When it came to flying high, the West Holmes Knights went as high as anyone at the Fairless Tri-County Invitational track meet Saturday, April 1.
Grady Hay and Matt Chanay went one-two in the pole vault, and helped ignite West Holmes to a sixth place finish in the 13-team field.
Hay took top honors by clearing 12-06 with a jump in which he sent the bar bouncing but left it still on its posts for a championship leap. Chaney cleared 12-00, edging Fairless’ Gavin Alexander.
East Canton took home the team gold by accumulating 117 points, while runner-up Carrollton totaled 87.5. Tuslaw placed third with 75.5, Fairless was fourth with 63, Claymont was fifth at 60 and the Knights came in next with 57, edging Wickliffe by a half-point.
Senior Josh Goudy got inched out in the discus and took second in the shot. Goudy grabbed runner-up in the shot with a heave of 47-02, a quality toss considering the cold weather made it tough to throw. The win went to Claymont junior Blake Linard’s winning throw of 49-09.25. In the discus, he earned third-place behind Linard’s 146-10 and Linard’s Mustangs teammate Lyle Clark, who unfurled a throw of 139-03. Goudy’s 138-50 was easily a solid third.
In the long jump, Knights Michael Taylor and Ethan Kinsey earned sixth and seventh-place respectively, Taylor soaring to 18-00.25 and Kinsey finishing with a leap of 17-11.75. Kinsey and Jonathan Kandel finished ninth and 10th in the high jump, both clearing 5-04.
Kandel then took on the 800 and he looked fantastic, buzzing to third-place in 2:08.36. He was nipped at the finish line by Jacob Wenzel of Tuslaw, while winner Josh Conrad of East Canton won in a time of 2:04.66.
In the evening’s final track event, the 4×400, the Knights team of Travett Boughman, Hay, Chanay and Kandel parlayed its time of 3:47.48 into a third-place finish behind East Canton’s winning time of 3:37.64 and Wickcliffe’s 3:46.07.
Chanay also ran well in the 100-meter hurdles, where his timew of 17.04 as good for fourth-place. Winning was East Canton’s Zach McClaskey in 15.84. Waynedale’s Jarod Geiser placed seventh in 17.61.
In the 4×800, West Holmes’ quartet of Ethan Raber, Jeremy Schonauer, Jackson Iamarino and Brayden Bender placed eight in 9:47.3.
Waynedale’s Derek Reber placed sixth in the 300-meter hurdles in 45.39, while Fairless’ Dylan Neff continued his incredible early-season run by blazing to victory in the 400 in 52.94. Neff went on to win in the 200 in 23.39.
The Lady Knights clawed their way to a third-place finish, racking up 80.5 points, behind champion St. Thomas Aquinas with 94 and Carrollton’s 92.5. Fairless was fourth with 73.5 while Waynedale ended up fifth with 51.5.
The Lady Knights got a pair of championships with wins from Taylor Yerian in the 300-meter hurdles and Michelle Hostettler in the 1600.
Yerian ran a blistering 49.48 to easily win the hurdles by more than a full second. Hostettler ran with Carrollton’s Maddie Dunlap for the first three laps before pulling away to win the 1600 in 5:16.25. Dunlap took second in 5:50.21. Lady Knights sophomore Erin Norman ended up eighth in 6:19.81.
The two distance runners traded places in the 3200, where Dunlap won in a time of 11:25.08, while Hostetler earned second in 11:57.96, just enough to slip past Fairless’ Ella Pumneo. Norman again grabbed eight –place in 13:46.65.
Hostettler also competed in the 800, where she turned in a time of 2:28.3, good for fourth-place. St. Thomas Aquinas senior Kalee Soehlen set a meet record, winning the race in 2:18.93.
In the 100-meter hurdles, Waynedale senior Sami Ice blazed her way to victory in a time of 16.60, easily getting past Carrollton’s Layna Pasiuk’s runner-up time of 17.06. West Holmes freshman Maiah Geib made the finals and placed seventh in 18.76.
In the 100, Golden Bears senior Brianna Potts qualified third and finished the finals in fourth-place in 13.20. Tuslaw sophomore Ke’Aijhan Strong set a new meet record with a time of 12.48.
In the 4×200, Waynedale’s Ice, Stacie Nelson, Mandy Ebert and Potts placed sixth in 1:59.64, while the West Holmes team of Daybria Yerian, Rebecca Kashuba, Hailey Summers and Kaylin Martin placed eighth 2:00.83.
In the 4×100, the Golden Bears team of Julie Doty, Ice, Ebert and Potts finished fourth in 55.56, while West Holmes’ Makayla Roush, Summers, Kashuba and Yerian was seventh in 57.06.
In the 200, West Holmes got a solid fifth-place finish from freshman Kalin Martin in 28.99. Strong also set a new meet record in this race too, finishing in a blistering 26.07.
In the field events, Lady Knights junior Madison Kandel earned third in the discus with a throw of 105-04, behind repeat champion Kelsi Hulit of Malvern’s throw of 122-00. Waynedale’s Sarah Hershberger took fifth with a throw of 97-01, while West Holmes’ Kacie Leppla was eighth with a toss of 92-06.
Kandel grabbed second in the shot with a heave of 34-06.5, while Waynedale’s Marcie Snyder was third at 33-01.5.
To absolutely nobody’s surprise, All-Ohioan Sami Ice won the pole vault with a leap of 10-00, and was not really challenged.
West Holmes excelled in the long jump, where Kaylin Martin took second with a leap of 15-02 while Taylor Yerian placed third at 14-10.
Fairless’ Kennady Gibbins won the high jump with a leap of 5-00, with Waynedale’s Julie Doty placing fourth at 4-08.