One of the best shot putters in the state, Brandon Mosher of the Big Walnut High School boys track and field team has grown accustomed to winning championships.
This season, the junior also has shown his prowess in the discus.
Mosher captured both the shot put and discus titles at the Division I regional meet May 23 and 25 at Pickerington North, where the top four finishers in each event qualified for state June 1 and 2 at Ohio State.
"I never thought I'd be a regional champion in both (events), but I worked really hard in the offseason," said Mosher, who also won titles in both events in the district 3 and OCC-Capital Division meets this season.
At regional, Mosher won the discus with a throw of 162 feet, 4 inches and tossed 56-4 in the shot put to edge Central Crossing's Luis Bolanos-Cruz (55-11 1/4). A year ago at state, Mosher placed eighth (56-6) in the shot put.
His performance helped Big Walnut finish fifth (39 points) at regional behind Pickerington Central (97), Olentangy Orange (60.5), Gahanna (48) and Pickerington North (47) as 41 teams scored.
At the OCC-Capital Division meet that concluded May 12, Mosher threw 59-5 in the shot put, breaking a school record (58-1/2) that had stood for nearly 50 years, according to coach Eric Myers.
"In both events, he's become such a technician in the ring," Myers said. "He just has great, great feet. He has great drive and he's pushed himself to get to the state meet in both events."
Mosher was joined at state by senior Tim Rumas, who qualified in both the 100 meters and 200. A first-time state qualifier, Rumas placed second in the 200 (21.53 seconds) behind Gahanna's LeCarr Trent (21.52) and finished fifth in the 100 (10.98). He earned an at-large state berth in the 100.
"Last year was his first ever to run track," Myers said of Rumas. "When he came out, he really started teaching himself and doing a lot of video work. ... He's just a very, very competitive kid, and I think he just fell in love with (running track)."
Also at regional, the 400 relay of Dante Chhuom, Caleb Ramey, Devon Bingman and Rumas placed fifth (43.31), the 800 relay of Ramey, Shane Swartzentruber, Bingman and Rumas was sixth (1:29.85), Ramey finished 10th in the long jump (19-10) and Jackson Podraza tied for 14th in the high jump (5-8).
Kaley Rammelsberg returned to state for the girls team, which finished 20th (8.5) at regional behind champion Gahanna (84) as 32 teams scored.
The junior placed fourth in the high jump (5-3) after winning a jump-off against Hilliard Darby's Stacia Rispress for the final state berth.
"I'm really happy I got to state, but I'm not happy with my performance at regional," said Rammelsberg, who finished 12th (5-2) at state last season. "In the jump-off, I knew that this could be it for me, and I might not go to state. But I started calming down. ... I cleared it by a lot, but (Rispress) missed it."
Also competing at regional were Colbi Borland in the 3,200 (sixth, 11:13.63), the 3,200 relay of Kaitlin Meade, Borland, Adelee Gartner and Becca Bogantz (eighth, 9:38.58) and Meade in the 800 (13th, 2:22.78).
Softball team had up-and-down season
Despite finishing one game under .500, the softball team reached a Division II district final and produced some memorable victories.
"We had an up-and-down season, but I was telling the girls we made a district final, we beat Olentangy (9-7 on April 6), which went to the regional final in Division I, and we beat Groveport (9-8 on May 2) and snapped their 27-game league win streak," coach Jeff Hatfield said. "Those were big wins for us."
Big Walnut lost to second-seeded Jonathan Alder 20-3 in five innings in a district final May 18 at Pickerington Central to fall one win shy of its first district championship since 2014 and finish 12-13 overall.
Seeded fifth, the Golden Eagles opened the district tournament with a 10-0 victory over Hartley in the second round May 10 and defeated Sparta Highland 7-6 in a district semifinal May 16 before falling to the Pioneers.
Big Walnut went 5-5 in the OCC-Capital to finish fourth behind Groveport (9-1), Newark (7-3) and New Albany (7-3) and ahead of Canal Winchester (2-8) and Franklin Heights (0-10).
The offense led the way for the Golden Eagles, who averaged nine runs and batted .412 as a team.
One of five seniors on the roster, outfielder Meredith Thomas had a team-high .593 batting average with 27 RBI, five doubles, one triple and two home runs and was named second-team all-state and first-team all-district and all-league.
The other seniors were first baseman Alexyss Bullock (.421, team-high 29 RBI, 8 doubles, 2 home runs; special mention all-district and all-league), outfielder Emma Schwinne (.469, 12 RBI, 5 doubles) and pitchers Vanessa Sharpe and Stacey Walters (.427, 24 RBI, 4 doubles, 6 home runs).
In the circle, Walters was 7-10 with a 6.51 ERA, 60 strikeouts and 81 walks in 90 1/3 innings.
Among the expected returnees are freshman infielder Arielle Brown (.481, 22 RBI, 6 doubles, 1 home run), junior center fielder Jocelyn Lucas (.423, 16 RBI, 9 doubles) and sophomore catcher Molly Sharpe (.429, 23 RBI, 3 doubles, 2 triples, 3 home runs).
Brown was named first-team all-district and all-league, Lucas was second-team all-district and all-league and Sharpe was honorable mention all-league.