The offseason will be especially important for the Central Crossing boys basketball team as it works to build chemistry between a group of players short on varsity experience.
All five starters for the Comets and six of their top eight players were seniors, so coach Neil Hohman will begin his team's rebuilding process over the summer.
"I think a lot of it is just having them being together and getting time together on the court," Hohman said. "They need to figure out how to play together and who does what well.
"It's good to learn about your teammates well before the season starts. A big key will be using the summer days to help build a bond and see who can fit in certain spots for us."
Seeded 41st for the Division I district tournament, the Comets lost at top-seeded Hilliard Bradley 51-26 on Feb. 22 in the first round to finish 5-18 overall. They placed fourth (4-6) in the OCC-Central Division as Dublin Coffman, Marysville and Upper Arlington shared the championship at 8-2.
Senior post player Devon Miller was honorable mention all-district and first-team all-league, leading the Comets in scoring (13.6 points per game), rebounding (6.1) and field-goal percentage (107-for-194, 55.2 percent). Senior guard Logan Green was honorable mention all-district and second-team all-league after averaging 7.6 points and 2.7 assists.
Senior forward Tyler Ronevich (honorable mention all-league) averaged 7.1 points and 4.3 rebounds. Senior point guard Matt Reed averaged 4.2 points and 3.6 assists, and senior post player Donavan Collins averaged 5.5 points and 3.5 rebounds.
"We had a great group of seniors," said Hohman, who completed his fifth season. "Logan played all four years and Devon played three after being hurt as a freshman. Matt didn't play last year but came back and played well for us at the point. They all had good attitudes and they played hard."
Juniors Tristen Needham, who scored 40 points in 22 games, and Jon Mathers, who scored 37 points in 23 games, have played the most among the expected returnees. Needham is a 6-foot-2 guard/forward and Mathers is a 6-3 post player who took a team-high 13 charges.
"We have a couple guys in Tristen and Jon (who) came off the bench for us, and (6-0 sophomore guard) Marquise (Loring-Svarda) played some for us," Hohman said. "We have a lot of new guys coming back, so we'll be working to get them playing together as a team."
Needham said he learned a lot from the seniors about how to conduct himself in practice and during games.
"The biggest take away was the work ethic," he said. "We have to put in the work every day, especially after practice. The work you put in after practice is what helps most in the games."
Next season, the Comets will play in a realigned OCC-Buckeye with Groveport, Lancaster, Newark, Pickerington Central and Reynoldsburg. To find success in the new league, Needham said the team will need to be close on and off the court.
"We have to work on our chemistry and playing together as a team," he said. "We're all friends so that will help.
"If you hang out with your teammates outside the sport, you get to know them and you work well together on the court. It's not always about basketball."
Gymnasts end season at district
The gymnastics team finished its season by placing 19th (120.125) of 27 teams in the district meet Feb. 22 at Worthington Kilbourne.
The Comets were led by freshman Mikayla Spring and sophomore Hope Groves. Spring finished 70th (30.525) of 194 competitors in the all-around and Groves was 71st (30.4).
Sophomores Taylor Redden (79th, 29.85) and Hannah Jennings (92nd, 28.475), freshman Andrea Norris (95th, 27.725) and senior Haylee Snodgrass (99th, 27.15) also competed.
Central Crossing tied Hilliard Davidson for fourth (18 points, 7-7) in the OCC-Central behind champion UA (32, 14-0).
Groves led the Comets in the OCC-Central meet Feb. 12 at Marysville, placing 10th in the all-around (30.475). The team finished fifth (117.25) behind first-place UA (131.875).