Starting with the early moments of the Division III, district 1 meet, the Worthington Christian School boys track and field team showed that it had a chance to dominate the event.
The 3,200-meter relay of Jake Bertelsen, Kyle Smith, Luke Smith and Taylor Vallangeon won in 8 minutes, 17.42 seconds, the first of eight events the Warriors won en route to scoring 135 points to capture the championship at the 16-team meet that concluded May 19 at Watkins Memorial. Fairbanks (101) was runner-up.
The top four finishers in each event advanced to the regional meet, which began May 23 and concludes Friday, May 25, at Fairfield Union.
Bertelsen also left district with titles in the 1,600 (4:30.64) and 3,200 (10:03.4).
Jordan Jackson won the 200 (22.22) and 400 (50.76) and was on the first-place 400 relay along with Ethan Crary, Montell Edwards and Michael King (43.85).
Jackson also joined Crary, Kyle Smith and Luke Smith on the winning 1,600 relay (3:28.7), and Kyle Smith added a title in the 800 (2:01.61).
Placing second at district were Crary in the 200 (23.06), Seth Parsell in the discus (141 feet, 1 inch), Luke Smith in the 800 (2:03.73), Vallangeon in the 3,200 (10:12.43) and the 800 relay of Crary, Edwards, King and Kyle Smith (1:32.37).
Edwards placed fourth in the 100 (11.47) and Crary was fourth in the 200 (23.06).
Derek Holston just missed advancing to regional in the shot put, as he placed fifth (42-6).
At regional, the top four finishers in each event advance to state June 1 and 2 at Ohio State.
Girls track team takes third at district
The sprint corps of the girls track and field team also excelled in the Division III, district 1 meet.
Winning titles were Ashley Hall in the 200 (25.91) and Hall, Emily Hall, Mianna Hartings and Emma Kasich in both the 400 relay (51.12) and the 800 relay (1:47.08).
Also advancing to the regional meet at Fairfield Union were Ashley Hall in the 100 (second, 12.66), Emily Hall in the long jump (second, 16-3) and Oyinda Oladejo-Lawal in the high jump (second, 4-11).
The Warriors finished third (67) of 16 teams at district, behind Grandview (89) and Northridge (82.5).
Both Caroline Mousa, who placed fifth in the 400 (1:06.25), and Maddie Patrick, who was fifth in the 3,200 (13:06.18), missed advancing to regional by one spot.
Season ends at district for boys tennis team
The boys tennis team had its season end at the Division II district tournament May 17 at Columbus Academy.
In first-round matches, the doubles team of sophomores Benjy Homoelle and Tommy Robinson lost to Bexley's Christian Roddy and Leo Schottenstein 6-0, 6-0 and senior singles player AjAi Smith lost to Wellington's Trevor Ball 6-0, 6-0.
"When you consider the strength of our (sectional that concluded May 12 at Academy), to be able to get some guys into district is an accomplishment," coach Dino Tsibouris said.
Baseball team looks to build from finish
The way the baseball team played in May is what coach Tim Kraynak hopes is an indicator of future success.
Worthington Christian beat Bexley 8-1 on May 2 in its regular-season finale and held off a late rally to defeat 16th-seeded Liberty Union 6-5 in the first round of the Division III district tournament May 8 as junior Nathan Sewall entered in relief in the seventh inning and gave up one run but retired the final two batters for the save.
Then in the second round May 10, the 14th-seeded Warriors forced extra innings against fourth-seeded Northridge, as sophomore Jack Lockhart scored on a single to left field by senior Josh DeMarco in the seventh. Senior Danny Myers also tried to score but was tagged out at the plate for the third out.
The Vikings won the game 6-5 in 10 innings.
"If there was one word to describe our season, it would definitely be adversity," Kraynak said. "The last two weeks, though, were probably more indicative of the team we had envisioned. We were playing well, probably playing our best when it mattered."
Worthington Christian, which finished 9-14 overall, lost junior Derek Fabian (INF/P) to a broken wrist in mid-March. He returned for the final five games and hit .556 (10-for-18 with one walk) with seven runs scored and went 1-1 with a 0.79 ERA in nine innings pitched.
The Warriors went 5-5 in the MSL-Ohio Division to tie Bexley and Grandview for third, behind London (8-2) and Academy (6-4) and ahead of Whitehall (1-9). Worthington Christian lost three one-run games in league action.
The Warriors are losing six seniors, led by Conner Crawford (SS/P), DeMarco (CF), Myers (C/RF) and Rettstatt (P/3B).
Crawford was named first-team all-league and all-district and was selected as an alternate for the Mizuno All-Ohio series. A Taylor University recruit, Crawford hit .333 with 15 RBI and had a 2.59 ERA and 41 strikeouts in 24 1/3 innings.
Rettstatt, who went 2-3 with 29 strikeouts in 35 innings and hit .296, was first-team all-league and honorable mention all-district.
Sophomore Jack Lockhart (2B/3B/P) and Sewall (P/1B) both were second-team all-league and sophomore Cooper Crawford (SS/P) and freshman Ethan Kraynak (OF) were honorable mention all-league.
Sewall went 2-1 with a 3.10 ERA and 55 strikeouts in 40 2/3 innings and Cooper Crawford was 2-3 with a 3.00 ERA in 21 innings.
Others eligible to return include junior Nathaniel Elliott (LF) and freshmen Braden Anderson (P) and Zach Hoheisel (1B).
"Not having (Fabian) in the lineup most of the year, we were not an offensive juggernaut," coach Kraynak said. "We've got a healthy crop of young talent that got some really valuable varsity experience."