Olentangy boys take second in OCC meet
The Olentangy High School boys cross country team overcame a slow start to finish as runner-up in the OCC-Capital Division meet Oct. 13 at Lancaster.
The Braves finished second with 56 points, behind New Albany (32) and ahead of Orange (91), Watkins Memorial (115), Delaware (144), Mount Vernon (145) and Big Walnut (151). Franklin Heights did not have a team score.
"We got out a little soft, but we ran a smart race for the last two and a half miles," coach Mike Moran said. "We had a couple of (first-team) all-league runners in Tyler Grover and Chase Benson, who ran well for us."
Grover finished fourth in 16 minutes, 35.5 seconds to lead the Braves and Benson was fifth in 16:38.7. Making honorable mention all-league were Corey Standerwick (14th, 17:25.4), Charles Rodeheffer (18th, 17:42.4) and Ryan Thede (19th, 17:45.4).
"We had really good performances from Corey Standerwick, Charles Rodeheffer and Ryan Thede," Moran said. "They ran well, and that should help going into district."
Olentangy will compete in the Division I, district 1 meet on Saturday, Oct. 20, at Watkins Memorial. The top five teams and the top 20 individuals advance to the regional meet Oct. 27 at Pickerington North.
"In our district, we have (sixth-seeded) Pickerington North, which won the OCC-Ohio (meet)," said Moran, whose team is seeded ninth. "We also have top-seeded Westerville North as well as (10th-seeded) St. Charles and (15th-seeded) Pickerington Central. We have a tough district. But if we run the way we have been running, we should be in good shape."
Last season, Olentangy finished seventh (183) in the district 2 meet as St. Charles (136) secured the fifth and final regional-qualifying spot. The Braves did not have any individual regional qualifiers.
"Watkins Memorial can be a fast course when it's dry, but it can be a mudfest if there is rain," Moran said. "It's a completely different course than (the one) we ran in Lancaster. There are so many hills on the Lancaster course."
Liberty boys place second in OCC-Central
The Liberty boys team finished second (39) in the OCC-Central meet Oct. 13 at Hilliard Darby, behind Hilliard Davidson (28) and ahead of Dublin Coffman (86), Thomas Worthington (128), Upper Arlington (141), Marysville (142), Central Crossing (210) and Westland (226).
Davidson and Liberty were ranked fourth and seventh, respectively, in the Division I state poll last week.
"I was happy with the way we competed," coach Jared Mills said. "Davidson is one of the top teams in the state, and so are we. It was a nice test to see what we need to do (to be successful in the postseason)."
The Patriots will compete in the Division I, district 3 meet on Saturday, Oct. 20, at Watkins Memorial. The top six teams and top 24 individuals advance to regional Oct. 27 at Pickerington North.
"We leave the (league) meet with confidence," Mills said. "The league meet in cross country is all about timing. We're training to peak at regional and state, and with this performance (in the league meet), we're in a good position to make that happen."
Andrew Johnston led Liberty in the OCC-Central meet, placing second in 15:26.7 to earn first-team all-league honors along with teammates Jim Pappas (third, 15:39.22) and Zach Van Gundy (seventh, 16:00.63). Brad Wiemels (12th, 16:17.73) was second-team all-league and Cameron Lackey (16th, 16:28.29) and Josh Wojciechowski (21st, 16:34.02) were both honorable mention all-league.
The Liberty girls team finished fourth (102) in the OCC-Central meet, behind Coffman (43), Davidson (51), UA (51), Liberty (102), Thomas (107), Marysville (188) and Central Crossing (196). Westland did not have a team score.
Claire Wiles led the Patriots. finishing seventh (18:33.55) to make first-team all-league. Claire Linn (16th, 19:38.38) was honorable mention all-league.
Orange girls take second in OCC-Capital
The Orange girls team finished second (65) in the OCC-Capital meet Oct. 13 at Lancaster behind New Albany (33).
Olentangy finished third (82), followed by Watkins Memorial (84), Big Walnut (127), Delaware (140) and Mount Vernon (155). Franklin Heights did not have a team score.
Hannah Hartzell led the Pioneers, winning the race in 18:50.4 to earn first-team all-league honors.
"I was pleased with our performance," coach Ingrid Simpson said. "It was our highest finish ever in the OCC, and Hannah really ran well on a really tough course."
Brooke Pulkrabek (11th, 21:11.3) and Alana Stillion (14th, 21:21.5) made second-team all-league and Skylar Tucker (19th, 21:33.2) and Madison Clarkson (21st, 21:37) were honorable mention all-league.
"I think (the league finish) will help our overall morale," Simpson said. "The girls were excited that they got second. Hopefully that will prepare us to advance from district to regional."
The Pioneers will compete in the Division I, district 3 meet on Saturday, Oct. 20, at Watkins Memorial. The top six teams and top 24 individuals advance to regional Oct. 27 at Pickerington North.
"The girls love running there (at Watkins Memorial). It's their favorite course," Simpson said. "There are a lot of twists and turns that you have to watch out for when you get up a full head of steam. But if the weather turns bad, it gets really muddy over there quickly. That can make it tough."