The Ready High School bowling program had its first boys state qualifier in 2008 and its first girl at state in 2011.
With that history in mind, this year's Division II district tournament turned into a special one for the Silver Knights.
On Feb. 22 at HP Lanes, the girls team captured the championship to qualify for state for the first time as a squad and freshman Ryan O'Harra of the boys team also advanced.
The boys state tournament was Feb. 28 and the girls competed March 1.
"This is the first time we've ever made it to state as a team, so the girls are very excited," coach Russ Rehner said. "I can't give them enough credit."
The girls rolled a 3,577 to take first ahead of runner-up Buckeye Valley (3,454) in the 12-team district tournament as the top two squads advanced.
Senior Paige Sutfin finished first with a 693 series. Also competing for the Knights were seniors Marina Sweet (11th, 535), Kay-Lee Dunkle (23rd, 464), Madison Whitehead (31st, 436) and Jordan Bair (37th, 425)
"It's what we've been working for since our freshman year," Whitehead said. "Our goal was to go to state this year and we did. This team works really well together."
The boys placed sixth (3,698) of 14 teams as Jonathan Alder (4,360) was first and the top three squads advanced.
O'Harra placed seventh (626) to earn one of three individual state-qualifying berths. Also competing for the Knights were seniors Ron Morrison (21st, 570), Andy Rinehart (48th, 505), Zach Bair (62nd, 479) and Payne VanTilburg (66th, 460).
Girls basketball team makes district final
During Joe Lang's first 32 seasons as coach, he led the girls basketball team to a 4-4 record in district finals.
His fourth-seeded Knights earned a shot at improving that record with a 62-31 win over 12th-seeded Utica in a Division III district semifinal Feb. 25 at Worthington Christian Middle School.
On March 1, Ready played second-seeded North Union for a district title.
"It's the greatest feeling to get to a district championship game, especially for coach Lang," sophomore guard Delaney Cutteridge said.
Ready was 17-6 before playing North Union, which beat Grandview 42-27 in a district semifinal Feb. 25 to set up the rematch of a game that the Knights lost 50-43 on Jan. 18.
The winner plays Hamilton Badin or Jamestown Greene-view in a regional semifinal at 6:15 p.m. Wednesday, March 5, at Springfield. The regional final is 1:30 p.m. Saturday, March 8, at the same site against Casstown Miami East, Cincinnati Mariemont, Georgetown or Versailles.
Ready's last district title came in 2007.
Against Utica, Ready caused 22 turnovers and held the Redskins to 10 second-half points. Margie Berkemeyer scored 18 points and Caroline Riewe had 12.
Wrestlers compete in state tourney
Senior Patrik Garren got a chance to defend his Division III state heavyweight wrestling title Feb. 27-March 1.
Garren, who also was third at state as a sophomore, was 43-1 entering the state tournament. He was joined there by senior teammates Patrick Stover (152 pounds) and Will Martello (160).
The trio advanced from district Feb. 21 and 22 at Heath, where Ready finished fourth (70.5) behind champion Hartley (107.5) as 50 teams scored.
"I've put in a lot of work this year," Garren said.
Garren got poked in the eye during his district final against Martins Ferry's Jon Bodkin but ended up pinning him in 1 minute, 16 seconds. He also earned pins in 25, 34 and 46 seconds at district.
Stover took a 36-5 record into his first state tournament. He lost to Nelsonville-York's Dakota Mays 13-4 in a district final.
Stover, who was sixth at district as a sophomore at 145, battled injury and went 1-2 at 145 at district a year ago.
"(Last year's district finish) kind of put the extra oomph in it for me," he said.
Martello lost in the second round at district but bounced back to win his next three matches to qualify for state. He then lost to Bainbridge Paint Valley's Teagan McFadden 4-1 to finish fourth.
Martello's brother, David, is a 2010 Ready graduate who was a two-time district qualifier.
"It's just been such a dream of mine to make it," said Martello, who was 32-15 heading into state. "My brother was a senior when (I was) in eighth grade and he wasn't able to (make it to state) so I just thought, 'I've got to do this.' I wish I could share it with him, but he's on a (submarine) in the Navy."
Also competing at district was senior Steven Pozz, who went 2-2 at 132.
Boys basketball team opens tournament
The second-seeded boys basketball team opened the Division III district tournament by beating 13th-seeded Columbus Academy 49-45 on Feb. 26.
The Knights play sixth-seeded Centerburg or 13th-seeded East Knox in a district semifinal at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, at Hilliard Davidson.
The winner plays top-seeded Hartley, ninth-seeded Liberty Union or 10th-seeded Fredericktown in a district final Thursday, March 6, at the Fairgrounds Coliseum.
Ready improved to 17-5 by beating Academy, which finished 11-13.
Anthony Pulsinelli scored 14 points, Shane Lee had 11 and Matt Yoho added eight for Ready, which has won five in a row.