Track & Field: Hilliard Darby boys, Gahanna Lincoln girls capture Division I regional titles

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Alex Smith won the high jump and long jump to help the Hilliard Darby boys team capture the Division I regional title May 28 at Pickerington North.

After finishing second in the OCC-Cardinal Division and Division I, district 3 meets, the Hilliard Darby boys track and field team entered the regional with little expectations in the title chase. 

Instead, the Panthers received solid performances in the field events and a pair of wins by distance specialist Sean Carney to finish first (68) ahead of runner-up and host Pickerington North (57) as 36 teams scored in the meet held May 26 and 28. 

It is Darby’s first regional title since 2006. 

“We have heavy hitters and a lot of depth,” Panthers coach Matt Fox said. “We executed and the kids had a great meet.” 

The Gahanna Lincoln girls team earned its sixth consecutive regional title with 84 points, finishing ahead of second-place Watterson (68) as 38 teams scored. 

>>DIVISION I RESULTS<<

Carney led Darby by winning the 1,600 meters (4 minutes, 18.33 seconds) and 3,200 (9:28.99). 

Alex Smith won the high jump (6 feet, 3 inches) and long jump (23-6 1/2) and Cameron McNeil won the discus (151-0) and shot put (53-6) to help lead the Panthers to the title. 

“We knew if we could get field events (May 28) and put it in Sean’s hands, we would be in a good spot,” Fox said. “Our goal was to get through the field clean and we knew when you have a runner like Carney, you have your MVP bringing you home. It’s a good feeling.” 

Gahanna was led by Alyssa Shope, who won the 1,600 (5:01.94) and 3,200 (10:57.65), and Camden Bentley, who finished first in the 100 hurdles (meet-record 13.66) and 300 hurdles (43.77). 

“This doesn’t get old, especially this year. It’s incredible,” Gahanna coach Roger Whittaker said. “We talked about it and the girls stepped up. It was a lot of fun. This is probably the most enjoyable regional meet because of the adversity.” 

Another highlight was Westerville Central’s Justin Braun winning the 400 (meet-record 46.73), 100 (10.51) and 200 (21.12). He is a transfer from Thomas Worthington.

—Frank DiRenna

DIVISION III

Grandview, Africentric

boys excel at regional

Derek Amicon and Collin Haj Abed helped lead the Grandview Heights boys to a runner-up finish (58) behind Ashland Crestview (70) at Chillicothe Southeastern.

Adena placed third (55) and Africentric was fourth (47) thanks to standout performances from its sprint corps.

Haj Abed won the long jump (20-6) and was runner-up in the 110 hurdles (14.93), while Amicon was second in the 800 (1:59.54) and 1,600 (4:25.17). Connor McCormick won the pole vault (13-4) for the Bobcats, and Amicon was on the runner-up 1,600 relay (3:37.58) with P.J. Tingler, Riley Oller and Adam Bechtel.

Africentric won both sprint relays. Justin Fudge, DeAngelo Fuller, Kaylin Spence and Daniel Wagner were on the winning 400 relay (44.07), and Spence, Fudge, Josiah Smith and Wagner ran on the first-place 800 relay (1:30.04).

Wagner won the 100 (10.98) and Fudge was runner-up in the long jump (20-2).

>>DIVISION III RESULTS<<

Cristo Rey’s Noah Carmichael was second in the 400 (50.94) as his team scored 12 points to tie for 19th.

Grove City Christian tied for 34th (4) as 43 teams scored.

Grandview led area girls teams, finishing fifth (36) behind champion Mount Gilead (82) as 38 teams scored. The Bobcats were led by their third-place 3,200 relay (9:57.39) of Hannah Yochem, Madeline Palmisciano, Greta Tew and Abbie Baxter.

Worthington Christian was seventh (33) led by its champion 800 relay (1:47.25) of Briana Plummer, Maria Klausman, Grace Hall and Audrey Mousa. The 1,600 relay of Plummer, Sydney Diedrich, Ellie Cain and Klausman finished second (4:18.21).

Grove City Christian was 13th (22) as Bryana Trout won the 300 hurdles (46.44).

The 800 relay of Rachael Dwomoh, KyAshia Perry, Ariel Grace and Makiah Ferguson placed third (1:51.5) to help Africentric score 10 points to finish 20th.

Delaware Christian tied for 26th (5).

—Scott Hennen

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