Through 10 meets, Reynoldsburg High School boys and girls track and field teams have combined to finish second six times and third twice.

Through 10 meets, Reynoldsburg High School boys and girls track and field teams have combined to finish second six times and third twice.

In the Division I postseason, the Raiders won't be content with those types of results, but for now, coach Denny Hammond said the championships can wait.

"I feel really good about the girls, and I feel really good about the boys, too," he said. "I think the boys are doing a lot better than anyone thought they would. Every meet we've been to, we've been in the running. Same with our girls, every meet we seem to get beat by one or two points. Hopefully once we get everybody together, we'll win some meets."

The Raiders have been without some key athletes on both teams, but they expect to be at full strength soon. The boys should get a significant boost from distance runner Tsehaye Hiluf, who was expected to compete for the first time last Tuesday against Lancaster. Hiluf, a freshman, was 30th (16 minutes, 13.39 seconds) in the state in cross country last fall and is expected to run the 3,200 meters and possibly the 3,200 relay.

The girls team will have middle-distance runner Taneisha Cordell back at 100 percent soon. Cordell ran the 1,600 leg as part of the distance medley relay (first, 13:06.61) at the Edwin Moses Relays in Dayton last Friday, and Hammond said she was set to begin training hard this week. Cordell was fourth in the state in the 800 last season in 2:13.94.

Cordell's return should allow the girls 3,200 relay to compete for the first time this season. That relay, which likely will include some combination of Cordell, Dani Watson, Melanie Marx, Azia Walker and Loni Marchello, was second in the state last season (9:21.62) with Cordell, Marx, Walker and Marchello running.

Hammond said Marx and Walker have been running particularly well. Walker ran a 56.52 in the 400 at the Mansfield Mehock Relays on April 17, a time Hammond said is a second faster than she was running at this point of the season last year. Marx ran the 800 in 2:25.83 at the Mehock Relays.

The girls also have not had their 800 relay or 1,600 relay at full strength yet, but Hammond said he's not overly concerned.

"We've been running well, but we still haven't put our four girls together yet," he said. "And there's no hurry for that. I'm not sure anybody really knows that (we haven't been full strength). This week we'll run our 800 and 3,200 and see where they're at."

In the field events, defending state discus champion Melissa Dodaro is throwing "as well as she's ever thrown in her life" in both the discus and shot put, according to Hammond. Kristen Mason also has been throwing particularly well in the shot put, with a best of 38-2 at the Mehock Relays and a best of 38-2 1/4 at the Edwin Moses Relays.

Even without Hiluf, the boys have been strong in the distance events. Calvin Garza and Daryl Murphy have been the top two runners in the 800, and Murphy, Garza and Hiruy Abraha have been strong in the 1,600. The 3,200 relay of Garza, Murphy, Khalid Omar and Lamar Booker ran a 7:59.02 at the Mehock Relays. Jake Wilson also is in the mix for a starting spot on that relay for the postseason.

"I think we're ranked second in the state in that relay right now and we haven't really thrown our best team together yet," Garza said. "I think we're looking really good this year."

At a glance

Below are the recent results and coming schedule for the Reynoldsburg track and field teams:

April 17-18 -- Boys: Finished seventh (22) behind champion Cleveland Glenville (66) in Mansfield Mehock Relays. Ken Fisher won the long jump (22-11 1/4); Girls: Finished third (63) behind Ann Arbor (Mich.) Pioneer (89) and Warrensville Heights (64). Melissa Dodaro won the shot put (41-5 3/4) and discus (143-10).

Last Friday -- Boys: Finished second (58) to Mason (59) in Edwin Moses Relays in Dayton. Reynoldsburg won the 3,200 relay (8:08.15); Girls: Finished second (69) to Mason (71). Dodaro won the shot put (41-0 1/2) and Reynoldsburg won the 1,600 relay (3:55.78) and distance medley (13:06.61).

*Last Tuesday -- Competed against Lancaster

Saturday -- At Cincinnati Walnut Hills Invitational

*Tuesday -- At Groveport

*OCC-Ohio dual