Throughout the past four years, Ackley has had quite the progression throughout his high school career that resulted in an undefeated 2022 cross country season, starting with a dominant showing at the OHSAA Early Season Invitational at Fortress Obetz back August, and then coming back almost three months later to win his first state title at the OHSAA Division I State Championship last Saturday.
On the grass and trails, Ackley has had a remarkable run, dipping under the 15-minute barrier at least once a season since sophomore year, with his first being a 14:59.67 performance at the 2020 installment of Celtic Clash. Moving ahead to this season, Ackley has eclipsed that barrier on five out of eight occasions, running a career best of 14:45.60, which put him at the top of the Ohio rankings, and thirtieth in the nation.
Championship-season and beyond, Ackley's resume is one to gaze upon, ranging from his multitude of victories in the qualifying stages in Ohio (conference, district, regional) prior to the state championship with several podium appearances there. Additionally, he has competed at Team Cross Regionals Midwest the past three years, with fifth place currently being his highest finish. That effort would have qualified him for Team Cross Nationals, but that event was canceled in 2021 due to the pandemic.
Even though the 2022/2023 indoor track season is just right around the corner, with outdoor coming shortly thereafter, Ackley's ability on the oval the previous three years were just as formidable as the cross country scene, possessing the range of events between the 800m to the 2 Mile (3218m). This is backed up by his exceptional performances along with countless podium appearances at the Division I indoor and outdoor state competitions, along with trips to New Balance Nationals during both the indoor and outdoor campaigns.
He possesses the following PRs:
800 - 1:56.38
1600 - 4:09.46
Mile - 4:10.98
3000 - 8:37.74
3200 - 9:05.67
Two Mile - 9:03.67
Ackley is set to join one of the premier programs in the country, who are now ranked in the top 10 after a second place finish on the men's side in the ACC Championships a few weeks ago.
He'll join a list of Ohioans such as Savannah Roark (Beavercreek) and Matthew Scrape (Pickerington Central), as well as fellow Midwest standout Alex Comerford (Otsego, MI) who have competed for the Orange roster in recent years.