Caleb Davern is returning to state, and he's on a mission.
The junior for the Central Crossing High School boys golf team will play in the Division I state tournament Friday, Oct. 20, and Saturday, Oct. 21, at Ohio State's Scarlet Course, and he's looking to win it.
Davern hasn't competed at state since his freshman season, when he tied for fifth with a two-round total of 152 as the Comets' first state qualifier.
He advanced this year by shooting 71 in the district tournament Oct. 10 at Apple Valley. A year ago at district, Davern shot 79 and tied for 28th.
"As (ultimate fighter) Conor McGregor said, 'You win or you learn,' " Davern said. "Last year was a learning experience. Now I am taking everything that I have learned to state."
Coach Justin Prati said Davern goes into every tournament with the mindset of winning, and state is no different.
"Caleb really wants a state title on his resume," Prati said. "He's hungry and he wants it."
Prati said Davern was focused at district and played a strong round to ensure that he reached state.
"Caleb played a great 18 holes and he was never over par," Prati said. "We expected that he would play well and he came out and did that."
Davern's 71 tied Olentangy Liberty's Trey Rath for the tournament's low score, but Rath won a one-hole playoff for medalist honors.
Thomas Worthington's David LaLonde (73) was the other individual qualifier, and Dublin Jerome (294) and Liberty (307) advanced to state as teams.
"I played some good golf (at district) and had some wayward tee shots but played really, really well with my irons and made it up and down when I needed to, and I made enough putts," Davern said. "I'm happy to get through to the next round."
Davern has been preparing for state since walking off the Apple Valley course at district last October.
"I have had a lot of good prep," he said. "I'm a member out there at OSU and I probably have played 20 times out there and have the layout of the course all figured out. I need to hit a lot of cut shots off the tee, I want to work on that and chipping big time, so come Thursday (Oct. 19) I want to get a good warmup on the greens."
Prati believes Davern's constant work on his game will pay off at state.
"Caleb pretty much spends most of his time playing Scarlet and Wedgewood," Prati said. "He knows that course. He will be as prepared as anyone there."
Cross country teams prep for district meet
The boys and girls cross country teams will compete in the Division I district meet Saturday, Oct. 21, at Watkins Memorial.
The girls will run in district 1 and the boys will be in district 2. The top five teams and top 20 individuals in both races advance to the regional Oct. 28 at Pickerington North.
On Oct. 14 in the OCC-Central Division meet at Hilliard Darby, the boys finished fifth (130 points) behind Hilliard Davidson (24), Dublin Coffman (60), Upper Arlington (68) and Marysville (99) and ahead of Westland (189).
C.J. Patrick (17th, 17 minutes, 21.36 seconds) led the Comets, followed by Dominic Manson (30th, 17:54.06), Greg Patrick (32nd, 18:00.08), Michael Fry (35th, 18:00.9), Avery Wright (39th, 18:07.56), Kyle Buerkle (41st, 18:24.47) and Dylan Price (46th, 18:49.3).
The girls were fifth (155) behind Davidson (22), UA (53), Marysville (77) and Coffman (88). Zoey Calafatis (31st, 21:57.6), Lilly Dimmerling (34th, 22:16.58), Jennifer Pena-Zamora (42nd, 24:39.22), Mallory Lalonde (44th, 26:35.84) and Lav'Marra Barker (45th, 27:55.82) competed.
Boys soccer team begins postseason
The 32nd-seeded boys soccer team was 5-10-1 overall before playing 40th-seeded Whetstone on Oct. 18 in the first round of the Division I district tournament.
The winner plays Saturday, Oct. 21, at top-seeded Liberty, and that winner advances to a district semifinal Wednesday, Oct. 25, against 19th-seeded Olentangy Orange, 35th-seeded Dublin Scioto or 47th-seeded Newark at the home of the better seed.
The district final is Oct. 28 at a site to be determined.
The Comets finished 0-5 in the OCC-Central after losing to Westland 3-1 on Oct. 10. Caven Roberts scored and Ryan Fahy had 14 saves.
Girls soccer team falls in district opener
The girls soccer team lost at 19th-seeded Delaware 3-2 in overtime Oct. 16 in the first round of the Division I district tournament.
Kennedy Edwards and Emma Malkowski scored for the 21st-seeded Comets, who finished 9-7-1 overall. Goalkeeper Britt-any Hanson had 11 saves.
Central Crossing defeated Westland 15-0 on Oct. 10 to close their OCC-Central schedule at 1-4. Jaylyn Lewis had four goals, Maddie Ross scored three times and Hanson had five saves.
Volleyball team begins district tournament
The 46th-seeded girls volleyball team was 2-17 overall before playing at sixth-seeded Worthington Kilbourne on Oct. 17 in the first round of the Division I district tournament.
The winner plays Thursday, Oct. 19, against 14th-seeded Canal Winchester or 16th-seeded Grove City at the home of the better seed.
The second-round winner plays eighth-seeded Olentangy, 34th-seeded Marysville or 40th-seeded Columbus West in a district semifinal Wednesday, Oct. 25, at Franklin Heights.
The district final is Oct. 28 at Franklin Heights.
The Comets won their OCC-Central finale 25-19, 18-25, 25-22, 25-13 over Westland on Oct. 10 to go 1-9 in league play.