The Thomas Worthington High School boys water polo team enters the North Region tournament Friday, Oct. 18, and Saturday, Oct. 19, at Napoleon looking for a return trip to state.
Last season, the Cardinals finished fourth at state, losing to eventual state champion Upper Arlington 18-8 in a semifinal and losing to Toledo St. Francis 10-9 in the consolation game to finish 29-9-1.
Thomas (20-9) is seeded second at regional and will play seventh-seeded Sylvania in the first round. The top three teams in the seven-team regional will advance to state Oct. 25 and 26 at Mason.
Also in the North Region are top-seed St. Charles, third-seeded St. Francis, fourth-seeded Kilbourne, fifth-seeded Napoleon and sixth-seeded New Albany.
In 29 games, Thomas goalkeeper Grant Smith has 117 blocks. According to coach John Wolf, Brady Roesch, Matthew Reed, Corey Lawell, Michael Wolf and Luke Porteus have been the Cardinals' key offensive players.
Kilbourne (11-16) will play Napoleon in the first round at regional. Goalie Nick Catanzarite has 135 blocks in 27 games for the Wolves, and Riku Kaida, Mason Schaaf and Chase Fickell have been Kilbourne's key offensive players, coach Wolf said.
Cardinals, Wolves girls getting set for regional
The Thomas girls team (11-14) is seeded second and has a first-round bye in the six-team North Region tournament.
The Cardinals will play fourth-seeded Cincinnati St. Ursula or sixth-seeded New Albany in the second round.
Also in the North Region are top-seeded Napoleon, third-seeded Kilbourne and fifth-seeded Sylvania.
According to coach Lauren Wallace, Abby Shell has been a key player offensively for the Cardinals.
Last season, Thomas advanced to state, where it lost to Cincinnati Sycamore 6-4 in a semifinal before losing to Napoleon 11-8 in the consolation game to finish 19-12. UA won its third consecutive state title, beating Sycamore 6-3 in the final.
Kilbourne (12-16) will play Sylvania in the first round at regional.
Courtney Fisher has been the Wolves' offensive leader, according to Wallace.
-- Frank DiRenna