-6) and Millersport (1-7).
On Saturday, Jan. 26, the Bobcats play a league game at home against Berne Union. They won the first meeting 57-44 on Dec. 17 as senior forward Andy Treasure scored 16 points and senior guard Payton Jones added 13.
On Jan. 18, the Bobcats defeated Amanda-Clearcreek 43-40 in a non-league contest. Treasure scored 21 points and junior forward Tim Murphy added six.
Grandview defeated Fisher Catholic 55-44 on Jan. 18 as sophomore forward Hunter Schmalz scored 17 points and Treasure added 11.
Swimming teams set for MSL meet
The swimming and diving teams competed in the diving portion of the MSL meet Jan. 23 at Columbus Academy. The swimming events will be held Saturday, Jan. 26, at Academy.
Last season in the 16-team MSL boys meet at Academy, the Bobcats placed third (158), six points behind runner-up Academy, as Granville (302) won the title. In the 14-team girls meet, Grandview was sixth (82) behind champion Granville (410).
On Jan. 18, Grandview swept DeSales at the Eldon Ward YMCA. The boys won 93-69, with senior Chad Carter and junior Will Kramer both winning two events. Carter won the 50-yard freestyle (26.75 seconds) and the 100 free (1:00.13). Kramer was first in both the 100 butterfly (58.85) and 100 breaststroke (1:08.16).
The girls defeated the Stallions 85-75. Winning events were senior Julie Menke (50 free, 29.18), junior Halli Bair (100 fly, 1:16.27), junior Maddie Bills (100 backstroke, 1:14.64) and sophomore Allie Kramer (500 free, 6:32.15).
Boys bowling team rolls program-best
The boys bowling team improved to 8-4 overall by defeating Centennial 2,079-1,829 on Jan. 16 while setting a program record for total pins.
Jacob Bottorf set a personal record with a 209 game and had a 380 series. Joe Nichols had a 353 series with a 198 game.
The girls team was 3-5 overall before facing Marion-Franklin on Jan. 22. The girls are 3-5 in the Central Ohio High School Bowling Conference-Central Division entering their match against Hartley on Thursday, Jan. 24, at Eastland Lanes.
The boys also are 8-4 in the COHSBC-Central.
Both teams have league matches against Whetstone on Friday, Jan. 25, and Watterson on Monday, Jan. 28, at Columbus Western Bowl.