After traveling the state to face elite competition, the Marysville High School wrestling team finally held its first home matches of the season Jan. 9.
The Monarchs responded by defeating Upper Arlington 48-18 and Thomas Worthington 61-16 in OCC-Central Division contests.
Marysville was scheduled to play host to the Marysville Duals on Dec. 7, but the event was canceled because of bad weather.
"Losing that home tournament was frustrating, but we draw a pretty good crowd out here at Marysville, so I'm happy for our kids to get to wrestle at home and get two wins," coach Shawn Andrews said. "We're trying to build some momentum. It's been a crazy winter break. We had school canceled and couldn't practice, so it's nice just to do something that's normal."
The Monarchs improved to 3-0 in the league. Hilliard Davidson and Olentangy Liberty both are 2-0.
Davidson also competed at Marysville on Jan. 9, rallying to defeat Thomas 39-34 and UA 36-33.
Marysville visits Davidson on Jan. 30 and Liberty on Feb. 6 in its pursuit of its third consecutive league title.
After defeating Thomas and UA, the Monarchs returned to the road and competed against Lakewood St. Edward, Toledo Central Catholic and Aurora (Ill.) Marmion Academy on Jan. 11 at St. Edward.
Marysville will compete in league matches against Central Crossing and Westland on Thursday, Jan. 16, at Davidson before heading to Alliance for the Top Gun Tournament on Friday, Jan. 17, and Saturday, Jan. 18.
Last season, the Monarchs were fifth (138.5 points) in the 44-team tournament behind champion Uhrichsville Claymont (224.5).
"We look forward to good competition," Andrews said. "Our kids have to know where they are when it comes time for the state tournament. It's good competition."
Against UA, Marysville had pins from Alex Sepeda at 152 pounds (5 minutes, 52 seconds) and Austin Pfarr at 220 (38 seconds).
The win against Thomas included a matchup between Marysville's David Sparks and the Cardinals' Noah Messerall at 138.
Sparks avenged a 6-4 loss Messerall last season at 132, winning by pin in 4:51.
"That's what I've been working for, matches like that," Sparks said.
Against Thomas, other winners by pin for Marysville were Hayden Lee at 113 (2:55), Derek Sharp at 120 (1:41), Troy Messer at 126 (1:18), Sedric Pittroff at 132 (4:29), Taleb Rahmani at 145 (3:14), Nick Rioch at 160 (40 seconds), Noah Danals at 190 (29 seconds) and Darius Walker at heavyweight (40 seconds).
"We're a young team," Sparks said. "We lost a few of our seniors last year, but (Jan. 9) was a real step up for us. We're turning the corner a little bit. We're working harder and backing up our team standing."
Boys basketball team loses at UA
The boys basketball team saw its two-game winning streak end with a 56-40 loss at Upper Arlington on Jan. 3.
Logan Roston led the Monarchs with a game-high 21 points.
"We have really improved our shot selection in games over the last two weeks, but we just couldn't get anything to fall for us in the first half and we put ourselves in a hole against a good UA team," said coach Ryan Grose, whose team trailed 24-17 at halftime.
"We are (at) .500 in the new year for the first time in over 10 years and we have a big stretch of games coming up with five in eight days (Jan. 10 through Jan. 17). Hopefully, we can get on a roll."
Marysville was 4-4 overall and 0-4 in the OCC-Central before playing Davidson on Jan. 10.
The Monarchs' game at home against Central Crossing on Jan. 7 was postponed because of bad weather and rescheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 15.
Girls basketball team defeats Comets
The girls basketball team climbed over .500 by defeating host Central Crossing 42-22 on Jan. 8. The game had been postponed a day earlier because of bad weather.
Mikayla Hughes led the Monarchs with 13 points.
"We started very slow, but fought back in the second half," coach Andrea Hackett said. "Our defense really picked up and we were able to hold them scoreless (17-0) in the third quarter. Our defensive pressure allowed us to ... get some easy layups."
Marysville was 7-6 overall and 3-4 in the OCC-Central before playing Davidson on Jan. 10.
Gymnastics team finishes second
Competing without its top athlete for part of the meet, the gymnastics team finished second (110) behind Central Crossing (121.55) and ahead of Westland (102) and Franklin Heights (93.1) on Jan. 8 at home.
Central Crossing and Franklin Heights are OCC-Capital opponents.
Marysville's Selena Sorensen was first on floor exercise (9.25) and vault (8.55), but she injured her left ankle on vault and was unable to compete on uneven bars and balance beam. Hannah Burns was third on floor (8.3).
Boys swim team defeats Orange
The boys swimming and diving team defeated Olentangy Orange 112-58 on Jan. 4 at Union County YMCA.
Winners for Marysville included Micah Haynes in the 200-yard freestyle (2:04.27) and 100 butterfly (58.79) and Connor Hall in the 200 individual medley (2:14.41) and 100 free (54.7).
The girls team lost to Orange 112-58, as Alexis Moore was first in the 50 free (27.63).