Ready High School senior Sarah Battle described the struggles at the Division II district meet last Saturday as being "basically like a regional" meet.

Ready High School senior Sarah Battle described the struggles at the Division II district meet last Saturday as being "basically like a regional" meet.

With the Silver Knights girls among 22 teams at Groveport and the boys among 25 teams in the Division III district meet at Gahanna, both survived large fields to earn fourth-place team finishes.

"We did the best we could," Battle said. "There was a lot of competition and a lot of teams there that we haven't seen since regionals last year."

Despite facing a larger field, the boys team had slightly more success than the girls.

The boys were aided this season by the emergence of junior Kyle Bergman, junior Nick Frye and freshman Taron Slone.

Last Saturday, Slone won in the 100 meters and ran on the 400 and 800 relays which placed second and first, respectively. Senior Andrew Mantell advanced in the 800 and the 1,600 relay. Mantell and the 400 relay, which included Demetrius Clark and Dana DePassio, both were state qualifiers a year ago.

The regional meet began last Wednesday and concludes Friday at Fairfield Union.

The boys finished fourth (67) at district behind Columbus Academy (98), Berne Union (69) and Fredericktown (68). The girls were fourth (47) behind Hartley (121), Heath (81) and Granville (77).

Battle took third in the 300 hurdles and second in the long jump and Emily Morris won the shot put. The 400 relay of Clare Bochy, Carly Culbertson, Heather Manning and Kaitlin McAndrew also qualified with a third-place finish. The 800 relay took fifth (1:48.09).

The girls are competing at the regional today and Saturday in Dayton's Welcome Stadium.

"To be honest, I didn't think I was going to make it in the 300 hurdles," said Battle, who added a sixth-place finish in the 100 hurdles (16.65). "I just sprinted my heart out and was able to make it. I'm very confident in my long jump."

•Senior Khang Thai failed to reach the boys tennis Division II state tournament for the second time in three seasons.

After finishing third at the sectional tournament May 15, Thai defeated DeSales' John Acomb in his first district tournament match last Friday at Columbus Academy, but lost to Watterson's Chris Diaz 6-1, 6-0 in the second round. Only the top two district finishers advanced to the state tournament Friday and Saturday in Ohio State's Stickney Center.

Thai finished third at district as a sophomore, but the top four finishers advanced to state that season.

Although the Silver Knights finished just 3-15 overall and 0-5 in the CCL, Thai had a 21-4 record. Three of his losses were to Diaz and the other was to Division II district runner-up Ian Wagner of Wellington.

Ready finished behind Watterson (5-0), DeSales (4-1), St. Charles (2-2), Hartley (2-3) and Worthington Christian (1-3) in the CCL.

Thai, a three-time district qualifier who missed all of his junior season with a broken leg, was one of four seniors along with Eddy Bahen, Anthony Castorano and Pete Galentine.

Sophomore second-singles player Josh Hicks and the doubles team of sophomores Joey Waldo and Zach Weiser each won one sectional match.

Also eligible to return are junior Max Kamer and sophomores Joseph Covietz, Joseph Dado, Thomas Livingston, Jordan McVey and Eddie Weeks.

•The baseball team bounced back from a rough regular season to reach a Division III district semifinal for the seventh time in nine seasons.

The Silver Knights opened the postseason by beating Caledonia River Valley (7-5 on May 13) and then upset top-seeded Fredericktown (4-3 on May 15) before falling to seventh-seeded Columbus Academy (2-1 on May 18) to finish with an 8-21 overall record.

In the tournament loss, the Vikings took a 2-1 lead in the seventh on a sacrifice fly. Ready had the bases loaded in the bottom of the frame with one out but couldn't complete the rally.

According to senior Tyler Davis - who pitched complete games against River Valley and Academy - winning two tournament games provided a positive ending to an otherwise difficult season.

"We played the baseball that we knew we could play, the play that we didn't show during the regular season," Davis said. "Our defense struggled in the middle of the season, but it all came together in the Fredericktown game."

Davis led a senior class that also included Jordan Carnes, Chase Chapman, Andrew Clarke, Dwight Etgen, Matt Feeney, Jeremy Finchum and Matt Magni. Magni was the winning pitcher against Fredericktown.

Eligible to return are juniors Jacob Chapman, Erik Dubiel, Jeff Johnson, Ryan Moore, Rhon Music and Landon Wolfe and sophomores Brian Horn and Sam Wolf.

Ready finished last in the CCL at 0-10, behind DeSales (8-2), St. Charles (7-3), Watterson (6-4), Hartley (5-5) and Worthington Christian (4-6).

•The softball team's 8-6 loss to fifth-seeded Highland on May 19 at Pickerington Central in a district semifinal ended a string of consecutive district final appearances at nine.

Ready was the 14th seed for the Division III tournament, but beat 12th-seeded Cardington 9-6 in 10 innings on May 11 and fourth-seeded Marion Pleasant 6-5 in the second round May 13.

The Silver Knights, who scored four runs in the 10th against Cardington and four in the seventh against Pleasant, took a 6-5 lead into the seventh against the Fighting Scots. Highland then scored three times off junior pitcher Katie Ardrey.

Junior first baseman Lindsey Kusan homered in the fourth to give Ready a 3-2 lead. Highland scored three times in the fifth, but Ready rallied with three in the sixth. Sophomore Michelle Naporano singled and Kusan doubled in the inning.

The Silver Knights made their latest tournament run despite having no seniors. Other key players included juniors Sam Curry (C/OF), Dani Pugh (SS) and Haley Widner (CF), sophomores Erin Bennett (OF) and Mara Waldo (C) and freshmen Emily Finchum (LF) and Alexis Mayle (2B).

Ready had its string of five consecutive CCL titles snapped as it went 5-3 to finish behind DeSales (8-0) and ahead of Watterson (4-4), Hartley (3-5) and Worthington Christian (0-8).

"I just told them I want them to remember how this feels," coach Nick Joseph said of the tournament loss. "I also told them that we're going to practice next week so we can get ready for the summer."

At a glance

Below are the regional qualifiers for the Ready boys and girls track and field teams with district event, place and time/distance/height:

Boys - Kyle Bergman: 110 hurdles (fourth, 15.88); Nick Frye: 110 hurdles (first, 15.14); Andrew Mantell: 800 (second, 1:59.45); Taron Slone: 100 (first, 11.32); 400 relay: Demetrius Clark, Cody Culbertson, Frye, Slone (second, 44.75); 800 relay: Clark, Culbertson, Dana DePassio, Slone (first, 1:33.67); 1,600 relay: Bergman, Frye, Mantell, Albert Rozman (second, 3:29.77) Girls - Sarah Battle: 300 hurdles (third, 47.64), long jump (second, 16-11 1/4); Emily Morris: shot put (first, 38-5 3/4); 400 relay: Clare Bochy, Carly Culbertson, Heather Manning, Kaitlin McAndrew (third, 51.17)