Connor Clark used a "buddy pass" to get Jacob Noel interested in the game of tennis.

Connor Clark used a "buddy pass" to get Jacob Noel interested in the game of tennis.

Less than a year later, the two Canal Winchester High School freshmen might end up being the top singles players on the Indians' boys tennis team.

Clark and Noel played first and second singles, respectively, when the Indians' season began last week, and Canal Winchester sought to field a full roster in its second season after a four-year hiatus.

"Today was the first actual match for a lot of these guys," seventh-year coach Jason Moisey said after a 5-0 loss to visiting Logan Elm in the season opener April 4. "We are trying to get used to things, get over nerves and contain the jitters. From what I have seen, I like what the guys are doing."

Clark took up tennis last year and began playing at Scarborough East Tennis and Fitness Club. Members receive a "buddy pass," Clark gave his to Noel, and Noel was hooked on the sport.

"I went to a practice and latched on to it really quick. It's the sport I've latched on to the fastest and I love it. I want to keep playing and see how far I can take it," Noel said. "I am trying to keep a close eye on the ball and make sure I follow through. I want to keep focus and keep a positive attitude."

Although Clark and Noel started the season as singles players, Moisey plans to juggle his lineup on a regular basis with several first-time players.

Rounding out the roster are senior Isaiah Chattos, juniors Alex Ugrinov and Ryan Warner and sophomore Zeke Blanchard.

"(Moisey) wants everyone to be well-rounded, so we'll probably end up being put together for doubles at some point," Clark said. "A lot of our players have good coordination. They're new, but I feel they'll pick it up easily and be even better soon."

Ugrinov and Warner are the only returnees from last year, when Canal Winchester finished 3-9 overall and went 1-6 in the OCC-Cardinal Division to finish seventh behind champion Dublin Jerome (7-0).

Moisey was unsure last week whether senior Kevin Karn would rejoin the team after playing last season.

"We are basically a new team," Moisey said. "Even last year, we were basically a new team, but we had some seniors. We are still constructing this."

The Indians were 1-1 overall and 1-0 in the OCC-Cardinal before playing at Dublin Scioto on April 11.

Canal Winchester defeated host Westerville South 3-2 in its league opener April 5, with Noel winning at second singles, Blanchard winning at third singles and Chattos and Warner winning at first doubles.

A match against Hartley on April 8 at Ohio Dominican University was postponed because of bad weather. A makeup date was not immediately determined.

Baseball team tries to remain hot

After opening the season with eight wins in 10 days, the baseball team lost to Watterson 2-1 on April 5 at V.A. Memorial Stadium in Chillicothe, and then waited at least six days to play its next game.

Bad weather forced the postponements of an April 6 game at Westerville South, an April 7 home game against Hartley and an April 8 game at Westerville Central. The Indians were 8-1 overall and 1-0 in the OCC-Cardinal before playing host to Central on April 11.

Canal Winchester, which opened league play with a 9-0 win over Westerville North on April 5, outscored its first nine opponents 73-5.

Although the Indians lost to Watterson, pitcher Austin Trace caught a line drive up the middle with his bare right hand. A video of the play was highlighted on ESPN. Trace had thrown a no-hitter in his first outing of the season March 30 against Bexley.

Softball team looks for more wins

The softball team showed off some power in the first two weeks of the season, but was 1-6 overall and 1-1 in the OCC-Cardinal before playing Hilliard Bradley on April 11.

Catcher Bailee Faulkner had two of the Indians' three home runs through seven games. She had a two-run home run in a 9-8 season-opening loss at Liberty Union on March 28 and another two-run homer in a 15-4 loss to Teays Valley on April 1.

First baseman Emily Bryant had the other home run, a three-run shot in the first inning of a 16-8 loss to Westerville Central on April 6. The Indians gave up six homers in that game.

Canal Winchester, which defeated Westerville South 7-2 in its league opener April 4, was outscored 71-32 in its first seven games.



April 4 -- vs. Logan Elm

*April 5 -- at Westerville South

April 8 -- Hartley at Ohio Dominican University

*April 11 -- at Dublin Scioto

*April 12 -- at Westerville Central

*April 14 -- at Hilliard Darby

April 15 -- at Fisher Catholic

April 18 -- vs. Hamilton Township

*April 19 -- at Hilliard Bradley

April 20 -- vs. Bloom-Carroll

*April 21 -- at Dublin Jerome

*April 22 -- at Westerville North

April 25 -- at Teays Valley

April 27 -- at Logan Elm

April 28 -- at Hamilton Township

April 29 -- vs. Hartley

*League contest

Below are the coming schedules for the Canal Winchester baseball, softball and track & field teams:


*April 14 -- At Westerville Central in makeup from April 8

*April 15 -- At Hilliard Darby

April 16 -- Home vs. Groveport

*April 18 -- At Hilliard Bradley

*April 20 -- Home vs. Hilliard Bradley


April 14 -- Home vs. Johnstown

*April 15 -- Home vs. Westerville North

April 16 -- At New Albany with Groveport

*April 18 -- At Dublin Scioto

*April 19 -- Home vs. Westerville Central

*April 20 -- At Westerville South


April 16 -- Hank Smith Invitational at Heath

April 19 -- At Reynoldsburg with Pickerington Central

*League contest