Sophomore Michael Derringer made his second appearance for the Northridge High School boys track and field team in the Division II meet last Saturday at Dayton.

Sophomore Michael Derringer made his second appearance for the Northridge High School boys track and field team in the Division II meet last Saturday at Dayton.

Derringer was one of two Vikings to advance to regional, along with junior Dana VanDervort, who was making her third regional appearance in the girls regional. The finals in both events were last Saturday. The top four in each event qualify for state Friday and Saturday at Ohio State.

In the Division II district 2 meet at Groveport on May 22, Derringer finished fourth in the 3,200 meters in 10 minutes, 37.63 seconds. The top four in each event advanced to regional.

The Vikings were 14th with five points, behind champion Hartley (91).

"Michael ran his second-best time of the season, with his best being a 10:35," boys coach Mike Dudgeon said. "We held him out of the (1,600) because we thought he had a better chance in the (3,200) and that paid off."

Last year in the regional at Lexington, Derringer finished 16th in the 3,200 (11:05.21) and did not qualify for state. In the team scoring, Northridge tied Galion for 37th (2) out of 40 teams scoring, behind champion Pemberville Eastwood (72.5).

Dudgeon also said the Vikings had strong performances from Will Bogantz in the 800 (ninth, 2:07.24) and Nick Klawitter in the 1,600 (17th, 5:32.4).

VanDervort advanced by finishing third in the 200 (26.34), breaking her own program-record with a time of 26.24 in the preliminaries. The previous standard was 26.7.

VanDervort was third behind Hartley's Chesna Sykes and Aisha Cavin, who finished first and second with an identical time of 25.32. Sykes won the Division II title in the 200 last season in 24.53 with Cavin taking second in 24.63.

"Dana had a solid third-place finish," girls coach Rebecca Brechbill said. "Her strategy before the race was to stay with the Hartley runners as long as she could and it paid off for her."

Last year in the regional at Dayton, VanDervort finished eight in the long jump (16 feet, 4 1/ 4 inches). The Vikings tied Goshen and Bellefontaine Benjamin Logan for 36th (1) out of 40 teams scoring, behind champion Hartley (82).

VanDervort finished fifth in the district at Groveport with an effort of 16-5. Northridge tied for 14th (14) with Buckeye Valley in the 26-team district, behind champion Hartley (121).

"In years past, the district was split in two, but they didn't do that this year and it made an extremely tough district even tougher," Brechbill said. "I was looking through the results of other districts and Dana would have either won or advanced from every other district but (the one at Groveport)."

•The softball team finished 26-3 overall after losing to fifth-seeded Highland 3-2 on May 22 in a Division III district final at Pickerington Central.

The second-seeded Vikings set a program record for most wins in a season and also won their first league title after finishing 12-2 in the MBC.

Danville was second at 11-3, followed by Loudonville (10-4), Utica (8-6), East Knox (6-8), Fredericktown (5-9), Johnstown (4-10) and Centerburg (0-14)

"I'll take a season like this every year where we win a lot and have an opportunity to play in the regional," first-year coach Ralph Taylor said. "Next year, with a little luck here and there, we will have a great chance to get back here and maybe even further."

Pitching and defense were the strong suits for the Vikings.

Sophomore right-hander Kimber Hazlett led the way, going 18-3 with an ERA of 0.49 in 142 innings. She had 262 strikeouts, 19 walks and gave up only 52 hits.

Sophomore Kayla Davison was 4-0 with a 0.54 ERA in 26 innings with 39 strikeouts, 11 walks and eight hits. Freshman Kassi Davison was 3-0 and did not surrender an earned run in 22 innings. She had 24 strikeouts with six walks and six hits.

"(The pitchers) all have another year under their belts and we should have an even better staff next year," Taylor said. "I'd like to be able to get a rotation going and get everyone involved."

The Vikings had only two seniors in shortstop Sarah Heiman and outfielder Sarah Verhovec. Heiman batted .420 with one home run, 18 runs scored, 17 RBI and 23 stolen bases. Verhovec hit .235 with 22 runs scored, 18 stolen bases and seven RBI.

"You're really happy for the whole team, in general, but you have to be really happy for our two seniors," Taylor said. "They had some struggling years and it's nice see them go out with a league championship, a sectional championship and as district runners-up."

Starters expected to return are junior outfielder Kelly King, junior center fielder Jessica Simmons (.326, 1 homer, 22 runs, 16 RBI, 21 SB), junior catcher Chelsea Tietz (.304, 3 homers, 19 runs, 15 RBI, 18 SB), sophomore Kara Barclay at third, Kayla Davison at second and Kassi Davison at first.

Hazlett also hit .388 with four homers, three triples, 24 runs, 15 RBI and 18 stolen bases.

Northridge had a team batting average of .289.

"One thing we need to work on is our hitting," Taylor said. "We are solid defensively and solid in pitching, but we could be better hitters."

Also expected back for the Vikings are junior Emily Scott and freshman Taylor Mann, both utility players.