Raymans Cole always had the hops. That’s why members of Springfield High School’s boys track and field team were relentless in their pursuit of the high flyer.
Instead, Cole pursued another passion, offseason basketball. Also an outstanding outside linebacker, his spring routine changed when Cole relented and tried track for the first time.
“I’m just glad they let me come and join them,” said Cole, who finished in the cruelest of places during Wednesday’s Division I regional meet at Wayne. “They’ve been trying to talk me out since my freshman year, but I never did because I was doing basketball.”
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There were two area individual winners in the D-III regional at Troy on Wednesday. Catholic Central freshman Mallory Mullen won the girls high jump (5 feet, 4 inches) and Southeastern senior Charlie Bertemes was the boys discus champion (156-0). Catholic Central was tied with Fort Loramie at 14-all for the girls team lead.
Both meets conclude with Friday’s running finals and the remainder of the field events. The top four in each event qualify to next week’s boys and girls state track and field meets at Ohio State University’s Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium in Columbus.
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Cole, a 6-5 junior, was fifth in the long jump, missing a trip to state by one place. His best jump of 20-11.50 inches was well short of the 22-5 he popped at the previous week’s district.
Needing a final leap of 21-4 to advance, instead Cole fouled by less than an inch. “I was just heartbroken,” he admitted.
He’ll take another shot at state in Friday’s high jump. His personal best of 6-4 in that event puts him among the favorites.
“This has surprised me a lot,” Cole said as rain overtook the stadium. “It’s a fun thing to do. I’ve got next year to come and the high jump.”
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Springfield senior Austin Tyree qualified for the finals in four events and posted the top 300-meters hurdles time (38.15). Tyree also advanced in the 110 high hurdles (15.13).
The Springfield boys 800 relay of Logan Richardson, Dovon Williams, Elijah Johnson and Tyree advanced (1:30.26) as did its 1,600 relay of Dane Klosterman, Cameron Elliott, Richardson and Tyree (3:24.48).
Springfield senior Tiffany Moss also qualified for the finals of the girls 100 hurdles (15.63).
• The school record-setting Tecumseh boys 1,600 relay of Braden Berner, Stephen Mattingly, Daniel Baker and Ethan Adams advanced to the finals with the fifth-best time (3:27.88). Tecumseh sophomore Katie Rawlins advanced with the seventh-best time in the girls 300 hurdles (47.31).
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• Placing among the top four in D-III at Troy was West Liberty-Salem’s runner-up girls 3,200-meter relay of Megan Adams, Grace Adams, Madison Bahan and Katelyn Stapleton (9:22.22). Northeastern senior Max Queen was third in the long jump (20-8.25) and Mechanicsburg senior Joey Mascadri was fourth in the pole vault (13-0).
The WL-Salem girls qualified all three other relays to Friday’s finals and had the top times in the 800 (1:46.13) and 1,600 relays (4:02.39). Other area qualifying leaders were Northeastern freshman Gianna Cameron in the girls 100 (12.68), WL-Salem freshman Emily Hollar in the girls 400 (58.19) and Cedarville senior Trey Gruet in the boys 300 hurdles (39.80).
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