Iman Ellis became the first girl from Reynoldsburg High School to advance to the state golf tournament when she qualified as a senior in 2007.
She also isn't the only athlete in her family to break down barriers.
On Oct. 9 at Apple Valley, her brother Darnell Ellis, a sophomore for the Raiders boys team, became what coach Chip Warren believes is his program's first state qualifier since 1990.
Ellis will compete in the state tournament Friday, Oct. 19, and Saturday, Oct. 20, at Ohio State's Scarlet Course. He is set to tee off at 9:48 a.m. for the first round of play.
"My sister has been supporting me," he said. "She just said to keep doing what I've been doing."
Ellis became the first Reynoldsburg boys golfer since 2004 to reach district when he advanced from the sectional Oct. 2 at The Players Club at Foxfire. Ellis, Westerville South's Justin Arens and Westerville Central's Austin Kondratick each shot 82, but Ellis won a one-hole playoff.
Ellis then turned in a 74 at district to join Thomas Worthington's Curtis Salmans (73) and Pickerington North's Scot Sapp (75) as individual state qualifiers.
Ellis shot 37 on both the front and back nine and had just two bogeys at district.
"It's very exciting to be able to do this," he said. "I just got up and down really well and was striking the ball well. My chipping and putting were less of an issue."
Wallace, Seitzer shine in OCC cross country
Leah Wallace won her second consecutive OCC-Ohio Division girls cross country championship and Dominik Seitzer earned first-team all-league honors in the boys meet Oct. 13 at Lancaster.
Wallace, who ran 18 minutes, 43.7 seconds, will look for her second consecutive Division I district championship when she competes in the district 2 race Saturday, Oct. 20, at Watkins Memorial. The top five teams and top 20 individuals advance to the regional meet Oct. 27 at Pickerington North.
"My goal now is to see how I do at the district and regional and make it to state," Wallace said. "I know what I'm expecting and how everything's going to go this time. This is my favorite time of year because you have all of the good runners together."
The Reynoldsburg girls placed fifth (143) in the league behind Gahanna (40), Pickerington North (59), Pickerington Central (77) and Lancaster (105) and ahead of Grove City (155) and Newark (163). Kyrsty Rider was the Raiders' No. 2 runner, finishing 35th in 23:30, and was followed by Logan Baker (43rd, 24:17.6), Ellie Barclay (45th, 25:35.8) and Mallory Bruggeman (47th, 25:56.1).
Seitzer was fourth (16:31.5) in the OCC-Ohio boys meet as the Raiders placed sixth (164) behind Pickerington North (47), Lancaster (52), Newark (53), Gahanna (82) and Pickerington Central (142) and ahead of Grove City (196).
Following Seitzer for Reynoldsburg were Donovan Kitchen (36th, 18:18.6), Brian Albrecht (45th, 18:56.8), Christian Snyder (57th, 20:04.7) and Blake Campbell (61st, 20:17.8).
The Raiders compete Saturday, Oct. 20, in the district 3 meet at Watkins Memorial, where the top six teams and top 24 individuals qualify for regional Oct. 27 at Pickerington North.
"Leah ran a great race and right now has the fastest time in the state," coach Keith O'Neal said. "All the girls ran well today. Dominik had a good race. Obviously he wanted to maybe win it, but it was a good race."
Football team bounces back
The football team held off a late rally by Lancaster to win 27-20 on Oct. 12 to improve to 5-3 overall and 3-2 in the OCC-Ohio.
The Raiders can secure their second consecutive winning season if they beat visiting Newark on Friday, Oct. 19.
Newark is 2-6 overall and 1-4 in the league.
The Raiders close the regular season Oct. 26 at Groveport, which is 1-7 overall and 0-5 in the league.