The Hartley High School boys and girls track and field teams will compete in the Division II regional meet with preliminaries taking place today and the finals Saturday at Dayton Welcome Stadium.

The Hartley High School boys and girls track and field teams will compete in the Division II regional meet with preliminaries taking place today and the finals Saturday at Dayton Welcome Stadium.

The top four in each event will advance to the state meet, which will be June 5-6 in Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium at Ohio State.

Hartley qualified a large number of athletes on both the boys and girls teams to the regional meet and coach Richard Jones is confident the Hawks will do well.

"Honestly, everybody that has qualified to the regional meet stands a chance to make it to state," Jones said. "The guys and girls have been training extremely well these last few weeks. The athletes that were there last year know what it takes, so I'm shooting on everybody to make it out to state. There are always some ups and downs, but ideally everybody that's going to the regional will make it to the state meet."

This year will represent one of the largest contingents of athletes Jones has taken to the regional.

"This is probably the largest number I've seen collectively between the guys and the girls since I've been here," Jones said. "We never really take a large team, but the ones that go usually do well."

Jones is confident following good showings in the district 2 meet, which concluded last Saturday at Groveport. The girls team was district the champion, finishing first (114 points) above runner-up Bexley (91) and Heath (76.5) as 14 teams scored. The boys team finished third (70) behind champion Granville (99) and Eastmoor Academy (97) as 14 teams scored.

District champions for the girls team were Chesna Sykes (100 meters, 12.12 seconds and 200, 25.19), Paige Coleman (300 hurdles, 47.79) and Ashlee Hoffman (400, 57.4).

Aisha Cavin was second in the 200 (25.2) and CharAnna Dixon was runner-up in the 100 (12.58). Finishing third were Taisha Ferguson (800, 2:23.18), Theresa Laughlin (1,600, 5:39.95) and Maya Pedersen (400, 58.34).

The Hawks also won three relays. The 400 relay of Cavin, Dixon, Hoffman and Sykes finished in 48.85, the 800 relay of Cavin, Hoffman, Pedersen and Sykes finished in 1:41.4 and the 1,600 relay of Ferguson, Tynisha Henry, Hoffman and Pedersen finished in 4:00.95.

For the boys team, individual champions were Rufus Walls in the 200 (22.54) and Geoffrey Whiteside in the 100 (11.05). Dominic Colvin was second in the 400 (49.18) and Nathan Fox was fourth in the 110 hurdles (15.67),

The 400 relay of Carwin Hill, Omar Lane, Isaiah Walls and Whiteside was first in 43.36. Finishing third were both the 800 relay of Colvin, Luke Evans, Hill and Lane (1:30.61) and the 1,600 relay of Evans, Hill, Isaiah Walls and Rufus Walls (3:25.22).

"Actually, it all played out the way it was supposed to, so I'm happy with the results at district," Jones said. "First and third (in the team standings) isn't bad at all. I'm glad with the way the results turned out and that there were no injuries. Those are the biggest things I look for at district."

•The season ended May 21 for the softball team when it lost to top-seeded Licking Valley 2-0 in a Division II district championship at Pickerington Central.

Hartley finished 16-11 overall after going 11-16 last season for first-year coach Meghan Rowlands.

Against Licking Valley, the Hawks were kept off balance all game by Hannah Dodson, who allowed three hits and induced 12 groundouts. Only once did the Hawks reach third base.

"She moved the ball around well, but I think her defense helped her out tremendously," Rowlands said. "We only had a few strikeouts and we put the ball in play, but they just had really sound defense."

Hartley advanced to the district final by defeating Whitehall 2-1 in a semifinal May 19 at Central. Samantha Hochuli's single drove home Molly Robine with two outs in the bottom of the seventh for the winning run.

"I certainly feel like we've turned the page," Rowlands said of the team's turnaround from last season. "The future looks promising because all nine starters are back next year. The mentality of these kids is just tremendous and that's part of the reason for our success."

Hartley loses one senior in outfielder Megan Koker, who did not start for the Hawks in the postseason but was a valuable backup during the regular season.

Players expected back next season include Emma Caputo (1B), Hannah Chalfant (CF), Erin Collins (SS), Erica Eakin (P/flex), Hochuli (2B), Angela Lanza (C), Nicole Moziejko (P), Robine (flex), Sam Rupp (CF) and Kayla Woodward (3B).

Moziejko was named Division II second-team all-state, first-team all-district and first-team all-CCL.

Lanza and Woodward both were second-team all-district and first-team all-CCL. Hochuli was first-team all-CCL and Caputo and Chalfant were second-team all-league.

With the majority of the Hawks returning, Rowlands said she has high expectations for next season.

"We expect to win district next year," Rowlands said. "This year marked the first district final we've been in in 14 years. We know how to play in a district final now. All in all I think we'll be pretty good next year."

•The season ended May 18 for the baseball team, as it fell to East Knox 6-1 in a Division III district semifinal at Grove City.

East Knox scored five runs in the first two innings off starter Justin Momeyer and Hartley managed just four hits.