Despite having no seniors and having lost its top player from a year ago to graduation in Mary Wells, the Westerville Central High School girls bowling team remains one of the top squads in central Ohio.
The Warhawks defended their OCC-Cardinal Division championship, going 5-0 to finish ahead of Delaware (4-1), Gahanna (3-2), Westerville South (2-3), Westerville North (1-4) and Big Walnut (0-5).
Central also was looking to repeat as the outright champion of the Central Ohio High School Bowling Conference-North Division when it competed against Hilliard Davidson on Feb. 6. The Warhawks were 12-0 overall and 11-0 in the COHSBC-North entering the match and were guaranteed at least a share of the league title.
Gahanna is second in the COHSBC-North at 11-1. South finished third at 10-2 and North is fourth at 7-4 heading into its final match, Monday, Feb. 11, against Olentangy Orange at Sequoia Pro Bowl.
"Our first goal is to win the (COHSBC-North and OCC-Cardinal titles) and then we move on to the postseason," assistant coach Blair Blumenscheid said. "We've just been preparing them all season for first winning the (league titles), then moving on to the (postseason) tournaments. They've come a long way. They're a young team and they're really coming together."
The boys and girls teams for Central and South will compete in the sectional tournament at Eastland Lanes and the boys and girls teams for North will compete in the sectional at Columbus Western Bowl. The girls and boys sectionals will be held Feb. 15 and 16, respectively.
The top nine teams and top nine individuals not on a qualifying team at both sectional sites advance to the district tournament at HP Lanes. The boys district is Feb. 22 and the girls district is Feb. 23.
Last season, the Central girls team won sectional and district titles and finished fifth at state behind champion Coldwater. Wells, who is on the women's bowling team at the University of Central Missouri, placed sixth at state last year.
The Central girls team finished third (2,814) in the nine-team COHSBC tournament Feb. 2 at Sequoia Pro Bowl, behind Briggs (2,986) and Northland (2,833). The top three teams from each of the COHSBC's three divisions competed in the event.
Kelly Scarborough led the Warhawks with a 546 series and Katelynn Rygg rolled a 538, as both were named first-team all-COHSBC. Savannah Slark rolled a 532 and was second-team all-COHSBC.
Entering the week, Slark was leading the team with a 188.5 game average, followed by Rygg (165.9), Adrieann Rowland (163.4) and Scarborough (162.2).
"When we first started out, it was going to be a little rough, but we're getting increasingly better -- better than I thought we would be by this time," Slark said.
The Central boys team tied North for first in the OCC-Cardinal at 4-1, ahead of South (3-2), Delaware (2-3), Big Walnut (1-4) and Gahanna (1-4). The Warhawks were tied with Olentangy for seventh in the COHSBC-North at 7-6 before competing against Davidson on Feb. 6.
Entering the week, Michael Spiers was leading the Warhawks with a 195.7 average, followed by Marcus Gonce (193).
North boys team wins COHSBC tournament
The North boys team won the eight-team COHSBC tournament with a 3,378 to finish ahead of runner-up South (3,338).
Teays Valley qualified for the tournament but did not attend because of bad weather.
"This is wonderful," boys coach George Rowan said of the COHSBC tournament title. "It's always good to win whether it's small or big, we don't care. We bowled well as a team. It takes five (good scores) to win. You can't win with four, three or whatever."
Markus Patterson finished first with a 647 series and was first-team all-COHSBC. Nick Pannell (592) and Mathew Patterson (589) were second-team all-COHSBC.
North is third in the COHSBC-North at 10-3 heading into its match against Orange on Monday, Feb. 11, at Sequoia Pro Bowl.
Entering the week, Mathew Patterson had a team-high 194.1 average, followed by Austin Farmer (191.1) and Markus Patterson (186.8).
Megan Patterson was leading the girls team with a 163.7 average, followed by Emily Moore (139.9) and Elizabeth Churilla (130.5).
South boys tie for first in COHSBC-North
Adam Henson led the South boys team in the COHSBC tournament, placing second with a 634 series to make first-team all-COHSBC.
Zach Pannell rolled a 616 and was second-team all-COHSBC.
"It's good to get all the better teams from the conference together," coach Jamie West said.
The Wildcats tied Jonathan Alder for first in the COHSBC-North at 12-2 and placed third in the OCC-Cardinal at 3-2.
Entering the week, Henson (218.4) and Pannell (218.3) had the top two game averages in central Ohio.
The South girls team finished fourth (2,629) in the COHSBC tournament.
Hannah Gotschall rolled a 535 and was second-team all-COHSBC and Miranda Reed had a 483 and was third-team all-COHSBC.
Entering the week, Reed had a team-high 167.5 average, followed by Gotschall (156.7), Mahaya Porter (154.3) and Sydney VanScyoc (153.3).
"We want to bowl as well as we can and get better during the season," West said.