As far as Ready High School football coach Joel Cutler is concerned, there's been a lot more to his team than simply two unrelated standout players with the same last name.
While two-way lineman Brady Taylor and running back Akili Taylor have received most of the accolades, Cutler said senior quarterback Matt Yoho, junior linebacker Alvin Knox and junior kicker Aiden Dulin have had impressive seasons.
Yoho was completing better than 60 percent of his passes before struggling to a 3-for-14 performance for 68 yards during a 21-14 overtime loss to Hartley in the regular-season finale Nov. 1 at Hilliard Bradley.
Dulin, who is one of central Ohio's scoring leaders, missed a 34-yard field goal with 6.7 seconds left in regulation as the Silver Knights fell to 9-1.
Ready was playing for its first perfect regular season. Still, it was the type of game that should have helped the Knights prepare for the playoffs.
They earned the second seed in Division VI, Region 21 and open the postseason Friday, Nov. 8, at Upper Arlington against seventh-seeded Oak Hill. The winner plays third-seeded Centerburg or sixth-seeded Woodsfield Monroe Central in a regional semifinal Nov. 15.
"They're all mentally tough guys and I have no doubt we'll be ready for the opening round of the tournament," Cutler said.
Knox, who has been among the team's top tacklers, will try to help Ready to another strong defensive effort against an Oak Hill team that according to Cutler has a "good quarterback" in Garrin Stiltner and runs the I-formation.
Both Ready and the Oaks are in the playoffs for the second consecutive season.
While the Knights' loss to Hartley was for the CCL-Gold Division title, Oak Hill won its fourth Southern Ohio Conference title in five seasons by beating Franklin Furnace Green 58-13 on Nov. 1. The Oaks gained 537 yards, including 423 on the ground as running back Andrew Kearns rushed for more than 200 yards.
Most of top runners eligible to return
Sophomore Kathleen Colvin is among several key athletes eligible to return for the cross country program.
Colvin finished 31st (20:10.83) in the Division II regional meet Oct. 26 at Troy as the top 16 individuals advanced to state.
That followed a ninth-place finish in a personal-best 19:42.1 in the district meet Oct. 19 at Watkins Memorial. She was third (20:26.8) in the CCL meet Oct. 12 at Otterbein.
"She peaked at the right time," coach Dean Tower said.
The girls team placed third (73) in the league behind Columbus School for Girls (30) and Watterson (53) and ahead of Hartley (91) and DeSales (102). It then was fifth (179) in the 20-team district meet behind champion Granville (48) as the top four advanced to regional.
Other key girls runners were seniors Allie Schroeder, Maddy Bowen and Sydney Gammon, junior Courtney Bair, sophomore Emily Genders and freshman Katie Perry.
"They all ran their personal best (at district)," Tower said. "They finished well and I was really proud of them."
The boys were last (116) in the CCL behind St. Charles (17), Watterson (62), DeSales (68) and Hartley (111), and 15th (391) of 21 teams at district behind champion Sparta Highland (52).
Junior Codi Platter was the Knights' top finisher in the league (13th, 18:55.6) and district (35th, 18:16.74).
Other key runners were juniors Mark Vatter, Mark Gnatowski, Adam Hutton, Steve Landy and Andrew Duncan and sophomore Henry Tokar.
Platter ran a season-best 16:30 on Sept. 7 in the McGowan Invitational at Watkins Memorial but battled injuries late in the season, according to Tower.
Volleyball team again makes district final
Despite having a new coach and several players in key roles for the first time, the girls volleyball team made it to a district final for the sixth consecutive season.
The seventh-seeded Knights began the Division III postseason with a 25-18, 25-13, 25-20 win over 14th-seeded Centerburg on Oct. 16 and upset fourth-seeded Marion Elgin 25-23, 19-25, 16-25, 25-17, 15-9 on Oct. 24 before falling to top-seeded Highland 25-11, 25-12, 17-25, 23-25, 15-8 in a district final Oct. 26 at Olentangy.
Ready went 14-11 overall and 3-5 in the CCL, tying Watterson for third behind DeSales (8-0) and Hartley (6-2). CSG was last at 0-8.
"A lot of people told me it was kind of going to be a rebuilding year for us, but after watching our girls this past summer, I thought it would be more of reloading," coach Mark Sisler said.
Ready loses six seniors, including Katelyn Keyes (setter/right-side hitter), Lauren Rivera (libero) and Rose Thacker (middle hitter).
Among those eligible to return are juniors Maggie Quinn (defensive specialist) and Meredith Rivers (outside hitter) and sophomores Holly Guggenbiller (outside hitter/right-side hitter) and Nicole Naporano (middle hitter).