Led by senior Camey Rabold, the Watterson High School girls swimming and diving team finished fifth in the Division I state meet held Feb. 24 and 25 at Branin Natatorium in Canton.

Led by senior Camey Rabold, the Watterson High School girls swimming and diving team finished fifth in the Division I state meet held Feb. 24 and 25 at Branin Natatorium in Canton.

The Eagles scored 132 points as Upper Arlington (300.5) won its eighth consecutive title.

Rabold won the 200-yard freestyle in a team-record 1 minute, 49.52 seconds, narrowly beating Mason's Zoe Thatcher (1:49.56). She had finished second at state in the 200 free last year after finishing fourth as a sophomore and sixth as a freshman.

"My coach told me to hold off on the first 50 so I could blow out the rest of the race," said Rabold, an Ohio State recruit. "Over the last 25, I put my head down, spun my arms fast and pulled as hard as I could.

"I'm excited to be a state champion, because I'll get to put my picture up on the wall at school with our other state champions, including (six-time individual swimming state champion) Gracie Finnegan."

Senior Aly Francis, junior Samantha Schuttinger, Rabold and senior Michele Rielly finished second in the 200 free relay (1:34.97) behind UA (1:34.68) and finished third in the 400 free relay (3:30.55) behind UA (3:24.34) and Cincinnati Ursuline (3:27.8).

"We were seeded first in the 200 free relay and we wanted to win, but we all swam really good splits, so we're happy," Rabold said.

Rabold finished third (team record 55.59) and Rielly placed fourth (55.69) in the 100 backstroke behind Ursuline's Emily Slabe (54.23) and Akron Firestone's Katie Miller (55.38).

Rielly placed fourth (23.72) and Francis finished 18th (24.58) in the 50 free, and Schuttinger finished 23rd in the 100 free (54.05).

"Finishing fifth as a team at state is a huge accomplishment because everyone contributed in some way," Rabold said.

•The boys basketball team struggled against Sparta Highland's 3-2 zone defense while falling behind 13-8 early in the second quarter during its Division II district tournament opener Feb. 22 at Dublin Scioto.

But after the fourth-seeded Eagles began playing more intense man-to-man defense, they outscored the Fighting Scots 55-10 the rest of the way to earn a 63-23 victory.

Sophomore guard Cody Calhoun had 19 points and junior wing player Mike Vlahakis scored seven to lead the Eagles, who improved to 15-6.

"We started slow, but once we buckled down on defense and picked up our pressure and the tempo, we were able to create turnovers and score in transition the other way," senior guard Tyler Schafer said. "That's how we turned this game around."

The Eagles will face 11th-seeded Big Walnut in the second round at 7:45 p.m. Thursday, March 1, at Scioto. The winner will play third-seeded Hartley or Lakewood in a district semifinal at 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 7, at Scioto. The district final will be played March 9 at the Fairgrounds Coliseum.

Big Walnut defeated Gran-ville 55-50 in the first round of the district tournament Feb. 22 to improve to 12-9, as 5-foot-11 senior guard Grant Beam had 22 points and 6-5 junior forward Adam Shaheen and 5-11 senior guard Tyler Beam each scored 10.

"Big Walnut does a nice job of punching it inside and their guards do a nice job of penetrating," coach Vince Lombardo said. "We do a lot of similar things offensively and defensively, so this should be a good hard-nosed game. We just need to start better against Big Walnut than we did against Highland."

Grant Beam is averaging a team-high 12.5 points for the Golden Eagles, followed by Tyler Beam (9.1), Shaheen (8.7), 6-1 junior guard Zach Laughman (6.2) and 6-3 senior forward Seth Wandling (6.0).

The Eagles are counting on 6-3 senior post player Jake Brobst and 6-4 junior post player Bryan Jackson to contain Shaheen and Wandling in the post.

"Big Walnut's a lot like us in that they go inside a lot or kick it back out to shoot 3-pointers," Calhoun said. "Bryan and Jake are our two main post men and we'll need them to shut down their post guys."

Vlahakis is averaging a team-high 7.4 points for Watterson, followed by Jackson (7.3), Brobst (7.1) and sophomore wing player Andy Grieser (7.0).

"Everyone has stepped up and made shots this season, and we'll need to keep that up in the tournament," Calhoun said.

With a victory over Big Walnut, Watterson could set itself up for a third meeting with Hartley. The Eagles defeated the Hawks 36-35 on Dec. 16 at Hartley and 36-34 on Jan. 31 at home.

Vlahakis scored 10 points and Grieser scored nine in the first meeting with Hartley, while Grieser and Jackson each scored 10 points in the second meeting.

Last year, the Eagles went 0-3 against Hartley, losing to the Hawks 34-32 and 37-30 during the regular season and losing to top-seeded Hartley 44-38 in a Division II district final.

Hartley, which had a first-round bye and is 16-3 entering its matchup with Lakewood, is led by 6-8 junior post player Jacob Matuska, senior guard Jordan Fair and senior forward Jordan Siefert.

Lakewood beat Whitehall 49-42 in the first round on Feb. 21 to improve to 6-15, as 6-2 senior guard Austen Morgan scored 17 points.

"We've had five very close games with Hartley the past two seasons and I wouldn't expect anything different if we get to play them again," Lombardo said.

•The girls basketball team defeated Hilliard Darby 51-33 in the second round of the Division I district tournament Feb. 22 at Olentangy Orange.

Ashley Andracki and Kayla Cook each scored 14 points to lead the Eagles, who improved to 18-4.

"We ran the whole game and played good team defense, which translated into easy baskets," Andracki said. "Everyone contributed to this win."

The ninth-seeded Eagles will play top-seeded Reynoldsburg in a district semifinal at 8 p.m. Thursday, March 1, at Orange. The winner will play seventh-seeded Olentangy or Hilliard Bradley in a district final at 7 p.m. Saturday, March 3, at Orange.

Reynoldsburg beat Franklin Heights 109-15 on Feb. 22 to improve to 22-0, as sophomore post player Alyssa Rice had 18 points and senior guard Adesua Aideyman scored 15.

Olentangy beat Delaware 70-38 on Feb. 21 to improve to 20-2, as 5-7 senior guard Nicole Payne had 14 points and 6-0 junior forward Megan Beidelman and 5-6 junior guard Gina Miccinilli each scored 12.

Bradley defeated Lancaster 54-31 on Feb. 21 to improve to 15-7, as senior guard Brooke Espenschied had 20 points and senior post player Jasmine Junkins scored 14.

"Reynoldsburg has elite athletes who have good size and skill," coach Tom Woodford said. "We played them five times during the summer and every time we played them we were more competitive. The nice thing about this tournament is we only need to beat Reynoldsburg once to move on."

Andracki is averaging a team-high 11.4 points, followed by Cook (8.4), Annie Gavin (7.6) and Regina Smith (5.4).

"We need to control the tempo on the defensive end but still get out and run on the offensive end," Woodford said.

•The wrestling team scored one point to tie Eastmoor Academy for 43rd in the Division II district tournament Feb. 24 and 25 at Uhrichsville Claymont behind champion Steubenville (202.5).

The top four placers in each weight class qualified for the state tournament, which runs Thursday, March 1, through Saturday, March 3, at Ohio State, and Watterson's lone district qualifier, Nicky DiCarlo, didn't make the cut, as he went 1-2 at 138 pounds.

•Competing as individuals in the district girls bowling tournament Feb. 25 at HP Lanes, Claire Enderle finished 21st (497) and Katie Eberhart tied for 46th (446).

Neither qualified for the state tournament, which will be held Saturday, March 3, at Wayne Webb's Columbus Bowl.