Division 1 Girls
The D1 Girl’s competition has several returning standouts. Jr. Annie Heffernan of Cincinnati St. Ursula is the leading distance runner in the State. She is the defending 3,200 meter champion setting a new D1, State Meet and Owens Stadium records with her 10:14.91. This year she is anchoring the 4x800 and has her sights on the 1600, 3200 double. She has the State’s leading times in both events. 1600 (4:54.96) 3200 (10:25.54).
Jr. Karrington Winters of New Albany returns to defend her back to back 400m championships. She has the State’s leading time of 53.74.
A must see event, if you are Pole Vault fan, will be this year’s vault championship. Four girls had Regional heights over 12’. Four others have vaulted 12’ this season. Leading the girls is Jr. Maria Horrigan of Bowling Green (12-10). She will be challenged by Sr. Jade Hawkins of Tri-Valley (12-7), Jr. Kristen Denk of North Royalton (12-4) and Sr. Kaitlyn Barber of Whitmer (12-3).
Here’s a look at the other events.
In the 4x800 four of last year’s top five teams return, highlighted by returning champion Mason (9:11.06). Jr.’s Delaney McDowel and Erin Brush return and are joined by Fr. Elizabeth Brush and Jr. Cassidy Peebles. The girl’s ran 9:20.30 at Regionals. 2013 #2, Perrysburg (9:16.64) returns three girls from last year running 9:16.91 at Regionals. 2013 #4 Wadsworth (9:21.35) also returns three girls running 9:17.66 at Regionals. The other top five team from 2103 is Hilliard Davidson. They ran 5th in 9:23.07 and ran 9:21.06 at Regionals. The leading time going into State is held by Geneva (9:15.60). The team consists of Sr. Hailey VanHoy, Jr. Emily Deering, So. Brittany Aveni and Fr. Dareion Marrison.
Jocselyn Powell, Canal Winchester Sr. has the leading time of 13.84 in the 110H. She was the 2013 state runner-up with a time of 14.52. She just may challenge the D1 and State Meet record of 13.64 set in 2000 by Shaker Height’s Dalanda Jackson. The other state returner is Sr. Jamie Annis of Big Walnut. She was 4th last year (15.03) and comes out of regionals with a 14.43.
Three girl’s return from last year’s State 100m finals. The number 3, 4 and 6th place finishers. Karrington Winters of New Albany was the 5th place finisher, but is not running the 100. Sr. Autumn Heath of Lakota East was 3rd last year (12.26) and has the State’s leading time of 11.87. Last year’s #4 (12.30) is Chardon Sr. Stephanie Ferrante. Her Regional time was 12.33, but she has posted an 11.94. As a Sophomore she was 7th in 12.49. The 3rd returner is Sr. Jocelynn Rogers of Lorain. She was 6th last year. (12.38). Her Regional time was 12.65, but she has posted a 12.03. One would have to give the edge to Heath, but it’s the 100 and a lot can happen in a very short time with a lot of fast girls.
Reynoldsburg’s 2009 State record of 1:37.02 shouldn’t be in jeopardy. Pickerington Central has the States leading time of 1:39.28 and is the only school that has posted a sub 1:40. They have three girls returning from their 3rd place finish in 2013 (1:40.50). Sr.’s Tyler Williams, Irene Skinner and Shalon Conley return in hopes of bettering last year’s performance. They are joined by Sr. Jada Williams. The #2 Ranked team in the State is Warren G. Harding with a time of 1:40.71 that they ran at Regionals. With a 1:40.79, the #3 ranked team in the State is Cincinnati Withrow. Withrow has just one returner from last year’s 2nd place team (1:40.36), Sr. Arbria Williams.
The 1600 showcases one of the nation’s leading runners in Cincinnati St. Ursula Academy’s Annie Heffernan. Ran 4:54.96 in her Region, but has a State leading time of 4:47.60 and is currently US#14. Heffernan should win the race and is comfortable pushing the pace and running out front. Of the 14 qualifiers, 8 are returners. The race for 2nd and 3rd will be exciting. Sr. Courtney Clody has posted a 4:59.03 that is the #5 time in the State. So.Micaela DeGenero of Granville has the #8 time in State (5:00.83). Six of the girls, excluding Heffernan, have posted runs under 5:05. Last year’s #3 runner, Sr. Jacquelyn Crow of Lebanon ran 4:58.30 last year. The last 100m of this race should be exciting and Heffernan may go after the 4:41.37 D1, State and Stadium record set by Emily Infeld of Cleveland Hts. Beaumont in 2007.
The 4x100 is just too close to call. Just .8 seconds separates the qualifiers. Six teams return, including defending champion Withrow (47.49) led by Sr. Arbria Williams. Harding (48.11), Gahanna (48.30), Withrow (48.36), Solon (48.45) and Pickerinton Central (48.61) have the top five times in the State.
Jr. Karrington Winters of New Albany is the two time defending champion. Last year she defended her Freshman year title running 53.59. Her State leading time of 53.74, run at Regionals, is ranked US#8. If Karrington runs what she is capable of, the race will be for 2nd and 3rd. Last year’s #2 finisher (54.76), Sr. Stephanie Ferrante has been running well and may challenge Winters.
The girl’s 300 features four returners from last year’s finals, including last year’s runner-up (43.56), Sr. Marinice Bauman of Olentangy. Bauman has the State’s leading and a US#9 ranked time of 41.45 run in Regionals. Sr. Jocselyn Powell of Canal Winchester was 2nd to Bauman in the Central Region, running 42.13. She has the #2 State ranking and is the only other girl under 43.
The girl’s 800 is reloading this year with only two returners from 2013. Last year’s #2 (2:11.20), Jr. Rachel Kotchman of Brecksville and #13 (2:19.76), Jr. Alexis Szivan of Amhurst Steele. Kotchman is ranked #7 in the State with a 2:13.87. Szivan is ranked #3 with a 2:12.42. The leading time in the State is 2:11.98 by Perrysburg Sr. Courtney Clody. The #2 time in the State is held by So. Rachel Banks of Chardon (2:12.42). The race will be close and will come down to the last 100m.
Last year’s #2, 3, 5 & 6th place runners all return to this years 200. Solon Sr. Jelvon Butler was 2nd (24.20). She is ranked #6 in the State with a 24.59. (The number one time in the State was held by Karrington Winters of New Albany but she cramped in the finals of the Regional 200 and did not qualify.) Sr. Autumn Heath of Lakota East is ranked #2 in the State with a 24.38. She was 5th last year (25.06). The 3rd fastest time is held by Sr. Stephanie Ferrante of Chardon (24.42). Ferrante was 3rd in last year’s finals 24.23. Hartley Sr. Naja Greer was 6th last year (25.09) and is ranked #4 in the State with a 24.48. One can see Butler, Ferrante, Heath and Greer battling for the number one spot on the podium.
Heffernan should dominate the 3200. She set the D1, State Meet and Stadium records last year in a winning time of 10:14.91. She hasn’t run that fast this year, but has a State leading time of 10:25.54. Aside from Heffernan, the race will feature five other returners from 2013. #6 (11:04.23) Sr. Erin Gyurke of Oregon Clay (10:55.33). #7 (11:09) Sr. Ashley Murray of Cloverleaf (11:16). #10 (11:30) Sr. Taylor Monheim of Perrysburg (10:59.60). #14 (11:42.83) Sr. Chloe Binczyk of Shaker Hts. (11:11.01). #15 (11:50.83). So. Jane Onders of Hilliard Davidson (11:00.58). So. Carlee Rhoads of Medina Highland is ranked #4 in the State, running 10:49.2 in her Regional. With 7 girls who have posted sub 11:00 runs this year, the battle for 2nd and 3rd should be fun to watch.
My choice in the 4x400 is Pickerington Central who ran a State lading time in Regionals of 3:50.52. The team consists of Sr’s. Irene Skinner, Tyler Williams and Brionna Peppers and So. Nyari Herron. Two other Central Region teams are ranked #2 & #3. Granville ran 3:52.80 and Gahanna Lincoln ran 3:53.99.
The State discuss title will go to Sr. Alexis Gray of Solon. She has the #2 throw in the State with a 156-4. She was 4th in 2013 (138-00). Her closet competitor is Jr. Oyesade Olatoye of Dublin Coffman who has thrown 147-06. 2103’s Runner-up, Jr. Kaylee Antill of Dresden Tri-Valley has thrown 144-05 and may challenge Olatoye for the 2nd spot on the podium.
Defending Champion Sr. Loretta Blaut has the State leading jump of 5-7 and is set to defend her title. Last year’s #6 finisher (5-4) So. Cassie Martin of Strongsville has posted a 5-6, along with GlenOak Jr. Dajia Mills and So. Olga Branney of Green. These three girls will also contend for the title.
In the Long Jump, six girls have jumped over 18 thus far. Sr. Cayla Carey, Cincinnati Ursuline Academy 18-09.75, Jr. Asya Reynolds of Lyndhurst Brush 18-00.00, Sr. Kellsa Mbah of Liberty Twp. Lakota East 18-04.00, So. Olivia Bechtel, Bay Village Bay 18-08.00, Sr. Kyla Paster of Berea-Midpark 18-07.75 and Jr. Bekah Carr of Celina 18-05.25. Carey has the #2 jump in the State of 18-11.5. This will be a tough competition to see who gets on the podium. Carey should win.
In the Shot, six girls return to State. Leading the State returners is last year #2 (44-10) Jr. Oyesade Olatoye of Dublin Coffman. She threw 44-9.50 at Regionals securing the State #3 ranking. Jr. Kaylee Antill of Dresden Tri-Valley has the 2nd best throw going into State with a throw of 43-11.75. Last year’s 3rd place finisher (44-09), Sr. Annette Echikunwok of Pickerington North is capable of getting on the podium again. She threw 40-6 at Regionals. Jr. Alexis Gray of Solon was 5th in 2013 (42-04.50) and threw 42-00. at Regionals.
The girl’s Pole vault is a must event to watch. Six girls’ return from last year and six girls have vaulted over 12-0. Jr. Maria Horrigan of Bowling Green has the #2 vault in the State at 12-10. Sr. Jade Hawkins of Dresden Tri-Valley has the #3 vault with a 12-7. Jr. Kristen Denk of North Royalton has the #4 ranking with a vault of 12-4. Sr. Kaitlyn Barber of Whitmer is ranked #5 with a vault of 12-3. Sr. Gretchen Rosch of Canal Winchester, Sr. Mackenzie Brown of Hiliard Davidson and Sr. Audrey Rabe of Chesterland West Geauga have all vaulted 12-0. It should b a great competition and Morgan Estes of Uniontown Green’s D1 and State Meet record 13-00.25 set in 2013 and the Stadium record of 13-1 set in 2012 by Bryan’s Alyssa McBride may be broken if one of these girls is on.