Watterson Roundup: Eagles boys and girls lacrosse teams fall in Division II state semifinals

Jarrod Ulrey
ThisWeek group
Watterson's Davis Minzler battles Cincinnati Mariemont's Mac McLelland during a Division II state semifinal June 2 at Centerville. Watterson lost 11-8 to finish 14-7.

During their Division II state semifinals, there were moments when the Watterson boys and girls lacrosse teams each seemed to be on the verge of advancing to the championship game for the first time. 

On June 1 at Centerville, the girls led their matchup against Cincinnati Mariemont late in the first half but fell behind by as much as five goals and lost 14-13 to finish 17-6. 

The next night at the same site, the boys led 4-2 at halftime against Mariemont but struggled to sustain enough consistent offense in the second half and lost 11-8 to finish 14-7. 

Kate Geswein scored three goals during the final five minutes in the girls team’s loss, including with 1 minute, 52 seconds to go, but the Warriors held the ball for most of the rest of the game. 

“We finally played our game toward the end,” girls coach Eileen Barrett said. “We came out a little slow at the start. With four minutes to go I was thinking that we could still win this. They wanted it. They have a heart like no other.” 

Carly Henry (29) and Watterson finished 17-6 with a 14-13 loss to Cincinnati Mariemont in a Division II state semifinal June 1 at Centerville.

The girls team was attempting to avenge a loss for the second consecutive game after falling to Mariemont 9-5 on April 16. 

The Eagles were the third seed for the Region 7 tournament and beat top-seeded DeSales 10-9 on May 28 to capture their first regional title. Watterson had lost to the Stallions 11-9 on April 15. 

Zoe Coleman scored three goals to lead Watterson in the tournament win over DeSales. 

“I’m shocked but I’m also not surprised,” Barrett said. “When we played them in the regular season we were ahead until the last eight minutes. Everybody was very upset and they came out for their revenge.” 

The boys team also was the third seed in Region 7 and won 9-7 over top-seeded DeSales in the regional final May 27 after losing to the Stallions 12-10 on April 14. 

Watterson got the game-winning goal from Andrew Bettendorf as it advanced to its third state semifinal, with the others coming in 2006 and 2017. 

“Our team played great,” junior attacker Jack Henry said. “I’m just glad we got a (win over DeSales) at the end.” 

Volleyball team looks 

to rebuild roster 

Of the 11 competitors in the boys volleyball program, five are eligible to return. 

The Eagles should enter next season, though, with more returning experience than they had this spring when senior Jake Maziarz was the only key player back. 

Maziarz finished with 613 assists and was first-team all-region as Watterson went 13-10 and reached the second round of the Division II, East Region tournament. He was a starter in 2019 when the Eagles were state runners-up. 

“For half the roster, this was their first year of high school play,” coach Ryan Thompson said. “I’m actually just going through the divisional breakdowns and realizing we’re the smallest school in our region for enrollment already so it’s real tough for us to find kids. We do a series of open gyms in the offseason and every week we’ll try to have an after-school activity or a free-pizza mixer. … We still competed in our division and we showed we can still get a winning record even if we’re getting just first-year players.” 

Senior Nick Isabelle (outside hitter) led in kills with 220, with seniors Dominic Contini (middle hitter), Mitchell Musuraca (outside hitter) and Nick Whitsett (middle hitter/outside hitter) also playing key roles. 

Juniors Frank Gill (libero), John Meyers (opposite hitter) and Luke Niese (middle hitter), sophomore Michael Kirkpatrick (opposite hitter) and freshman Ryan Pardi (defensive specialist) are eligible to return. 

“Michael Kirkpatrick (is) ... a real athletic type and we’re hoping he has that athletic growth spurt, so if he has that and works on his upper-body strength, he should be a good offensive player wherever he ends up,” Thompson said. 

Track teams shine 

at regional meets 

The boys and girls track and field teams competed at the state level June 4 and 5, with the boys in the Division II meet at Pickerington North and the girls in the Division I meet at Hilliard Darby. 

In the Division I regional May 26 and 28 at North, the girls were runners-up (68) behind Gahanna (84) as 38 teams scored. 

Capturing titles were Anna Kessler in the 100 meters (11.77 seconds), the 400 relay of Kessler, Grace Jenkins, Jordan Morales and Sydney Workman (48.72), the 800 relay of Jenkins, Kessler, Cailin O’Reilly and Workman (1:41.95) and the 1,600 relay of Riley Connors, Jenkins, Morales and O’Reilly (4:02.38). 

The other state qualifiers were Erin Karas in the 1,600 (second, 5:07.33), Kessler in the 200 (second, 25.29) and the 3,200 relay of Brooklyn Brush, Claire Sugar, Connors and Karas (third, 9:26.16). 

Also competing were Brush in the 800 (10th, 2:25.5), Connors in the 300 hurdles (seventh, 46.15), Karas in the 3,200 (seventh, 11:23.81), O’Reilly in the high jump (tied for 12th, 4 feet, 10 inches) and Sugar in the 800 (11th, 2:25.78). 

The boys team also was a regional runner-up, scoring 42 points in the Division II meet May 27 and 29 at Lexington to finish behind Sandusky Perkins (77) as 40 teams scored. 

Max Latshaw won the 3,200 (9:39.05), Will Garey was runner-up in the 1,600 (4:25.06), Cris Kubatko was second in the 3,200 (9:46.51) and the 3,200 relay of Garey, Kubatko, Latshaw and Max Hall also was second (8:08.18) to advance to state.

Finishing fifth to miss advancing by one spot were Cam Nickleson in the 100 (11.41) and Mason Bermudez in the 400 (51.49). 

Also competing were Carson Blank in the 110 hurdles (14th, 16.84) and 300 hurdles (13th, 42.41), Garey in the 800 (11th, 2:02.51), Nickleson in the shot put (10th, 45-2), Tyler Young in the 200 (ninth, 23.25) and long jump (seventh, 20-3 1/4), the 400 relay of Spencer Mandzak, Jake McCann, Nickleson and Young (sixth, 44.64), the 800 relay of Bermudez, Mandzak, Nick Youell and Young (14th, 1:40.84) and the 1,600 relay of Bermudez, Garey, McCann and Youell (13th, 3:34.8). 

julrey@thisweeknews.com 

@UlreyThisWeek 

BOYS VOLLEYBALL 

Record: 13-10 overall  

CCL standings: DeSales (5-1), St. Charles (5-1), Watterson (2-4), Hartley (0-6) 

Seniors lost: Dominic Contini, Nick Isabelle, Jake Maziarz, Mitchell Musuraca, Matt Niese and Nick Whitsett 

Key returnees: Frank Gill, Michael Kirkpatrick, John Meyers, Luke Niese and Ryan Pardi 

Postseason: Defeated Northland 25-16, 25-23, 25-23, lost to St. Charles 25-17, 25-8, 25-13 in second round of the Division II East Region tournament