The Whetstone High School boys and girls track and field teams had their seasons end May 23 on the first day of the Division I regional meet at Pickerington North.
Senior Jamie Bossenbroek, making her fourth regional appearance, finished ninth in the preliminaries for the girls 300-meter hurdles, as the top eight qualified for finals May 25. Bossenbroek just missed reaching the finals, finishing in 45.95 seconds as Pickerington Central's Trinity Brown placed eighth (45.94).
Bossenbroek was the lone regional qualifier for the girls team after placing third (46.03) in the 300 hurdles in the district 3 meet that concluded May 19 at Hilliard Darby.
Representing the boys team at regional was the 1,600 relay of junior Emil Adams, seniors Ibrahim Sesay and Francisco Soto and freshman Brack Dillon that finished 12th (3:27.14) in the preliminaries. The relay placed third at district (3:27.79).
The top four finishers in each regional event advanced to the state meet Friday, June 1, and Saturday, June 2, at Ohio State.
Softball team excited about next season
Softball coach Larry Peck is eager to see what next season brings.
"I'm extremely excited and optimistic about the future because we only lose two seniors and we had four freshman starters this year," said Peck, whose team finished 13-9 overall and 13-1 in the City League-North Division. "If everyone returns, we should be in good shape.
"Our freshmen will be a year older, stronger and smarter. Other City-North teams are losing quite a bit, so I could see this group reaching the City championship (game) next season."
The Braves fell short of reaching the City championship game the last two seasons. They lost to Centennial 12-5 on May 16 in a playoff to determine which team would represent the City-North in the City final.
Both Whetstone and Centennial finished 13-1 in the City-North to set up the tiebreaker. The Stars also beat the Braves 7-6 in a playoff last year.
"It was disappointing to finish the season like this," said Peck, whose team was seeded 29th in the Division I district tournament and lost 11-1 in five innings at 24th-seeded Pickerington North in the first round May 7. "We were 13-4 at one point, but we lost our last five games. I think some of our freshmen wore down in the final few weeks."
The seniors are Heaven McWilliams (OF) and Maive Proto-Newton (P). McWilliams batted .583 in 10 games and Proto-Newton was 4-4 in the circle with a 4.85 ERA in 39 innings.
Among the expected return-ees are juniors Roz Hannah (SS/3B) and Jolie Mason (1B), sophomores Anna Mary Absalom (P), Kassidy Keegan (C) and Dahlia Kleen (3B) and freshmen Grace Briegle (SS/OF/C), Sadie Hannah (2B/3B), Meghan Harrison (OF) and Amelia Morris (OF).
Roz Hannah led the team in batting average (.587), runs scored (37) and stolen bases (29) and had 19 RBI to share team-high honors with Mason, who batted .500 and scored 15 runs. Sadie Hannah hit .511 with 25 runs and 17 RBI.
Harrison batted .429 with 15 runs and 12 RBI and was followed in batting average by Keegan (.419, 16 RBI), Kleen (.405, 10 RBI), Morris (.386, 21 runs, 10 RBI) and Briegle (.275, 19 runs).
In the circle, Absalom was 7-5 with a 3.69 ERA and 59 strikeouts in 64 innings. She was 7-1 with a 1.04 ERA in league games.
"This was Anna Mary's first full year pitching, so she's going to continue to get better, too," Peck said. "I really like the makeup of what we have coming back, but we need them all to come back and work on their games during the offseason."