There was no easy solution for Ready High School girls basketball coach Joe Lang at the Division III district tournament drawing Feb. 3.
If he placed his team in the bracket whose district final will be held March 2 at Granville, the Silver Knights likely would have to get past top-seeded and defending state champion Africentric.
The bracket in which the district final is slated for the same day at Worthington Christian Middle School includes the second through fifth seeds.
Believing a first-round home game was to Ready's benefit, Lang set his eighth-seeded team up with a matchup Feb. 16 against 17th-seeded Cardington.
The winner visits second-seeded North Union at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21, but at least that potential matchup wouldn't be completely foreign to the Silver Knights.
North Union beat Ready 57-55 on Dec. 15 by making what according to Lang was a half-court 3-pointer at the buzzer.
The second-round winner will play fourth-seeded Fredericktown, 20th-seeded Columbus School for Girls or 21st-seeded Bloom-Carroll in a district semifinal at 8 p.m. Feb. 28 at Worthington Christian Middle School.
The Silver Knights entered the postseason with health concerns.
Junior guard Caroline Riewe was lost for the season during a 66-53 loss to Johnstown on Jan. 22. Junior forward Bobbie Menke injured an ankle during a recent practice, leaving her status uncertain for the postseason.
Filling in for Menke was junior Elisabeth Palazzo, who scored 14 points during a 52-39 win over Grandview on Feb. 6.
Ready also celebrated senior night against Grandview for guards Carly Culbertson and Kim Lloyd, who scored two and 14 points, respectively.
"I think Palazzo has stepped up and done a good job," Lang said. "She's physical, strong and she's competed. She's only 5-8, but she's really stepped up. (Sophomore guard) Madison Gatley and (freshman guard) Delaney Cutteridge have been doing a good job splitting the job that Caroline was doing.
"(Culbertson and Lloyd) are both three-year varsity players who have been unbelievably loyal. They're hardworking kids and have been more concerned about everyone else more than themselves."
Boys basketball team preps for tourney
The eighth-seeded boys basketball team will open the Division III district tournament at noon Saturday, Feb. 23, against visiting Heath, which is the 20th seed.
The winner plays at fifth-seeded Grandview at 7 p.m. Feb. 27 in the second round.
Coach Don Worstell believes his team's schedule should prepare it well for the postseason.
"I really like our team," he said. "They're a fun group to coach and I feel like they play pretty good basketball. They don't seem to be physical enough every night in the CCL, but we're excited for the tournament. It's hard for the competitor in us to have all of those losses in close games, but we're not going to let it beat us up. There were several games we just didn't get it done at the end. We feel very prepared."
Ready was 10-10 overall before closing the regular season Feb. 15 against Marion Elgin. The Silver Knights finished 1-7 in the CCL.
Senior guards Doug Strickler and Kyle Wilgus have been key players all season, and juniors Matt Yoho and Josh Gantz have given the Silver Knights a strong presence with their play at forward and in the post.
"We've had a very balanced team this year with good contributions from all the kids," Worstell said. "We defend pretty consistently. I'm very comfortable with our ability to defend other teams. Our schedule has been very, very good."
Wrestlers excited for postseason
The wrestling team competed in a Division III sectional tournament Feb. 15 and 16 at Madison Plains. The top four individuals in each weight class advanced to the district tournament Friday, Feb. 22, and Saturday, Feb. 23, at Duncan Falls Philo.
Competing for the Silver Knights at sectional were juniors Patrik Garren (heavyweight), Will Martello (152), Steven Pozz (126), Dalton Scott (138) and Patrick Stover (145). All won CCL titles Feb. 2 except for Pozz, who was second.
"We like going to other schools and seeing some other faces, but you'd be surprised with how much we get done (with only five competitors)," coach James Yonushonis said. "It's nice that most of them except for Patrik are around the same weight."
Swimming season ends at sectional
No members of the boys and girls swimming teams advanced to the Division II district meet Feb. 15 at Ohio State. In a sectional Feb. 9 at Upper Arlington, the boys were last (8) of five teams behind champion Grandview (280) and the girls were last (19) of four teams behind champion Centennial (332).
Bowling teams begin postseason
The girls bowling team began the postseason in a sectional Feb. 15 at Columbus Western Bowl and the boys opened the postseason in a sectional Feb. 16 at Eastland Lanes.
The top nine teams and top nine individuals not on qualifying teams from both sectionals advanced to district at HP Lanes. The boys district tournament is Friday, Feb. 22, and the girls will compete the next day.
During the regular season, the boys went 17-2 and the girls were 14-1. The boys won the Central Ohio High School Bowling Conference-Central Division at 14-1 and the girls won the COHSBC-Central at 10-0.