With its five competitors in the four rounds of the OCC-Central Division tournament averaging within seven strokes of one another, the Dublin Coffman High School boys golf team earned a runner-up finish.
That's one place better than a year ago for the Shamrocks, who finished 16-4 in the league to finish behind Upper Arlington (18-2) and ahead of Hilliard Davidson (14-6), Marysville (8-12), Central Crossing (4-16) and Westland (0-20).
"We were happy that we played well and particularly when we won our first (league) match," coach Scott Sutherland said. "It's been a couple years since we'd beaten (UA) in a match. The next two rounds we played some good golf and Arlington just got better. (In the final round), we were a little disappointed. We've struggled a little bit of late, but they're excited for the rest of the year."
Coffman, which won the opening round of league play Aug. 8 at Apple Valley with a 312, finished third in the final round Sept. 13 at Darby Creek with a 322, behind Davidson (313) and UA (313). The Wildcats won the fifth-score tiebreaker.
Andrew Simpson led the Shamrocks with a 78.0 league average that placed him fifth overall and earned him first-team all-league honors. Matt Sopko (78.8) and Blake Whitis (79.0) were second-team all-league, while Spencer Eiselt (80.3) and Drew Shipley (84.8) made the third team.
"We've been consistent throughout the year," Sutherland said.
Coffman will open the postseason Oct. 3 with a Division I sectional at Clover Valley. The top four teams and top four individuals not on qualifying teams advance to district Oct. 10 at Apple Valley.
OCC title streak
ends for girls golfers
After winning seven consecutive league titles, the girls golf team had to settle for being runner-up this season.
Coffman went 16-4 in the four-round OCC-Central tournament to finish behind UA (20-0) and ahead of New Albany (9-11), Davidson (7-13), Canal Winchester (6-14) and Marysville (2-18).
In the final round of league play Sept. 12 at Royal American, the Shamrocks shot a 345 to finish behind UA (333). Maria Howard was medalist with a 77. Also competing for Coffman were Olivia Brickey (88), Jooho Oh (88), Annika Manjunath (92) and Ava Guilliams (93).
Howard earned overall league medalist honors with a 75.5 average, while Brickey and Manjunath each averaged 82.3 to make second-team all-league.
Coffman opens the Division I postseason with a sectional Oct. 3 at Mentel Memorial. The top three teams and top three individuals not on qualifying teams advance to district Oct. 10 at Cooks Creek.
The boys and girls soccer teams are hoping to continue strong starts.
On Sept. 14 in a doubleheader at Jerome, the girls and boys each earned 2-1 victories.
Luke Kiley and Emeka Eneli each scored for the boys team, which erased a 1-0 deficit against Jerome, a team the Shamrocks beat 3-0 in the regular season and 6-3 in a Division I regional semifinal last season.
Coffman tied Cincinnati St. Xavier at 2 on Sept. 16 and was 8-0-1 overall and 1-0 in the OCC-Central before playing Westland on Sept. 19.
In last week's Division I state poll, the Shamrocks were ranked fifth.
"We made some adjustments at halftime (against Jerome) and were able to turn the tables and get back into it," boys coach Brian Stoddard said.
"I'm super proud of the guys."
In the girls team's victory over Jerome, Simone Rivard-Roberts scored the winning goal with 11 minutes remaining. Coffman tied the Celtics at 1 a year ago.
The Shamrocks were 6-1-2 overall after beating Watkins Memorial 4-0 on Sept. 18 and were 1-0 in the OCC-Central before facing Westland on Sept. 19.
Through eight games, Rivard-Roberts had six goals and two assists, Emma Barthel had three goals and five assists and goalkeeper Izzie Vaccari had made 17 saves.
"(Rivard-Roberts) has become a reliable goal-scorer," girls coach Costa Kalorides said.
Below are the coming schedules for the Coffman cross country, field hockey, boys golf, girls golf, boys soccer, girls soccer, girls tennis and girls volleyball teams:
Sept. 23 -- Bob Reall Invitational at Lancaster
Sept. 25 -- Home vs. Granville
Sept. 23 -- Upper Arlington Master Invitational at Scioto
Sept. 25 -- OCC Shootout at Moundbuilders
Sept. 21 -- Watterson and Newark Catholic at The Links at Echo Springs
Sept. 23 -- Marysville Invitational at Darby Creek
Sept. 26 -- New Albany at New Albany Country Club
Sept. 23 -- At Lexington (Ky.) Paul Laurence Dunbar
Sept. 24 -- At Lexington (Ky.) Henry Clay
*Sept. 26 -- Home vs. Marysville
Sept. 21 -- At Watterson
Sept. 26 -- Home vs. Olentangy
Sept. 23 -- Home vs. Avon
*Sept. 26 -- Home vs. Hilliard Davidson. The Shamrocks beat the Wildcats 25-12, 25-7, 25-10 on Sept. 5.