Reggie Cannon wonders what might have been every time he watches Allyson Kuhns compete in the shot put for the Central Crossing High School girls track and field team.
The second-year coach sees Kuhns excel in the event despite being a senior in her first season with the Comets.
Kuhns finished first in the Braves Invitational on April 25 at Whetstone with a throw of 32 feet, 2 1/2 inches. She first picked up the shot put in March.
"You never know how far she could have been throwing if she had been throwing the shot (put) for four years instead of four weeks," Cannon said. "She's already thrown more than 33 feet, so she probably would be in the high 30s or low 40s. She has a lot of natural talent."
Kuhns' best throw has been a 33-6, and she has thrown 78-0 in the discus. She originally played club volleyball in the spring, but decided to give track a try.
"Everyone kept trying to get me to come out, but I was playing volleyball in the spring and now I'm not doing that anymore," Kuhns said. "I tried it and I liked it. I did not know that was going to happen because it was a sport that I never tried and once I tried it, I liked it.
"The first time I threw (the shot put), it went about 30 feet. I had never thrown it before and I didn't think it would go that far."
Sarah Hall, who coaches the Central Crossing throwers, said Kuhns has the talent and desire to keep getting better.
"It comes down to how much effort and work they want to put into it," Hall said. "Ally took to it immediately. She loved it and every time she does well, she wants to do better and better. She has that motivation to go farther and farther."
Getting that added distance comes from more than just pure strength. Throwers must refine their technique for continued improvement.
"A lot of it is technique because your strength will only get you so far," Hall said. "What is her next technique move to get her there? That's what we're trying to find for her for (the) OCC and district (meets).
"We're teaching her the glide (for the shot put). Ally had trouble with that so we went with the shuffle, and she's good at that because she's taller. (With the shuffle) you start at the back of the ring and you shuffle toward the front."
Kuhns was a right-side hitter in volleyball. She said the motions are similar for throwing the shot put and burying a kill on the opponent's side of the net.
"In both volleyball and throwing, you have your hand all the way up by your ear before you follow through and it's the same when you throw the shot (put)," she said. "I'm glad I came out (for track) because I made new friends and got to try something new."
Kuhns has a 4.0 GPA and will attend Wright State to study nursing, but Hall said Kuhns might want to look into the throwing program with the Raiders.
She believes Kuhns could spark the Comets when they compete in the OCC-Central Division meet May 10 and 12 at Dublin Coffman.
"The sky is the limit with Ally," Hall said. "She threw over 30 feet in her first meet and she has gone almost 34 feet.
"I told her that if she could go 35 feet by OCCs that she would have a good chance of winning it, and maybe even getting to state a couple weeks later. She just needs to find what she needs to get those extra feet added to her throws."
Softball team seeded second in district
The softball team was voted the second seed for the 46-team Division I district tournament behind top-seeded Marysville.
The Comets have a first-round bye and play 32nd-seeded Briggs or 37th-seeded Westerville South at home Wednesday, May 9, in the second round. They have not played either team this season.
The winner plays 18th-seeded Reynoldsburg, 22nd-seeded Olentangy Liberty or 41st-seeded Columbus West in a district semifinal May 14.
The chances that the Comets would repeat as OCC-Central champions diminished with a 1-0 loss to Marysville on April 25.
The Monarchs were 8-0 in the OCC-Central after defeating Upper Arlington 14-13 on April 30 and before playing Hilliard Davidson on May 1 and 2. Central Crossing was 17-2 overall and 7-2 in the league before playing Westland on May 2.
Emily Gant pitched a four-hitter with 14 strikeouts and no walks against Marysville, but she allowed a first-inning run and the Monarchs made it stand up. Andi Rapp and Hannah Scott both singled in the game.
Central Crossing travels Thursday, May 3, to Cardington before playing in the Gahanna Showcase against Stow-Munroe Falls on Friday, May 4, and Holland Springfield and Mason on Saturday, May 5.
Baseball team to open tourney at Thomas
The baseball team is seeded 35th of 48 teams for the Division I district tournament.
The Comets open Monday, May 7, at 25th-seeded Thomas Worthington. They have not played the Cardinals this season.
The winner advances to a second-round game Wednesday, May 9, at 23rd-seeded Olentangy Orange. Central Crossing did not play Orange this season, but lost to the Pioneers 5-1 in the second round of the district tournament last season.
The second-round winner advances to a district semifinal May 15 against top-seeded Liberty, 31st-seeded Westerville North or 47th-seeded Franklin Heights.
The Comets were 5-12 overall and 3-10 in the OCC-Central after losing to Davidson 4-1 on April 30. They close league play against Coffman on May 2 and at Westland on Friday, May 4.
Dylan Davis threw a five-hitter with four strikeouts and one walk as Central Crossing defeated Westland 3-2 on April 26.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, Austin Woods singled, stole second and scored the winning run on a single by J.J. Carr.
Below are the coming schedules for the Central Crossing boys tennis and track & field teams:
May 3 -- Home vs. Grandview
May 7 -- Home vs. Marion-Franklin
May 8 -- Home vs. DeSales
TRACK & FIELD
May 5 -- Teays Valley Invitational