Johnny Jackson has been around the Westerville North High School track and field program for 21 years, but the coach saw something momentous in the OCC-Buckeye Division meet May 10 and 12 at Olentangy Orange.
Jackson said the Warriors performed the best he could recall in the throwing events during the league meet. Jeremiah Burton and Phylan Perkins both won titles in the shot put and placed third in the discus.
"We did excellent in the throws and it's the best we've done when I have been here, even as an assistant, for 21 years," said Jackson, who has led the girls team for 15 seasons and the boys for 13. "That has a lot to do with our throws coach, (former Ohio State thrower) Stephanie Enarusai. She has done a great job with them.
"They might be throwers, but we prepare them for success by doing a lot of running. My goal is to build good athletes, not just good track athletes or good throwers."
Perkins surpassed her goal of throwing 40 feet in the shot put with an effort of 40-10 1/2, which was a meet record.
"I have been waiting on this moment for a while. ... I have been wanting to get 40 feet for a long time," said Perkins, who moved to the district over the summer after previously attending Pickerington Central. "I had been throwing around 37 (feet), so this is great. It gives me a lot of confidence going on from here."
Perkins also had a throw of 108-6 in the discus as the girls team finished fifth (35 points) behind Westerville Central (146), Olentangy Liberty (135), Orange (126) and Olentangy (61) and ahead of Westerville South (20).
Burton won the shot put with a personal-record 53-8 and threw 126-0 in the discus as the boys team tied Olentangy for fifth (43) behind Orange (195.5), Central (99), Liberty (71.5) and South (71).
"Right now, I'm throwing where I need to be," Burton said. "I have been struggling with my technique some this season, but I'm getting that down. I feel my confidence is pretty high. We'll practice and get things tweaked out."
Rodney Van Cleaf was fourth in the discus (123-3).
Jaiden Stokes was second for the girls team in the 200 meters (25.74 seconds) and ran on the fourth-place 800 relay (1:46.95) with Jalyse Cornley, Leah Freeman and Audrey Smith.
Cornley, Smith, Autymn Briggs and Reese Herrell comprised the fourth-place 1,600 relay (4:22.41).
Also for the boys, Ryan Cooper placed third in the 400 (51.45) and Rondale Smith was third in the 300 hurdles (42.07). Cooper, Brian Nganga, Parish Boahen and Dorian Reynolds were on the third-place 1,600 relay (3:29.42).
"I thought (May 10) that we were good in the throws but horrible on the track, and I told them that I thought we stunk up the place," Jackson said. "I told them to go out with no regrets and do their best (May 12), and I think they did that."
The Warriors began the postseason with the Division I, district 1 meet, which started May 15, continues Thursday, May 17, and concludes Saturday, May 19, at Hilliard Darby. The top four finishers in each event advance to regional Wednesday, May 23, and May 25 at Pickerington North.
Tennis team ends season at sectional
The boys tennis team had its season end on the first day of a Division I sectional tournament May 10 at Reynoldsburg.
The top four finishers in singles and doubles advanced to district.
Seniors Trent McFarland and Reese Nguyen went 1-1 in doubles, and juniors Harry Passerello and Ervan Rodgers were 0-1.
Sophomore Jeffrey Evans and freshman Carter Jones both finished 1-1 in singles, and junior Jason Walden was 0-1.
Led by first-year coach Uy Nguyen, the Warriors finished 3-11 overall and tied Central and South for fourth (1-4) in the OCC-Buckeye behind Orange (5-0), Olentangy (4-1) and Liberty (3-2).
Boys lacrosse team opens regional play
The ninth-seeded boys lacrosse team was 8-10 before opening the Division I, Region 3 tournament May 15 against eighth-seeded Thomas Worthington in the second round.
The winner plays at second-seeded Worthington Kilbourne or 14th-seeded Hilliard Bradley in a quarterfinal Friday, May 18. North defeated Bradley 10-2 on March 20.
That winner advances to a regional semifinal Tuesday, May 22, at home against third-seeded New Albany, fourth-seeded St. Charles, 11th-seeded Pickerington Central or 12th-seeded Centerville. The Warriors defeated Central 11-6 on April 19, but lost to New Albany 10-2 on April 12.
The regional final is May 25.
Girls lacrosse team begins postseason
The ninth-seeded girls lacrosse team was 8-10 after defeating 14th-seeded South 15-4 in the first round of the Division I, Region 1 tournament May 14.
Paige Miller had five goals.
The Warriors play at top-seeded New Albany in the second round Friday, May 18. North lost to the Eagles 20-1 on March 20.
The winner advances to a regional semifinal Monday, May 21, at home against sixth-seeded Strongsville, seventh-seeded Perrysburg, eighth-seeded Wadsworth or 10th-seeded Sylvania Northview.
The regional final is May 24.
Boys volleyball team to begin postseason
The boys volleyball team is seeded ninth of 20 teams in the Division I East Region tournament and has a first-round bye before facing eighth-seeded Westerville Central in a regional quarterfinal Saturday, May 19, at Olentangy.
The winner plays second-seeded Olentangy, 16th-seeded Bradley or 19th-seeded New Albany in a regional semifinal Tuesday, May 22, at Olentangy.
The regional final is May 25 at Central.
The Warriors are 11-8 overall and finished 6-4 in the OCC-Buckeye, behind champion Olentangy (10-0).
Softball team falls in second round
The softball team lost at 11th-seeded Watkins Memorial 12-0 in five innings May 9 in the second round of the Division I district tournament.
Megan Zody took the loss for the 27th-seeded Warriors, who finished 13-14 overall.
North finished 3-7 in the OCC-Buckeye after losing to Olentangy 9-1 on May 10.
Baseball team loses to top-seeded Patriots
The baseball team lost at top-seeded Liberty 13-2 in five innings May 9 in the second round of the Division I district tournament.
Chad Gordish took the loss for the 31st-seeded Warriors, who finished 10-18.
Athletes announce college decisions
Three boys lacrosse players announced their college decisions May 10.
Drew Iarussi will play at Muskingum, Kendrick Rogers will play at Otterbein and Zack Whaley will play at Capital.