Cross Country

Jerome boys turn in central Ohio’s top state performance


The Dublin Jerome High School boys cross country team finished second in the Division I state meet Nov. 2 at National Trail Raceway to lead all central Ohio squads.

The Celtics scored 105 points to finish behind Cincinnati St. Xavier (46) and ahead of third-place Hilliard Davidson (154). New Albany was 11th (238) and Olentangy Liberty placed 12th (265) of 16 teams.

Seniors Mitchell Leitch (sixth, 15 minutes, 36. 67 seconds) and Jake Mandel (seventh, 15:40.05) led the Celtics.

“It’s really unbelievable,” Leitch said. “We had been looking forward to this all week — really all year. We’re really happy with what we did.”

Newark senior Toby Hardwick placed second (15:21.37) behind Youngstown Boardman’s Mark Hadley (15:10.63). Liberty senior Andrew Johnston finished 10th (15:46.87).

In Division II, Defiance (107) won the boys race ahead of runner-up Tipp City Tippecanoe (140). Granville senior Tyler Otterstedt (38th, 16:57.8) was the top area runner.

In the Division III boys race, McDonald (94) won ahead of Cortland Maplewood (103) and Grandview senior Luke Evans (eighth, 16:21.67) was the top area performer.

Gahanna was seventh (235) of 16 teams in the Division I girls race behind champion Mason (76). Davidson was 10th (240), Thomas Worthington was 13th (292) and Upper Arlington was 15th (334). UA sophomore Ann Heuerman (10th, 18:51.98) led area runners.

In the Division II girls race, Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary (101) won its fifth consecutive state title ahead of Bay Village Bay (119). Granville was 10th (223) and Hartley junior Emily Franz (29th, 19:32) led area participants.

In the Division III girls race, Columbus Academy junior Julia Rizk finished third (18:48.61) behind Liberty Center’s Brittany Atkinson (18:31.45) and Coldwater’s Christina Seas (18:43.15). Liberty Center (98) won the team title ahead of runner-up Gates Mills Academy (110), while Columbus School for Girls was ninth (216) and Academy was 13th (278) of 16 teams.