NEWCOMERSTOWN - When the regional track and field meet unfolds at Lancaster Fairfield Union High School next week, there will be a strong area flavor.
The immediate area enjoyed much success Friday night as the Division III district meet wrapped up inside Lee Stadium.
The Eastern District is actually broken up into two divisions for girls. The majority of the OVAC member schools competed in District I, which heads to Fairfield Union. Steubenville Central, Beallsville and East Richland Christian were in District II that will make the trip to Fairless High School in Navarre.
ST. JOHN’S Fallon Doyle heads to the final lap of the 1600 meter run during Friday’s Division III?district meet in Newcomerstown. Doyle prevailed and she also won the 3200. Additional images may be found at cu.timesleaderonline.com
River was the highest scoring area team with 72 points.
The Pilots were led by sophomore Abby Caldwell. She continued her brilliant season by winning the 100 (12.77), finishing second in the 200 (27.25) and, despite falling, was fourth and advanced in the low hurdles (49.81).
Junior Devyn Potts enjoyed a strong meet in the hurdles. She was second in the lows (47.76) and third in the highs (17.12), advancing in both races.
Potts and Caldwell joined speed forces with Kyndra Earley and Jessica Karpacs for a victory in the 4x2. They turned in a solid 1:51.42.
In the field, senior Courtney Imhoff posted a 4-ft-10 clearance to finish second and advance.
The Pilots' 4x4 team of Gabby Good, Kyndra Earley, Potts and Karpacs posted a 4:28.28 for the fourth and final spot in the 4x400.
During Tuesday's action, the Pilots' 4x8 advanced with a fourth-place finish.
St. John Central enjoyed a strong day of qualifying. The Irish, who were once again led by their big two of junior distance ace Fallon Doyle and sophomore speedster Jessica Alvey, finished with 67 points.
Doyle, who was an all-Ohioan as a freshman and missed out on the state meet a season ago, left Tuscarawas County with a double distance victory.
She turned in an impressive 5:08.80 to win the 1600 going away. She then re-wrote the record in the 3200. She ran eight laps in 11:25.55, breaking the old mark from 2012 by more than 13 seconds.
"I am excited (for regional) and really can't wait for next week," Doyle said shortly after finishing the 3200. "I was very happy with the mile ... it played our perfectly. The mile is my main focus for the year."
Doyle elected to bypass the 800 in favor of the two mile based on her opportunities down the road.
"I figured I had a better chance to place higher and run a better time in the 3200," Doyle continued. "I am hoping to run another PR next week and get ready for the state."
Alvey, meanwhile, did what she does in the 400. She excellerated the backstretch and ran away from the field in the final 250 or so meters. Seeking her first trip to Columbus, she ran a 58.90, which was nearly three seconds better than the runnerup.
Alvey also advanced in the long jump during Tuesday's action, marking the sand at 15-ft-11 1/2 for second.
Also during the first day of competition, sophomore Lindsey Froehlich won the discus (108-7) and junior Gabrielle Santinoceto was second (105-11).
Bridgeport also had a very strong evening of qualifying with speedy junior Briana Massey leading the way.
Massey will be a busy young lady next week in Lancaster, taking part in four events.
She'll enter three of those as a district champion.
"I am really excited for (the regional)," Massey said. "I've been there before in the 200, but I am really looking forward to the long jump. I've really worked on my form and technique in long jump, and it's improved."
Massey won the long jump during Tuesday's action with a mark of 16-9 1/4.
Using a strong turn, Massey set the standard in the 200 with a crisp 26.54. Earlier she was second in the 100 with a 13.08.
"I've been working on the turn trying to get around it quicker and pump my arms," Massey said. "It's getting a little tiring going to state and getting a spot better, but not getting onto the podium."
While Massey was thrilled with her individual efforts, it was the fact that she'll be joined by senior Cheyenne Flowers, sophomore Starbrea Butler and senior Bethany Barker in the 4x1.
Massey's anchor leg sparked the Bulldogs to a 53.53 and the victory.
"I am most proud of the 4x1 team because we've really come a long way this season," Massey said. "We've really been working hard as a team, and I am just glad the other girls get to go to regionals and experience it, too."
Bellaire finished seventh in the team standings with 47 points.
The Big Reds received strong work from talented distance runner Taylor Stoner, who advanced in both the 800 and 1600. She was fourth in both events, posting times of 2:30.69 and 5:40.13, respectively.
Senior Hunter Eden qualified in two events as well. She added the high hurdles to her workload thanks to a fourth place finish in 17.47. She had already qualified for the long jump during Tuesday's meet, finishing fourth with a leap of 14-2 1/2.
On Tuesday, the Big Reds' 4x8 team of Stoner, Danielle Stoner, Shaye Beckett and Rylie Purtiman advanced with a third-place finish in 10:22.81.
Also during Tuesday's competition, junior Melissa Cordy advanced in pole vault with a clearance of 8-6.
Barnesville qualified a pair of competitors in a trio of field events.
Sophomore Shayla Markovich advanced in both discus and shot put. She was third in the iron-ball event (31-5) and fourth in the disc (100-0).
Sophomore Trista Newsome advanced in the pole vault, finishing fourth at 8-feet.
Monroe Central is sending three girls to the regional in an event apiece.
Freshman Ashley Hayes advanced in the 100, finishing fourth in 13.88.
Senior Annie Digity advanced in the long jump, placing third at 14-10 1/2. Senior Kelsey Dick will throw the shot put at the regional after sewing up the fourth spot with a mark of 30-4.
Shadyside's lone individual representative will be sophomore McKayla Kinemond in the pole vault. She advanced on Tuesday with a clearance of 9-feet.
On the track, the Tigers' 4x2 team of Logen Johnson, Alexa Coggins, Ashley Visnic and Kinemond turned in a 1:56.75 to finish fourth and move on.
IN DISTRICT II, which qualifies to Navarre Fairless with the boys, a two-horse race between Garaway and Steubenville Central ensued for 17 events.
In the end, however, the Pirates' depth in distance proved to be too much for the Crusaders. Garaway pocketed the district title with 151 points, which was 13 more than the Crusaders.
More importantly than the top trophy was the fact that Central qualified extremely well.
Sophomore Kara Kakascik was a double winner. She captured the 200 (27.64) and the 400 (60.54).
Senior Monica Rigaud is starting to turn it up a notch of late. She posted a sweep in the hurdles, winning the highs in 15.20 and the lows in 49.39.
The Crusaders also captured the 4x2 and 4x4 relays. The team of Jordan Wood, Taylor Bednar, Kakascik and Rigaud ran 1:49.36 and 4:14.05 for the gold medals.
Steubenville CC's 4x8 advanced during Tuesday's action.
In the field, Moriah Vosteen was the champion of the high jump at 5-2.
Other Central qualifiers include Katie Engle (shot put and discus), Maurkesha Young (100), Bednar (100, 200), Wood (400), Molly Marrow (800) and Lauren Hunt (3200).
Beallsville's Dicey Stewart advanced in the shot put, finishing fourth with a put of 30-8 1/2.
East Richland Christian's Alyssa Crowley advanced in the high jump, soaring over 4-8 and Rebekah Mitchell qualified in the long jump at 14-2.