Upper Arlington High School girls golfer Emily Hummer hoped all along that she would reach the Division I state tournament with her team for the second time in three years, but short of that, the junior won't complain about her finish.
Hummer shot a two-day total of 145 in the tournament that concluded Oct. 20 at Ohio State's Gray Course, finishing fifth of 72 golfers as Centerville's Marissa Wenzler earned medalist honors with a 138.
"I am definitely happy, but I still will remember whether I could have been better if I'd made this putt or that one," Hummer said. "But overall, I'm happy. Hopefully next year, the team can come and we can do even better."
Hummer, who was a freshman on UA's 2016 team that finished fourth at state, shot a 71 in the first round Oct. 19, largely on the strength of her putting. She had three birdies in her first five holes to offset a double bogey on No. 16.
"I wasn't putting that well at the beginning of the year, but I've been putting a lot better and that's kind of helped me," Hummer said. "I've been hitting the ball pretty solid and trying to stay focused mentally.
"I think I turned a corner right before (the sectional tournament). I'd had a few bad rounds in the high 70s and then before sectional, I talked to my brother (Andy) and he helped me and I've been playing better ever since. And it helps that (Ohio State) is my home course."
Hummer birdied her first hole Oct. 20 but shot 2-over par on the front nine and 2-over on the back nine.
"I feel like I'm comfortable here," Hummer said. "Sometimes in big events, you're not that comfortable. But with this, I am able to know the greens pretty well. I've been at a lot of different places. If I hit a bad shot here, well, I've been there before.
"It's a lot different as an individual, though. When you have your team, you feel a little more pressure because you are playing for your team. But as an individual, this is just for myself."
Most of UA's lineup is eligible to return, including junior Lizzie Murray, sophomores Reagan Nolan and Julia Rabadam and freshman Eileen Murray.
Girls water polo team falls in state final
The girls water polo team lost to the Cincinnati Mavericks 11-8 in the state final that concluded Oct. 22 at Cincinnati Princeton and featured a 45-hour delay because of a power outage.
The game began Oct. 20 but was suspended with 2 minutes, 42 seconds left in the third quarter and third-seeded UA trailing the top-seeded Mavericks 9-6. Caroline Colombo scored three goals to lead the Bears, who finished 23-12.
"It was black in there for about a minute or so. We couldn't even see the pool," coach Dan Peterkoski said. "The emergency lights came on, but the pool itself stopped working. It lost a foot of water anyway. ...
"None of us had ever been in a situation like this, so more or less, we just had to deal with it. It was an unfortunate circumstance, but the girls did a good job of regrouping (Oct. 22) and traveling an hour and 45 minutes each way for less than 20 minutes of game time."
Abby Hendershot, Grace McCarty, Katie McKenzie, Lydia Muldoon and Erin Reardon each added one goal for UA, which trailed 2-1 after the first quarter, 6-4 at halftime and 10-7 after three quarters.
The Bears began the state tournament with a 14-4 win over sixth-seeded Thomas Worthington in the second round Oct. 19 and defeated second-seeded Napoleon 10-5 in a semifinal Oct. 20.
UA was seeking its fourth state championship in five years, seventh in nine years and 17th overall.
Girls tennis season ends at state
For the second consecutive year, Evelyn Holman and Wendy Shi of the girls tennis team went 1-1 in the Division I state tournament.
Holman, a senior, and Shi, a junior, defeated Medina Highland's Rachel Fannin and Emily Hadler 6-3, 6-3 before losing to Mason's Ananya Aggarwal and Sanjana Reddy 6-3, 6-3 in the second round Oct. 19 at Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason.
"I feel like state is something that you're kind of nervous for every year, but this year I know my way around and feel like I know a lot of people here," Shi said. "It feels really familiar and really nice (playing with Holman). Last year, we put together our doubles team at the sectional, made a doubles team right there on the spot. This year, we played in some outside tournaments together.
"I think we were pretty aggressive (in first state match) coming to the net."
Holman and Shi were the only state qualifiers for UA, which went 11-1 overall and 5-0 in the OCC-Central Division to win its 29th league championship in 30 seasons. The Bears have been represented at state in 26 of the last 27 seasons, the only exception being 2012.
Runners prepping for regional
For the second consecutive year, both the boys and girls cross country teams are headed to the Division I regional meet Saturday, Oct. 27, at Pickerington North.
Both teams finished third in their respective district 2 meets Oct. 20 at Darby.
Heidi Heuerman placed third (18:23.5) to lead the girls team to 131 points and third place behind champion Granville (34) as 16 teams scored. The top six teams and top 24 individuals advanced to regional.
Also scoring for the Bears were Eileen Dunn (28th, 20:32.9), Megan Kiehl (29th, 20:33.9), Danika Ratnapradipa (35th, 20:44) and Mallory Sharp (36th, 20:44.5).
The boys team placed all five of its scoring runners in the top 21 to score 80 points and place third behind champion Hilliard Davidson (30) as 16 teams scored. The top five teams and top 20 individuals advanced.
Thomas Richter was eighth (16:39.2) to lead the Bears, followed by Jack Amling (16th, 17:04.9), Charlie Nowinski (17th, 17:06.4), Nathaniel Swords (18th, 17:07.8) and Payton Domagalski (21st, 17:11.6).
At regional, the top five teams and top 20 individuals advance to the state meet Nov. 3 at National Trail Raceway.
Girls soccer team rolls into semifinal
The girls soccer team played host to 12th-seeded Darby in a Division I district semifinal Oct. 23, a game that at least on paper figured to be closer than the ninth-seeded Bears' first two tournament contests.
UA outscored its first two postseason opponents 20-0, including a 10-0 second-round home win over 43rd-seeded Mifflin on Oct. 18. Sarah Poling scored two goals to lead the Bears, who also beat 36th-seeded Whetstone by the same score in a first-round home game Oct. 15.
UA was 11-4-3 before playing Darby, needing two wins for its first district championship since 2015.
The UA-Darby winner plays third-seeded Dublin Jerome or 16th-seeded Olentangy Liberty in a district final Saturday, Oct. 27, at a neutral site. The district champion faces Gahanna, Marysville, Watterson or Westerville North in a regional semifinal Tuesday, Oct. 30, at a neutral site. The regional final is Nov. 3.
UA defeated North 2-0 on Aug. 28 and Jerome 4-1 on Sept. 18, lost to Gahanna 4-1 on Sept. 15 and played Marysville to a scoreless tie on Oct. 2.
Boys water polo team preparing for state
The boys water polo team will seek its first state championship since 2012 when it competes in the state tournament Friday, Oct. 26, and Saturday, Oct. 27, at Mason and Princeton.
Seeded third of 13 teams, UA earned a first-round bye and will play sixth-seeded Cincinnati St. Xavier or 11th-seeded Worthington Kilbourne in the second round. The winner would need one more win to reach the state final, and the loser will finish no better than fifth.
The Bears finished fifth at state last year.
UA, which has not played since an 11-5 win over Kilbourne on Oct. 10, is 23-8.
"We've played a lot of good teams and I think that will prepare us for (this) weekend," coach J.J. Spangler said. "We've had some injuries and some adversity, but we've kept together as a team and kept a single goal in mind the entire season: winning the state championship."
Alec Caswell has a team-high 91 goals, followed by Jake Meyer (65), Avery Voss (55) and Reed Ray (52).
According to Spangler, senior Daniel Seely will be the Bears' goaltender this weekend after seeing limited action during the regular season.
"He's stepped up when we needed him and has done a great job," Spangler said. "It's not an easy position to learn, but he's picking things up."
Volleyball team falls in second round
The girls volleyball team's best season in eight years came to an end Oct. 17, when 10th-seeded UA lost to 11th-seeded DeSales 19-25, 25-17, 25-19, 25-18 in the second round of the Division I district tournament at home.
UA finished 17-7 overall, marking its most wins since going 19-5 in 2010, and 8-2 in the OCC-Central to finish second behind Dublin Coffman (10-0). The Bears' only losses in league play were to the Shamrocks.
UA began the postseason with a 20-25, 25-9, 19-25, 25-18, 25-11 home win over 30th-seeded Teays Valley on Oct. 15.
"We gave everything we had. (DeSales) has a great team with some great players and this was a battle," coach Chris Van Arsdale said. "There were probably runs of three or four points in each one of those sets that if they'd have gone the other way, we would have been just fine. This was a tough one.
"We knew this would be a tough road. If we had managed to pull this one off, we'd have seen (ninth-seeded Dublin) Scioto next (in a district semifinal). We liked our odds and we knew we'd have two great matches. It just didn't go our way."
Boys soccer team ousted by Cardinals
The boys soccer team's season came to a quick end Oct. 20 when the ninth-seeded Bears lost to 21st-seeded Thomas Worthington 3-2 (5-4 on penalty kicks) in the second round of the Division I district tournament at home.
Diego Ly and Anthony Reisman scored for UA, which had taken a first-round bye and finished 8-5-4.
Field hockey team loses to Patriots
The field hockey team finished 10-7-1 after a 3-0 loss at fifth-seeded Liberty in the second round of the district tournament Oct. 17.
UA, which was seeded seventh, had advanced with a 2-0 home win over 15th-seeded Hartley in the first round Oct. 15.
The Bears, who recorded their most wins since going 13-5 in 2015, expect to return several key players, including juniors Sophie Croci (forward/midfielder) and Olivia Wang (defender) and sophomore forward Katie Webber.