The Start of Many: Ohio Signing Day
Running Into The Spotlight
Two of Ohio's elite sprinters, Camden Bentley (Gahanna Lincoln) and Troy Lane (Pickerington Central), have both recently announced their decisions to join the University of Kentucky Wildcats next year; a program that has made a name for itself in the SEC and NCAA in recent years under the mentorship of Lonnie Greene, cultivating superstars such as Sydney McLaughlin and Abby Steiner (Dublin Coffman '18).
Bentley set a state record in the 100-meter hurdles with a (wind-legal) 13.42 mark back in April, followed by a scorching (all-conditions) 13.25 mark back in June. To top it off, Bentley has accumulated countless victories in her portfolio, including many state championship podium finishes and titles, along with several All-American placements on the national stage. Additionally, this previous outdoor season, domestically, she went undefeated in both the 100m Hurdles and the 300-meter hurdles.
Lane has always been up there in the spotlight, starting with a 3rd place finish at the OHSAA Division 1 Championships in June 2021 as a sophomore, just finishing behind Brandon White and Justin Braun. Skip to the 2022 Outdoor Season, this was when Lane skyrocketed onto center stage with a new state record in the 100-meter dash with a 10.25 at the OHSAA Division 1 Championships. Along with that, he also took home the 200-meter dash title with a 21.09, which capped off his near flawless season in both events.
With an indoor season upcoming on the horizon, and the outdoor season to follow shortly after winter, Bentley and Lane are surely two to keep an eye on in these coming months.
Buckeyes adding to their ranks... and NCAA XC appearance tally
Over to the Ohio State University, the Buckeye women (#25 at the time) qualified for the NCAA Championships after placing second in the NCAA Great Lakes Regional, led by Ohio native Addie Engel (Springfield Catholic Central '20), alongside Daniella Santos (Hilliard Darby '20), and Andrea Kuhn (Watkins Memorial '19), earning All-Region honors.
Following that performance at the Great Lakes Regional, the Buckeyes placed 15th out of 31 on the national stage at NCAA Championships, with Addie Engel leading the charge and earning All-American honors with a 10th place finish, putting her on the podium with some of the best in the country.
On the recruiting side of things, at least as of now, the Buckeyes are slated to bring in a number of Ohioans, with Mason Louis highlighting the current signings.
Boasting current personal bests of 10.60 in the 100m, 21.47 in the 200m, and 47.54 in the 400m Dash, Louis has made quite a statement the past few years, alongside his 4 state championship titles, which were collected during various indoor and outdoor track and field seasons.
Alongside him, many others are set to become Buckeyes next year, such as Zoee Lehman, Nick Biega, Dillon Sweetman, Will McGraw, Liam Shaughnessy, Brian Bates, DJ Filmore, and Mia Robillard, with many more to announce their commitments in the coming months.
Home Sweet Home
Outside of those mentioned above, there were quite a few that have decided to stay local, jumps specialist Juliette Laracuente-Huebner highlighting the bunch, with 3 nationally ranked performances the previous year in the High Jump (5-7), Long Jump (19-5.75), and Triple Jump (39-11.5). She is set to join the University of Cincinnati Bearcats.
The Bearcats have also signed the likes of Madison Conatser, Amber Carter, and Elena Horn.
Dublin Scioto sibling duo Bryce Page and Reece Page are also staying within the state, with Bryce signing for Wright State University, and Reece heading up north to join the University of Toledo.
Jaxen Durfey, 2x All-Ohio recognition during cross country along with being the 2022 Indoor State Runner up in the D3 1600m, will be joining the University of Findlay Oilers.
With many more to announce and sign in the following months, this list is surely to keep on growing.
Anywhere and Everywhere
Leaving the borders of The Buckeye State, many have opted to take their talents away from home, with the likes of distance stars Katie Clute to the University of Oregon, and Connor Ackley to Syracuse University.
Both of them had stellar cross country seasons this past fall, going undefeated in all competitions, with national qualifying competitions taking place in the coming weeks.
As previously mentioned, the state record holder in the 100-meter hurdles, Camden Bentley, is hurdling her way down south to The University of Kentucky.
To mention a few others, Innocent Ntwali to University of Louisville, Tommy Rice and Jaylee Wingate to University of Tennessee - Knoxville, and Caitlyn Jones to Virginia Tech.