The Gahanna Lincoln High School girls track and field team’s fourth consecutive Division I indoor state championship came largely on the strength of its relays, which is exactly what coach Roger Whittaker expects.

The Lions’ 1,600-meter relay finished first (3 minutes, 55.93 seconds), the 800 relay placed second (1:14.99) and the 3,200 relay was third (9:14.29) on March 3 at SPIRE Institute in Geneva, powering the Lions to 52 points and first place ahead of runner-up Pickerington Central (32) as 59 teams scored. Granville was third (29).

“We’re a relay-based team and we put a lot of emphasis on relay production,” Whittaker said. “We had a good shot to get major points from all three relays, and we did. …

“As far as we’re concerned, it’s a two-part year. All we do here is get that base in and hopefully get some success to help us into the outdoor season. It’s a long season, but indoor is an integral part to the big prize, the outdoor state meet.”

Gahanna also shined in the 800, in which Shynae Deas finished first (meet-record 2:12.94) and Madison Martinez was second (2:14.07). Dees and Martinez were on the 1,600 relay with Alexis Thigpen and Amariah Thomas and on the 3,200 relay with Allison Groves and Claire Steigerwald.

Joy Bradley, Shaina Rutledge, Thigpen and Thomas comprised the 800 relay.

Central was led by Jaydan Wood’s win in the 400 (54.9) and the first-place 800 relay (1:41.12). Wood also placed fourth in the 200 (24.72).

Dublin Coffman’s Abby Steiner won the 60 (7.36) and 200 (23.75), leading the Shamrocks to 20 points and a seventh-place tie with Huber Heights Wayne. Hilliard Davidson was 10th (18) as its 3,200 relay finished first (meet-record 9:03.73) and Lindsay Stull placed second in the 1,600 (5:03.99).

Also winning a title was Hilliard Darby’s Emma Kowalski in the weight throw (47 feet, 8 3/4 inches).

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In the boys Division I meet, Olentangy Orange led the area with a third-place finish (30) behind Wayne (42) as 67 teams scored. Westerville Central was sixth (22), led by its first-place 800 relay (1:28.26).

The Pioneers’ 3,200 relay of Alex Kenish, Tyler King, Andrew Schnoff and Tommy Wintering won in a meet- and school-record 7:47.47, and Jaeschel Acheampong placed second in the triple jump (45-1/4) and sixth in the long jump (22-10 3/4).

“State meets are determined by second- and third-place finishes and we got some strong performances across a lot of events,” Orange coach Adam Walters said. “Going in, we were confident that we could be a top-five team.”

Other area champions were Darby’s Dylan Litreal in the weight throw (70-8 3/4) and Thomas Worthington’s Andy Payne in the 3,200 (9:10.97).

Coffman’s Lucas Bons placed second in the 1,600 (4:12.46) and fourth in the 800 (1:55.93), Gahanna’s LaCarr Trent was second in the 60 (6.93) and Central’s 1,600 relay (3:23.35) also was a runner-up.

In the Division II/III meet, Heath’s boys finished second (27) behind Dayton Dunbar (67) as 79 teams scored. The Bulldogs’ 1,600 relay won (3:28.08) and Chandler Wilhelm placed second in the 800 (1:56.42).

On the girls side, Grove City Christian’s Calista Manns was fourth in the 60 hurdles (9.21).

dpurpura@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekDave

At a glance

Below are area competitors who finished in the top eight in the state indoor track and field meet March 3 at SPIRE Institute in Geneva:

BIG WALNUT (Division I)

Boys — Brandon Mosher: shot put (59-5 3/4, third); Caleb Ramey: triple jump (44-1 3/4, third)

COLUMBUS ACADEMY (Division II/III)

Boys — Nick Robie: 1,600 (4:25.51, sixth); Nick Watson: 1,600 (4:30.24, eighth)

DELAWARE (Division I)

Girls — Torie Young: 400 (58.0, fifth)

DeSALES (Division II/III)

Boys — 800 relay (1:33.64, fifth)

DUBLIN COFFMAN (Division I)

Boys — Lucas Bons: 800 (1:55.93, fourth), 1,600 (4:12.46, second); Girls — Abby Steiner: 60 (7.36, first), 200 (23.75, first)

GAHANNA (Division I)

Boys — LaCarr Trent: 60 (6.93, second), 200 (22.31, eighth); Kelly Wilson: 60 hurdles (8.2, sixth); 800 relay (1:31.29, eighth); 3,200 relay (3:25.75, sixth); Girls — Shynae Deas: 800 (2:12.94, first); Madison Martinez: 800 (2:14.07, second); Claire Steigerwald: 3,200 (10:52.68, fourth); Amariah Thomas: 60 (7.72, sixth), 200 (25.33, seventh); 800 relay (1:41.99, second); 1,600 relay (3:55.93, first); 3,200 relay (9:14.29, third)

GRANVILLE (Division I)

Boys — Ryan Law: triple jump (42-10 1/2, seventh); Girls — Gracie Dennison: long jump (16-9 1/4, seventh), triple jump (34-10 1/4, third); Megan Gummere; weight throw (40-11 3/4, eighth); Addison Hoover: weight throw (41-2 1/4, sixth); Rosie Lamb: 1,600 (5:04.06, third); Kylee McFarland: 800 (2:14.49, third); Reilly Zink: 3,200 (10:51.36, third)

GROVE CITY CHRISTIAN (Division II/III)

Girls — Calista Manns: 60 hurdles (9.21, fourth)

GROVEPORT (Division I)

Girls — Toni Woods: long jump (16-7 3/4, eighth)

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP (Division I)

Boys — Calvin Godsey: high jump (6-3, sixth); Girls — Bethany Robinson: triple jump (32-8 1/4, sixth)

HARTLEY (Division II/III)

Boys — 1,600 relay (3:34.37, seventh); Girls — 800 relay (1:52.25, seventh)

HEATH (Division II/III)

Boys — Austin Weekley: shot put (48-11 1/4, sixth); Chandler Wilhelm: 800 (second, 1:56.42); 1,600 relay (3:28.08, first); 800 relay (1:33.54, third)

HILLIARD BRADLEY

Boys — Alec Frymier: 60 hurdles (8.15, fifth)

HILLIARD DARBY (Division I)

Boys — Chris Burkhart: weight throw (62-3 1/2, fourth); Dylan Litreal: weight throw (70-8 3/4, first); Girls — Emma Kowalski: shot put (37-5 1/4, fifth), weight throw (47-8 3/4, first); Stacia Rispress: high jump (5-2, sixth)

HILLIARD DAVIDSON (Division I)

Boys — Conner Johanssen: 1,600 (4:12.89, eighth); 3,200 relay (7:57.52, third); Girls — Lindsay Stull: 1,600 (5:03.99, second); 3,200 relay (9:03.73, first)

OLENTANGY (Division I)

Girls — Siobhan Szerencsits: pole vault (12-3, second)

OLENTANGY LIBERTY (Division I)

Boys — Luke Bendick: pole vault (14-0, seventh); Girls — Emma Bower: 3,200 (10:55.07, sixth)

OLENTANGY ORANGE (Division I)

Boys — Jaeschel Acheampong: long jump (22-10 1/4, sixth), triple jump (45-1/4, second); Kevin Acheampong: triple jump (42-10 3/4, sixth); Andrew Schnoff: 800 (1:58.06, sixth); 800 relay (1:31.24, seventh); 1,600 relay (3:28.36, eighth); 3,200 relay (7:47.47, first); Girls — Grace Frye: 400 (58.38, seventh); 800 relay (1:46.04, eighth)

PICKERINGTON CENTRAL (Division I)

Boys — Terry Simuel: 400 (50.15, eighth); 800 relay (1:30.05, fourth); Girls — Shalea Boyd: long jump (15-10, fifth); Trinity Brown: 60 hurdles (9.17, fifth); Iyonna Ross: 400 (58.07, sixth); Jaydan Wood: 200 (24.72, fourth), 400 (54.9, first); 800 relay (1:41.12, first)

PICKERINGTON NORTH (Division I)

Boys — Ashwin Briggs: 800 (1:58.15, eighth), 1,600 (4:13.63, third); Matt Duvall: 3,200 (9:26.2, fifth); Girls — 800 relay (1:44.5, fourth)

READY (Division II/III)

Girls — Lauren Whitt: 400 (59.31, seventh)

REYNOLDSBURG (Division I)

Boys — Lance Gaughey: 400 (50.14, seventh)

THOMAS WORTHINGTON (Division I)

Boys — Arjun Jha: 1,600 (4:14.99, fourth); Andy Payne: 3,200 (9:10.97, first); Girls — Sarah Charley: long jump (16-9 1/2, sixth), Carina Napoleon: 800 (2:14.66, fourth); 1,600 relay (4:04.97, fifth); 3,200 relay (9:25.59, fourth)

WESTERVILLE CENTRAL (Division I)

Boys — Luke Finnegan: 200 (21.93, fifth); 800 relay (1:28.26, first); 1,600 relay (3:23.35, second); Girls — McKenna Fry: 1,600 (5:04.89, fourth); Sydney Kapral: 800 (2:16.2, sixth); 3,200 relay (9:26.74, fifth)