Notebook: Hilliard Bradley Jaguars boys volleyball team enjoys whirlwind day

Scott Hennen
ThisWeek group
Senior outside hitter Jonah Gilbert had 37 kills as Bradley defeated Dublin Jerome 25-20, 25-18, 25-21 in a Division I, East Region final May 28 at Westerville Central. After the match, the seniors attended their graduation ceremony at Ohio State.

The seniors on the Hilliard Bradley boys volleyball team had an unforgettable day May 28.

The second-seeded Jaguars defeated seventh-seeded Dublin Jerome 25-20, 25-18, 25-21 in a Division I, East Region final at 5 p.m. that Friday to qualify for state for the first time since 2012. After the victory, they were shuttled to another milestone, high school graduation at 7 p.m. in Ohio State’s Schottenstein Center.

Senior outside hitter Jonah Gilbert had 37 kills in the match, which took approximately 70 minutes to play. Gilbert was pleased with the outcome but wanted to get to graduation.

“It’s great to win this and it’s great to be headed to graduation,” he said. “I always thought I’d graduate from high school, but it’s just another goal. It’s cool to check the box and move on with my life a little bit.

“It’s been a goal since my freshman year to go to state. There’s only been one team in Bradley history that’s made it to state, and it’s great to be a part of that history. It’s good to see that hard work paid off.”

Bradley was 18-3 heading into its match against Massillon Jackson in the first round of the state tournament, which was June 5 and 6 at Pickerington Central. 

In 2012, the Jaguars lost 25-11, 25-15, 25-17 to host Cincinnati Moeller in their opening match at state. The Crusaders went on to defeat Darby 25-20, 25-10, 25-17 for the championship.

Coach Zach Franklin was in his second season with the Jaguars at that time. After his team lost to Olentangy Orange 25-20, 27-25, 16-25, 25-17 on May 13 to tie Olentangy Liberty for second in the OCC-Central Division, he remained optimistic.

“When we went to state last time (in 2012), we didn’t win the league title either,” he said. “I’ll take a trip to state every time.”

Franklin said his players weren’t distracted by their fast-paced agenda.

“I didn’t have to think about their focus once,” he said. “They were dialed in and ready to play.”

•Coach Rob Schmeling was proud of the way a young Darby boys lacrosse team matured during his 11th season.

The 12th-seeded Panthers lost 15-2 at fifth-seeded Centerville on May 18 in the second round of the Division I, Region 3 tournament.

“Our season was about growth and opportunities,” Schmeling said. “We were faced with many challenges, but our young men worked extremely hard and gained valuable experience.”

The Panthers finished the season with one senior in midfielder Matthew Rex.

Junior midfielder Miguel Sayers (honorable mention all-region, second-team all-league) led the Panthers in scoring with 39 goals and 19 assists, and freshman midfielder Maguire Link (honorable mention all-region, second-team all-league) had 30 goals and 11 assists. 

Sophomore midfielder Ben Krumpe (honorable mention all-league) had 24 goals and eight assists, and freshman midfielder Connor Burke had 20 goals and 11 assists.

Sophomore defender Cade Galko (second-team all-region and all-league) had 15 goals, six assists and 147 ground balls, and sophomore midfielder Jacob Norris had 10 goals and five assists.

—Scott Hennen

•The Darby baseball season was highlighted by winning a sixth consecutive and eighth overall OCC championship. 

Darby went 11-4 in the OCC-Cardinal to finish ahead of runner-up Olentangy (9-6). 

The seventh-seeded Panthers advanced to a Division I district final, losing 3-2 to fourth-seeded Westerville South on May 26 to finish 21-9 overall. 

Darby was led by senior Andrew Patrick (P/SS/1B), a Wright State commit who was named Player of the Year in the league and first-team all-district. 

He batted .388 with 13 RBI and a team-high three home runs. On the mound, Patrick was 7-1 and had a 1.90 ERA with 60 strikeouts and 15 walks in 55 1/3 innings. 

Junior Casey Maruniak (3B) batted .433 with a team-high 31 RBI, and sophomore Cam Gilkerson (1B/OF/P) batted .355 with 12 RBI. 

Sophomore Max Mullen (P/OF/INF) was 7-3 and had a 1.20 ERA with 42 strikeouts and 25 walks in 52 2/3 innings. 

Gilkerson, Maruniak and Mullen were first-team all-league, Mullen was second-team all-district and Gilkerson and Maruniak were honorable mention all-district. 

Senior Alex Chawla (P/OF) batted .320 and was second-team all-league. 

Junior Jameson O’Flynn (INF/OF) was special mention all-league and juniors Nate Burdick (C/OF) and Matt Spencer (P/OF) were honorable mention all-league. 

“My only disappointment is I don’t get to coach the seniors again,” coach Mike Weer said. “My son (Rhys) is part of that group. I’ve known those guys since they were 6 and 7 years old. Some I remember from our camps. I’ve coached some of them for a long time outside of even Darby. We’re proud of them. We’ve created a good culture.” 

—Frank DiRenna 

•First-year Davidson boys lacrosse coach Dave Ames believes the future remains bright for his program. 

Seeded seventh in the Division I, Region 3 tournament, the Wildcats beat eighth-seeded Pickerington North 18-5 in the second round May 18 before losing 13-3 to third-seeded St. Charles in a semifinal May 21 to finish 8-12 overall. 

“With the strength of our schedule, I was overall pretty pleased with the progress of the team,” Ames said. “It’s cliché, but the record doesn’t dictate the amount of successes that we had.” 

Davidson went 2-3 in the OCC-Central to finish fourth behind champion Upper Arlington (5-0). 

Junior attacker Kaden Ames had 30 goals and 34 assists. He was second-team all-region and all-league. 

Junior goalie Kaiden Roche made 199 saves and was second-team all-region and all-league. 

Senior defender James Craig had 52 ground balls and forced 26 turnovers. He was second-team all-region and all-league. 

Sophomore midfielder Noah Dodgion had 25 goals and 15 assists and was second-team all-region. 

Junior attacker Josh Lively led the team in goals with 46 and added eight assists. He was honorable mention all-region. 

“We had 15 first-year letterwinners, that’s how young we were,” coach Ames said. 

—Frank DiRenna 

Davidson girls lacrosse coach Chad Smock was pleased with his team’s development. 

Seeded 12th in the Division I, Region 3 tournament, the Wildcats lost 12-9 to 13th-seeded Pickerington North in the second round May 18 to finish 8-12 overall. 

“The success of this team can’t be measured by the amount of wins on the field,” Smock said. “This senior class will always be remembered for their work ethic, positive attitude and huge hearts. They’ve transformed the whole attitude of this program and their legacy will be here long after they’ve moved on to the next chapter in their lives.” 

Davidson went 2-3 in the OCC-Central to finish fourth behind champion UA (5-0). 

Senior Leah Craft (midfielder) was second-team all-region and honorable mention all-league. Senior Sadie Davis (midfielder) was second-team all-region, senior Julia Detterman (attacker) and freshman Naomi Mullett (defender) were second-team all-league and sophomore Alyssa Rodriguez (attacker) was honorable mention all-region. 

—Frank DiRenna 

•Two years ago, the Bradley girls lacrosse team went 0-18. After last season was canceled, the Jaguars won five games this spring under first-year coach Faith Meads.

As the 15th seed, Bradley lost its Division I, Region 3 tournament opener May 15, falling 12-9 at 14th-seeded Centerville to finish 5-13 overall.

“Winning five games was a huge accomplishment for these girls,” said Meads, whose team went 0-5 in the OCC-Central. “From the first day until now, their skill level improved as well as their lacrosse IQ. They started figuring out how to work together on a team to make things happen all over the field.”

Attacker/midfielder Reyann Askar (second-team all-league) and attacker Rylee Mason (honorable mention all-region, second-team all-league) led the senior class.

“We’re losing seven seniors that were a big part of the team,” Meads said. “I’m thankful for those seniors in their help cultivating a positive environment and passion for lacrosse.

“I’m extremely excited for next year and all of the girls coming back. I think this year has really set a strong foundation for our program to grow.”

Sophomore midfielder Alyssa Burnside (honorable mention all-league) and sophomore midfielder/defender Katelyn Kuhn (second-team all-league) lead the players expected to return.

—Scott Hennen

•The Bradley boys lacrosse team finished 2-13 overall in its first season under coach Jalen Jackson, but the Jaguars’ underclassmen gained valuable experience.

Bradley, the 15th seed, lost 13-6 at 13th-seeded Westerville North on May 14 in the first round of the Division I, Region 3 tournament. It went 0-5 in the OCC-Central.

Midfielder Nate Hubler (5 goals), goalie Liam Kennedy (honorable mention all-league; 145 saves), defender Zach Lehman (26 ground balls) and attacker Max Williams (10 goals) led an eight-player senior class.

Junior midfielder Andrew Burnett led the team with 13 goals, and freshman midfielder Sam Green scored eight. Also expected to return are junior defender Hunter Stickler (21 ground balls), junior midfielder Evan Schneider (4 goals) and freshman attacker Mason Miller (7 goals).

—Scott Hennen

sports@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekSports

BRADLEY BOYS LACROSSE

Record: 2-13 overall

OCC-Central standings: Upper Arlington (5-0), Olentangy Liberty (4-1), Dublin Coffman (3-2), Davidson (2-3), Olentangy Orange (1-4) Bradley (0-5)

Seniors lost: Andrew Brooks, Jake Duffer, Nicholas Garbesi, Nate Hubler, Liam Kennedy, Robert Klise, Zach Lehman and Max Williams

Key returnees: Andrew Burnett, Sam Green, Mason Miller, Evan Schneider and Hunter Stickler

Postseason: Lost to Westerville North 13-6 in first round of Division I, Region 3 tournament

BRADLEY GIRLS LACROSSE

Record: 5-13 overall

OCC-Central standings: UA (5-0), Coffman (4-1), Liberty (3-2), Davidson (2-3), Orange (1-4), Bradley (0-5)

Seniors lost: Reyann Askar, Caitlin Conklin, Natalie Green, Sydney Lithiluxa, Rylee Mason, Alison Rasor and Abby Sayre

Key returnees: Alyssa Burnside and Katelyn Kuhn

Postseason: Lost to Centerville 12-9 in first round of Division I, Region 3 tournament

DARBY BASEBALL  

Record: 21-9 overall  

OCC-Cardinal standings: Darby (11-4), Olentangy (9-6), Olentangy Berlin and Thomas Worthington (7-8), Marysville (6-9), Dublin Jerome (4-11) 

Seniors lost: Corwin Allen, Alex Cannon, Alex Chawla, Andrew Patrick, Peyton Riffe, Carson Schneider, Jake Swartzmiller and Rhys Weer 

Key returnees: Nate Burdick, Cam Gilkerson, Casey Maruniak and Max Mullen, Jameson O’Flynn and Matt Spencer 

Postseason: Defeated Pickerington Central 6-4; def. Olentangy 2-0; lost to Westerville South 3-2 in Division I district final

DARBY BOYS LACROSSE

Record: 5-12 overall

OCC-Cardinal standings: Jerome (5-0), Thomas (4-1), Olentangy (3-2), Berlin (2-3), Darby (1-4), Marysville (0-5)

Senior lost: Matthew Rex

Key returnees: Connor Burke, Cade Galko, Ben Krumpe, Maguire Link, Jacob Norris and Miguel Sayers

Postseason: Lost to Centerville 15-2 in second round of Division I, Region 3 tournament

DAVIDSON BOYS LACROSSE 

Record: 8-12 overall  

OCC-Central standings: UA (5-0), Liberty (4-1), Coffman (3-2), Davidson (2-3), Orange (1-4), Bradley (0-5) 

Seniors lost: Cole Coppess, Fletcher Davis, James Craig, Ryan Koenig, Jacob Miller, Will Riffe, Dom Trager and Hayden Van Vleet 

Key returnees: Kaden Ames, Noah Dodgion, Josh Lively and Kaiden Roche 

Postseason: Defeated Pickerington North 20-5; lost to St. Charles 13-3 in Division I, Region 3 semifinal 

DAVIDSON GIRLS LACROSSE 

Record: 7-10 overall  

OCC-Central standings: UA (5-0), Coffman (4-1), Liberty (3-2), Davidson (2-3), Orange (1-4), Bradley (0-5) 

Seniors lost: Avery Arkwright, Savannah Brumfield, Caily Burr, Leah Craft, Sadie Davis, Emma Dehority, Julia Detterman, Ainsley Guthrie, Ally Rahe, Grace Royer and Sadie Ruddock 

Key returnees: Gigi Meyer, Naomi Mullett and Alyssa Rodriguez 

Postseason: Lost to Pickerington North 12-9 in second round of Division I, Region 3 tournament