Dublin Scioto High School wrestler Daniel Segura is hoping the regular season is a prelude to what lies ahead in the postseason.
The sophomore went 1-2 at 132 pounds in the Division I state tournament a year ago to finish the season 39-12. Striving to make a return trip to state, he again is piling up the victories as he is 17-0, including a 3-2 win over Coffman's Ben Yost at 145 during a tri-match between the Irish, host Coffman and Jerome on Jan. 4.
Segura used a reversal in the closing seconds to pull out the win and avenge a loss to Yost a season ago.
"I think about matches like last year during practice and it motivates me to get better every day," Segura said. "I know (Yost is) a good wrestler. I respect him and that's why I wanted to wrestle him because I knew it was going to be a good match."
Coach Adam Huddle said the match against Yost was a good test for Segura as he gears up for the postseason.
"We want good matches right now. We're not worried so much about our wins, losses," Huddle said. "We're worried about how well we compete in those state-level matches."
Coffman dominated the tri-match, defeating the Irish 51-20 and the Celtics 74-6. Scioto defeated Jerome 58-15.
"We wrestled hard. I was proud of our kids," Huddle said. "We came out a little sluggish against Jerome. It really hurt us having to give up three forfeits against Coffman. We were in that match if not for those. It was tough sledding going into the Coffman match and we knew it would be. We wanted to get really good matches in."
Segura finished first at 145 in the Kevin Cleveland Memorial Tournament on Jan. 6. Other champions for the host Irish were Hamza Dahshi (120), Deron Pulliam (182) and Bernie Duran (220).
Dylan Le (106) and Donovan Hardin (heavyweight) finished second and Gage Hannan (152) and Kenyon Pannell (132) placed fourth.
Scioto finished third (195.5) of 12 teams in the event, behind champion Westerville North (240).
"It's a lot of work when you're hosting a tournament, but it is a really good tournament for our kids," Huddle said. "We get a lot of good matches and a lot of good teams come in. It's a good weekend tournament for us."
The tournament is held in honor of Cleveland, a former Scioto wrestler who died from a severe allergic reaction in March 1995 while at Miami University.
The Irish resume OCC-Cardinal Division action Thursday, Jan. 11, at home against Hilliard Bradley. They opened their league schedule with a 39-34 loss at Delaware on Dec. 21.
Boys basketball team rallies to beat Wolves
The boys basketball team rallied late to edge rival Worthington Kilbourne in an OCC-Cardinal game Jan. 5.
Noah Brechbuhler hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to cap a five-point rally with under 6 seconds remaining in the Irish's 46-43 win over the host Wolves.
Brechbuhler stole the ball after an inbounds pass and hit the game-winner from about 25 feet.
Dapreis Owens led the Irish with 12 points and Victor Mwamba, who tied the game at 43 on a layup with 5 seconds left, scored 11.
"It was a struggle for us offensively, but we continued to battle on defense and eventually made the shots that mattered in the end," coach Mike Moler said. "I'm proud of the way we found a way to win the game. When we play the game the right way with enthusiasm and energy, we are successful. We still need to be more consistent at both ends of the floor. When that happens, success will follow."
Scioto was 7-3 overall and 3-1 in the OCC-Cardinal before playing Bradley on Jan. 9.
Girls team out to good start in league
The girls basketball team looked to remain undefeated in OCC-Cardinal play when it faced Bradley on Jan. 9.
The Irish entered the contest riding a seven-game winning streak and were 8-4 overall and 5-0 in the league.
Scioto defeated visiting Kilbourne 52-43 on Jan. 5 as Madison Heasley had 18 points and Lauren Erickson scored 16.
Heasley and Kennedie Lomax both scored 12 points and Erickson added 11 in a 61-33 win at Central Crossing on Jan. 2.
Ekis named boys soccer coach
Erik Ekis is looking forward to his return to the prep level.
Ekis has been named boys soccer coach, pending school board approval. He replaces Chad Snider, who stepped down after compiling a 70-88-15 record in 10 seasons.
Ekis last coached at the prep level in 2005, with the Westerville Central girls team.
"I'm just excited to be back in coaching at (the) high school (level)," said Ekis, who has been a science teacher at Central since the school opened in the fall of 2003. "I'm just excited to coach and I'm honored to serve the school and community where my family resides."
Ekis' son, Evan, is a 2014 Scioto graduate who played for the Irish's boys team.
In Central's inaugural season in 2003, Ekis guided the Warhawks to the Division II state title game, where they lost to Bay Village Bay 4-0 to finish 18-4.
In 2005, Central lost to Dublin Coffman 1-0 in a Division I district final.
In three seasons under Ekis, the Warhawks went 47-11-1.
Ekis previously served as girls coach at DeSales from 1997-2001, guiding the Stallions to Division II state titles in 1997 and 1998, and coached the boys team at Westerville North from 1991-94.
Ekis also served as a director of the Classics Eagles club program from 1991-2016.
Below are the coming schedules for the Scioto boys basketball, girls basketball, gymnastics, swimming & diving and wrestling teams:
*Jan. 12 -- At Jerome
*Jan. 12 -- Home vs. Jerome. The Irish defeated the Celtics 39-34 on Dec. 5.
Jan. 17 -- At Olentangy Liberty
Jan. 12 -- At Worthington Kilbourne with Coffman and Jerome
Jan. 13 -- McGee Invitational at Coffman
SWIMMING & DIVING
Jan. 12 -- Watterson at Dublin Recreation Center
Jan. 13 -- Northeast Classic at Branin Natatorium in Canton
*Jan. 11 -- Home vs. Hilliard Bradley
Jan. 12-13 -- Marion County Tournament at Marion County Coliseum