COLUMBUS — Bella Butler carried purple cooling towels to the tent where athletes wait for medal ceremonies at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
“They soak up water,” Butler said, “and I just keep pouring water over myself.”
The state championship always falls on scorching days. Friday and Saturday were no different.
Butler, a senior at Oakwood High School, should know. This was her third trip to the state meet, and it likely would have been four if the meet hadn’t been canceled because of the pandemic in 2020. She already had quite the collection of state medals entering this weekend but had never won a race by herself until Saturday.
Butler equaled the 2021 feat of her former teammate Grace Hartman by winning Division II state championships in the 1,600 and 3,200-meter runs.
“It means so much to me,” Butler said. “I’m just really grateful for the opportunity to be able to run here and come here with my team. I want to thank my coaches so much because I really couldn’t have done it without them.”
Butler dominated both races. She had a large lead throughout the 1,600 and won by more than four seconds in 4 minutes, 49.01 seconds. She won the 3,200 by more than 10 seconds in 10:49.66.
Butler finished fourth in the 1,600 as a junior (4:49.12). Hartman finished second in that race (4:47.06). In the 3,200 a year ago, Hartman won (10:43.97), while Butler finished second (10:48.75).
Hartman (4:52.08) and Butler (4:55.63) finished one-two in the 1,600 in 2021. Hartman also won the 3,200 that year (10:48.50).
“It definitely feels different,” Butler said, “but I miss Grace.”
Butler also raced in the final event of the day, the 4x800 relay. A team that also included race Grace Bauer Salley Altenburg and Riley Meador finished eighth (4:03.20).
There was another Dayton champion in the Division II meet.
• Dayton Dunbar junior Dai’Vontay Young honored his grandma, Allison Satterwhite, with a victory in the 110-meter hurdles. He finished in 13.95 and said after the race he was thinking about his grandma the whole way because she traveled from Dayton to see him race.
“It’s nice to see her and hear her, and I see the smile on her face,” Young said.
Young entered the race with a regional qualifying time of 14.40. He finished the preliminaries with the second-best time (14.23). He said his finals time was a personal best.
Young ran the 100 minutes after winning the hurdles and placed eighth (10.80).
• Clark County also produced a D-II state champion. Greenon senior Tru Buddenberg won the pole vault with a height of 12 feet, 8 inches. Buddenberg finished fourth as a junior (11-6) and third as a sophomore (11-10).
Buddenberg set a personal best twice. She had never reached 12-6. Once she got that height, the pressure was off, and she hit 12-8 as well.
“I just did my thing and acted like it was practice,” she said.
When she hit 12-6 for the first time, Buddenberg landed and jumped up and down and ran to hug her dad Michael, who won a state championship in cross country for Bellaire in 1992.
MORE SATURDAY RESULTS
Boys discus: Darian Dixon, Shawnee, 13th (139-4).
Boys high jump: DJ Brown, Middletown Bishop Fenwick, fourth (6-2).
Girls shot put: Tori Tyo, Versailles, 17th (34-8½); and Lyza Forson, Urbana, 18th (33-2).
Girls pole vault: Heidi Stammen, Versailles, 10th (11-2).
Boys 110 hurdles: Kory Davis, Brookville, second (14.35).
Girls 1,600: Samantha Erbach, Waynesville, second (4:53.90); Ruby Gross, Carroll, 12th (5:17.36).
Boys 1,600: Logan Arnold, Carroll, seventh (4:22.37); Nicholas Dunn, Badin, 10th (4:25.03); and Aiden Clendenin, Valley View, 11th (4:30.48).
Boys 4x100 relay: Chaminade Julienne’s Dereon Howard Tayonne Turner Aiden Lowery Diallo Forest, sixth (42.88); and Brookville’s Kory Davis, Alex Kidwell, Tim Davis and Coy Hyre, eighth (43.03).
Girls 400: Ashley Yontz, Fenwick, sixth (58.29).
Girls 300 hurdles: Leeyah Samuels, Dayton Northridge, third (44.04).
Girls 800: Samantha Erbach, Waynesville, fourth (2:14.34); and Katie Walton, Valley View, 11th (2:18.90).
Boys 800: Seth Tivakaran, Carroll, fourth (1:54.79).
Girls 3,200: Delaney Cahill, Oakwood, seventh (11:19.62); and Anna Thurman, Carroll, 16th (11:50.58).
Girls 4x400 relay: Valley View’s Kennedy Underwood, Addy Abner, Hayden Sorrell and Katie Walton, third (3:58.50).