AMHERST — There will be some familiar faces at state next week after some outstanding performances on the first day of the Division I regional track meet Wednesday at Amherst Stadium.
The Amherst 3,200 girls relay team of Alexis Szivan, Cara Giannuzzi, Megan Parker and Sher Champe qualified for state after taking third place with a time of 9:24.65, just a little over a second behind second-place Bay. Perrysburg took first with a time of 9:16.91.
“It’s really exciting going back to state for the third time,” Champe said. “Today was a tight race. We just needed to go out and run our legs. We had PRs that we wanted to hit and we wanted to get in the top four. It was that motivation that drove us to qualify for state.”
The Amherst 1,600 relay team of Undrea Ballard, Lexi O’Connor, Champe and Szivan qualified for Friday’s final with a first-place finish in their heat.
“We’re going to win on Friday,” Champe said. “We’re going to be two-time regional champions.”
Champe has made it to state every year except one, while Szivan is making her second trip.
“I’m really excited,” Szivan said. “We all just want it. A lot.
“I’m always nervous before every race, but we came in confident because we knew what to expect. The experience helps.”
Avon Lake’s Max Seipel is heading back to state after throwing 180 feet, 1 inch in the discus. He took second place to Fremont Ross’ Jared Ballenger, who threw 182. Seipel made it to state last season in the shot put.
Seipel and Ballenger will be roommates next season at Ohio State. Seipel said it helped Ballenger being there, because they like to push each other.
“I started out kind of rough, my form wasn’t great in the beginning,” said Seipel, who is making his fourth trip to state (including indoor track). “I was in fifth place when the finals started and my coach tweaked my form and it helped a ton.
“I’ll be more relaxed and plan on having a good time (at state) this year. This will be my first time throwing discus at state. I just plan on having a good time with it. This meet was the biggest meet of my life. It was ridiculous, it’s just like the state meet. I had a personal best in the weight room this week so I felt good going in. I have a lot of trust in my personal training and lifting.”
Lorain’s Jocelynn Rogers, Andresja D’Armas, Lamia Scott and Destiny Wilson had a good showing, taking first place (1:43.41) in the 800 relay and second in the 400 relay (49.66).
Rogers also qualified in the 100 meters, taking second place in her heat with a time of 12.77, while D’Armas was right behind her with a 12.90, also qualifying.
Rogers also notched second in the 200 meters (25.75).
In the 400-meter dash, Avon Lake’s Lauren Bakaitis qualified with a third-place finish in Heat 1 with a time of 59.26, while Avon’s Emily Joyce took fourth in Heat 2 with a time of 59.21.
Avon Lake’s Charlotte Ward also qualified for Friday with a fifth-place finish in the 300 hurdles.
The Amherst boys relay team of Brandon Fernandez, Joe Mihalcik, Mike Kardos and Scott Kelly took fourth place (3:26.10) in the 1,600 relay to qualify for Friday’s final.
However, the Amherst boys relay team of Noah Haramia, Kardos, Joseph Colon and Kelly took sixth in the 3,200 relay final and did not qualify for state.
North Ridgeville’s Jason Lucas qualified for Friday’s final in the 300 meter hurdles. He took fifth place in Heat 2, but his time was better than the fourth-place time in Heat 1 to qualify. Teammate Demario McCall, who was supposed to run in the 100- and 200-meter dash, was scratched because of an injury.
Contact Steve Walker at 329-7135 or email@example.com.
Team standings: 1. Medina, 19; 2. Tol. St. John’s, 16; 3. St. Ed’s, 14; 4. Berea-Midpark, 13; 5. Fremont Ross, 12; T6. Cleveland JFK, North Royalton, Norwalk, 10; 9. Tol. St. Francis, 9; T10. Avon Lake, Sandusky, 8; 12. Brunswick, 6; T13. Whitmer, Celina, 4.50; T15. Findlay, Amherst, 3; T17. St. Ignatius, Sylvania Southview, 2; T19. Ashland, Medina Highland, 1.
Finals (top 4 advance to state)
Discus: 1. Jared Ballenger (Fremont Ross), 182-00; 2. Max Seipel (Avon Lake), 180-01; 3. Mike Hierholzer (Medina), 173-05; 4. Jonathan Zedella (St. Ed’s), 172-01; 5. Maurice Harris (Tol. St. Francis), 171-07; 6. Jake Wickey (Medina), 158-06
Pole vault: 1. Kyle Hutchinson (Medina), 14-06; 2. Matt Owens (Berea-Midpark), 14-06; 3. Matt Karaffa (North Royalton), 13-06; 4. Sam Phares (Celina), 13-03; 5. Austin Hanna (Whitmer), 13-03; 6. Chase Hoerig (Findlay), 13-00
Long jump: 1. David Williams (JFK), 23-033/4; 2. Steele Wasik (St. Ed’s), 22.02 1⁄2; 3. Davion Fisher (Sandusky), 22-02 1⁄2; 4. Shon Layson (Tol. St. John’s), 22-01 1⁄4; 5. Sam Robinson (North Royalton), 22-00; 6. Makai Veasley (Tol. St. John’s), 21-08; 7. Jernard Pinckney (Sylvania Southview),
21-06 3⁄4; 8. Justin Harris (Berea-Midpark), 20-11 3⁄4
3,200 relay: 1. Norwalk, 7:51.57; 2. Toledo St. John’s Jesuit, 7:56.34; 3. Brunswick, 7:57.01; 4. Toledo St. Francis, 7:57.39; 5. Berea-Midpark, 8:00.21; 6. Amherst (Noah Haramia, Michael Kardos, Joseph Colon, Scott Kelly), 8:07.43
Team standings: 1. Whitmer, 18; T2. St. Joe’s Academy, Strongsville, 12; 4. Perrysburg, 10; T5. Bay, Ashland, 8; T7. Mansfield Senior, Amherst, 6; T9. Lima Senior, Perkins, Oregon Clay, 5; T12. Medina, Revere, Wapakoneta, 4; 15. Westlake, 3; T16. Rocky River, Anthony Wayne, 2; T18. Normandy, North Royalton, 1; T20 Medina Highland, Marion Harding, 1⁄2.
Finals (Top 4 advance to state)
Shot put: 1. Alaya Hayes (Whitmer), 41-11.50; 2. TiTyana Gardner (Whitmer), 40-03 3⁄4; 3. Brittany Morrison (St. Joe’s), 40-01; 4. London Williams (Lima Senior), 37-08; 5. Hilary Bourne (Wapakoneta), 37-05; 6. Haley Lyle (Westlake), 37-04
High jump: 1. Cassie Martin (Strongsville), 5-05; 2. Cirrus Robinson (Ashland), 5-04; 3. Janae Harris (Mansfield Senior), 5-03; 4. Alyssa Johnson (Perkins), 5-03; 5. Larissa Kurtz (Revere), 5-03; 6. Kye Williams (St. Joe’s), 5-02; 7. Kelly McCafferty (Strongsville), 5-02; T8. Nikki McKenna (Medina Highland), Olivia Davis (Marion Harding), 5-00
3,200 relay: 1. Perrysburg, 9:16.91; 2. Bay, 9:23.38; 3. Amherst (Alexis Szivan, Cara Giannuzzi, Megan Parker, Sher Champe), 9:14.65; 4. Oregon Clay, 9:27.65; 5. Medina, 9:28.01; 6. St. Joseph Academy, 9:32.73