Whetstone Roundup: Thaine Nederveld happy with performance at state
Whetstone senior cross country runner Thaine Nederveld made it his goal this season to qualify for the Division I state meet for the first time, especially since his 23rd-place finish in the 2019 regional left him only three spots short of advancing.
Nederveld accomplished his goal by placing ninth (16 minutes, 27.5 seconds) in the boys regional meet Oct. 31 at Pickerington North. He was the Braves’ lone representative at regional and state Nov. 7 at Fortress Obetz, where he finished 46th (16:21.0) of 177 runners behind champion Nathan Moore of Uniontown Lake (14:59.5).
“I missed qualifying for state last year, so this year I said, ‘OK, I just have to make it to state,’ ” Nederveld said. “I was pretty happy with how everything went. Once I got to state, I was just trying to enjoy the experience and run as well as I could.”
Coach Joe Monda said he was proud of what Nederveld accomplished.
“He gave everything he had,” Monda said. “He ran well but his legs were a little tired from the week before. He had a great season that was topped off with a trip to the state meet.”
Nederveld was Whetstone's first state qualifier since 2009, when Evan Schwartz finished 54th in 16:49.32.
Nederveld hopes to run in college but is undecided on where to attend. This year, he said he learned how to preserve his energy for the last stages of a race and the amount of work that’s required to accomplish his goals in competition.
“I really learned how to save just a little bit for a kick at the end of the race, and I also learned how to work really hard to achieve a goal,” Nederveld said. “After last year, after I (missed qualifying for state) by three spots, I wasn’t going to let that happen again this year. So I made sure I put in enough training so I could get to the state meet.”
Monda said he was pleased with the boys and girls teams’ seasons considering the obstacles that were in place because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
Both teams finished first in the City League meet, which was held Oct. 15 on the Braves' home course. Nederveld won the 57-runner boys race in 16:23.7 after winning it in 16:53.7 in 2019, and Braves senior Jane Carney finished first (23:05.1) of 30 runners in the girls race.
“Considering where the City League was at the beginning of September, I was more than pleased that we were able to have a season,” Monda said. “The kids put in a lot of hard work over the summer and were rewarded by being able to compete.
“The senior leadership was outstanding in that they kept the team running when we were shut down.”
Both the boys and girls teams will lose five seniors.
For the boys, expected key returnees include sophomores Maitland Neff and Wyatt Starkie and freshmen Damian Earley, Josh Conroy and Oscar Ball. For the girls, sophomores Ella Combs, Anna Kain, Mia Kain and Olivia Koester and freshman Ava Feller lead those expected to return.
Nederveld, Starkie, Feller, Carney and seniors Matthew Conroy and Marisa Tayal earned first-team all-league honors. Neff, Earley, Ana Kain, Mia Kain, Combs and senior Olivia Cobbs earned second-team all-league honors.
Girls volleyball team
falls in City final
The girls volleyball team lost 25-18, 18-25, 25-27, 25-20, 15-11 to Africentric in the City championship match Nov. 11.
The Braves began the City tournament with a 25-4, 25-5, 25-13 win over Marion-Franklin on Nov. 2. They then defeated Walnut Ridge 25-18, 25-11, 25-18 on Nov. 4 and Eastmoor Academy 25-21, 25-18, 15-25, 25-15 on Nov. 9.
Whetstone finished 13-1 overall and won the City-North Division at 12-0.
Boys soccer team
to lose eight seniors
The boys soccer team will lose eight seniors but expects to return 19 players from its roster.
Key expected returnees include junior midfielder Sam Garcia (6 goals, 3 assists), junior defenders Michael Newell-Dimoff, Rafa Arebalo and Carson Dellesky and sophomore defender Alvaro Rodriguez.
Junior goalie Nathan Rothacker and sophomore goalie Max Rogers also are expected to return.
The Braves, who finished 6-2-2 overall and 5-1-2 in the City to tie Mifflin for second behind Northland (7-1), concluded their season Oct. 20 with a 3-2 loss (10-9 shootout) to International in the first round of the league tournament.
•City League standings: Boys — Whetstone (28), Linden-McKinley (34), Eastmoor (68), Briggs (135), Mifflin (139), South (149), Northland (154); Girls — Whetstone (21) Centennial (40), Eastmoor (75)
•Seniors lost: Boys — Julian Ackerman, Zach Castro, Matthew Conroy, Eli Hinderer and Thaine Nederveld; Girls — Julian Calderone, Jane Carney, Olivia Cobbs, Micah Stromsoe Delorenzo and Marisa Tayal
•Key returnees: Boys — Oscar Ball, Josh Conroy, Damian Earley, Maitland Neff and Wyatt Starkie; Girls — Ella Combs, Ava Feller, Anna Kain, Mia Kain and Olivia Koester
•Postseason: Boys — 14th (349) at district behind champion Lancaster (91); Girls — 11th (355) at district behind champion Hilliard Davidson (19)
•Record: 6-2-2 overall
•City League standings: Northland (7-1), Mifflin (5-1-2), Whetstone (5-1-2), West (5-3), Centennial (4-4), Beechcroft (3-4-1), International (2-5-1), Briggs (2-6), Walnut Ridge (0-8)
•Seniors lost: Tika Basnet, Max Cipriani, Brack Dillon, Jacob Hoffman, Ismail Mohamed, Chance Mpigirway, Andy Pineda and Lucas Poirier
•Key returnees: Rafa Arebalo, Carson Dellesky, Sam Garcia, Michael Newell-Dimoff, Alvaro Rodriguez, Max Rogers and Nathan Rothacker