ST. MARYS — Some of the best thinclads in the Mountain State clashed on a humid Wednesday night here at Bill Hanlin Stadium in the Class A, Region I track and field championship meet.
Athletes were trying to finish in the top three of their event in order to automatically advance to the state meet.
Williamstown’s Ella Hesson, Magnolia’s Jason Beisel as well as Ritchie County teammates Olivia Cress and Gus Morrison won three events apiece.
The Yellowjacket girls, who ended the night by running a 4:10.28 in the 4×4 with Tori Combs, Emma Berman, Ella McMullen and Brookelyn Reynolds to break the old regional record of 4:13.40 set by Wheeling Central in 2016, ran away with the team crown.
Head coach Zach Hall’s squad amassed 172 points to best runner-up Ritchie County. St. Marys was third with 61 and Magnolia’s 59 was good for fourth.
The Rebel boys of head man Rick Haught, who had their third-place 4×4 Little Kanawha Conference team disqualified, topped runner-up Magnolia, 168-108.5. St. Marys edged Tyler Consolidated, 66.5-60 for third place.
Hesson, who is off to run at Davis & Elkins, had wining efforts in the 800 (2:24.99), 1600 (5:15.31) and 3200 (12:35.79).
Cress won the high jump after clearing 5 feet, 2 inches. She won the long jump with a leap of 16-7.5 and also won the 300 hurdles with a time of 46.54. Cress was bested in the 100 hurdles by Parkersburg Catholic’s Aaliyah Brunny, 15.92 to 16.39.
Beisel, the senior Blue Eagle, sped to victory in the 100 (11.38, the 200 (22.82) and the 400 (50.52). Morrison won his titles by sweeping the hurdles (110, 15.82; 300, 41.65) and going 21-1.75 in the long jump. The Rebel narrowly bested Williamstown’s Malachi Stewart in the 110 high hurdles as the ‘Jacket crossed in 15.84.
Magnolia’s Mady Winters was a double-winner thanks to going 40-6 in the shot and 112-8 in the discus, which just edged out runner-up Hope Weber of Paden City’s 112 feet, 7 inch heave.
The only other double-winner was Wheeling Central’s Aidan Scott. He nipped Wood County Christian’s Michael Cline in the 1600, 4:45.54 to 4:45.82, and ran a 10:25.73 in the 3200. The Wildcat Cline topped the field in the 800 after finishing in 2:05.03.
Ritchie County’s boys also received gold from Kaleb Cole in the shot put with a throw of 45 feet, 4 inches. Aaron Stull of St. Marys won the discus by throwing 137 feet, 6 inches. Blue Devil teammate Tre Moss cleared 12 feet, 6 inches to win the pole vault. The only other individual winner for the boys was in the high jump where Tyler Consolidated’s Hadyn Brown cleared 6 feet, 2 inches.
Thanks to Erica Davis of St. Marys, the WHS girls were unable to sweep the running events. Davis clocked in at 26.43 to nip ‘Jacket Camryn Irvin’s 200 time of 26.53. However, WHS got wins in the 100 from Brookelyn Reynolds (13.22) and in the 400 by Ella McMullen (59.48). Reynolds just finished ahead of Tyler’s Jocelyn Foltz (13.27) and Magnolia’s Jaci Rohde (13.31).
In the pole vault, Williamstown claimed the top two spots, but Emma Berman cleared 9 feet before teammate Madelyn Anderson did.
In other relay events for the girls, WHS stood atop the podium in the 4×1 (Irvin, Berman, Jalie Henthorne, McMullen, 51.97), the 4×2 (Henthorne, Berman, Tori Combs, Irvin, 1:50.77) and the 4×8 (Combs, Reagan Ortiz, Brianna Winsett, Hesson, 10:01.44). Ritchie’s shuttles team of Presley Johnson, Ivy Hogue, Emily Griffin and Marissa Scott) won with an effort of 1:13.06.
The Ritchie County boys had wins in the 4×8 (Blaine Bowie, Brady Layman, Isaac Slater, Cayden Moore, 8:52.19) and the shuttles thanks to Ethan Haught, Creed Knight, Marlon Moore and Bruce Moyer posting a time of 1:02.41.
Magnolia’s quartet of Gavin Postlethwait, Brady Renner, Sam Zombotti and Gavin Herrick went 3:40.70 to win the 4×4. The 4×1 was captured by Wheeling Central with a time of 46.33 thanks to Nigel Walsh, Payton Marling, Bobby Geyer and Cooper Blair.
Contact Jay Bennett at email@example.com