Ekaterina Brammer was anxious to hear the results.

The senior on the Big Walnut gymnastics team, who goes by "Kat," has missed competition since Dec. 20 because of a foot injury. She was scheduled to undergo an MRI on Jan. 16 that would help doctors determine how long she would be out.

Her hope is that it won't be long.

Brammer, a three-sport student-athlete, has many more goals to accomplish before heading to bootcamp in August as a member of the U.S. Marine Corps.

"I've always had a feeling that I wanted to give back to the country in one way or another," Brammer said. "I wasn't born in America. I was born in Russia, and this country has given me a lot, and I've always wanted to give back to it."

Brammer was born in St. Petersburg, the former capital of the Russian empire, and given up at birth. She was in an orphanage for two and a half years before Brad and Michele Brammer adopted her and her nonbiological brother, Andre, who also is a senior at Big Walnut, in 2003.

One of her first childhood memories was wearing a cast. Due to malnutrition in the orphanage, she had suffered a broken leg. And, it's one reason why she "fell in love" with gymnastics.

Doctors highly recommended the sport to her parents because Brammer had many sensory issues.

"Both of my children were confined to beds 17 hours a day at the orphanage, never had solid food, never had a bath before," Michele Brammer said. "Their upbringing has been quite remarkable considering all the things they've had to overcome physically, emotionally and mentally."

Brammer's strongest scores this season have come on floor exercise and balance beam.

In last season's district meet, she tied for 87th in the all-around (27.5 points), tied for 100th on vault (7.65) and placed 111th on floor (7.6) as Big Walnut finished 19th (113.1) of 24 teams.

"It's hard being my senior year and knowing that I won't be able to do it again," Brammer said.

By the end of this school year, she hopes to have her name added to the school's "12 Seasons of Greatness," which honors student-athletes who compete in 12 consecutive high school sports seasons "in good standing."

Since the start of her freshman year, Brammer has participated in competitive cheerleading, gymnastics and track and field. In track, she runs the 100 meters and competes in the pole vault.

Brammer also participates in drama club, plays in the marching band and carries a 4.0 GPA, her mother said.

But above all, the importance of service always has been stressed in the Brammer household, Michele said. The family has traveled the world, helped the homeless and is very involved with outreach at St. John Neumann Catholic Church in Sunbury.

"Her brother wants to be a police officer, so there is a strong desire to help others," Michele said. "They know their Russian story and know that they needed help."

After serving her country, Brammer plans to attend college and study medicine or law, but right now she's ready to make a difference.

In 2016, she won the Delaware County Chapter of the American Red Cross Youth Heroes Essay Contest, writing that "a lot of heroes are not famous. It's just when the time comes, they do the right thing."

Brammer's ready to do just that.

"Near and far, there are heroes all around," she wrote in her essay. "Some may be silent, some may be open. Some may work alone and others in groups. Whoever they are, they are here, and will never turn down a moment for help when there are people in need. They are the many, yet the few, but all the proud."

Mengel producing for boys bowling team

Bryan Mengel of the boys bowling team rolled games of 229 and 214 on his way to a match-high 443 two-game series in a 2,151-2,075 loss to Marysville on Jan. 15.

Prior to the Central District Preview on Jan. 18 at Columbus Square Bowling Palace, Mengel was averaging 190.8 pins per game on the season and had averaged 220 pins in his previous 10 games.

The Golden Eagles are 3-7 overall, 2-6 in the COHSBC-A Division and 1-4 in the OCC-Buckeye.

The girls team rolled a season-best score in defeating Marysville 1,813-1,548 on Jan. 15. Ashleigh Westervelt had a career-high game of 246 as part of a 414 series to lead all scorers in the match.

The Golden Eagles are 3-6 overall, 2-5 in the COHSBC-A and 0-4 in the OCC-Buckeye.

Trio leading boys team in scoring

Three players were averaging in double figures for the boys basketball team entering an OCC-Capital contest against Canal Winchester on Jan. 17.

Kegan Hienton was averaging a team-high 14.2 points, followed by Jared Kreager (12.1) and Jagger Barnett (11.6).

The Golden Eagles were 8-5 overall and 2-3 in the league before playing the Indians.




Below are the coming schedules for the Big Walnut boys basketball, girls basketball, bowling, gymnastics, swimming & diving and wrestling teams:


Jan. 21 -- At Olentangy

*Jan. 24 -- Home vs. New Albany. The Golden Eagles lost to the Eagles 51-49 (OT) on Dec. 13.


Jan. 21 -- Home vs. Olentangy

*Jan. 24 -- At New Albany. The Golden Eagles defeated the Eagles 45-34 on Dec. 13.


*Jan. 21 -- Olentangy Berlin at Delaware Lanes

*Jan. 24 -- Reynoldsburg at Holiday Lanes


Jan. 20 -- Olentangy Invitational

Jan. 23 -- At Hilliard Darby with Hilliard Bradley, Hilliard Davidson, Olentangy Liberty and Worthington Kilbourne


Jan. 17 -- Gahanna at Gahanna YMCA

Jan. 25 -- OCC-Capital meet at Kenyon College


*Jan. 23 -- At Groveport

Jan. 25 -- Watkins Memorial Invitational

*League contest