COLUMBUS - Allison Schroeder never forgot how close she came to winning a state championship a year ago in the Division II 300-meter hurdles.
The Ottawa-Glandorf junior used the experience for motivation this season.
The year-long focus delivered major results as Schroeder streaked to victory in the 300 hurdles yesterday in the D-II state track meet at Ohio State University's Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
Schroeder pulled away from the field over the final 100 meters to finish with a school- record and personal-best time of 43.32.
Oak Harbor's Erica Lipstraw placed fourth (45.07).
"I'm speechless," Schroeder said. "That's the best recognition you can have as a high school athlete."
Schroeder, third a year ago in 46.36, ran this year's race with as much confidence as she did will. She attacked the first hurdle and remained aggressive through the race.
"I knew it was a possibility and I've been training the whole year for that one shot at the championship," Schroeder said.
Akron Buchtel won the girls team title with 43 points. Heath claimed the boys championship with 41 points.
Eastwood's Jack Schemenauer, who suffered an ankle sprain a week ago while warming up for a regional race, closed out his high school career by finishing third in the 300 hurdles (38.42) and fourth in the 110 hurdles (14.62). His state-meet showing erased the disappointment of his junior season in which he made it to only one of the two hurdles events after getting disqualified in the regional for a false start in the 110.
"It's been great, especially with the sprained ankle," Schemenauer said. "I expected to run a little faster, but I kind of let go of that with the sprained ankle. I came out here and did the best I could do."
Schemenauer's Eagles teammates - Eric Gerwin, Josh Fairbanks, Jeremy Foster and Cody Seifert - placed eighth in the 800 relay with a time of 1:35.98.
Jenna Lauf and Marlea Rolander gave Napoleon a pair of finalists in the 100 hurdle and placed fourth and sixth, respectively. Lauf crossed the finish line in 15.64, followed by Rolander at 15.89.
"It's been awesome," Rolander said. "We're always together and she's pushed me."
Defiance's Lauren Fett ran fifth in the 1600 with a season-best time of 5:09.99.
Napoleon's Chelsea Gerken, who competed in four events over the two days of competition, closed out her high school career by finishing sixth in the 800. The school-record holder finished in 2:15.35.
Rossford junior Rachael Clay returned to state in the 400 and placed eighth (58.05).
"My goal this year was to make it back and I did," said Clay, who also competed here as a freshman. "I didn't really have a goal for today. I just did my best."
- Donald Emmons
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