High School Track and Field: What to look for in this week’s regional meets

Credit: David Jablonski

Credit: David Jablonski

Regional track and field preliminaries start Wednesday and Thursday at three sites with finals scheduled for Friday and Saturday.

Wayne hosts Division I and Troy hosts Division III on Wednesday and Friday. The Division II meet is at Piqua on Thursday and Saturday. The top four placers in each event advance to the state meet the following weekend at Ohio State.

Boys Division I: Centerville junior Sopuluchi Anosike led the Elks to a district title at Bellbrook and will compete at regionals in the 110 and 300 hurdles, high jump and long jump after winning all four at districts. His past performances suggest he could qualify for state in each event.

Anosike’s best times in the 110 (14.76 seconds) and 300 (38.88) are both second-best in the region. His best high jump (6 feet, 8 inches) is tops in the region and his best long jump (22-3) is tied for third. His best chances to eventually place at state are in the high jump (No. 2 state ranking) and the 300 (No. 7).

Northmont sophomore Dorian Brew ran a personal record 10.75 in the 100 meters to win the district meet at Troy. That’s the 17th best time in the state and No. 7 in the region, but another PR this week could be enough to get him into the top four. One of his challengers for the fourth spot is Franklin junior and Bellbrook district winner Liam Acevedo, whose PR is 10.70 and tied for the fourth-best time in the region. Acevdeo and Beavercreek sophomore Kaden Ellerbe finished 1-2 in the 400 at Bellbrook and enter regionals as the top two runners in the 400. Acevedo (47.98) has the state’s third-best time and Ellerbe (48.00) is fourth.

In the 800, Lebanon junior Calvin Kilgallon (1:53.47) ranks No. 5 in the state and second in the region. Others who could advance are Centerville junior Lucas Melzer (1:54.91) and Springboro senior Trey Maenle (1:55.25). In the 3,200, Tippecanoe freshman Landon Kimmell (9:14.82) ranks No. 3 in the region and Miamisburg senior Innocent Ntwali (4:16.15) ranks No. 4. Both won their district races.

In the discus, six of the top eight throwers in the state will be competing. Three of them from area schools will be chasing Springfield senior Jay McKinster, the clear favorite to win state with a top throw this season of 196-7. Centerville senior Cameron Gay (177-2) won the Bellbrook district and is ranked third in the region and fourth in the state. Troy junior Devon Strobel (172-5), who was second to McKinster at Troy, is No. 4 in the region and sixth in the state. Springboro senior Ryan Johnson (169-8) is sixth in the region and eighth in the state. Gay and Johnson could also advance to state in the shot put after finishing 1-2 at districts. Gay (59-9.25) is ranked third in the state and Johnson (57-4.75) is sixth.

Sidney sophomore Garrett Guinther (15-4) and Beavercreek senior Joseph Hill (15-0) rank second and fourth in the region in the pole vault. If both advance, they will be in the running to place at state.

Beavercreek’s 4x400 (ranked No. 6 in the state) is the only relay team with a top four time this season in the region.

Girls Division I: Beavercreek sophomore Kayleigh Keyes is the defending champion in the 400 and has the second-best time in the state this year at 55.69. Her winning time last year was 55.27. Troy senior Leah Harnish (56.15) ranks fourth in the state.

In the 100, Wayne sophomore Trinity Bibbs placed fourth at state last year in 12.24. Her best time this year is 12.16, which ranks No. 13 in the state and No. 9 in the region. Based on this season the top contenders are Chaminade-Julienne sophomore Te’Aira Branham-Patrick (11.86) and Wayne freshman Ric’Keya White (11.87). Branham-Patrick’s time is fourth-best in the state and White’s is tied for fifth. And those times rank 3-4 in the region. Branham-Patrick (24.54) ranks No. 6 in the state in the 200 and No. 5 in the region. Bibbs placed third at state last year in 24.89, but her 24.85 this year ranks No. 12 in the state.

White could also advance and place in both hurdles events. Her best time in the 100 of 14.35 ranks her No. 1 in the region and No. 4 in the state. Her best time in the 300 ranks her No. 1 in the region and No. 2 in the state.

Springboro senior Cara Mooney placed seventh at state last year in the 1,600 and owns third-best time in the state this year (4:51.5).

In pole vault, Wayne senior Megan Rybitski and Centerville sophomore Ann Lehmann lead the region with vaults of 12-0 which rank them No. 7 in the state.

Boys Division II: Dunbar junior Dai’Vontay Young (14.09) ran the season’s fastest 110 hurdles time in the state at the district meet in Piqua. And Brookville junior Kory Davis (14.12) ran the second-fastest time. They meet again at the region meet and presumably will do the same at state.

Young (10.82) and Brookville sophomore Coy Hyre (10.83) are also looking to go to state in the 100. Hyre beat Young in the district meet.

Carroll junior Logan Arnold (4:21.09) leads the region in 1,600 and ranks No. 5 in the state.

Credit: David Jablonski

Credit: David Jablonski

Girls Division II: Oakwood senior Bella Butler is going for a distance triple crown. She won the state cross country meet in the fall. Now she heads to regionals with the state’s top times in 1,600 (4:46.54) and 3,200 (10:39.86). She is also trying to lead the 4x400 and 4x800 relay teams to state. The 4x800 team won districts and has the sixth best time in the state. The 4x400 team was fourth at districts, but overall has the third best time in region and seventh best in the state.

Butler also has the state’s best time in the 800, but she did not run that race at districts. Waynesville junior Samantha Erbach, who finished second in the state cross country meet, won the 800 district race and has the state’s third-best time (2:15.15). She also is ranked No. 2 in the 1,600.

Boys Division III: Cedarville senior Caleb Sultan (1:53.1) has the second best time in the state in the 800 and third best across all divisions. At state, he will be chasing United star Kaleb Nastari (1:49.31).

Anna senior Justin Richards looks to advance in the 100 (10.89) and the long jump (21-8.25). He has the third best time in the state in the 100 and fifth best long jump. He also has a shot in the 200. He ranks second in the region in the long jump behind Marion Local junior Kyle Otte (22-6.25).

Versailles senior Colton Reese expects to advance in both hurdles events. He ranks No. 1 in the state in 110 (14.75) and fourth in the 300. Tri-Village senior Justin Finkbine (14.84) ranks second in the region. Covington junior Asher Long leads the region in the 3,200 (9:21.76) and ranks first in the region. Marion Local senior Nate Buschur has the second-best pole vault this season at 15 feet.

Girls Division III: Legacy Christian senior Maddy Merritt could advance in the 100, 200 and 400. Her best event is the 400 with a No. 3 state ranking (57.48). In the region, she ranks No. 2 in the 200 and No. 3 in the 100. Coldwater sophomore Issy Zahn ranks second in the state in the 100 (12.23) and 200 (24.99). In hurdles, Dayton Christian junior Aurora Schubert ran a PR of 14.65 at the Piqua regional and ranks fourth in the state.

In the 800, Minster senior Taylor Roth (2:15.07) leads the region and is No. 2 in the state. In the 3,200, Botkins sophomore Alaina Mann leads the region and is No. 4 in the state.

Dixie junior Sierra Brinson is expected to reach state in the shot put (41-9) and the discus (129-8) where she could place in both.

Fort Recovery junior Mara Pearson (19-0.5) has been the state’s best long jumper. Zahn ranks third (18-6). Ansonia junior Colleen Steinmetz ranks second in state in the pole vault (12-0), and classmate and teammate Alexa Drees is tied for the third (11-0).

In state relay rankings, Minster is second in the 4x400 and 4x800 and third in the 4x200. They won all three at the Spencerville district meet.

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