Three returning pitchers will be leading the way for the St. Charles Preparatory School baseball team as it looks to defend its CCL championship.

Seniors Clayton Anderson (4-3, 45 1/3 innings, 2.47 ERA), Vince Ronnebaum (1-2, 28 2/3 innings, 2.44 ERA) and Keaton Stankowski (2-0, 18 innings, 3.89 ERA) helped the Cardinals finish 15-11 overall last season and tie Watterson for the CCL title at 6-2.

"We return some depth on the mound, which is encouraging," said coach Ray Benjamin, who is in his 21st season. "We haven't really had that in a while.

"It's a unique thing to have three guys who saw significant time on the mound. We're still working on a rotation, and that will all pan out like it always does."

Anderson said he'll be ready when Benjamin calls on him.

"My first two years (on varsity) I was able to see what my job was, and that experience will help this year," he said. "I have good location, but I'm not going to strike a lot of people out. I keep the ball low and give up a lot of groundball outs."

Junior catcher Mason Olding, who batted .289 with 10 RBI last season, is eager for the season to start.

"We have a lot of speed, and we will probably play a lot of small ball this year," Olding said. "I'm ready to get the season started."

The Cardinals opened March 26 against Hilliard Bradley and begin CCL play April 13 at Hartley.

St. Charles still was working through some position decisions as the season started.

First base will be manned by Ronnebaum, Stankowski or sophomore Connor Carretta. The three remaining infield positions will be filled by a group of players including Anderson, seniors Andrew Biegler, Jax Geist, Brooks McCann and A.J. Schlosser and juniors Charlie Duross and Aidan Rice.

Playing in the outfield will be seniors Isaac Krakowka, Ryan LaTorre and Mitch Whittaker, juniors Corbin Balser, Taylor Bryant and Tom Fanning and sophomore Trey Willis.

Juniors Tommy Horner and Andrew Rubadue also play catcher.

"I love our team speed," Benjamin said. "We potentially have the best speed I have seen here in a long time. We have to make sure we use that speed to move the runners up and push across some runs.

"Defensively, we have to make sure we're making the routine play. We're not good enough to make multiple mistakes. We don't have to be perfect, but we need to be pretty close."

Harnett eager to lead lacrosse team

First-year coach Patrick Harnett wants to build on the lacrosse program's strong foundation.

Harnett, who played lacrosse at Thomas Worthington and Hofstra before coaching in Florida at the high school, college and professional levels, inherits a team coming off a 10-7 season.

"They already had a strong program here and we want to continue to build on that," said Harnett, who replaced Mark Berndt after five seasons. "We're approaching this season as a classroom because we have a younger group after graduating so many seniors from last season."

The Cardinals had 15 seniors last spring, most of whom played major roles in the team's success.

Among returnees, seniors Keaton Doon (defender) and Beck French (attacker), juniors Evan Bouscher (midfielder) and Max Lyski (midfielder) and sophomore Karson Doon (attacker) saw the most time last season. Junior goalkeeper Eddie Rice was a backup.

Senior Will Morrison, who has moved from defender to attacker, scored six goals in St. Charles' 18-3 season-opening win over Thomas on March 16.

Karson Doon scored three times, finishing the game despite breaking his left arm in the second quarter. He will miss at least four weeks.

"Will had a great game against Thomas and Karson scored three goals despite a broken radius," Harnett said. "Freshman Blake Roller will take over for (Karson) and will see more playing time than expected early. Beck French is the most experienced and will be the leader in the attack."

Led by Keaton Doon and senior Ronan Sullivan, defense should be one of the Cardinals' strengths. Senior Patrick Browne, Bouscher and Lyski lead the midfield, and sophomore Jake Lowis joins Rice in goal.

"Our defense is one of the better areas of the team because of the depth and talent," Harnett said. "It's where we have the most continuity and good senior and junior leaders."

shennen@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekHennen

Schedules

BASEBALL

March 26 -- vs. Hilliard Bradley

March 28- vs. Lakewood

April 2 -- Buckner (Ky.) Oldham County at ESPN-Disney spring training in Kissimmee, Fla.

April 3 -- Rochester (N.Y.) Gates Chili and Appleton (Wis.) Xavier at ESPN-Disney spring training in Kissimmee, Fla.

April 5- Raleigh (N.C.) Grace Christian Day at ESPN-Disney spring training in Kissimmee, Fla.

April 6 -- Bountiful (Utah) Viewmont at ESPN-Disney spring training in Kissimmee, Fla.

April 11 -- at Dublin Jerome

April 12 -- vs. Worthington Kilbourne

*April 13 -- at Hartley

April 14 -- vs. Toledo St. John's (DH)

*April 16 -- at DeSales

*April 18 -- vs. Watterson

*April 20 -- vs. Ready

April 21 -- at Pickerington North

April 24 -- vs. Dublin Scioto

*April 25 -- vs. Hartley

*April 27 -- vs. DeSales

April 28 -- at Hilliard Darby

*April 30 -- at Watterson

May 1 -- vs. Dublin Coffman

*May 2 -- at Ready

May 3 -- vs. Whitehall

May 4 -- at Thomas Worthington

May 5 -- vs. Hilliard Davidson

LACROSSE

March 16 -- vs. Thomas Worthington

March 26 -- at New Albany

March 27 -- vs. Bexley

March 28 -- at Delaware

April 6 -- Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy at Boca Raton (Fla.) St. Andrew's

April 7 -- at Boca Raton (Fla.) St. Andrew's

April 10 -- vs. Buckeye Valley

April 12 -- at Dublin Scioto

April 14 -- vs. Liberty Township Lakota East

April 17 -- vs. Hilliard Darby

April 19 -- vs. Dublin Coffman

April 23 -- at Columbus Academy

April 26 -- vs. DeSales

April 28 -- vs. Westerville South

May 1 -- at Pickerington North

May 3 -- at Olentangy Orange

May 8 -- vs. Worthington Kilbourne

May 10 -- Watterson at Otterbein

*League contest

Below is the coming schedule for the St. Charles volleyball team:

April 3 -- Home vs. Mount Vernon

April 4 -- Home vs. Dublin Jerome