Kainan Ramsey decided to check out a different sport this spring.
Now others are checking out the senior on the Thomas Worthington High School boys track and field team.
"I always had an interest in track before because it seemed like fun, but all of my concentration was on soccer until this year," said Ramsey, who is among the area's top athletes in both the 100 and 200 meters. "I went out of my comfort zone, I'm working hard and I'm loving it.
"I love the people in this program and the atmosphere. It's like having a new family and new friends and now I want to go out with a bang in my senior year."
Ramsey is seventh in this week's area honor roll in the 100 with a time of 10.88 seconds. He's third in the 200 (21.95).
"He was walking our halls and decided to give track a try and then finished third in the 200 in the indoor state meet," coach Bill Darling said. "With little experience, he has carried that over this spring and it's a testament to his athleticism and hard work. He basically came out of nowhere."
Ramsey's surprise was beneficial for the Cardinals, who scored 33 points in the Division I indoor state meet March 4 at the University of Akron to finish second to Pickerington Central (43).
"We knew we had some talent across the board with our distance and middle-distance guys and some field-event scorers, but Kainan really solidified our sprinters," Darling said. "He's been amazing. I just wonder how good he could be if he was with us the past three years. He's really enjoying it and has fit right in on the team."
Ramsey credits assistant coach Dominic Mazza with his quick development.
"He has pushed me and helped me learn a lot of the basics," Ramsey said. "I was a striker in soccer and just ran in short bursts. But I was third in the indoor state meet and qualified to nationals and I'm having a blast.
"Track has become my new passion and I want it to continue. I'm getting interest from some colleges and I want to run in college. We're waiting to see how the season finishes."
The Cardinals have been strong in middle-distance and distance events this spring, led by seniors Ty Banks, Andrew Morgan and Joshua Allen and juniors Arjun Jha and Andy Payne.
Seniors Cade Richeson (throws) and Zander Wigney (400) and junior Khalil Jones (long jump, 300 hurdles) also have been key contributors for the Cardinals.
"We're looking forward to the OCC-Cardinal (Division) meet and where we are coming out of there before deciding if we will make changes in the postseason," Darling said.
The league meet is Thursday, May 11, and Saturday, May 13, at Dublin Coffman.
The boys team then will compete in the Division I, district 4 meet at Westerville South. Field events are Tuesday, May 16, followed by running preliminaries on May 18 and running finals on May 20.
The girls team will compete in the Division I, district 2 meet at Hilliard Darby. Field events are May 16, followed by running preliminaries on Wednesday, May 17, and running finals on May 20.
The top four finishers in each district event advance to the regional meet May 24 and 26 at Pickerington North.
The girls team has been led by seniors Christina Nash (distance) and Hannah Moulton (distance), junior Lauren Hitt (throws) and sophomores Bre Beatty (hurdles), Gia Napoleon (middle distance/distance), Sarah Charley (long jump) and Cassidy Shaver (middle distance).
"Gia won the state indoor (title) in the 800 and is running strong in the (1,600) right now," coach Andy Cox said. "... We've got a lot of other girls contributing and among the area's best in the honor roll."
Hitt recently increased her season-best throw in the discus by three feet, up to 119 feet, 9 inches. Charley's season-best in the long jump is 17-2.
"Our relays are improving and we're shaving times," Cox said. "We have good balance and we're on target to peak during the postseason, which is what we want. Despite having (some meets canceled) with the weather, I think we're on target."
Girls lacrosse team
faces Celtics for title
The OCC-Cardinal championship will be on the line when the girls lacrosse team plays at Dublin Jerome on Thursday, May 11.
The Cardinals and Celtics both are 5-0 in the league entering the contest, which is the league finale for both teams.
Thomas enters the matchup on a roll. It defeated Coffman 19-8 on May 5 for its ninth consecutive win, getting six goals from Jenna Rao and five from Erin Baumann while improving to 13-2 overall.
"We're closing (league play) with Jerome and then have a tough non-league home game against the second-ranked team in the state, Massillon Jackson, on Saturday (May 13)," coach Scott Hamilton said. "These last two games should have our energy and focus up, and that will only help when we start the (Division I, Region 3) tournament."
The Cardinals are seeded second of 15 teams in the Region 3 tournament and will play host to 14th-seeded Marysville in the first round Tuesday, May 16. The winner plays host to seventh-seeded Darby or eighth-seeded Gahanna in a quarterfinal May 19.
The Cardinals defeated Kilbourne 17-8 on May 1 as Baumann scored four goals and Rao, Riley Godard and Addie Hamilton each scored three, and they beat Olentangy Orange 22-12 on May 4 behind six goals apiece from Hamilton and Tori Banks.
"Our offense is coming along and we've got some girls taking control," coach Hamilton said. "We're moving the ball well. Our defense is a big factor in that because we're getting turnovers, good clears and getting into our transition. We're on the fastbreak and we're taking it to the house. The defense was outstanding against Kilbourne. They started our offense."
Boys lacrosse team
to begin postseason
The boys lacrosse team is seeded 11th of 19 teams in the Division I, Region 3 tournament and will play at sixth-seeded St. Charles in a second-round game Wednesday, May 17.
The winner likely plays at third-seeded Jerome in a regional quarterfinal May 20.
The Cardinals were 3-12 overall before their regular-season finale at Coffman on May 8.
Thomas finished 3-3 in the OCC-Cardinal after losing to Kilbourne 5-4 in overtime on May 2.
for baseball team
The baseball team finished 9-3 in the OCC-Cardinal, placing second to Darby (11-1).
Thomas completed league play by sweeping Kilbourne, winning 2-1 on May 1 and 8-2 on May 3.
The Cardinals, whose game against Orange on May 6 was postponed because of bad weather, were 16-4 overall entering the Division I district tournament.
Seeded fourth of 46 teams, Thomas had a first-round bye and played 29th-seeded Pickerington North in the second round May 10. The winner plays 16th-seeded Zanesville or 18th-seeded Westerville Central in a district semifinal Monday, May 15, at a neutral site to be determined. The district final is Wednesday, May 17, at a neutral site to be determined, with the opponent likely being fifth-seeded Canal Winchester or 11th-seeded Orange.
The district champion advances to a regional semifinal May 25 at Coffman.
Softball team opens
Seeded 43rd of 45 teams, the softball team opened the Division I district tournament May 8 with a 20-0 loss at 22nd-seeded Olentangy Liberty.
The Cardinals, who fell to 0-18 overall, did not register a hit.
Thomas lost to Darby 11-0 on May 2 and fell to Kilbourne 6-1 on May 3 in OCC-Cardinal games to fall to 0-11 in the league. The Cardinals must make up a league game with Jerome.