With much of the same cast returning from 2016, the Dublin Coffman High School boys golf team became an OCC-Central Division title contender last fall.

Despite losing six players to graduation, the Shamrocks again are fielding an experienced lineup as they eye another battle with Upper Arlington atop the league standings.

Coffman opened the four-round league tournament Aug. 7 at Turnberry, shooting a 304 to place second behind UA (303).

"We've got a lot of solid guys and we had good tryout scores, probably better than we've had in the past because we were more consistent," third-year coach Scott Sutherland said. "I didn't have anybody in my top six that had big numbers and we had some consistent numbers in the mid- to upper-70s. Last year, we had issues of guys having a bad day and guys that would go low, but when they were off, they were off. This year, we're going to have more consistent guys that I can count on for good scores as opposed to hoping we can get four good scores and not have to take a bad score."

In the opening round of the league tournament, senior Matt Sopko led with a 73, followed by junior Sam Sellman (76), senior Spencer Eiselt (77), junior Brett Whitis (78) and junior Jacob Hazen (80).

Senior Blake Whitis also should be a key contributor.

Hazen had the team's best scores during tryouts.

In the second round of league play Aug. 13 at Denison Golf Club, Coffman shot 326 to finish third behind UA (299) and Hilliard Davidson (319) as Sellman led with a 79.

Last season, Coffman placed fourth at the Division I sectional at Clover Valley to edge Scioto by one stroke for the final district berth and then shot 328 to place seventh at the 12-team district tournament as the top two teams advanced to state. Blake Whitis shot a 78 to finish five strokes from advancing to state.

Sopko is coming off a season in which he averaged 78.8 in OCC-Central play to make second-team all-league. Blake Whitis (79.0) also made second-team all-league and Eiselt (80.3) and 2018 graduate Drew Shipley (84.8) both were honorable mention all-league.

"We've got some pretty solid guys and I had a really good showing from two freshmen that will be our No. 1 and 2 on the varsity B, so I'm excited," Sutherland said. "We've got about 18-20 big tournaments and we travel a couple times."

Girls golfers expect to make impact

With last year's OCC-Central Player of the Year heading his lineup, seventh-year girls golf coach Randy Patton believes he could have one of the top 10 teams in Ohio.

The only player who is not back from last season when the Shamrocks placed third in the Division I sectional at Mentel Memorial and sixth (339) in the nine-team district tournament at Cooks Creek as the top two teams advanced to state is 2018 graduate Jooho Oh.

Senior Maria Howard returns after posting a league-best 75.5 average for Coffman, which opened league action Aug. 8 by placing third (329) behind New Albany (301) and Upper Arlington (322) in the first round of the six-team league tournament at Royal American.

The second round was Aug. 15 at Cooks Creek.

"I look for a really good year out of the 'Rocks," Patton said. "The girls are excited and I'm excited. If we use our experience, we've got a chance to go a long way. We've got five girls back, including the Player of the Year in our division of the OCC, and I've got a couple sophomores that are really good. I like who we are. I just want us to improve throughout the year."

Senior Olivia Brickey, junior Jenna Lynn and sophomores Ava Guilliams and Annika Manjunath also are returnees.

Manjunath shot a 67 during one of the team's tryout rounds. Guilliams was one of the team's top players during last year's regular season but missed the postseason with an injury.

Manjunath shot a 74 to tie for second and Howard carded a 79 in the opening round of the four-round league tournament.

Coffman went 16-4 in the OCC-Central last year to place second behind UA (18-2), and Patton expects New Albany also to be a league-title contender after it went 9-11 to place third.

Coffman opened Aug. 6 by placing third (317) in the Gahanna Invitational behind New Albany (295) and two-time defending state champion Olentangy Orange (309).

"The thing I like about this team is that we've got five girls that can break 80 and a couple that can break par," Patton said. "I told the girls, 'Let's just make sure we're in the conversation in early October.' It's a great group, and they seem to enjoy being around each other."

Tennis team gets boost from youth

The girls tennis team had three new players in its lineup when it opened Aug. 15 at Wellington, including one freshman.

Last season, the Shamrocks went 10-9 overall and 4-1 in the OCC-Central to place second behind UA (5-0) after winning the league title in 2016.

"We had some good freshmen show up," seventh-year coach Brett Hundertpfund said.

"One wound up on varsity and the rest are sitting on the (junior varsity), and my assistant and I were pleasantly surprised. With a lot of my returnees, you can tell they played a lot over the summer. We had a couple open spots on varsity, so we had a couple people who were on the j.v. last year that they've obviously put in a lot of work and earned spots on the varsity team, so it's cool to see that."

Junior Claire Feit was expected to be at first singles for the opening match.

Seniors Lena Caruso, Alex Kapustin and Anya Shah and junior Hannah Qin also are returnees.

Sophomores Cassi Shough and Ria Singhal and freshman Geetha Anne are others on the team.

Sophomore Lalasa Nagireddy, who played first singles much of last season but did not compete in the postseason, transferred to Jerome in the offseason.

Caruso and Qin lost in sectional quarterfinals and Feit lost in the first round in singles at sectional while the doubles teams of Kapustin and 2018 graduate Meredith Ainsworth and Shah and 2018 graduate Darien Blackwell both lost in sectional quarterfinals.

"I like how the girls seem to be coming together so far," Hundertpfund said.

"We've got a lot of personalities. All the girls get along and we've got a lot of good talent and a good schedule. We're playing in some good tournaments."

julrey@thisweeknews.com

@UlreyThisWeek

Schedules

BOYS GOLF

Aug. 4 -- Cincinnati Sycamore Invitational at Blue Ash

Aug. 6 -- Olentangy Liberty Invitational at Denison Golf Club

Aug. 7 -- OCC-Central at Turnberry

Aug. 9 -- New Albany Invitational at New Albany Links

Aug. 10 -- Mount Vernon Invitational at Chapel Hill

Aug. 11 -- Youmans Classic at Oakhaven

Aug. 13 -- OCC-Central at Denison Golf Club

Aug. 14 -- Dublin Invitational at Golf Club of Dublin

Aug. 18 -- Cincinnati Moeller Invitational at Walden Ponds

Aug. 27 -- Centerville Invitational at Yankee Trace

Aug. 29 -- OCC-Central at Apple Valley

Sept. 1 -- Pinnacle Classic

Sept. 8 -- St. Charles Invitational at Brookside

Sept. 10 -- Golden Bear Invitational at Zanesville Country Club

Sept. 12 -- OCC-Central at Darby Creek

Sept. 15 -- Trojan Invitational at Findlay Country Club

Sept. 22 -- Upper Arlington Masters at Scioto Country Club

Sept. 26 -- Olentangy Liberty at Kinsale

Sept. 29 -- Jerome at Hickory Hills

Oct. 6 -- Wedgewood Showcase

GIRLS GOLF

Aug. 6 -- Gahanna Invitational at Jefferson

Aug. 8 -- OCC-Central at Royal American

Aug. 10 -- Panther Invitational at Turnberry

Aug. 13 -- Newark Catholic at The Virtues

Aug. 15 -- OCC-Central at Cooks Creek

Aug. 18 -- Midwest Classic at Skyland Pines

Aug. 20 -- Centerville Invitational at Yankee Trace

Aug. 22 -- Jerome, New Albany and Olentangy Orange at Muirfield Country Club

Aug. 25 -- New Albany Fall Classic at Cooks Creek

Aug. 29 -- OCC-Central at Mentel Memorial

Sept. 4 -- New Albany Invitational at New Albany Country Club

Sept. 6 -- New Albany, Olentangy Orange at Blackhawk

Sept. 11 -Olentangy Liberty at Scioto Reserve

Sept. 12 -- OCC-Central at Westchester

Sept. 15 -- Toledo St. Ursula Invitational at Highland Meadows

Sept. 18 -- Olentangy Liberty at Marysville Golf Course

Sept. 20 -- Upper Arlington Invitational at Brookside

Sept. 22 -- Marysville Invitational at Darby Creek

Sept. 24 -- Hilliard Davidson at Marysville Golf Course

Sept. 25 -- New Albany at New Albany Country Club

Sept. 27 -- Newark Catholic at Marysville Golf Course

Oct. 6 -- Pickerington North Fall Classic at Cooks Creek

GIRLS TENNIS

Aug. 15 -- at Wellington

Aug. 16 -- vs. Olentangy Orange

Aug. 17 -- vs. Cincinnati Ursuline

Aug. 18 -- Columbus School for Girls Invitational

Aug. 21 -- vs. Westerville North

*Aug. 23 -- vs. Hilliard Davidson

Aug. 25 -- Watterson Invitational

*Aug. 28 -- at Westland

Aug. 29 -- at Pickerington North

*Aug. 30 -- vs. Marysville

*Sept. 4 -- vs. Central Crossing

*Sept. 6 -- at Upper Arlington

Sept. 11 -- at Olentangy

Sept. 12 -- vs. Columbus Academy

Sept. 13 -- at CSG

Sept. 15 -- Lexington Invitational

Sept. 18 -- at Scioto

Sept. 20 -- at Upper Arlington B

Sept. 24 -- at Watkins Memorial

Sept. 25 -- vs. Olentangy Liberty

Sept. 27 -- vs. Watterson

Oct. 2 -- vs. Bexley

*League contest

Below are the coming schedules for the Coffman cross country, field hockey, boys soccer, girls soccer and girls volleyball teams:

CROSS COUNTRY

Aug. 22 -- At Jerome with Scioto

FIELD HOCKEY

Aug. 17 -- At Olentangy Liberty

BOYS SOCCER

Aug. 18 -- Home vs. Olentangy

GIRLS SOCCER

Aug. 17 -- At Olentangy Liberty

GIRLS VOLLEYBALL

Aug. 22 -- At Olentangy