Haydon Spaulding wasn't pleased with his time racing as an individual for the Hilliard Bradley High School boys cross country team in the Division I regional meet Oct. 27 at Pickerington North, but the junior dealt with the cold, rainy weather as best he could to get much-needed experience for next fall.
Spaulding finished 62nd of 127 runners in 17 minutes, 20.9 seconds, as the top 20 individuals advanced to state Saturday, Nov. 3, at National Trail Raceway.
"I think I could have gone out faster and I should have placed higher, but it was pretty muddy out there and usually I don't do well in windy and cold races," Spaulding said. "I gave it all I had, so that's the important thing.
"In the woods, the mud was pretty bad, and I don't know if I have seen a course that's this muddy. That slowed down a lot of people, including me, but I pushed through the mud as hard as I could."
Pickerington North's Matt Duvall (15:54.6) finished first, while Worthington Kilbourne's Tanner Williams (16:38.2) was 20th.
"I don't think Haydon's particularly happy, but I know that this is the next step that he needed to take going into his senior year," coach Ben Gadfield said. "As a coaching staff, we're thrilled with the way he has finished this year out.
"He ran at the regional meet as a freshman when we made it as a team. A lot of maturing has taken place between now and them. This is a very, very valuable experience for him going into his senior year."
Spaulding finished 15th (16:48.4) of 97 runners in the district 1 meet Oct. 20 at Darby to qualify for regional.
"I can take this as a learning experience to prepare myself for next year," Spaulding said after competing at regional. "I'm definitely going to come out and race as hard as I possibly can next year."
Others with postseason experience who are expected to return are junior Eli Schneider and sophomores Caden Burkhart, Joshua George and Robby Klise.
"We have been saying for two years we're young and now we will have some older guys and be where we want to be next year," Gadfield said.
The girls team did not have any regional qualifiers.
Juniors Isabella Brooks and Kate Hittie and sophomores Amber Figueroa, Ella Richardson and Audrey Schmidt are expected to return after competing in the postseason.
Girls volleyball team ousted by top seed
The 17th-seeded girls volleyball team lost to top-seeded Olentangy Liberty 25-16, 25-19, 25-17 in a Division I district semifinal Oct. 23 at Franklin Heights to finish 14-11.
Bradley was led by junior Allie Holland, a 6-foot-4 middle blocker and University of Tennessee recruit. She was named first-team all-OCC-Cardinal after leading the team in kills (346) and blocks (90) while also having 141 digs and 25 aces.
Junior setter Riley Speelman (second-team all-league) led in assists (717), digs (201) and aces (45) and had 94 kills and 27 blocks. Sophomore middle blocker Anna Alford (6-2; honorable mention all-league) had 135 kills and 72 blocks, and junior middle blocker Bella Colombini had 108 kills and 30 blocks.
Freshman outside hitter Maggie Willis had 99 kills, 27 blocks, 103 digs and 24 aces, sophomore outside hitter Clare Flanagan added 71 kills, 141 digs and 30 aces, sophomore outside hitter P.J. Kern had 61 kills and 30 aces and senior defensive specialist Emily Ewen had 105 kills.
Boys soccer team falls to Warhawks
The boys soccer team lost 1-0 at eighth-seeded Westerville Central in a Division I district semifinal Oct. 24 to finish 11-6-2.
Sophomore goalkeeper Dominic Williams had nine saves for the 10th-seeded Jaguars.
Senior midfielder Ethan Love led Bradley with nine goals and five assists and junior forward Jordan Mendez had seven goals and four assists. Both were named first-team all-OCC-Cardinal.
Senior midfielder Matt Berner (second-team all-league) had five goals and four assists, junior midfielder Avery Ramsey had three goals and one assist and sophomore forward Chris Crock added three goals.
Also receiving league honors were senior midfielder Derek Morgan (honorable mention) and sophomore defender Rishil Patel (special mention).
Williams had 71 saves on the season, and junior goalie Musa Musa had 44.