Saturday, May 11th, 2024

Flyers, Wildcats repeat

Marion boys win third straight title, Minster rallies past Versailles

By Tom Haines
Photo by Nick Wenning/The Daily Standard

Minster's Chaney Cedarleaf (left) and Maggie Hemmelgarn and Fort Recovery's Natalie Brunswick race in the 1,600-meter run at the Midwest Athletic Conference track and field championships in Versailles on Friday.

VERSAILLES - Marion Local won its third straight boys title in the Midwest Athletic Conference track and field championships, cruising to a 50-point win over runner-up Minster on Friday.

The Minster girls won their 33rd conference title, but they had a closer run of it.

The Wildcats trailed Versailles by 17 1/2 points coming into the second day and continued to trail until the second-to-last event, when Maggie Hemmelgarn and Maria Niekamp went 1-4 in the 3,200-meter run to push them over the top on the way to a 125 1/2 - 117 win over the host Tigers.

"We knew we were going to have to score a lot of points to catch up to Versailles," Minster girls coach Jessie Magoto said. "We had a few things not go our way early on, and that made it a little tougher, but our distance events doubled. Going 1-2 in the mile, 1-4 in the 800, 1-4 in the 3,200, those were big."

Last year, Versailles led by 7 1/2 points after the first day and by a point after the 300 hurdles before Minster pulled away to win by 22 1/2.

"We've competed against them at several invites, and we've been close throughout every meet," Magoto said. "They're a great team. They have tons of depth spread out through all their events, so that makes for a tough, tough competitor to go against. So, it was fun competing against them, knowing that it was going to be tapping into everybody."

The Wildcats got two placers in the 100 hurdles, with freshman Molly Brame taking second behind Marion's Grace Moeller and junior Sophia Werling in fourth. Senior Anna Larger took eighth in the 100 dash, but then the 4x200 relay failed to finish, leaving Versailles up 23 1/2 points.

From there, Minster placed in all but one event the rest of the way, and Brame and Cadence Bergman both picked up points in the 300 hurdles. Fellow freshman Claire Bohman added a second-place finish in the 400.

"She's been having a great season, in the 100s and the 300s," Magoto said of Brame. "It's one thing to do well, but to do well when there's pressure on. And then Claire Bohman getting second - still hard to believe, that's a little freshman doing that. Those were big moments for us."

Chaney Cedarleaf and Hemmelgarn went 1-2 in the 1,600, and Cedarleaf then came back with a win in the 800 with sophomore Annie Hemmelgarn in fourth.

In the 3,200, Niekamp and Maggie Hemmelgarn quickly established themselves in the lead pack with Fort Recovery's Natalie Brunswick. Brunswick led from the second lap to the seventh, with Hemmelgarn running at her hip the whole way.

Shortly after the bell went off for the final lap, Hemmelgarn made her move, passing Brunswick as they overtook a pair of lapped runners from New Bremen. She pulled away for a five-second win, crossing the line in 11:36.01, while Niekamp came in fourth behind Parkway's Taylor Muhlenkamp.

"Two-mile's not even something she runs," Magoto said. "She hasn't run it, just went in it for points. So that was pretty cool, and the same with Chaney running mile-800 and winning both, going in it for points.

"The things they'll do for points for their team, it's pretty spectacular."

That put Minster up 117 1/2 - 112, and Cedarleaf joined the 4x400 team that took second, ensuring the MAC title.

Marion Local led the boys standings by two points coming into the day but quickly built a healthy cushion. In the lone field event of the day, the pole vault, Marion's Toby Kremer and Carter Jones went 1-2, with Kremer clearing 14-6 to win. The two Flyers were the only vaulters to get above 13-0.

Jones broke his PR at 14-0, which he cleared on the final try.

"We had a conversation about trust this week - he needs to trust himself, he needs to trust me, he needs to trust his teammates, and we all need to be on the same page," Marion coach Kyle Grabowski said. "It's an individual sport, but we succeed together. We've got to have each other to lean on. He finally was listening, finally trusting. We got some help from the Versailles coaches, they're great people, and he went 14. It was the most ecstatic scream, the biggest cheer that I felt this whole meet."

Justin Knouff won the 100, blazing a 11.11 to beat Versailles' Conner Gibson by 0.22 seconds. Coldwater's Jack Riethman, who is undefeated in the 100, didn't run but is expected back at next week's Division II districts.

Photo by Nick Wenning/The Daily Standard

Marion Local's Wesley Schoen (right) and Aiden Grieshop went 1-2 in the 400.

Victor Hoelscher held off Knouff for a win in the 200, and Wesley Schoen and Aiden Grieshop went 1-2 in the 400. The Flyers also swept the day's three relays, breaking meet records in the 4x100 and 4x200 and winning the 4x400 by 6 1/2 seconds.

That gave the Flyers their third straight MAC title after snapping a 27-year drought in 2022.

"I hope, and I think, they get it," Grabowski said, "but it still feels just as good as the first one that we won together, when these seniors were sophomores and the juniors were freshmen. We've got some juniors and seniors now who've been integral parts of those teams over the years here. They know how to perform, and we saw that."

Fort Recovery's Trevor Heitkamp swept the 1,600 and 3,200, winning the 3,200 by more than 19 seconds over Coldwater's Mason Ayers.

The Indians got a win from Karlie Niekamp, who threw 107-07 in the discus. The girls 4x100 relay ran a 49.66 to hold off St. John's as both beat the meet record.

St. Henry won the girls 4x200. Karlee Buschur won the 300 hurdles, overtaking Moeller at the last hurdle to finish in 46.6 and break her own school record.

Coldwater added sprint ace Izzy Zahn to its 4x400 team, which ran 4:03.25 to take first.

Zahn also put on a show in the 200, holding off Fort Recovery's Anna Roessner with a run of 24.53. Both Zahn and Roessner beat her meet record from 2023.

Photo by Nick Wenning/The Daily Standard

Delphos St. John's Alex Kessen narrowly beats Fort Recovery's Anna Roessner and Coldwater's Izzy Zahn in the 100 dash.

The two also dueled in the 100, and both beat the meet record of 12.50, first set in 1981. But it was Alex Kessen of Delphos St. John's who pulled away late for the win, with a new record time of 12.19 to beat Roessner by .02 and Zahn by .07.

The Cavalier girls also got a win from freshman Audrey Alig, who ran a 1:00.30 in the 400.

"She's really figuring out that form," Coldwater coach Mark Bruns said. "About a month ago she figured that out, and now it's really clicking for her. She puts in a lot of work. It's fun to see when it finally clicks - that lightbulb went off, and it's been awesome."

Coldwater freshman Aiden Rose won the 110 hurdles, running a 15.21 to beat New Knoxville's Jay Schroeder, who broke a school record.

"His first couple hurdles, it's usually close, but second half of the hurdles, the last five or six, he really turns it on, really attacking it," Bruns said. "I think it's just a freshman not knowing any better. He just goes, and it's really doing well for him in the 110s in particular."

Gibson won the 300 hurdles, with Marion's Andrew Pohlman .02 seconds behind. Minster's boys got a win from Jack Grieshop, who ran the 800 in 1:58.35.

Subscribe for $16/month

Next week brings district meets. Coldwater's boys go to the Division II district at Defiance and the Cavalier girls go to DIII at Ada. Versailles' girls go DII and the boys go DIII, with both in the Piqua districts.

The rest of the MAC schools will compete at DIII districts in Spencerville starting Wednesday.

Subscriber and paid stories on this date
CELINA - Sexual transmitted infection (STI) rates have risen significantly throughout Ohio and the U.S. since 2017.
Specifically, syphilis rates, f
CELINA - The Mercer Soil and Water Conservation District Board of Supervisors welcomed a new face and is seeking another to fill a vacancy.
At the monthly meeting Friday, the board welcomed new administrative assistant Michele Behm. She replaces Cheryl Vian.
Compiled by Gary R. Rasberry
Ottawa-Glandorf had a dominating day in sweeping the boys and girls team titles at the 2024 Western Buckeye League track and field championships held at Bath High School.
ROCKFORD - If there is any no-hit softball game that can be considered quiet, Parkway provided one on Friday.
The Panthers used their three pitchers with efficency and scored runs the same way in getting a 10-0 win over Bluffton in the Division III sectional final in Rockford.
ST. MARYS - Napoleon made the most of its scoring opportunities while St. Marys couldn't come up with a clutch hit.
Behind 15 strikeouts by pitcher Arianna Kiessling, the Wildcats were able to hold off the Roughriders 3-1 in the Division II sectional final Friday evening at K.C. Geiger Park.
NEW BREMEN - Hardin Northern could barely hit New Bremen pitcher Alayna Ross Friday night.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals were hitting on all cylinders offensively.
Area Roundup
Compiled by Gary R. Rasberry
Fort Recovery scored three runs in the sixth to break a tie and added five in the seventh to pull away for a 10-2 win over Wayne Trace in the Division III sectional softball final in Haviland.