Folake Olujide-Ajibade of the Dublin Scioto High School girls track and field team gained valuable experience by competing in her first Division I state meet June 1 and 2 at Ohio State.
The sophomore reached the final in the 100-meter hurdles. Competing against eight seniors, she placed eighth in a program-record 14.69 seconds to earn the final spot on the podium.
"The sooner we get them out here, the more confidence they get every year. And the less freaked out they are by coming, they can keep the nerves down and perform better," coach Stacey Schall said.
Olujide-Ajibade scored one point at state, as the Irish tied for 58th behind champion Gahanna (51) as 64 teams scored.
"I'm really happy," Olujide-Ajibade said.
"I was the only sophomore. I was really happy to be among (the seniors competing in the 100 hurdles) because I really look up to them. ... This really motives me. I really want to improve my times."
Olujide-Ajibade was the Irish's first state qualifier since 2013 when the 400 relay of Nykee Scruggs, Aysia Prewitt, Charissa Newkirk and Madison Scurlock finished 11th.
Olujide-Ajibade qualified for state by finishing second in the 100 hurdles (15.5) at the regional meet May 23 and 25 at Pickerington North.
Also at regional, Olujide-Ajibade teamed with seniors Yosola Olujide-Ajibade and Brooklyn Richardson and sophomore Foluke Olujide-Ajibade to finish sixth in the 800 relay (1:42.81), Yosola Olujide-Ajibade was ninth in the 400 (58.27), senior Kennedie Lomax finished 10th in the shot put (35 feet, 1 inch) and 16th in the discus (92-5), freshman Audrey Bannister was 10th in the 3,200 (11:39.95) and Folake Olujide-Ajibade finished 11th in the 300 hurdles (46.3).
Scioto scored 11 points at regional to finish 17th behind champion Gahanna (84) as 32 teams scored.
The Irish finished fifth (61) in the 16-team district 1 meet that concluded May 19 at Hilliard Darby behind champion Pickerington Central (112), as Folake Olujide-Ajibade won the title in the 100 hurdles (15.5).
Scioto scored 116 points in the OCC-Cardinal Division meet May 10 and 12 at Coffman to finish third, behind Darby (146.5) and Thomas Worthington (141) and ahead of Delaware (93), Jerome (63.5), Worthington Kilbourne (39.5) and Hilliard Bradley (31.5).
Winning league titles were Folake Olujide-Ajibade in the 100 hurdles (14.93) and the 400 relay of Foluke Olujide-Ajibade, Richardson, sophomore Erin Holsinger and freshman Meg Tysen (50.66).
Boys track season ended at regional
The boys track and field team ended its season at the Division I regional meet.
The 3,200 relay of senior Cesar Arellano, freshman Trevor Page, sophomore Sam Thomas and senior Tyler Mielke finished fifth (7:57.15), junior Max Eveland placed seventh in the pole vault (13-8), junior Eric Holsinger was ninth in the 100 (11.08) and Arellano finished 14th in the 3,200 (10:00.95).
The Irish tied for 26th (6) behind champion Pickerington Central (97) as 41 teams scored.
"My high school running career came to an unfortunate and unexpected end (at regional)," said Arellano, who will continue his running career at Bowling Green.
"But if running has taught me anything, it is to keep my head up and now it's onto the next chapter of my life, college running."
Arellano led the Irish at the district 1 meet, as he teamed with Page, Thomas and Mielke to place second in the 3,200 relay (8:03.99) and finished fourth in the 3,200 (9:45.6).
Scioto scored 43.33 points at district to place fifth of 16 teams, behind champion Pickerington Central (158).
The Irish finished fifth (77.5) in the OCC-Cardinal meet, behind Bradley (143.5), Darby (128.5), Thomas (104.5) and Jerome (98) and ahead of Kilbourne (42) and Delaware (35).
Winning league titles were the 3,200 relay of Arellano, Page, Thomas and Mielke (8:10.31) and Eveland in the pole vault (13-0).
Boys lacrosse coach completes first season
The boys lacrosse team finished 3-15 overall under first-year coach Nick Gallagher.
Seeded 13th in the Division I, Region I tournament, the Irish lost at second-seeded Olentangy Liberty 14-4 in the first round May 15.
Scioto went 0-6 in the OCC-Cardinal to finish seventh, behind Kilbourne (6-0), Jerome (5-1), Delaware (4-2), Thomas (3-3), Darby (2-4) and Bradley (1-5).
"As a coaching staff, we are pleased with our group's work ethic," Gallagher said.
"Obviously, everyone wanted a better record, but we did make some strides as a group, which is going to pay off in the future. We are always going to be a work in progress, but I give the players a ton of credit for sticking together during a very irregular season. Coaching changes are always difficult, and they're much more challenging when the timeline is crunched."
Gallagher, a 2004 Scioto graduate who helped lead the Irish to prominence in the early 2000s, replaced Drew Sraver as coach during the past offseason. Sraver stepped down in November after five seasons.
Midfielder Spencer Cogan, who was one of four seniors, was named first-team all-league and senior attacker Ben Gawronski was second-team all-league.
"Ben, Spencer, Dakotah (Marshall) and Evan (Philipp) were a huge part of what we did this season," Gallagher said.
"As seniors, they're in a leadership role, and we were pleased with how they composed themselves in a tough situation. It's hard on the players when there is a coaching change. It's much harder on the seniors, and our situation was made more difficult by the lack of lag time between the new hiring and the beginning of the season."
Among the players expected to return are junior Jeremy Chapman (defender), sophomores Pete Hrelec (midfielder) and Alex Mar (goalkeeper) and freshman Garrett Mielke (midfielder).