Marysville High School swimming and diving coach Craig Faircloth believes his boys team's comeback wins over Hilliard Davidson and Hilliard Darby on Jan. 16 at Union County YMCA helped prepare the Monarchs for the postseason.
With excitement building in the pool area, Marysville's Gavin Mickelson edged Davidson's Keith Serafy in the final leg of the 400-yard freestyle relay to help his team defeat Davidson 49-44 and Darby 49-45.
"That might be the loudest it's been here in a while, so that was great," Faircloth said. "We had a lot of best times, so that's very encouraging given that we're getting into the last month and a half of the season."
Marysville also defeated Hilliard Bradley 72-17.
The effort was a program record for the 400 free relay in 3 minutes, 32.02 seconds, bettering the mark of 3:33 set by Colin Mickelson, Ian Mickelson, Justin House and Reid Schroyer in 2008.
Joining Gavin Mickelson on the winning relay were Connor Hall, Christian Madsen and Micah Haynes.
"This is what it's all about, seeing the kids get faster as the season progresses and trying to make a memorable year for them," Faircloth said.
Marysville is preparing for the OCC-Central Division meet Saturday, Jan. 25, at Thomas Worthington.
Last season, the boys team finished sixth (72 points) behind champion Upper Arlington (452).
Against the Hilliard schools, Gavin Mickelson was second in the 100 free (51.88) and 200 free (1:52.89), while Haynes was second in the 100 butterfly (58.25) and 500 free (5:40.95).
Mickelson, Hall, Madsen and Braxton Cruea were second in the 200 free relay (1:39.38).
The girls team defeated Bradley 52-41, but lost to Davidson 60-34 and Darby 61-33.
Freshman Alexis Moore won the 50 free (27.48) and finished second in the 100 free (1:00.55) despite injuring a shoulder during a turn in the 100.
Moore, Jessica Cowgill, Andrea Daily and Morgan DeWitt were second in the 200 free relay (1:53.51).
"I want to go as far as I can go," Moore said of the postseason. "I'm hoping my shoulder is OK so I can go on further."
Last season, the girls team finished eighth (48) in the league meet behind champion UA (452).
Boys basketball team extends winning streak
The boys basketball team was on a three-game winning streak before playing Westland on Jan. 17 in an OCC-Central contest.
The Monarchs were 7-5 overall and 2-5 in the league.
Marysville defeated Central Crossing 78-70 in a league game Jan. 15 at home. The Monarchs took control in the second half, opening a 57-44 lead early in the fourth quarter.
Jevon Knox led Marysville with 15 points, and Logan Roston and Kyle Moulton each had 11.
"It wasn't a pretty game, but sometimes you'll take ugly, take the 'W' and move on," coach Ryan Grose said. "We're in a stretch right now of five games in eight days, this being game No. 4 in back-to-back nights (and) that can have a little bit of an effect on us with our mental focus, and maybe being a little bit tired."
Drew Mellen scored 20 points in a 67-62 win over Bellefontaine on Jan. 14 at home.
Case Chamblin scored 13 and Roston had 11.
The Monarchs' winning streak began with a 77-64 win over Westland on Jan. 11 at home. Roston scored 20 points, Chamblin had 18 and Knox added 11.
"We have to get ourselves ready for the second round of OCC play," Grose said.
"We have a shot at some teams that we played pretty well against the first time around. We need to find a way to get some wins."
Girls basketball team defeats Davidson
The girls basketball team was 8-6 overall and 4-4 in the OCC-Central before playing Westland on Jan. 17.
The Monarchs completed a sweep of Davidson, winning 52-41 on Jan. 10 at home. Mikayla Hughes scored 18 points and Hannah Long added 10.
Marysville also defeated the Wildcats 64-62 on Nov. 25 at Davidson.
"We've come a long way," coach Andrea Hackett said. "We just have to keep working on the little things. We watch film and it's just all the same things that we work on in practice and (are) just not carrying over into games, but I'm extremely happy with the effort that I'm getting at practice. It's just doing those little things right in the game."
Wrestling team stays perfect in OCC
The wrestling team improved to 5-0 in the OCC-Central, defeating Westland 81-0 and Central Crossing 48-21 on Jan. 16 at Davidson.
The Monarchs are seeded first in Region 6-B of the Division I state team tournament and face eighth-seeded Piqua or ninth-seeded Troy in a first-round match Wednesday, Jan. 22, at home. The winner then faces fourth-seeded Dublin Coffman or fifth-seeded New Carlisle Tecumseh.
The second-round winner advances to a Region 6 semifinal Jan. 29 at a site to be determined.
Marysville defeated Coffman 61-15 in an OCC-Central match Dec. 19.
Last season, the Monarchs reached the state quarterfinal round before losing to Massillon Perry 49-24.