The disappointment on Leila Raines' face was evident after the Division I girls golf state tournament Oct. 20 at Ohio State's Gray Course.
After shooting an opening-round 69 on Oct. 19, the Olentangy Berlin High School junior shot a 72 on the second day for a total of 141, three strokes behind medalist Marissa Wenzler of Centerville to finish second.
Raines had expected better, but the playing conditions changed from dry, fast greens in the first round to windy weather and soggy greens in the second.
"It was definitely tougher putting (in the second round), trying to get the speed down," said Raines, who became the first athlete from Berlin to reach a state tournament. "I was minus-2 (from par) through 12 (holes) and then I (double-bogeyed) 13 and bogeyed 16 and 17 to finish plus-2.
"It's a game of misses with all of the wind. You have to miss it in the right spot, especially on these greens. If you miss it above the hole, then good luck."
Raines, a Michigan State commit, was making her second appearance at state. She finished seventh (72) in a rain-shortened, one-day state tournament as a freshman at Olentangy but did not play last fall, opting to compete in several top-flight amateur events.
Coach Bethany Dlesk said Raines had her usual steady performance.
"Leila has a lot to be proud of," Dlesk said. "She did very well and was very consistent. She played very well considering the conditions."
Raines played with the boys team during the regular season because the girls program had only two other participants in junior Sierra Cardi and freshman Michele Starner.
In the district tournament Oct. 9 at Cooks Creek, Raines shot a 72 to earn one of two individual-qualifying berths to state. She was medalist with a 72 in a sectional Oct. 2 at Mentel Memorial.
"I think (Raines' state appearance) is going to make more girls (at Berlin) interested in the sport," Dlesk said. "They see that it's the first year that we're open and we have a girl go to state, maybe they'll want to be a part of that. Hopefully it helps us get more girls (to try) out."
Raines expects to return to the boys program next fall and plans to play in the boys postseason as well.
"I was a little disappointed that this is my last chance at a (girls) state title, but that's how it goes," she said. "It's been a lot of fun."
Cross country teams to compete at regional
The boys and girls cross country teams will compete in the Division II regional meet Saturday, Oct. 27, at Pickerington North.
The boys race sends the top seven teams and top 28 individuals to state Nov. 3 at National Trail Raceway. In the girls race, the top six teams and top 24 individuals qualify for state.
Corey Rinehart was 10th (17 minutes, 24.9 seconds) to lead the boys team to second (76 points) in the district 1 race Oct. 20 at Hilliard Darby behind Heath (27). The top three teams advanced to regional.
Jacob Reitz (12th, 17:27.8), Grant Schrieber (16th, 17:47.6), Jack Dunlop (18th, 17:57.5) and Ethan Harsh (20th, 18:01.9) also scored.
Meghan Boggess was fifth (19:51.6) at district to lead the girls, who were fourth (98) behind champion Buckeye Valley (61) as the top five teams advanced.
Also scoring were Katie Balthaser (11th, 20:33.1), Rebecca Koppelman (16th, 20:45.1), Megan Schlabig (33rd, 21:51.1) and Madison Lapid (39th, 22:07.4).
Boys soccer team reaches district semi
The seventh-seeded boys soccer team was 6-8-4 before playing at second-seeded Columbus Academy on Oct. 24 in a Division II district semifinal.
The winner advanced to a district final Saturday, Oct. 27, against third-seeded Granville or sixth-seeded Bexley at a neutral site to be determined. The Bears defeated Granville 3-2 on Sept. 27 and Bexley 1-0 on Oct. 4.
The district champion faces Bellbrook, Cincinnati Indian Hill, Cincinnati McNicholas or Kettering Alter in a regional semifinal Wednesday, Oct. 31, at London.
Berlin opened the postseason with a 9-0 win over 21st-seeded Eastmoor Academy on Oct. 16. Harrison Bialos scored three times and Connor Kindell had two goals.
Brendan Greenhalge had three goals and Landon Kuhn had two as the Bears defeated 22nd-seeded Licking Valley 9-0 on Oct. 20 in the second round.
Girls soccer team wins marathon contest
The seventh-seeded girls soccer team was 6-12 before playing at top-seeded Gran-ville on Oct. 23 in a Division II district semifinal.
The winner advanced to a district final against second-seeded Big Walnut or fourth-seeded Bloom-Carroll on Saturday, Oct. 27, at a neutral site to be determined. The Bears lost to Big Walnut 5-0 on Sept. 11.
The district champion plays Chillicothe Unioto, Circleville, Fairfield Union or Waverly in a regional semifinal Tuesday, Oct. 30, at Bloom-Carroll.
The Bears needed two days to finish their second-round, 3-2 double-overtime victory over sixth-seeded Buckeye Valley. The contest started Oct. 18, but the teams were forced to return for the second overtime Oct. 20 because of darkness.
Sydney Walker scored her second goal and the game-winner off a pass from Ashley Kerekes just 30 seconds into the second overtime. Olivia Neidhardt scored the other goal.
Volleyball team falls to Licking Valley
The 13th-seeded girls volleyball team lost at 11th-seeded Licking Valley 25-18, 25-13, 22-25, 25-13 on Oct. 17 in the second round of the Division II district tournament.
The Bears finished 4-18 overall and 1-13 in the OCC-Cardinal.
Sophomore middle blocker/outside hitter Heather Higgins led Berlin in kills (152) and blocks (26) and had 103 digs and 28 aces. Freshman setter Elise Brown led in assists (253) and aces (37) and had 70 kills.
Sophomore defensive specialist Jenna Boucher led with 189 digs and had 24 aces. Other top contributors were junior right-side hitter/setter Morgan Lenix (103 kills, 34 aces, 116 digs, 158 assists), freshman right-side hitter/middle blocker Lauren Young (99 kills, 21 blocks), junior defensive specialist Shelby Buck (153 digs, 22 aces) and freshman outside hitter Ella Showalter (50 kills).
Field hockey team loses to Academy
The field hockey team lost to top-seeded Academy 12-0 on Oct. 17 in the second round of the district tournament.
Junior goalkeeper Olivia Himes had 14 saves for the 18th-seeded Bears, who finished 0-15-1 overall and 0-7-1 in the Central Ohio Field Hockey League-West.
Key players expected to return include junior defenders Bri Hibbitts, Morgan McNevin and Molly Porter, sophomore forward/midfielder Jenna Brennan, sophomore midfielder Courtney Souchan, freshman forward Payton Aloi and freshman forward/midfielder Olivia Eisenhower.