Things are looking up for the Johnstown-Monroe High School boys lacrosse team.
The Johnnies have returned their top scorers from last season and have a program-high 26 players on the roster. They are 2-3 and next play April 17 at Wilmington.
“This is the most kids we have ever had (in the program),” said fourth-year coach Stephanie Alley, whose team finished 7-10 last year. “We had 13 kids my first year here and each year we’ve had more and more. It’s a great thing to have growth like that in such a phenomenal sport.”
Senior attackers Hunter Alley and Isaia Jacob both were honorable mention all-region last season. Alley had 72 goals, 16 assists and 71 groundballs while Jacob, a University of Indianapolis recruit, had 27 goals, 26 assists and 114 groundballs.
Other returning starters are seniors Pace Branson (defender), Andrew Sayer (midfielder) and Brandon Siegfried (attacker), junior Lee Queen (midfielder) and sophomore Jacob Bowers (goalkeeper).
Sophomores Aaron Lehner (attacker) and Clayton Walker (midfielder) also play key roles on offense.
Alley scored five goals and Lehner added two goals and one assist as the Johnnies defeated Newark 15-0 on March 18. Alley and Siegfried both had three goals in a 19-8 loss to Licking Valley on March 20, and Alley scored six times and Jacob added two goals and three assists in an 11-3 win over Clarksville Clinton-Massie on March 25.
Jacob had two goals in a 12-6 loss to Buckeye Valley on March 29, and he had the lone goal in a 14-1 loss to Big Walnut on March 31.
boys track team
Nate Taylor was runner-up in both jumping events to lead the boys track and field team in the Dick Houston Relays on April 6 at Licking Valley.
Taylor went 19 feet, 8 1/4 inches in the long jump and cleared 5-8 in the high jump, helping the Johnnies finish fourth (56 points) of 13 teams behind champion Heath (96).
The junior also was on a pair of fourth-place relays. He joined Paul Lang, Brandan Sapp and Nate Clark in the distance medley relay (12 minutes, 27.12 seconds) and Josh Ashbrook, Luke Clark and Lang on the 1,600-meter relay (3:53.95).
Daniel Rose was third in the shot put (41-9). Brenden Peloquin, Ryan Bates, Caleb Argyle and Alexander Jenney were on the third-place 440 shuttle-hurdles relay (1:11.81).
Nate Clark, Lane Sidner, Sapp and Lang ran on the fourth-place 3,200 relay (9:52.03).
The girls finished sixth (34) of 12 teams behind champion Watkins Memorial (106).
The 800 relay of Celsey Argyle, Maria Tucker, Maria Moore and Charlize Geiger was fourth in 2:14.58.