The Miami Trace Panthers track team will be sending 16 student-athletes to Wednesday’s Division I Regional tournament at Pickerington North High School.
“It was a good day, for both teams,” Miami Trace boys and girls head coach Brent Noes said of Thursday, May 19 at the District meet in Marietta. “More so for the girls, but, the boys did a nice job, as well.”
The Miami Trace girls team placed second out of eight teams with 95 points.
Dover won the meet with 135.75 points.
Chillicothe placed sixth with 65.25 points.
On the boys’ side, Miami Trace finished ninth out of 10 teams with 43 points.
New Philadelphia won in dominating fashion with 183 team points. Dover was a distant second with 71 points.
Chillicothe placed fourth with 65.5 points.
Jaden Rowe qualified to the Regionals in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.41, good for second place.
“Jaden was recognized as First Team, All-District because the kid that beat him was from the East District,” Noes said.
“Weston Melvin qualified in the open 400,” Noes said. Melvin placed second at the District meet with a time of 51.81.
“He, too, even though he was runner-up, he’s recognized as a District champion,” Noes said. “Again, the kid that beat him was from the East.”
Landen Cope, Taevin Brown, Jake Manbevers and Rowe placed second at the District in the 4 x 100-meter relay in 44.57 to qualify to the Regional meet.
“This is the second year in a row that we’ve had a boys 4 x 1 get out to Regionals,” Noes said. “We’ve got a different line-up this year than last year and we were still able to get them out.”
Asher LeBeau placed fourth in the 300-meter hurdles in a time of 43.01 to qualify to the Regional in Pickerington.
“This is the first year for Asher competing in track and field,” Noes said. “So, he’s obviously a first-year hurdler. We have three hurdlers who have qualified to the Regional meet in the 300-meter hurdles. That’s pretty impressive. It’s such a technical race.”
Jana Griffith won the 300-meter hurdles event at the District in a time of 47.02. That made it back-to-back District titles for Griffith in the event.
Courtney Arnold placed fourth in the event to advance to Regionals with a time of 50.62.
“We took 13 girls to the District track meet and 10 of them are moving on to the Regional,” Noes said. “Our goals transform; they kind of shift after the league meet. Prior to the league meet, we have a goal where, everything we do, all season long, is all about the team first.
“Once we get through the league meet, the team first (concept) gets put on the back burner,” Noes said. “Then it becomes more about the individual. I asked them, what do you want to do. Do you think you’ll be able to be successful and move yourself further down the road and up the ladder to the Regional meet and then, hopefully, to the State meet.
“We had 13 girls who said these were the events they wanted to do,” Noes said. “We had some girls who said they didn’t want to do the events they normally do, and that’s okay. We’re not going to push the issue.
“We were very fortunate that the girls battled and became District runners-up,” Noes said. “That’s the first time, since I’ve been the head coach, that our girls have reached that high, to be District runners-up, especially at the Division I meet. We could not have been happier for the girls.”
Libby Aleshire won the District shot put event with a throw of 32’ 10” to qualify to the Regional.
Aleshire also won the District discus throw with a distance of 110’ 1”.
Lilly Workman placed fourth with a throw of 100’ 10” to qualify to the Regional.
Alyssa Butler won the long jump with a leap of 16’ 8 1/4”.
Griffith placed third with a jump of 15’ 7” to join her teammate at Regionals in that event.
Junior Kaelin Pfeifer qualified to the Regional tournament in four events (the maximum number of events in which an athlete is permitted to compete).
Pfeifer placed third in the 200-meter dash with a time of 27.59 and took fourth in the 100-meter dash in 13.36.
Pfeifer was also a member of the winning 4 x 100-meter relay team, along with Griffith, Mary Pfeifer and Butler, in 52.27.
Pfeifer, Sydney Martin, Gracie Shull and Mallory Conklin teamed to place fourth in the 4 x 400-meter relay with a time of 4:24.43 to advance to Regionals.
“Kaelin Pfeifer is a four-event Regional qualifier,” Noes said. “That in itself is a pretty cool feat to accomplish. You’re only allowed to compete in four events. What makes it even more special for Kaelin, is, because of our District, the way it’s set up, we do our District meet in one day. We don’t do it in two days.
“As a result, they ran prelims in the 100 and the 200 that day,” Noes said. “So, Kaelin actually ran six races in one day and was still able to qualify in all four. I tried to talk her out of it, but she came to me and insisted that she be in all four events, even after I told her that she was going to be running six races.
“She said she wanted to do it and she could do it,” Noes said. “I have nothing but respect for that young lady, for her attitude and her work ethic and toughness. Because, that takes a pretty tough individual to be able to do that and still be successful, so, hats off to Kaelin.”
This is Pfeifer’s first year on the Miami Trace track team.
Conklin also won the 800-meter run at the District in 2:29.29.
“(Six) is the most District champions I ever remember having, on the girls’ side,” Noes said.
Also for the Panthers at the District meet, Aiden Johnson placed sixth in the pole vault, clearing 10’ 6”.
Cole Campbell was sixth in the discus throw with a distance of 121’ 2”.
Bryce Bennett placed fifth in the shot put with a throw of 43’ 3 3/4”.
Field events start at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday and track events are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. at Pickerington North High School.