Track & Field: Korbin Martino leads Canal Winchester Indians to fifth place at state

Dave Purpura
ThisWeek group
Canal Winchester's Korbin Martino (center) competes in the 200 meters during the Division I state meet June 5 at Hilliard Darby. He finished seventh in the 200 and second in the 400, helping the Indians place fifth as a team.

A top-five finish in the Division I state meet was what the Canal Winchester boys track and field team had in mind, but at the same time the Indians were left wanting more.

Three finishes in the top four June 4 and 5 at Hilliard Darby — including a runner-up effort for senior Korbin Martino in the 400 meters (47.04 seconds) — led Canal Winchester to 24 points and fifth place behind champion Pickerington North (43) as 84 teams scored.

Martino also placed seventh in the 200 (22.24) and was on the fourth-place 800 relay (program-record 1:27.03) and sixth-place 1,600 relay (3:21.1) with juniors Elike Heh and Dexter Mounts and freshman Karson Martino.

Karson Martino replaced junior Dylan Randall on both relays after Randall, who finished eighth in the 100 (11.09), was limited by a hamstring injury.

“With (Randall) running, we’d have had a chance for top three in the (800 and 1,600 relays) but that aside, everyone else ran really well,” coach Kurtis Robinson said. “The other exciting part is of the nine kids we had at state, seven of them are back next year. We have unfinished business, hopefully, we can take care of next year.”

Randall did run the 400 relay that finished fourth (42.11) with senior Blessing Johnson and classmates Hayden Hull and Ishmael Moss.

Korbin Martino, a Penn State recruit, finished 0.9 of a second in the 400 behind Westerville Central’s Justin Braun, who also won the 100 and 200.

“I wasn’t so worried about my individual results. I wanted us as a team to do well,” Korbin Martino said. “Our main goal was to win a team state championship. A couple things had to go the way they did and a couple things didn’t. That’s life. … But to run this season and the way we ran with my brother and my cousin (Mounts) was a great experience.

“Pickerington North ran a great meet. We thought we could hang right there with them. We felt like anything was possible.”

Other athletes eligible to return after the Indians won their second consecutive district championship include junior Stephan Byrd — a Cincinnati football commit and regional qualifier in the high jump and shot put — as well as sophomore Isaiah Coleman (jumps, sprints) and freshman Aaron Rodoski (sprints).

Robinson also said incoming freshman Jacob Tisdale could be a key addition after winning the 200 at the middle school state meet as well as placing third in the 400 and seventh in the 100.

“Right now, we’re blessed with a lot of talent,” Robinson said.

Although the girls team loses both its regional qualifiers in Lipscomb recruit Allena Klamorick (800) and Tiffin signee Samantha Smith (pole vault), it expects to return a number of key contributors.

That group includes juniors Shelby Baer (hurdles, sprints) and Lauren Snider (throws), sophomore Marissa Klamorick (distance) and freshman Rory Chapman (sprints).

Groveport Madison senior Jashaun McGraw finished 15th in the shot put in his first appearance in the Division I state track and field meet.

•Senior Jashaun McGraw closed out his Groveport Madison boys track career with a 15th-place finish in the shot put (47 feet, 9 ¼ inches) at the Division I state meet.

McGraw threw 46-10 and 45-11 in his first two turns. While those were well short of his state-qualifying distance of 52-5, which allowed him to finish second at regional May 28 at Pickerington North, McGraw still relished his first state appearance.

“It’s always been a dream of mine. I just wanted to make it, just so I could say I qualified, but once it was actually here, it was crazy,” McGraw said. “I remember when I couldn’t even place in the top five at track meets. To be at state, it’s amazing for real.

“I at least wanted to get over 52 and PR in my last meet.”

McGraw was the only state qualifier for the Cruisers, who did not score.

Groveport graduated its other boys regional qualifier in Kahari Davis (100), while key contributors eligible to return include juniors Markell Holmes (sprints) and Harris Musungu (jumps, sprints) and freshmen Mike Musungu (sprints) and Elijah Simmons (sprints).

Among those expected back for the girls team are junior Kalista Milne (jumps, sprints, throws) and sophomores Anijyah Bryant (sprints), Alexis Golden (distance), Zimmari Lilly (sprints) and Nijah Montgomery (sprints).

dpurpura@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekDave

CANAL WINCHESTER

OCC-Capital standings: Boys — Canal Winchester (174), Big Walnut (142.5), Westerville South (99), Dublin Scioto (70), Worthington Kilbourne (62.5), Westerville North (60), Delaware (49), Franklin Heights (4); Girls — Big Walnut (144.4), South (142), Delaware (87.4), North (78.5), Canal Winchester (73.5), Kilbourne (71.2), Scioto (61), Franklin Heights (3)

Seniors lost: Boys — Kaylor Byrd, Sage Calhoun, Jonathan Chandler, Lane Gibson, Sebastian Harbin, Bowden Jerome, Blessing Johnson, Mitchel Lamb, Ian Lewis, Korbin Martino, Michael McKeon, Josh Merrill, Conner Ruth, Brett Smithers and Isaiah Wilson; Girls — Bonnie Butler, Isabella Byrd, Evelyn Cuddihy, Erin Duckworth, Elle Howard, Cameryn Huffman, Ashton Hunt, Allena Klamorick, Kasi Reed, Emily Roush, Janaeya Scott and Samantha Smith

Key returnees: Boys — Stephan Byrd, Isaiah Coleman, Elike Heh, Karson Martino, Ishmael Moss, Dexter Mounts, Dylan Randall and Aaron Rodoski; Girls — Shelby Baer, Rory Chapman, Marissa Klamorick and Lauren Snider

Postseason: Boys — First (114) at district, third (50) at regional behind champion Hilliard Darby (68), fifth (24) at state behind champion Pickerington North (43); Girls — 16th (13) at district behind champion Pickerington Central (85), did not score at regional

GROVEPORT MADISON

OCC-Buckeye standings: Boys — Lancaster (168), Central (153), Reynoldsburg (115), Groveport (51), Newark (30), Central Crossing (6); Girls — Central (164), Lancaster (158.5), Newark (95), Reynoldsburg (63), Groveport (38), Central Crossing (2.5)

Seniors lost: Boys — Gabriel Aly, Ezra Ayele, Kahari Davis, Marques Holmes, Eli Jackson, Jashawn McGraw, John Motton, David Neal, Carl Smith, Fabian Vazquez and Jayden Williams; Girls — Emani Anthony, Isabella Burholt, Destine Edwards, Gracia Musa, Chenise Smith, Amara Towns, Sha’Ron Whatley and Danasha Winfield

Key returnees: Boys — Markell Holmes, Harris Musungu, Mike Musungu and Elijah Simmons; Girls — Anijyah Bryant, Zimmari Lilly, Kalista Milne and Nijah Montgomery

Postseason: Boys — 11th (25) at district behind champion Pickerington North (121), 11th (25) at regional, did not score at state; Girls — 11th (9) at district behind champion Gahanna (154)