Lakota East’s Spletzer places fourth in final race

Cutline: Lakota East High School's Carly Spletzer runs in the 3,200-meter run at the Ohio High School Athletic Association's Division I state track and field championships on Saturday afternoon at Hilliard Darby High School. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO BY MICHAEL COOPER
Cutline: Lakota East High School's Carly Spletzer runs in the 3,200-meter run at the Ohio High School Athletic Association's Division I state track and field championships on Saturday afternoon at Hilliard Darby High School. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO BY MICHAEL COOPER

Credit: Name Test

Credit: Name Test

HILLIARD — In the final race of her high school career, Lakota East High School’s Carly Spletzer held nothing back.

The senior finished fourth in the 3,200 meter run in a time of 10:54.94 at the Ohio High School Athletic Association Division I state track and field championships on Saturday afternoon at Hilliard Darby High School.

The senior went out strong to start the race and led several laps.

“You just try to go out and hang on as best as you can and that’s what I did,” Spletzer said. “I was hoping for a little bit higher, but it’s my highest state finish, so I can’t be upset.”

The finish was even sweeter after last season was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It was super disappointing,” Spletzer said. “We all had goals we wanted to achieve, so I think this year getting to come back out here felt great. Getting to finish my high school career at state, that’s the most I could ask for. I’m super happy.”

Lakota East junior Azariyah Bryant placed third in the 100-meter dash in 12.05 seconds. She entered the race with the best preliminary time of 11.8 seconds.

“I’m not disappointed, but I’m just excited for the experience,” she said. “The people I was going against were great. They all did what they do. Overall, I felt like it was a good thing.”

The race will provide plenty of fuel for the offseason, Bryant said.

“I’m not too far off,” she said. “I’ve got a whole year to get ready. I’m going to get ready in the winter time, prepare myself to come back my senior year.”

Ross freshman Myah Boze placed third in the 300-meter hurdles in a personal-best time of 44.53.

“I’ve got a few more years,” she said. “If I keep working hard, maybe I can get up to (first place). … I ran better than I did all season. I put everything on the line.”

Talawanda junior Kiefer Bell placed seventh in the 1,600-meter run in 4:14.41.

“I just wanted to compete and leave it all on the track for my last race of the season,” he said. “I’m pretty happy. This is my first state track meet, so it’s fun to be in a new atmosphere, new place and meeting some new people I’ve never raced before.”

Lakota East senior Camiyah James placed fifth in the long jump with a leap of 17 feet, 10.75 inches.

West relay team claims gold

Lakota West won the Division I state championship in the boys 3,200-meter relay Friday.

The team of Cole Cronk, Zach Beneteau, Sergio Negroe and Zach Plotkin — all seniors — finished first in a school-record time of 7 minutes, 47.48 seconds, beating the second-place team from Loveland by just over a second.

Lakota West qualified for state with a time of 7:49.77 at the regional meet. That was the third-best qualifying time of the 16 relay teams at the state meet.

Also on Friday, Lakota West’s Annika Kinley finished as the runner-up in the girls high jump with a leap of 5-feet, 7 inches.

Fairfield’s Jaydan Mayes placed fourth in the boys long jump with a leap of 22-9.5. Nicholas Davis of Ross finished sixth in the boys pole vault at 15-0.

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