Although they're not in school or working out with their teams because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, Worthington student-athletes are preparing for the spring sports season.
They've quickly realized that training at home -- and often on their own -- presents challenges.
Kilbourne senior Hannah Hale, an attacker on the girls lacrosse team and a Florida Southern commit, has been running in her neighborhood, playing wall ball and practicing her shooting.
With no coaches or teammates around to hold them accountable, Hale said athletes need to rely on themselves and stay ready in case school and spring sports resume.
"When you work out at home you really have to push yourself without having coaches being there and telling you what to do," she said. "In my opinion it's more fun to work out with my teammates rather than by myself, so it does become a little bit challenging trying to make running and doing body workouts fun when I'm doing it by myself."
An initial three-week closing of Ohio schools by Gov. Mike DeWine ends Friday, April 3. The OHSAA has instituted a no-contact period, but coaches are allowed to send their athletes suggested workouts.
The earliest the spring regular season could begin under the initial ruling is April 11, but the timetable would be altered if the reopening of schools is further delayed.
Update: DeWine announced March 30 that schools will remain closed through May 1.
Thomas girls track and field coach Andy Cox, who presided over last year's Division I state champion 3,200-meter relay of 2019 graduate Gia Napoleon, senior Lydia Miller and juniors Morgan Edwards and Carina Napoleon, said the team has designed home training regimens based on individual needs.
"It's more challenging now that facilities are closed," Cox said. "We're being more creative. That's just what we do."
In addition to helping the 3,200 relay win the state title in a program-record 8 minutes, 55.85 seconds, Carina Napoleon finished 13th in the 1,600 (5:12.12). Her current training consists of workouts from a fitness app as well as running in her neighborhood because the Thomas track is closed.
Some days she trains with her sister, Gia, who now competes in cross country and track at Ohio State.
"She has things to do, too, and we've kind of been matching up schedules and working together," Carina said.
Thomas sophomore Justin Braun, who won the Division I state title in the boys 400 (46.76) as a freshman, said he is running and sprinting and plans to implement strength training into his routine. With the uncertainty of whether there will be a season, Braun said athletes have to drum up motivation on their own.
"For a lot of people, including myself, it's finding the inspiration to go," he said. "Assuming we don't have a track season, what's the point of training for the next couple of months? What are we training for?"
Kilbourne boys lacrosse senior attacker Carson Kott, a Capital commit, has been throwing the ball around with his twin brother, senior midfielder Max Kott, although he misses the rest of his teammates.
"I'll throw the ball once in a while, but it's just kind of tough," Carson said. "It's just not the same without our team."
Like Hale, Kilbourne girls lacrosse senior attacker and midfielder Jackie Wolford, a Kent State commit, is passing the time with wall ball, shooting drills and neighborhood running. She said it isn't just her teammates she misses, but Kilbourne's turf field as well.
"Playing on turf is so much better than being on grass in your backyard. It allows you to do more things better," she said. "And not having my teammates around is sort of hard. You don't have the confidence boosters, all the energy there to help you throughout everything."
The Worthington Christian boys tennis team was expecting to have most of its lineup returning from last season, including senior Peter Tsibouris at first singles.
According to coach Dino Tsibouris, who is Peter's father, it has been a difficult time because the Warriors had high hopes for this season.
"Our whole team is pretty much taking the view that their dream senior year will not take place," coach Tsibouris said. "They've been playing together since seventh grade and it's such a bummer.
"We did two and a half weeks of voluntary conditioning. Peter is playing his best tennis this year, which is frustrating. A lot of our guys are playing even better than last year. I can't imagine there's anything left of the (regular) season. It's quite possible they could have the (postseason)."
Worthington Christian senior Jake Thompson was projected to be one of the boys track team's top competitors after being a Division III state qualifier last season in the long jump.
"I've been running outside with the limited flat ground we have in Ohio," said Thompson, who has committed to Taylor University. "In addition to that, I've added in some sled pulls and ab circuits to keep my strength up. For my specific events, long and high jump, I've been doing some hurdle hops, small take-offs and even just dunking the basketball to get my jumps back from the time off."
ThisWeek reporter Jarrod Ulrey contributed to this story.