The Olentangy Orange boys bowling team entered the week with its sights set on its second league championship.
The Pioneers had an opportunity to clinch a share of the COHSBC-A Division title Jan. 28 against New Albany. They entered the match 9-1 overall and in the league, meaning they would have finished in a first-place tie with Westerville Central (10-1) with a victory over the Eagles in their league finale.
Marysville was third in the COHSBC-A at 8-2 before a match against Westerville South on Jan. 28.
Orange's first league championship came in the 2012-13 season, when it tied Hilliard Davidson for first place in the OCC-Capital.
"One of our goals every year is to win the league," coach Rodney Palmer said. "The people we (returned) have bowled well and the people we brought up (from junior varsity) have bowled well. They are getting better at the right time."
Orange lost to Central 2,247-1,920 on Dec. 2 in its league opener. The Warhawks lost to Marysville 2,232-2,218 on Dec. 10, while the Monarchs lost to Berlin 2,191-2,002 on Dec. 19 and fell to Orange 2,125-2,106 on Jan. 14.
The Pioneers were out of contention for the OCC-Buckeye championship entering the match against New Albany. They were 5-1 in that league entering their final match, while Central finished 7-0 in that league.
"I tell them not to worry about how the other teams are doing," Palmer said. "They only need to worry about how we roll. If we play the way we are capable of playing, then we'll do well."
Through 10 matches, Marcus Turner had a team-leading 194.2 average, followed by Nick Kicas (183.4), Jake Norz (176.1), Jake Burre (166.0) and Tanner Davidson (165.3).
The girls team was 6-3 overall and in the COHSBC-A and 3-2 in the OCC-Buckeye before competing against New Albany on Jan. 28.
Raymie Shields had a team-best 167.9 average through nine matches, followed by Eve Wicks (147.9), Lauren Berend (142.8) and Lauren Deck (137.2).
Girls swimmers finish second in league meet
Strong performances from Alex Knodel helped lead the girls swimming and diving team to a runner-up finish in the OCC-Buckeye meet Jan. 25 at Kenyon College.
Knodel placed second in the 200-yard individual medley (2 minutes, 0.63 seconds) and third in the 500 freestyle (5:26.26) and was on the runner-up 400 free relay (3:50.73) with Kayla Fisher, Ava Row and Brooke Farren.
The Pioneers scored 312 points to finish behind Liberty (466) and ahead of Olentangy (296), Westerville Central (295), Westerville North (284) and Westerville South (271).
Emma Logan placed third in the 200 IM (2:21.08) and fourth in the 100 breaststroke (1:12.26), Farren was third in the 100 butterfly (1:03.64) and fifth in the 100 backstroke (1:04.97), Fisher was fourth in the 100 free (57.37) and the 200 medley relay of Fisher, Logan, Joanna Ross and Row finished fourth (1:57.07).
The boys team finished third (268) in the league meet behind Liberty (688) and North (315) and ahead of Olentangy (245), South (175) and Central (173).
Graham Weidenhamer placed third in the 100 breast (1:02.42) and fifth in the 200 free (1:56.96) and Tuckor Lambert was fourth in both the 100 free (50.74) and 100 back (58.51), and both joined Tannor Lambert and Jack Helmer on the third-place 200 medley relay (1:47.65).
The Lamberts, Noah Crowe and Weidenhamer comprised the fourth-place 400 free relay (3:42.91).
Boys basketball team prepping for Wildcats
The boys basketball team was 10-5 overall before playing New Albany on Jan. 28 but is only 2-5 in the OCC-Buckeye entering its game at Westerville South on Friday, Jan. 31.
The Pioneers lost to the Wildcats 72-57 on Dec. 20.
Orange, which was 4-3 in its first seven games of the new year, knocked off Dublin Coffman 70-66 on Jan. 21 as Andre Irvin made four three throws in the final 15 seconds to secure the win.
Jason Foster had a team-high 19 points against the Shamrocks, followed by Ryan Cutler with 17, Irwin with 11 and Joel Addo with 10.
Orange fell to Westerville Central 72-60 in a league contest Jan. 24. Cutler had 17 points, Irvin scored 13 and Foster scored 11.
Below are the coming schedules for the Orange boys basketball, girls basketball, bowling, gymnastics, hockey, swimming & diving and wrestling teams:
*Jan. 31 -- At Westerville South. The Pioneers lost to the Wildcats 72-57 on Dec. 20.
Feb. 4 -- At Franklin Heights
*Jan. 31 -- Home vs. South. The Pioneers lost to the Wildcats 77-47 on Dec. 20.
Feb. 4 -- Home vs. Franklin Heights
Feb. 4 -- Teays Valley at Wayne Webb's Columbus Bowl
Jan. 30 -- Home vs. Berlin and *Liberty in Beauty and the Beast
*Jan. 31 -- Dublin Coffman at Chiller North
*Feb. 1 -- Columbus Academy at Chiller North
*Feb. 2 -- Liberty at Chiller North
SWIMMING & DIVING
Jan. 31 -- Liberty, Olentangy and Orange at Ohio Wesleyan
Jan. 30 -- Boys: At *South; Girls: Home vs. Jamestown Greeneview
Feb. 1 -- Girls: Bellefontaine Invitational