Brian McCants has announced that this will be his last season as coach of the Wellington School boys basketball team.
McCants, who is in his 12th season, led the Jaguars to Division IV district and regional titles in 2003. The Jaguars also won a district title in 2005, but that championship was awarded to them after Africentric, which had beaten Wellington 73-46 in the district final on its way to winning the state title, had to forfeit all of its postseason wins for using an ineligible player.
Wellington was 10-8 before playing Northridge on Feb. 12. Seeded seventh of 19 teams, the Jaguars will play host to 13th-seeded Grove City Christian in the second round of the district tournament at 7 p.m. Feb. 27. Both teams have a first-round bye.
The winner will play third-seeded Fairfield Christian or 18th-seeded Morral Ridgedale in a district semifinal March 4 at Westerville North.
"I've enjoyed my 12 years coaching at Wellington, but I'm going to look at some opportunities to coach in college or possibly at a Division I or II high school program that's closer to my home in Marion," McCants said. "I'm looking to end my career here on a positive note with this great senior class that we have."
The Jaguars close the regular season with home games against Centennial on Thursday, Feb. 14, and Ridgeway Ridgemont on Saturday, Feb. 16. Athletics director Dominic Davis plans to present McCants a plaque honoring his career at Wellington during a ceremony after the game against Ridgemont.
"Brian's been more than just a coach here," Davis said. "He's also been a mentor for a countless number of athletes. His message to his teams has always been about the importance of family and the strength of working together."
Girls swimmers take third at sectional
The girls swimming and diving team scored 297 points to place third in the four-team Division II sectional meet Feb. 9 at Upper Arlington, behind Centennial (332) and Grandview (306).
The boys team placed fourth (92) in the five-team sectional behind champion Grandview (280).
There were no automatic berths for the district meet Friday, Feb. 15, at Ohio State. Twenty-seven at-large district berths were awarded for each swimming event based on times from the three Central, East and Southeast sectional sites. Divers do not compete until district.
Placing first for the girls team were Jenna Tugaoen, Annie Miller, Abby Fleeter and Kate Miller in the 200-yard medley relay (1 minute, 59.45 seconds) and 400 free relay (4:00.41), Annie Miller in the 200 individual medley (2:20.17) and 100 breaststroke (1:11.39) and Tugaoen in the 100 butterfly (1:01.97) and 100 backstroke (1:02.82).
Winning for the boys team were Matthew Xin in the 200 free (1:56.35) and Joe Campbell in the 500 free (5:25.12).
At district, the top two placers in each swimming event automatically advance to the state meet Feb. 20-22 at Branin Natatorium in Canton. In addition, 16 at-large state berths will be awarded for each swimming event based on times statewide. The top boys diver and top three girls divers advance to state.
Girls basketball team looking to end skid
The girls basketball team will open the Division IV district tournament on Saturday, Feb. 16, at second-seeded Worthington Christian.
The winner will play host to 18th-seeded Millersport in the second round Tuesday, Jan. 19.
Wellington, which is 6-16 and is seeded 17th, enters the postseason on a seven-game losing streak.