Plenty of area athletes created season-ending highlights at state track and field championships.
But it was field events that stood out this year with state championships won in pole vault, shot put, discus, and high jump at the Ohio championships in Columbus and a long jump title from a southeast Michigan athlete.
Otsego’s Cole Gorski cleared a personal-best height of 16 feet, 2 inches to win the Division II boys pole vault championship at Ohio State’s Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
Bowling Green pole vaulter Maria Horrigan soared to a D-I girls state championship in the event with a personal-record of 12-10¼.
In D-I high jump, Springfield’s Manny Durden cleared 6-10 to become a state champion, while Fremont Ross’ Jared Ballenger captured the discus crown with a throw of 182-10.
Also in D-I, Perrysburg’s Jordan Doore, Taylor Monheim, Alexis Kemp, and Courtney Clody claimed the 3200-meter relay championship with a school-record time of 9 minutes, 4.63 seconds. Their triumph helped the Yellow Jackets finish seventh in the girls team standings.
In Division II, Liberty-Benton’s Michaela Butler swept the 100 and 200 with winning times of 12.15 and 24.86, respectively.
Eastwood’s Tim Hoodlebrink, Joe Salinas, Brennan Seifert, and Devin Snowden claimed the 1600 relay with a time of 3:18.09.
Genoa’s Logan Bryer won the shot put with a toss of 55-8.
Wauseon’s Taylor Vernot ran second in the 1600 with a time of 4:53.34 and third in the 3200 at 11:11.44, helping the Indians place 10th in the girls team standings.
In Division III, Liberty Center’s Brittany Atkinson added an individual state track title to her two individual cross country titles by running first in the 3200 with a personal-best time of 10:53.48.
Liberty Center’s Nick Demaline won the shot put with a toss of 66-3½.
Archbold’s Emily Roth, Meridith Short, Alicia Hernandez, and Jensyn Garrow came through to win the 1600 relay with a time of 3:56.22.
Archbold’s Levi Wyse competed in four events, placing as high as runner-up in the 100 with a time of 11.03.
In Michigan, Whiteford’s Miranda Johnson completed a superb career. The senior won a third consecutive long jump championship at the Division 4 state meet and captured a second straight title in the 200.