Coach Jenna Haskins believed the Olentangy Berlin High School softball team might face a steep learning curve in its inaugural season, but that hasn't been the case.
The Bears have competed with some of the area's best teams and were 6-10 overall and 4-6 in the OCC-Cardinal Division after losing to Dublin Jerome 5-2 on April 22.
"I believe we are going above anyone's expectations right now with three juniors and only one player who was a varsity starter before this year," Haskins said. "We're turning heads with what we have been able to accomplish."
An example would be a 6-5 comeback victory over Dublin Scioto on April 17 in league play. Trailing 5-2, Berlin scored four times in the bottom of the seventh inning to win with sophomore Maia Crumb driving in the decisive run.
"We were down 4-0 in the first inning, but we were able to battle back," said Haskins, whose team lost to the Irish 15-7 on April 1 in the first league meeting. "I tell the girls when there is a challenge that it's just another way to get better."
Haskins has been most impressed with how her players have become interchangeable with a different one stepping to the forefront each game.
Kirsten Kracht is the lone player with much varsity experience, having started for Olentangy last season. Through 14 games, she led the Bears in batting average (.476), home runs (3), RBI (13), runs (15), triples (3), on-base percentage (.542) and slugging percentage (.881).
Allie Burkhart was batting .409 with 11 RBI and 13 runs, and Blythe Beaumont was hitting .381 with 10 RBI. Crumb was batting .361 with two homers and 12 RBI.
Berlin has two freshmen pitchers in Kali Bateman and Ally Siegrist. Both were 3-4 with Siegrist having a 4.02 ERA in 45 1/3 innings and Bateman a 4.59 ERA in 39 2/3 innings.
"It's been a variety of girls leading us, which is a fantastic thing," Haskins said "Our top four batters have all been able to produce for us. We also have two freshmen pitchers that are learning, and they are showing a lot of mental toughness."
Track teams take 3rd at Hamilton Township
The boys and girls track and field teams both finished third in the Elmo Kallner Invitational on April 20 at Hamilton Township.
Luke Walden won the pole vault (14 feet) and Corey Rinehart was first in the 1,600 meters (4 minutes, 38.15 seconds) for the boys, who scored 99.5 points to finish behind Canal Winchester (133) and Groveport (109). Ethan Harsh was runner-up in the 300 hurdles (42.48).
For the girls, the 400 relay of Sierra Cardi, Cara Susey, Skylar Stevenson and Meghan Hill was first (51.53) as the Bears scored 81 points to finish behind Canal Winchester (112) and Teays Valley (91).
The 3,200 relay of Rebecca Koppelman, Olivia Cool, Olivia Neidhardt and Aneesah Ahmed placed second (10:15.07). Also finishing second were Meghan Boggess in the 3,200 (12:01.06) and Susey in the 300 hurdles (49.45).
Euton, Moeller leading baseball team
Tyler Euton and Jake Moeller were leading the baseball team at the plate through 14 games.
Moeller led in batting average (.333) and RBI (7) and had scored nine runs. Euton was batting .324 with six RBI and had team highs in runs (11) and stolen bases (3). Jacob Lewis was batting .297 with six RBI and eight runs, and Mitch Herbst was hitting .278.
On the mound, Adam Wallace was 2-3 with a 2.05 ERA, 16 strikeouts and nine walks in 30 2/3 innings. Chris Nash was 2-2 with a 3.14 ERA, 15 strikeouts and 19 walks in 29 innings.
The Bears were 6-9 overall and 2-4 in the OCC-Cardinal after losing to Jerome 6-4 on April 22.
Below are the coming schedules for the Berlin baseball, boys lacrosse, girls lacrosse, softball, boys tennis, track & field and boys volleyball teams:
April 25 -- At DeSales
*April 26 -- Home vs. Thomas Worthington
*April 29 -- Home vs. Hilliard Darby
*May 1 -- At Darby
*April 25 -- At Hilliard Bradley
*April 30 -- Home vs. Delaware
*April 25 -- Home vs. Bradley
*April 30 -- At Delaware
*April 25 -- At Darby. The Bears defeated the Panthers 11-0 (5 innings) on April 10.
April 26 -- At Hartley
*April 29 -- Home vs. Worthington Kilbourne. The Bears defeated the Wolves 7-5 on April 11.
April 30 -- At Olentangy
*May 1 -- At Delaware. The Bears lost to the Pacers 12-2 (6 innings) on April 15.
April 25 -- Home vs. Westerville South
April 29 -- Home vs. Westerville Central
April 30 -- At Big Walnut
*May 1 -- At Dublin Scioto
TRACK & FIELD
April 26 -- Olentangy Invitational
April 29 -- At Orange with Reynoldsburg
*April 25 -- Home vs. Thomas. The Bears lost to the Cardinals 25-15, 25-15, 18-25, 25-16 on April 8.
*April 30 -- At Darby. The Bears lost to the Panthers 25-11, 25-12, 25-10 on April 9.
May 1 -- At Licking Heights