Worthington Christian Roundup: Warriors track teams building around Noah St. John, Grace Hall

Jarrod Ulrey
ThisWeek group
Freshman Sean Ball is playing second singles for the Worthington Christian boys tennis team. The Warriors, led by first-year coach Chris Mayotte, have no players returning from 2019.

The Worthington Christian track and field program is spending the first few weeks of the season gaining experience after losing 18 competitors who would have been seniors last spring, when the season was canceled because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. 

Both the boys and girls teams have one returning competitor from the 2019 Division III state meet.

“It’s been a long year and I feel bad for the seniors last year that couldn’t compete, but we’re glad we get to go this year,” coach Mark Mousa said. “We’re very young this year. We knew we were going to be losing a very good group, but we have about 30 girls and 30 boys and a lot of them are freshmen and sophomores.” 

The top returnee for the boys is senior Noah St. John, who ran on the 3,200-meter relay that finished 13th (8 minutes, 19.36 seconds) at state in 2019. St. John, who also will run the 800, is planning to compete collegiately for Indiana Wesleyan. 

Junior Tyler White is expected to be one of the Warriors’ top 200 and 400 runners, with senior Aaron Manzer, junior Michael Nyamohanga and sophomore Elijah Alt joining him in the sprints. Manzer also will do the long jump. 

Sophomore Josh Carrell and freshman Jax Hollister are competing in the shot put and discus. 

The girls are led by junior Grace Hall, who was a regional qualifier in 2019 in the 100 and ran on the 400 relay that was 15th (51.02) at state. She also will compete in the long jump.

Also returning after competing in the 2019 regional are junior Sydney Diedrich (800) and junior Audrey Mousa (1,600 relay). Mousa is expected to be a strong 200 runner.

Junior Briana Plummer is a newcomer who is competing in sprints along with senior Alysha Beard.

Sophomore Zoe Ward is competing in distance, with freshman Emma Unger likely to run middle distance and distance. 

Junior Morgan Lawrence will compete in the shot put and discus. 

“We’ve got a lot of young guys that we’re excited to work with,” coach Mousa said. “With our girls team, we have a lot of freshmen and they’re just very, very talented and extremely athletic. They need to learn how to race and compete, but our girls team will be very good even though we’re extremely young.” 

TRACK & FIELD 

Coach: Mark Mousa, second season 

Next meet: April 16 at Russ Owen-Bexley Relays 

Key athletes: Boys — Elijah Alt, Josh Carrell, Jax Hollister, Aaron Manzer, Michael Nyamohanga, Noah St. John and Tyler White; Girls — Alysha Beard, Sydney Diedrich, Grace Hall, Morgan Lawrence, Audrey Mousa, Briana Plummer, Emma Unger and Zoe Ward 

Tennis team 

has new look 

In addition to having a new coach in Chris Mayotte, the boys tennis team has no players returning from 2019, when it was led by six juniors and one senior. 

The Warriors, who went 5-7 overall and 2-3 in the MSL-Ohio Division in 2019, will feature sophomore Stephen Reid at first singles and have just one senior in David Reid. 

“We’re young,” said Mayotte, who has served as an assistant with the girls team for eight seasons. “We lost six seniors last year and they were all varsity players, so I’ve got no returning varsity players. With Columbus Academy, Bexley and Wellington in our league, those teams are always going to be strong. We have a tough schedule, but it’s OK.” 

Freshman Sean Ball is playing second singles and is the team’s most experienced player outside of prep competition. 

Freshman Matt Sanders is seeing action at third singles, with sophomores Jon Bauman and Bradley Pomajevich at first doubles but also serving as options at third singles. 

David Reid is teaming up with sophomore Gabe Pace at second doubles. 

“Sean is my only year-round player,” Mayotte said. “Stephen doesn’t play year-round, but he’s just a good athlete and a good player. He’s experienced and has been playing for a long time. 

“We just want to get them match experience, get them to start playing as much as possible and be grateful we get to play and help them build experience, win or lose. None of these kids got to play last year, so we’re just grateful we get to get out there.” 

BOYS TENNIS 

Coach: Chris Mayotte, first season 

Next match: April 15 vs. Bexley 

Key athletes: Sean Ball, Jon Bauman, Gabe Pace, Bradley Pomajevich, David Reid, Stephen Reid and Matt Sanders 

julrey@thisweeknews.com 

@UlreyThisWeek