D-III state track: Marion Local boys wins second straight team title

West Liberty-Salem, Coldwater relay teams among area state champs

Marion Local High School claimed its second straight team championship in Division III boys track on Friday at Welcome Stadium. Now the question is, “Is there any more room in the crowded trophy case back home in Maria Stein?”

“If I was to measure it out, I think there’s one more spot,” Marion Local coach Kyle Grabowski said. “I think coach (Tim) Goodwin and the football team this fall might fill it up, and then it’s, ‘What do we do from there?’”

Marion Local has won 14 state championships in football. That’s more than any school.

The track team won its first title in 2023 and became the first team to repeat in Division III since East Canton, which won three championships in a row from 2017-19.

“We were pretty confident because we had a wide variety of qualifiers compared to last year,” Grabowski said. “We had one fewer event, but two more spots. So we were pretty happy coming out of regionals and thought there was a good chance.”

Marion Local scored 51 points to beat second-place Lowellville, which had 35.

The top individual scorer for Marion Local was senior Toby Kremer, who won the pole vault by setting a personal-best height of 15 feet, 4 inches.

Marion Local’s 4x200-meter relay team of Wesley Schoen, Victor Hoelscher, Justin Knouff and Aiden Grieshop also finished first (1:29.77).

Each champion scored 10 points. Here’s how Marion Local scored the rest of its points:

4x100 relay (8 points): The team of Brayden Pavelka, Knouff, Kyle Otte and Carter Jones placed second (43.37). The top three teams in this event were judged by a photo finish. United beat Marion Local by .004, and Margaretta was .002 behind Marion Local.

4x400 relay (8): The team of Grieshop, Hoelscher, Pohlman and Wesley Schoen placed second (3:21.35).

Discus (8): Senior Jack Knapke finished second (177 feet, 1 inch).

200 (5): Hoelscher finished fifth (22.56).

100 (2): Junior Justin Knouff placed seventh (11.25).

Credit: David Jablonski

Credit: David Jablonski

The other local D-III state champions on Friday were:

• The West Liberty-Salem 4x100 relay team of Tori Douthwaite, Delaney Jones, Gwen McCullough and Chloe Griffith finished first (49.10). WL-S finished fifth as a team with 23 points.

• Coldwater junior Izzy Zahn won the 200 (24.48). Coldwater finished second as a team with 33 points, 17 behind Smithville.

• Coldwater’s 4x400 relay team of Audrey Alig, Becca Wenning, Kiersten Keller and Zahn also won a state championship (3:56.13).

Here are the other athletes who competed in finals Friday and placed in the top eight in Division III:

Girls 100 hurdles: Marion Local sophomore Grace Moeller placed second (14.91).

• Fort Loramie junior Ariel Heitkamp placed third (15.14).

• Triad’s Cayla Eaton placed ninth (17.31).

Boys 110 hurdles: Jackson Center senior Lucas Hartle placed seventh (15.72).

Girls 100: Jones, a West-Liberty-Salem junior, placed fourth (12.26).

• Zahn placed sixth (12.39).

Boys 100: Mechanicsburg senior Kailen Butler placed third (11.11).

Girls 100 seated: Lakota West sophomore Jupiter McKnight finished fourth (25.08).

• Beavercreek junior Zoe Roll took sixth (30.24).

Girls 4x200 relay: Ft. Loramie’s team of Heitkamp, Taylor Schmitmeyer, Izzy Meyer and Sunni Voisard finished seventh (1:44.38).

• Anna’s team of Abbey George, Victoria Heitkamp, Ava Reed and Brooke Metzler was eighth (1:46.37).

Girls 1,600: Legacy Christian junior Caroline Hamilton placed eighth (5:06.21).

Boys 1,600: Mechanicsburg senior Will Negley finished sixth (4:18.40).

• Mechanicsburg sophomore Beckett Negley was seventh (4:19.32).

Girls 4x100 relay: Fort Recovery’s team of Anna Roessner, Paige Guggenbiller, Kiana Matsuda and Mara Pearson finished fourth (49.67).

• St. Henry’s team of Chloe Speck, Ellie Fullenkamp, Morgan Baumer and Sam Lauber placed eighth (50.41).

Boys 400: Newton junior Seth Coker finished seventh (49.66).

Girls 300 hurdles: Heitkamp was third (44.85).

Boys 300 hurdles: Covington sophomore Day’Lynn Garrett was sixth (40.28).

Girls 800: St. Henry senior Rileigh Baumer placed fifth (2:17.39).

Boys 800: Minster senior Ryan Halpin finished second (1:54.94).

• Minster senior Jack Grieshop took fourth (1:55.52).

Girls 200: Fort Recovery junior Anna Roessner placed third (25.09).

Boys 3,200: Covington senior Asher Long was second (9:14.85).

• West Liberty-Salem senior Asher Knox finished eighth (9:29.29).

Girls 4x400 relay: Minster’s team of Keri Heckman, Claire Bohman, Margaret Hemmelgarn and Chaney Cedarleaf placed sixth (4:04.22).

Credit: David Jablonski

Credit: David Jablonski

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