BYESVILLE - The immediate area will certainly be well-represented in boys track when the regional meet opens Thursday in Division II.
Strong qualifying performances have led to an impressive cast in a myriad of events to be headed to The Plains High School in Athens after district action concluded Saturday afternoon at sun-drenched Meadowbrook Colts Stadium.
Maysville headed back to Muskingum County with the district championship trophy, outdistancing the host Colts, 92-83, on the scoreboard.
ST. CLAIRSVILLE senior Drake Walker sets the early pace in the 800 as the field heads toward the second lap at Saturday’s Division II?Eastern District Championship meet at Meadowbrook High School. Walker won the event in 1:56.83. Additional images may be found at cu.timesleaderonline.com
St. Clairsville's boys were the highest finishing area squad. The Red Devils of Coach Ben Frye compiled 77 points, which was good for fourth place overall.
The Red Devils did, however, win three district championships during the course of the meet.
Junior speedster Jaylon Brown demonstrated that he's a man on a mission after failing to reach the state final last spring as an individual. Brown used a strong final 60 meters to pull away for the 100 victory in a time of 11.25.
Later in the meet, he posted his career best time in the 200 meter dash. He sprinted to a 22.01 to win the title.
"Last year was a letdown for me because I didn't do as well as I thought I should have," Brown admitted. "Placing as a freshman and then not making the finals last year was disappointing, so I am just trying to work my way up to the top. I feel great (physically) and to run a personal record is great. I pushed myself a lot harder on the turn than I usually do, so I feel if I keep pushing myself harder throughout the race, I can bring my time down even more."
Just eight days after running a school record 1:55, senior Drake Walker proved that was no fluke. The talented middle distance ace circled the track in a brisk 1:56.83 to take the 800 title and advance to the regional.
The Red Devils' adjusted 4x1 team turned in an impressive 43.94 clocking to finish second. The squad, which had Brown running the anchor leg, also included Jesse Smith, Isiah Green and Jay Gossett.
Freshman Logan McCort advanced in the 3200 meter run, circling the oval eight times in 10:44.87 for fourth place.
During Thursday's action, junior Michael Eaton finished second in the pole vault with a 13-ft-6 clearance and classmate Colby Lindsay was second in the discus with a personal best mark of 157-ft-2.
Martins Ferry had a strong showing, accumulating 44 points and advancing a quality cast to the regional.
The Purple Riders were led by a pair of district championships.
Senior Cody Schau got things started with a victory in the high jump. He cleared 6-ft-1 on his final attempt to earn himself the gold.
On the track, the Riders' speed foursome of Brian Styles, Hunter Hill, Andrew Watts and Jack Fitch ran away from the field in the 4x200. The all underclass team turned in a brilliant 1:32.86 for the crown.
The same foursome finished third in the 4x1, posting a solid 44.54.
In the field, senior Sean McGee is headed back to the regional in a pair of throwing events. He was third in the shot put with a toss of 52-ft-9. On Thursday, he finished fourth in the discus with a mark of 148-ft-1.
Steubenville's relays once again performed well as they tend to do once the calendar flips to May.
The 800 relay team of Garon Lytle, Michael Jett, Perrier Coleman and Robert Hayden ran a 1:34.78 to take the third-place medal.
Individually, Big Red will send junior Joey Nodianos, who was third in the high hurdles in 15.62.
Junior Jaquan Lavender was third in the 400 meter dash, running a lap in 51.86. Sophomore Oko Anyabwile was fourth in the intermediate hurdles with a 43.25.
Hayden advanced in the 100 meter dash, posting a 11.49 to finish third. Lytle also qualified in the long jump, finishing third with a mark of 19-ft-6 3/4.
Senior Dashon Redman had a strong showing in the shot put. He finished fourth with a toss of 49-ft-7.
The 4x400 squad for Big Red finished fourth. The team was comprised of Nodianos, Anyabwile, Michael Diaz and Shane Fabros. The quartet turned in a 3:40.67.
Union Local's boys will be led to Athens by senior standout Collin Jones. The Capital-bound hurdler advanced in both the high and intermediate hurdles. He was fourth in the highs in 15.97. He came back a short-time later and finished runnerup in the intermediates. He cleared eight hurdles in 41.33 for the silver.
Sophomore Austin Kemp advanced on Thursday in the pole vault, clearing 12-ft-6 to finish fourth.
Junior Zach Beck cleared 5-ft-10 to advance as the bronze medalist in the high jump.
Indian Creek will take a solid delegation, including some new faces, who are venturing to just their third track meet as a competitor.
Senior Alex Young, who was the Redskins' every day shortstop on the baseball team, decided to give track a try and he's proving it to be a good decision.
Young won the district title in the 400 meter dash, cruising to a 50.98 clocking in just the third time he's ran the event.
Sophomore Max Lewis finished second in a deep and talented 800 field, posting a solid 1:59.68.
In the field, senior Logan Woods qualified in the long jump with a mark of 19-ft-5.
The Redskins' qualifying got started on Thursday when their 4x8 team finished third in 8:50.19.
Buckeye Local's lone qualifier is senior Chuck Stock, who was fourth in the high jump at 5-ft-10.