The Hilliard Davidson cross country teams continued their domination at the district level, but again have their sights set on bigger goals.
Both teams easily won Division I district titles Oct. 19 at Darby to earn berths in the regional meet Saturday, Oct. 26, at Pickerington North.
The girls team won its 10th consecutive district title, finishing first (23 points) in the 17-team district 3 meet, well ahead of second-place Lancaster (86).
Lindsay Stull cruised to the win, finishing first of 115 runners in 18 minutes, .5 seconds. Big Walnut's Colbi Borland was second (18:30.3).
"Like the others, it's a steppingstone for Lindsay," girls coach Nate King said. "We know this is a course where you can run fast times, so we were all excited to pull the trigger and see what we could run before focusing on placing at regional and state. Lindsay is doing well, very steady, very healthy. She's a great leader. We have a very balanced team from the front to No. 7."
Sophia Hoersten placed third (18:48.2), followed by Sydney Petersen (fourth, 19:06.1), Keagan Gehring (seventh, 19:16.6), Ava Hoersten (eighth, 19:21.6), Justine Smith (10th, 19:28.7) and Alyssa Mason (11th, 19:36.3).
The top six teams and top 24 individuals advanced to regional.
"We had a big training week because we're trying to focus on state, so you can't pull back your training too early," King said. "They were a little tired, but they ran pretty well. In district, things spread out a lot because there's not a ton of teams, so you have to run in open air and they did a pretty good job doing that."
Petersen is looking forward to again contending for a state team berth.
"We focus on sticking together, closing the gap between Lindsay and Sophia, and me, Alyssa and Keagan working as a pack and working for each other," said Petersen, a senior. "It's been like that since freshman year and it's so much better that way because we have fun together and we just enjoy each other."
The boys finished first (39) in the 16-team district 1 meet, well ahead of runner-up Olentangy Orange (78). It was the Wildcats' fourth consecutive district title.
The top five teams and top 20 individuals advanced to regional.
Connor Ackley led Davidson by finishing first of 114 runners in 15:59.5.
Nick Puhl was third (16:19.5), followed by Alex Hudson (10th, 16:29.6), R.J. Sagrilla (11th, 16:34.4), Mitchell Montgomery (14th, 16:38.7), Noah Pease (19th, 16:42.8) and Nate Gilbert (21st, 16:44.8).
"We wanted to make sure we packed it up today and move up in the field like we have been all season," boys coach Pat Schlecht said. "It was a real good effort because there's always these kids from the other schools that are peaking right now, so there's always athletes in there running great times.
"It's about knowing your guys and where they need to be and are they connected in doing all those things."
At regional, the top five teams and top 20 individuals advance to state Nov. 2 at National Trail Raceway.
Miller ends first year as boys golf coach
Brett Miller noted several highlights during his first season as boys golf coach.
This past offseason, he replaced Monte Rhoden, who retired after 29 seasons and guided the Wildcats to nine consecutive Division I district tournament appearances.
"This was a lot of fun," Miller said. "I enjoyed being out here with the guys, watching them get better from the beginning to the end."
Sophomore Zach Burton represented the program in the Division I district tournament Oct. 8 at Apple Valley. He shot a 73 to tie for seventh of 72 golfers, as the top two teams and top two individuals not on qualifying teams advanced to state.
"It's exciting to see where he's going to be next year and his senior year," Miller said.
The Wildcats saw their streak of competing at district as a team end, as they finished ninth (337) in a sectional Oct. 1 at Denison Golf Club.
Burton had a 74.75 average in the four-round OCC-Central tournament and made first-team all-league. Senior Zach Welch (83.25) and freshman Matt Jackson (90) were honorable mention all-league.
Juniors Cam Colman and Will Nocco also are eligible to return.
Season ends for boys soccer team
The sixth-seeded boys soccer team saw its season end Oct. 17 with a 2-1 overtime loss at fifth-seeded Dublin Scioto in the second round of the Division I district tournament.
The Wildcats, who had a first-round bye, finished 12-3-2 overall.
Davidson forced overtime on a goal by senior defender Charlie Riddle with 14 seconds left in regulation. Scioto's Jayden Lunsford scored in overtime.
"Whenever a (No.) 5 seed plays a (No.) 6 seed, you know it's going to be a war," coach Dan Hoover said. "We knew what we were in for. Scioto is a set-piece team and they played for set pieces. We tried to minimize those."
Winning the OCC-Central Division title was among the season highlights for Davidson. The Wildcats went 5-0 in league play, outscoring their opponents 20-0.
"Going 5-0 and not getting scored on in the conference is huge," Hoover said. "(The players) can take that (league title) with them. Their title will be posted in the rafters in the gymnasium and not many people can say that."
Senior forward Carter Ely led the team in scoring with 23 goals and three assists, followed by senior forward Daiki Matsuoka with eight goals and six assists and senior midfielder Sean Carrier with five goals and four assists.
Among the players expected to return are juniors Bilal Katabay (forward), Peter Nash (midfielder), Lorenzo Nieves (goalkeeper), Marco Perez Jr. (defender), Ayoub Ouhammou (midfielder), Omar Shaaban (forward) and Dylan Syvilayrack (midfielder) and sophomores Lucas Baker (defender), Sam Holden (forward), Carson Puhl (midfielder) and Yusei Tsunematsu (midfielder).