As he prepared to enter the field for what would become his final game as a member of the Ready football team, senior Jacob Robinson beamed with joy.
His 8-year-old brother, Mason Robinson, was dressed in a Silver Knights costume -- complete with toy sword in hand -- because he'd been given the task of leading the team onto the field for its game Oct. 11 against Harvest Prep at Fortress Obetz.
The moment was especially heartwarming to Jacob and his family because of what Mason endures on a regular basis.
In addition to having cerebral palsy, which affects a person's ability to move and maintain balance and posture and has sometimes forced him into a wheelchair, Mason also has spent significant time in the hospital over the years because of seizures.
Mason has ESES, which is short for electrical status epilepticus during sleep and causes him to have seizures that occur while he's awake and asleep.
"Nobody else really knows what it's like behind closed doors and how much effort me and my whole family put into helping him," Jacob said. "He still uses his wheelchair, so it was a really happy moment for him to (lead the team onto the field). It was nice to see him do that because of what he's been through being in and out of the hospital."
Nationwide Children's Hospital has become a familiar place over the years for the Robinsons because of Mason, but Jacob also recently was forced there.
A starter on both the offensive and defensive lines who had 25 tackles with two tackles for loss and one sack this fall, Jacob's season ended early in overtime of Ready's 21-15 loss to Harvest Prep.
While he was blocking on offense, Robinson took a helmet to his left calf. Trainers tried to work on the injury but he was unable to return.
Over the next few days, the calf swelled to the point that he was taken to the emergency room. The pain and swelling continued to worsen, and after his toes and foot began to go numb, doctors found a hema-toma that would require surgery.
"They sent me home on crutches, and I had gotten on the bus and was on my way to watch us play Whitehall (on Oct. 18) since I was going to be out for this game," Jacob said. "I was like, 'I really can't feel my foot,' so they brought me back in. I went through surgery (Oct. 18 and) I had another surgery (Oct. 21)."
Robinson isn't likely to return for Ready's season finale Friday, Nov. 1, against Grandview at Fortress Obetz.
Before playing Bexley on Oct. 25, the Knights were 3-5, including falling 20-10 at Whitehall for their third consecutive loss.
Robinson is planning to return for the wrestling season this winter and is hoping to play Division III college football, with Wilmington among the schools he's considering.
According to coach Joel Cutler, Robinson's nickname is "Biscuit" because of a situation that took place years ago.
"(Jacob) had youth football weigh-ins and prior to that he was eating sausage and gravy," Cutler said. "He made it only by a pound and then inherited the name 'Biscuit' because he was a biscuit away from not being able to play.
"It's been an honor to coach Jacob. He and his family have endured a lot with his younger brother. He has been a weight-room warrior. ... He never misses a 6 a.m. workout and has been a leader for the offensive and defensive lines. I'm really proud of the young man he's become."
Although Mason always has dealt with seizures, his condition worsened in February 2018. He was having about 100 seizures per day, had two bouts of meningitis and was struggling to walk.
A second-grader, his condition began to improve earlier this year.
"It's a roller coaster and we don't really make a lot of plans these days," mother Kim Robinson said. "We thought this would be so cool if Mason could run out in the tunnel with the boys and potentially get out on the field, so we talked to coach Cutler about it and he (agreed) 100 percent that this would be amazing. He's kind of like the little mascot. He loves football and loves the sport. It's such a small gesture, but it's so huge for our family.
"The football team has been so supportive of Mason and of Jacob as well. Everybody sees (Mason) and the people just swarm towards him because they're just so excited to see him doing well. Coach Cutler is just amazing. He's been so supportive of our family. (Jacob has) been playing football since he was 4. Even though (his season) had to end early, it couldn't have been a better year."
Most of boys, girls runners to return
The boys and girls cross country teams should return most of their top competitors next season.
In the 12-team Division II, district 1 meet Oct. 19 at Hilliard Darby, the boys were last (358) behind champion Lakewood (38) as freshman Zachary Swierz led with a 66th-place finish (21 minutes, 24.2 seconds), followed by sophomore Austin Burgoon (67th, 21:31.3), freshman Ben Johns (73rd, 23:08.7), senior Hunter McBrayer (75th, 24:20.2) and freshman Andrew Wolfe (77th, 27:41.8).
Sophomore Erik Rodriguez, who did not compete at district, was the team's No. 1 runner in the CCL meet when he finished 29th (19:30.74) on Oct. 12 at Westerville Community Center.
"(The boys team has) been working really hard this season and has made significant progress," coach Rachel Wayne said.
The girls didn't post a team score in the Division III district meet Oct. 19 at Darby as sophomore Addison Whitmer led with a 64th-place finish (23:27.8), followed by freshman Kate Radwanski (94th, 25:55.8), sophomore Amelia Freeman (107th, 29:01.1) and junior Makenna Freeman (110th, 29:35.6).
Senior Lindsey Bair, junior Ava Hurd and sophomore Allison Bair were others in the program.
"Addison Whitmer has an excellent work ethic and strives to do her best always," Wayne said.
Girls soccer season ends in second round
The eighth-seeded girls soccer team had its season end with a 7-1 loss at top-seeded Grandview on Oct. 19 in the second round of the Division III district tournament.
Ready, which went 7-9-1, loses a seven-member senior class that was led by first-team all-league midfielder Lindsey Bair and second-team all-league defender Lauren Schlosser. Bair led in scoring with seven goals and four assists.
Also earning first-team all-league honors were junior midfielder Ava Hurd and sophomore midfielder Caroline Buendia, while sophomore forward Abigail Grundei and junior goalie Alyssa Sanders both were on the second team.
Others eligible to return include junior Cielo Lopez (defender/midfielder), sophomore Sophia Bowman (midfielder) and freshmen Ava Baker (midfielder), Lyla Hurd (forward), Natalie Morocho (midfielder) and Jesica Saldana (defender).