MASSILLON -- Despite rainy conditions action got underway Wednesday at the Division III Regional Track and Field Championships at Perry High School with finals held in field events along with preliminary trials also being held.
In the boys pole vault finals, local athletes put on a dominating performance led by junior Ryan Stevens of Newcomerstown who captured first place with an effort of 14-00 to secure a spot in the Ohio High School Athletic Association State Track and Field Championships. NHS sophomore teammate Dylan Garretson also advanced to the state meet by placing fourth with 13-04 to put a pair of Trojans into the Big Stage in Columbus.
Just missing a spot at the state meet was Buckeye Trail junior Chase Stillion who finished fifth with an effort of 13-00, while senior Trail teammate Hunter Sayre placed 12th with a 10-06.
Barnesville senior Caide Bunfill also just missed out on qualifying for the state meet in the boys long jump with a fifth place showing with 21-01.50, while Shenandoah senior Jeremy Hall finished in 12th place with 18-11.00.
In boys discus action no local athlete advanced, with the best local performance coming from a pair of Caldwell athletes in senior Sheldon Archer (10th, 129-08) and sophomore Jeremy Ditch (11th, 124-11), along with Shenandoah junior Nick Miller (12th, 119-07).
Competing in the boys 4x800-meter relay finals, the Buckeye Trail team of Trey Dougherty, Owen Stratton, Kaleb LePage and Gerrad Williams failed to advance on with a ninth place showing in 8:41.76.
Local performers who qualified to return for Friday's finals were numerous with Barnesville senior Kohl Campbell returning in a pair of events on Friday including the 110-meter hurdles (3rd, 15.70) and the 300-meter hurdles (4th, 40.89). Advancing to Friday's finals in the 400-meter dash was Barnesville senior Matthew Burkhart (5th, 51.56)
Combining to advance to the finals in a pair of relay events was the combination of Kane Stephens, Bunfill, Burkhart, and Campbell in the 4x400-meter relay (2nd, 3:29.68), along with the 4x200-meter relay team (6th, 1:32.48).
In girls relay action in the 4x800-meter finals the Caldwell team of Lindsey Furr, Danni Goman, Hannah Pfeffer and Lauren Fry failed to advance to the state meet (9th, 10:29.51).
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ATHENS -- Indian Valley will be sending several athletes on to the state track and field championships as the first night of the Division II regional meet at The Plains near Athens kicked off Thursday night.
Indian Valley 's 3200-meter relay team of Hunter Probert, Matt Love, Garett Mozena and Trevor Ault posted an 8:04.94 to place second to punch their ticket to the state meet.
The top four placers in each event advanced to the state tournament at Ohio State University next weekend.
Also advancing was the Indian Valley team of Brittney Roth, Alex Pirano, Shanon Regula and Celina Mayforth, as they clocked in fourth with a 9:41.41.
Claymont's Blake Linard was second in the boys discus with a throw of 145-5 and West Holmes' Josh Goudy was fourth at 143-1.
In the boys' pole vault, Indian Valley's Zach Love was third at 13-6 and Garaway's Jarrod Hunt was fourth at 13-0.
Editor's Note: Due to early press deadlines for the Memorial Day holiday, the regional track results are incomplete with Day 2 of action yet to be completed.