It didn't take long for Ryan Del Grosso of the Marysville High School boys track and field team to find himself fighting between fourth and fifth place in the 3,200 meters at the Division I district 2 meet last Saturday at Dublin Coffman.

It didn't take long for Ryan Del Grosso of the Marysville High School boys track and field team to find himself fighting between fourth and fifth place in the 3,200 meters at the Division I district 2 meet last Saturday at Dublin Coffman.

With the top four in each event advancing to the regional, Del Grosso needed to get past Olentangy Liberty's Nick Kahl, Hilliard Davidson's Nate Winters and Mount Vernon's Jordan Vance, all of whom were running close to each other throughout most of the race. With two laps left, Del Grosso made his move, pulling away from the group and finishing fourth in 9 minutes, 52.01 seconds to beat the fifth-place Kahl by more than 14 seconds.

"I felt really good," said Del Grosso, whose team was 11th (18.33) in the district behind champion Hilliard Darby (109.5). The girls team was 10th (21.16) behind champion Lancaster (118). "I've been sick for the past four weeks, so to come out here and run a nice race, it felt good."

Del Grosso trailed only Darby's Joe Jackson (9:34.19), Davidson's Yoshi Shimizu (9:38.43) and Darby's Jay McKenna (9:48.44).

"Ryan ran a great race," coach J.R. Cooper said. "He was very smart. He got himself in the right position and was able to cruise at the end."

Del Grosso made up for last year's district disappointment, when he finished fifth (9:57.14).

Also qualifying to the regional which began last Wednesday and will conclude Friday at Davidson for the boys team was junior Josh Woods, who was second (21 feet, 4 1/4 inches) in the long jump behind Marion-Franklin's Paris Turner (22-4).

Freshman Hayes Crispin was eighth (42.15) in the 300 hurdles, with Darby's Jordan Rispress winning in 39.25. Sophomore Andrew Diehl was fifth (6-0) in the high jump behind winner Cole Lapp (6-2) of Dresden Tri-Valley. Also scoring in the high jump was freshman Chris Coburn, who tied for eighth (5-10) with Matt Farkas of DeSales and Pat Wilson of Watterson.

"I think everything that happened at (the OCC-Central Division and district meets) is pretty much everything we were hoping for," Cooper said. "We wanted some high finishes and got some. Everybody came on strong and I'm proud of them."

The girls team also qualified two athletes to the regional. Sophomore Kate Francisco continued to excel in the high jump, placing second (5-2) behind Olentangy's Kelsey Couts (5-4).
Also qualifying for the girls team was sophomore Emily Sattler, who placed fourth (2:23.89) in the 800 behind winner Kassy Thomas (2:19.32) of Gahanna. In that race, Sattler was in fifth heading into the homestretch before edging past Mount Vernon's Celia Leonard with 40 meters left.

Freshman Allison Rogers was fifth (1:00.99) in the 400 behind fourth-place Allison Wright (1:00.32) of Davidson. The 1,600 relay of Sam Fisher, Katie Helfrich, Kylee Tuchfarber and Rogers was seventh (4:15.95) behind champion Mount Vernon (3:59.77).

The top four in each event at the regional advance to state June 6-7 at Ohio State.