After each played singles for most of the season, Westerville Central High School boys tennis players Cory Blankenship and Jared Jaicks will team up for the postseason in hopes of making a long run.
The juniors will compete in a Division I sectional Thursday, May 10, and Saturday, May 12, at Hilliard Bradley. The top four finishers in singles and doubles advance to district May 17 at Bradley and May 19 at Upper Arlington.
At district, the top four finishers in singles and doubles advance to state May 25 and 26 at Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason.
Blankenship and Jaicks are 2-1 as a doubles team heading into sectional. They defeated Westerville South's Anthony Vilardo and Chloe Meyers 6-7, 6-3, 7-6 at first doubles April 19 in the Warhawks' 4-1 win.
Jaicks has played first singles while Blankenship has been at second singles for most of the season.
"We've been playing singles mostly this season, but (we've played well) as a doubles team, so hopefully we can keep that going into sectional," Blankenship said.
The two will square off with Northland's N'Keeley Elmore and Jejuan Weatherspoon in a first-round match at sectional, with the winners playing Dublin Coffman's Anton Bakunin and William Sun. Blankenship and Jaicks need three wins to secure a district berth.
"I want to play my best and try to win," Jaicks said.
Last season at sectional, Blankenship went 1-1 in singles while Jaicks did not compete.
"Hopefully, Jared and Cory have a chance to qualify for district. That's the goal," coach Brian Arnett said.
Also at sectional, Krish Nair and Lakshan Suthanthira will take on Independence's Jeremiah Hinkle-Moore and Vincent Lanada in the first round in doubles.
In singles, Mason Fortin will face Olentangy Orange's Pranav Krishnan, Will Arnett will play Groveport's Miles Mason and Micheal Weiler will face Independence's Camron McGill in opening-round matches.
"We have no (top-four) seeds, but we have some first-round matches we can win," coach Arnett said. "It's just a matter of going in there and playing well. Obviously, as you (advance) the matchups get tougher. Our goal this year is to have everybody win at least one match at sectional."
Central was 3-9 overall before playing Columbus Academy on May 8 and finished 1-4 in the OCC-Buckeye Division.
"When you're playing young kids and playing a tough schedule, you measure success differently," coach Arnett said. "We're definitely a lot better than we were at the beginning of the season, and that's really all that matters at this point."
Track teams win Warhawk meet
The boys and girls track and field teams both won the Warhawk Invitational on May 4 at Otterbein.
The boys scored 133.5 points to finish first of nine teams, ahead of runner-up Grove City (104.5). The girls also finished first (188.5) of nine teams, ahead of runner-up Canal Winchester (86).
For the boys, winners were Luke Finnegan in the 100 meters (10.95 seconds) and 200 (21.91), Austin Smith in the 1,600 (4:36.09), Finnegan, Myles Williamson, Rickey Hyatt and Erice Bonner in the 400 relay (43.75) and Devon Richardson in the discus (125 feet, 1 inch).
For the girls, winners were Lyssa Zepfel in the seated 400 (1:32.63) and seated 800 (3:10.42), Savannah Hall in the 100 (12.66), Princella Ackon in the 200 (26.78), Leah Schulze in the seated 100 (21.94), Chloe Ey in the 400 (1:00.09), McKenna Fry in the 1,600 (2:15.76), Hall, Moriah Johnson, Skylar Themelaras and Delaney Reed in the 400 relay (50.33), Hall, Johnson, Ackon and Kendall Allen in the 800 relay (1:47.54), Fry, Ey, Sydney Kapral and Mabinty Kebe in the 1,600 relay (4:04.54) and Ey, Kayla Jones, Ashley Hockstok and Lauryn Chapman in the 3,200 relay (10:09.96).
The Warhawks will compete in the OCC-Buckeye meet Thursday, May 10, and Saturday, May 12, at Orange. They then will compete in Division I district meets beginning Tuesday, May 15, at Hilliard Darby.
Baseball team opens postseason
The 24th-seeded baseball team improved to 13-13 with an 11-1 win in six innings over visiting 48th-seeded Whitehall in the first round of the Division I district tournament May 7.
The Warhawks played at 10th-seeded Pickerington Central in the second round May 9, with the winner playing seventh-seeded Worthington Kilbourne or 15th-seeded Bradley in a district semifinal Monday, May 14, at a neutral site to be determined. The district final is Wednesday, May 16, at a neutral site to be determined.
The Warhawks defeated Lakewood 12-0 in five innings and 2-0 on May 5 at home.
Softball team begins postseason play
The softball team was 12-9 overall before playing Big Walnut on May 8 and opening the Division I district tournament against 25th-seeded Dublin Scioto on May 9 at home.
If the 19th-seeded Warhawks won the second-round game, they likely will play top-seeded Marysville in a district semifinal Monday, May 14, at a neutral site to be determined. The district final is May 18 or 19 at Pickerington Central.
Central went 7-3 in the OCC-Buckeye and trails first-place Olentangy (7-2). The Braves would clinch the outright league title with a victory Thursday, May 10, over Westerville North.
Below are the coming schedules for the Central boys lacrosse, girls lacrosse and boys volleyball teams:
*May 10 -- At Pickerington Central
May 15 -- Home vs. seventh-seeded Hilliard Darby in second round of Division I, Region 3 tournament. Winner plays fifth-seeded Hilliard Davidson or 19th-seeded Newark in quarterfinal May 18. The Warhawks are seeded sixth of 19 teams.
May 10 -- Home vs. Hilliard Bradley
May 14 -- At second-seeded Olentangy Liberty in first round of Division I, Region 1 tournament. Winner plays fifth-seeded Olentangy Orange or 15th-seeded Whitehouse Anthony Wayne in quarterfinal May 18. The Warhawks are seeded 12th of 15 teams.
May 10 -- Home vs. Dublin Coffman