NEWCOMERSTOWN - The quest for the state track meet got under way for the Eastern District Division III schools Tuesday evening.
The top four finishers in each boys' final advance to next week's regional at Navarre, while the girls' squads have been broken into two districts with the top four of District 1 heading to Lancaster Fairfield Union and the District 2 qualifiers heading to Fairless High School in Navarre.
Barnesville's solid 4x800 team won the district title in the distance relay to qualify for next Wednesday's regional run. The team of Katlin Grimes, Kyle McIntire, Jacob Anderson and Brandon Stephens posted a 8:29.94 to win the title.
Beallsville's Matthew Burke is regional bound in the high jump. He finished second in the competition, soaring over 6-feet. He then headed for the long-jump pit. He posted a third-place finish there to advance. His mark was 19-ft-5 3/4.
River's Jared Hinkle punched his regional ticket in the shot put with a fourth place finish and a mark of 46-ft-10.
GIRLS DISTRICT 1
Beallsville's Hayley Campbell was the champion of this district in the discus. She twirled the platter to a mark of 97-ft-1.
Monroe Central's Demitra Habig was third in the district with a mark of 94-ft-3.
Barnesville's Jennifer Steele qualified in the pole vault, soaring over 7-ft-6 for the fourth and final spot.
The Lady Shamrocks' 4x800 team of Lina Partridge, Amy Wahl, Emma Castello and Allison Healey finished second in the distance relay with a time of 10:37.41.
River's distance relay team of Randa Imhoff, Emily Dierkes, Landyn Ramsay and Laken Ramsay ran a 10:49.21 to qualify for the Fairfield Union regional.
Martins Ferry, which is almost two weeks removed from winning the overall OVAC title, returned to the track and got off to a strong start in its first season at Division III.
The Lady Riders claimed the first event of the meet when the team of Jamie Truchan, Brenna Becca, Alyssa Smith and Sunshine Wrenn ran 3200 meters in 10:21.03.
The only other area qualifier from District 2 thus far is Bellaire frosh Melissa Cordy. She finished fourth in the pole vault to claim the final bid with a vault of 9-feet.
The remainder of the field events and all of the running finals will be held on Friday. The field events begin at 4 p.m.