One word pops into the mind of Wellington School baseball coach Craig Jones when he thinks of his team -- young.

One word pops into the mind of Wellington School baseball coach Craig Jones when he thinks of his team -- young.

The Jaguars, who finished 7-12 overall last year after losing to Grove City Christian 8-7 in eight innings in the first round of the Division IV district tournament, lost six players to graduation.

Jones said it's the most players lost to graduate since he took over the program in 2007.

"Our lineup right now is wide open," said Jones, whose team opens today at Brookhaven. "I tell the guys that every day is a tryout."

Wellington returns seniors Alex Hunnell and Gus Murphy, juniors Nick Bruno, David Connell, Taiyo Scanlon-Kumara and Tanner Zaas and sophomores Ryan Butler, C.J. Hansen, Austin Holland and Sam Zacker.

Also on the team are senior Carter Gill, juniors Nathan Klabunde, Matt Sorrell and Willy Hess and freshmen Billy Brisk, Shawn Meddock and Tyler Sharp.

The outfield should consist of Murphy in left, Bruno in center and Scanlon-Kumara in right, but competition for the infield positions as well as the pitching staff is ongoing.

"Perhaps the biggest question mark we have this year is going to be pitching," said Jones, who expects Hunnell, Zaas, Zacker, Hansen and Sorrell to handle the bulk of the pitching load.

Last year in the infield, Zaas, who batted .362 with 15 RBI, played first base, Hunnell played catcher and Hansen played second base, with Holland and Zacker serving as utility infielders.

However, Jones said no position is guaranteed this season.

"It's going to come down to being aggressive and consistency," Jones said. "We have to go out, get after it and work. We can't beat ourselves."

ĽAndy Farber hopes his second season as boys lacrosse coach goes a lot easier than his first.

Last year Farber had to deal with the suspension of the three key players at the beginning of the season as well as the death of Dr. Larry Allen, the father of 2009 graduate and midfielder Jim Allen and junior defender John Allen.

"It seemed like every external distraction you can deal with as a coach hit us during that season," said Farber, whose team finished 10-6 overall after losing to New Albany 16-5 in a Division II regional semifinal. "The returnees learned they have to keep pushing forward no matter what challenge gets thrown at you."

Wellington was 1-2 before playing Olentangy Liberty last Wednesday. The Jaguars defeated Hilliard Darby 4-2 on March 22 before losing to Palm Beach Gardens (Fla.) Benjamin School 15-1 on March 23 and Sheffield (Mass.) Berkshire School 11-2 on March 24 during a trip to Florida for spring break.

Offensively, the Jaguars will feature a different look.

Junior Patrick Kim has moved from the midfield and joins senior Josh Taylor, sophomores Jonathan Taylor and Anthony Becker on attack.

Vying for time in the midfield are seniors Jeremy Guinn, Chris King, Chris Roembke, Rob Smith and Mike Walsh, juniors Chris Coughlan and Corey Morse and sophomores Tyler Blaine, Nick Mayne, Jonathan Robinson, Rick Smith, John Wobbrock and Andy Zody.

King, who was moved from attack to the midfield, suffered a knee injury during the first week of practice but is expected to return to the lineup later this month.

Senior Geoff Quinn returns as goalkeeper and will be backed up by junior Sam Vrabel and freshman Russel Fast. The defensive corps is comprised of seniors Richard Gullo and Jacob Robinson and sophomores Arjun Chopra, Jordan Tunnel, Mac Young and Alex Zalanta.

The Jaguars, who had 13 games decided by three or fewer goals last year, are hoping their experience will allow them to improve on last season.

"The key for us this season is going to be to get better every day," Farber said. "We have to push through the monotony of practice and improve every day.

"Lacrosse is a game of progression. Hopefully, we'll be at our best when they get to May."