The Bexley High School boys golf team recently began its season, but coach Jimmy Ryan already is looking toward the postseason.
The Central District sends just one team and one individual qualifier to the Division II state tournament Oct. 12 and 13 at Ohio State's Scarlet Course. That leaves Ryan concerned the Lions could be left behind like last season.
Looking to advance to its third consecutive state tournament, Bexley shot 306 to finish second at district last fall, four strokes behind Columbus Academy.
The Lions won district titles in 2015 and 2016. They won the state championship in 2015 and were fourth in 2016 as current senior Trevor Binau won medalist honors with a 144.
"We still have a chance (to make it back to state), but we have a ways to go," said Ryan, who is in his 16th season. "It's really disconcerting. They have a new administration (at the Ohio High School Athletic Association) and I thought they would look to fix this (limited number of state qualifiers). They could have increased the number of teams (at state) from 12 to 16 or added a regional level, but they just left things as they were."
Binau shot a 75 at district last fall. Will Hoyer, a 2018 graduate, led Bexley with a 72, one shot behind medalist and state-qualifier Trent Tipton of Hartley.
"I pretty much have been doing the same things I have been for the last four or five years to prepare for the season," said Binau, who was Player of the Year in the district and MSL-Ohio Division the past two seasons. "I try not to overwork myself to get back (to state). I trust what I have been doing will put me in position to do that."
Ryan said he's happy to have Binau as his No. 1 player.
"Trevor shot a 66 at tryouts for us (Aug. 2 at Westchester), which is a (program) record for us," Ryan said. "He holds pretty much all the records for us."
Also returning are seniors Bo Collier and Aaron Meyer and juniors Tyler Roberts and Micah Rubinstein.
Rounding out the roster are senior Will Blank, junior Max Gardner, sophomores Lee Hillman, Will Meyer, Ethan Thompson and Ricky Walsh and freshmen Robby Meyer, Jake Schottenstein and Liam Timmons.
"We can put out five pretty good golfers starting with Trevor, but we should continue to improve as the season goes on," Ryan said. "We have a good mix of talent and we should be in good shape heading into the postseason."
The Lions were second last fall in the MSL-Ohio, which included two state championship teams. They went 10-2 to finish behind Division II champion Academy (11-1) and ahead of Division III champion Worthington Christian (6-6).
Bexley competed in the MSL-Ohio preseason tournament Aug. 7 at Westchester and placed second (300) behind Academy (298).
Girls golfers eager to learn
Brycen Baugh likes the work ethic displayed by the girls golf team in his first season as coach.
"I really like the fact that they have a natural desire to want to play golf and get better," said Baugh, who spent 10 seasons coaching the middle school boys golf team. "They stay after practice and work on things from that day such as putting drills and chipping drills."
Four players return after competing in last season's Division I sectional, where junior Viviane Banion shot a 97 to lead the Lions.
Juniors Abbey Elizondo (110), Emma Segerman (127) and Kate Maynard (135) also competed. Senior Grace Brigdon (99) did not return to the program.
"Viviane and Abbey are our Nos. 1 and 2 and they are really close and it might switch from match to match," said Baugh, who also is an assistant boys basketball coach. "The girls are starting to realize that they are better than they were last year and have a chance to do well."
Laura Woodward is the team's lone senior and Audrey Lauerhass is a junior. Rounding out the roster are sophomore Brianna Rucker and freshmen Camilla Borders and Sienna Grant.
The Lions finished second (12-4) in the MSL-Ohio last fall behind Worthington Christian (14-2). They began league action Aug. 7 with the preseason tournament at Airport, shooting 376 to finish ahead of the runner-up Warriors (406).
Girls tennis team looks to define roles
Shelby Cheses is trying to determine which players will fill which courts in her 12th season coaching the girls tennis program.
The Lions return one Division II district qualifier from last season in Avery Weisman. The senior teamed with 2018 graduate Haley Wilson to play doubles at district.
"We're still deciding where everyone will be playing," said Cheses, whose team was 10-6 overall last season. "We're not going be super strong (at first singles), but we have a good group of girls and should be strong on other courts.
"We have to find the right spots for everyone. We have to figure out who is best suited for singles or doubles and how they pair up with their teammates."
Also back are senior Olivia Williams, juniors Katie Benedict, Ava Grossman and Ellie Levy and sophomore Stephanie Lehman. Junior Maxine Giller and sophomore Sydney Elliot also will be in the mix.
"Playing time is the big thing for us," Cheses said. "I got the girls to play some over the summer, but they didn't play in a lot of tournaments. They will continue to improve as the season goes on."
Bexley was third (27 points, 4-2) in the MSL-Ohio last fall behind Academy (51, 6-0) and Wellington (37, 5-1).
The Lions opened Aug. 14 against Thomas Worthington. They begin league action Aug. 28 against Whitehall.
Aug. 6 -- Columbus Academy Shootout at Columbus Country Club
Aug. 7 -- MSL-Ohio preseason tournament at Westchester
Aug. 8 -- Marysville Invitational at Darby Creek
Aug. 10 -- Bloom-Carroll at Pine Hill
Aug. 13 -- Fairfield Union at Westchester
Aug. 14 -- Worthington Christian Invitational at NorthStar
Aug. 16 -- Columbus Academy at Westchester
Aug. 18 -- Watkins Memorial Invitational at Cumberland Trail
Aug. 21 -- Grandview at Westchester
Aug. 25 -- MSL-Ohio midseason tournament at Turnberry
Aug. 28 -- Teays Valley at The Players Club at Foxfire
Sept. 1 -- Bob Darwin Memorial at Westchester
Sept. 4 -- Hartley at Westchester
Sept. 5 -- DeSales at Westchester
Sept. 8 -- Worthington Christian Invitational at Turnberry
Sept. 11 -- Watterson at Westchester
Sept. 12 -- Heath at Westchester
Sept. 15 -- Rodney Butt Classic at Denison Golf Club
Sept. 18 -- MSL-Ohio postseason tournament at Denison Golf Club
Sept. 20 -- Canal Winchester at Westchester
Aug. 7 -- MSL-Ohio preseason tournament at Airport
Aug. 9 -- Granville Invitational at Airport
*Aug. 13 -- Wellington at Blacklick Woods
*Aug. 22 -- Worthington Christian at Blackhawk
Aug. 29 -- Hartley at Blacklick Woods
*Aug. 31 -- Wellington at Raymond Memorial
*Sept. 6 -- Worthington Christian at Blacklick Woods
Sept. 11 -- Hartley at Jefferson
Sept. 15 -- Bloom-Carroll Invitational at Pine Hill
Sept. 18 -- MSL-Ohio postseason tournament at Airport
Sept. 27 -- Canal Winchester at Westchester
Aug. 14 -- vs. Thomas Worthington
Aug. 23 -- at Watkins Memorial
Aug. 18 -- Columbus School for Girls Doubles Tournament
Aug. 20 -- vs. Dublin Scioto
Aug. 22 -- vs. Gahanna
Aug. 27 -- vs. Reynoldsburg
*Aug. 28 -- vs. Whitehall
Aug. 30 -- at Upper Arlington B
Sept. 5 -- at Hilliard Bradley
*Sept. 6 -- at Grandview
Sept. 11 -- at Olentangy Berlin
Sept. 12 -- at Hilliard Darby
*Sept. 13 -- vs. Worthington Christian
Sept. 17 -- at Columbus School for Girls
*Sept. 20 -- at Columbus Academy
*Sept. 25 -- vs. Wellington
Sept. 26 -- vs. Watterson
Sept. 27 -- at Pickerington Central
Oct. 2 -- at Dublin Coffman
Below are the coming schedules for the Bexley cross country, field hockey, boys soccer, girls soccer and girls volleyball teams:
Aug. 20 -- New Albany Invitational
Aug. 20 -- Home vs. Olentangy Orange
Aug. 22 -- At Olentangy Berlin
Aug. 22 -- Home vs. Bloom-Carroll
Aug. 17 -- Home vs. Pickerington Central
Aug. 22 -- At Fairfield Union
Aug. 18 -- At Bloom-Carroll
Aug. 20 -- At Teays Valley
*Aug. 21 -- At Columbus Academy