Moments after their 14-10 loss at Worthington Kilbourne on April 19, members of the Columbus Academy girls lacrosse team remained upbeat despite suffering their first setback of the season.
That's the attitude coach Anne Horton has tried to instill in her team throughout her 19 seasons.
"The kids won the second half. They were pumped," said Horton, whose team fell behind 8-0 in the first half but outscored Kilbourne 10-6 over the final 36 minutes. "We don't like to lose. I told them whenever things aren't going well in the game, we have to figure out a way to fix it. (The Wolves) came out just smoking us and I told them if we don't start playing with more grit they're going to kill us, and we flipped the game."
Senior attacker Courtney Deena, who led the team in scoring last season with 61 goals and was first-team all-region and all-state in Division II, again is playing a role in the Vikings' success. Deena, who will play field hockey at the University of Maryland, scored five goals against Kilbourne.
"This was a good challenge for us, especially being so young," she said. "We needed to have a challenge like this early in the season rather than later."
The Vikings were 6-1 overall and 3-0 in the Central Independent League before playing Wellington on April 23.
Junior attacker Courtney Gittins scored four goals against Kilbourne.
Annie Lavin (defender), Deepa Manda (goalkeeper) and Abby Young (attacker) are the other seniors.
Other returning players are juniors Paige Berliner (def-ender), Kat Restrepo (defender) and Brianna Stahl (defender) and sophomore Kelly Brown (midfielder).
Other players are juniors Lindsay Bowman (defender), Hayley Mitchell (attacker) and Rachel Theis (defender), sophomore Alivia Brown (midfielder) and freshmen Katie Boeckman (midfielder), Julia Chester (midfielder), Alyssa Edwards (midfielder), Grace Geiger (attacker), Makela Hughes (attacker), Eleanor Rackoff (midfielder), Charlotte Smith (attacker) and Lawson Stump (goalie).
"I'm thrilled with the season," Horton said. "We're so young. We have eight freshmen and we're relying on them for key stuff. (The Kilbourne game) was a big game for them and some of them grew a lot."
Last season, the Vikings finished 11-5 overall and won their third consecutive Central Independent League title at 7-0, ahead of Bexley (5-2), Hartley (4-2-1), Columbus School for Girls (4-3), Watterson (3-3-1), DeSales (2-5), Wellington (1-6) and Granville (1-6).
Academy lost to Cincinnati Mariemont 9-6 in a Division II South/Central Region semifinal.
"We're really looking forward to the tournament," Deena said. "We have a strong shot this year with a lot of girls who really want it this year. That's a key part of our goal in the tournament."
Boys tennis team earns two key wins
The boys tennis team defeated Cuyahoga Falls Walsh Jesuit 3-2 on April 19.
Winners were Evan Alexander 6-3, 6-4 at third singles, Ryan Jung and Shrikar Kundur 6-4, 6-4 at first doubles and J.P. Perrini and Ezer Smith 6-2, 6-3 at second doubles.
Academy also defeated New Albany 3-2 on April 17 for its first win over the Eagles since 2007, according to coach Jeff Warstler.
Winners were Jacob Wareti 6-1, 6-1 at first singles, Abram Schottenstein 1-6, 6-4, 7-5 at second singles and Alexander 6-3, 6-1 at third singles.
"We just have real good kids who are really good players," Warstler said. "We're playing loose and competing hard. The kids are doing a great job."
Boys lacrosse team defeats Akron Hoban
The boys lacrosse team defeated Akron Hoban 18-7 on April 20 at home.
Last season, Hoban defeated the Vikings 18-7 in a play-in game of the Division II Central Region tournament.
Senior attacker Hart Wise led Academy in the rematch with seven goals. Sophomore midfielder Carter Kistler scored five goals, and junior attacker Grayson Wise had three.
Baseball team 'learning to compete'
The baseball team capped a busy week by splitting a pair of MSL-Ohio Division games.
After defeating Bexley 17-10 on April 19, the Vikings lost to Granville 13-2 in five innings April 20 in a game rescheduled from April 18 because of bad weather.
"We've had some really tough, one-run losses," said coach Jim Collis, whose team lost to Whitehall 4-3 on April 15 and Lakewood 7-6 on April 12. "We play in a very competitive MSL league. The kids are learning to compete and hopefully will find ways to finish the one-run games."
Track teams win at Bloom-Carroll
The boys and girls track and field teams each finished first April 20 in the Bloom-Carroll Invitational.
The boys team was first (122) ahead of second-place Licking Heights (108) as 11 teams scored.
Winners were Jake Tuckerman in the 800 meters (2 minutes, 5.9 seconds) and 1,600 (4:58.8), Isaac Sheumaker in the shot put (41 feet, 9 1/4 inches), Aakaash Paladugu in the high jump (6-0), Jack Lint in the 110 hurdles (14.8) and Alex Ho in the 3,200 (10:42.3).
The girls team was first (110) ahead of Bloom-Carroll (99) and Licking Heights (99) as 11 teams scored.
Winners were Jillian Woodard in the long jump (16-1 1/4), Julia Rizk in the 1,600 (5:37.4), Susan Peck in the 3,200 (12:40.8) and Rizk, Andrea Ballinger, Elizabeth Falkenberg and Margaret Sutton in the 3,200 relay (10:17.8).