The Westerville Central High School athletics program used a balanced effort during the school year to win the Ralph Young All-Sports Award, given annually to the school in each OCC division that performs the best across the league's 16 common sports.

The Westerville Central High School athletics program used a balanced effort during the school year to win the Ralph Young All-Sports Award, given annually to the school in each OCC division that performs the best across the league's 16 common sports.

The Warhawks scored 86.5 points to finish ahead of second-place Olentangy Liberty (82) in the OCC-Cardinal. Olentangy (80), Westerville North (79), Dublin Jerome (77.5), Dublin Scioto (72), Westerville South (50.5) and Marysville (48) rounded out the division.

Last year, Liberty won the award in its first year, finishing ahead of second-place Central.

Central athletics director Andy Ey said a banner will be presented to the school during halftime of a home football game in the fall.

"This is huge," Ey said. "It's very satisfying. We're excited about it. It speaks to the improvement that our teams have made over the eight years that we've been open. It speaks to the depth that we have all the way across our athletic program."

Central had one first-place finish, as the boys track and field team won the OCC-Cardinal meet on May 12 and 14 at Pickerington North.

The Warhawks (126.5) finished ahead of Olentangy (104.5), Liberty (102), Westerville North (90), Marysville (72.25), Westerville South (66.25), Scioto (49.50) and Jerome (44).

Central's athletes took a victory lap following the win.

"We were not sure (if we had won the award), but we knew we had done everything we could to help secure the trophy," boys track coach Justin Rush said. "As soon as I let the team know that we had won the conference, they wanted to know if we had won the all-sports trophy as well. This is a great example of how unselfish the guys were. They had just won their first conference title and they wanted to know about the school's award."

The Warhawks' balanced effort included second-place finishes for the boys soccer, girls volleyball, boys golf, boys basketball and baseball teams. The boys tennis, girls tennis, boys cross country, girls cross country and softball teams were third.

Eight points are awarded for a first-place finish, seven for a second, six for a third and so on.

Ey said the girls bowling and girls swimming and diving teams also finished first in the OCC-Cardinal, but those sports are not included in the award criteria.

Other all-sports award winners were Pickerington North (111) in the OCC-Ohio, Dublin Coffman (110) in the OCC-Central and New Albany (108) in the OCC-Capital.

The award is named in honor of Young, the retired athletics director at Delaware and longtime OCC secretary.

Young has been a track official for 38 years and manages basketball tournaments at the sectional, district and regional levels for the OHSAA. He currently serves as treasurer of the Central District.

The OCC was established in 1966 with five member schools. After 45 years, the OCC has 32 member schools that compete in four divisions and sponsor 25 interscholastic sports.