Wellington Roundup: Jaguars' Taylor Vargo reaches state diving meet for second straight year

Jarrod Ulrey
ThisWeek group
Wellington's Jake Johnson was among the Division II district qualifiers for the boys swimming and diving team, advancing as part of the 200 medley and 400 freestyle relays.

The Wellington swimming and diving program had one qualifier to the Division II state girls meet Feb. 24 at Branin Natatorium in Canton in senior diver Taylor Vargo, who made it for the second consecutive season.  

Hoping to join Vargo at the state meet in girls swimming Feb. 24 and in boys swimming Feb. 25 at Branin Natatorium was a contingent that included senior Heath Thomas, who was a state qualifier in two boys events last season.  

The district meet was held Feb. 18 at Bowling Green and the top two in each event advanced automatically to state. The remaining state qualifiers were determined based on times from all district meets statewide.  

For the boys, Thomas entered as the No. 1 seed in the 500-yard freestyle and 200 individual medley, sophomore Eric Albers was the No. 1 seed in the 100 breaststroke, the 200 medley relay was seeded second and the 400 free relay was seeded third. 

Also advancing for the boys from the sectional meet held Feb. 12 and 14 at Upper Arlington were senior Avery Rennick in the 50 free and 100 free and Albers in the 100 free.  

At the sectional, Albers, Rennick and Thomas were joined on the 200 medley relay by sophomore Jake Johnson and the same four were on the 400 free relay.  

Vargo advanced to state after scoring 362.15 at the district diving meet Feb. 16 at Jefferson Country Club to earn the third and final qualifying berth. She finished 19th at state last season.  

Sophomore Olivia Robinson qualified for state last season but finished seventh (267.55) at district. 

Qualifying for the girls was senior Christine Cooke in the 100 breast.  

The 200 medley relay of Cooke, senior Paige Bennett, junior Drew Ober and freshman Natalie Allen swam 2 minutes, 20.1 for the best time at its sectional but did not advance, and Ober won the 100 free at the sectional in 1:01.74 but missed advancing to district by 0.7 seconds.  

Wellington's Chase Ouellette scored 17 points in a 62-56 loss to Columbus South on Feb. 13 as the boys basketball team fell to 5-10 overall.

Boys team begins  

tournament action  

The 14th-seeded boys basketball team opened the Division III district tournament Feb. 24 against seventh-seeded Ready or 17th-seeded Marion Elgin at the home of the better seed in a second-round game.  

If the Jaguars won that game, they will play third-seeded Johnstown, 15th-seeded Mount Gilead or 16th-seeded Marion Pleasant in a district semifinal March 2 at the home of the better seed.   

The Jaguars – who had reached a Division IV regional final last season before the remainder of the postseason was canceled because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic – were 5-10 overall after losing to Columbus South 62-56 on Feb. 13.   

Junior forward Chase Ouellette scored 17 and senior guard Marcus Stewart finished with 15 points in the loss to South.   

The MSL-Ohio Division held only one round of league play, with Wellington going 1-5. In the league tournament, the Jaguars lost 52-27 to Bexley on Feb. 6 and 62-46 to Grandview on Feb. 9.

julrey@thisweeknews.com  

@UlreyThisWeek