Like visiting an old friend for the first time in a while, some Ohio athletes returned to something they had not seen in a couple of weeks: competition.
With the distance runners competing this weekend in Cincinnati, Ohio finished in fourth place with 74.5 points. For the Bobcats, it was their best finish in the All-Ohio Outdoor Championships since 2006.
“It was our first well rounded meet in quite some time” coach Clay Calkins said. “There is still upside to be had from individuals.”
The most successful event of the meet was the 3000-meter steeplechase.
Senior Kari Summers won the event with a time of 10 minutes and 47 seconds.
Melissa Thompson, Ashley Waddington and Angela Klimkowski finished in fourth, eighth and tenth, respectively.
Calkins said it was the first time they ran that event competitively.
Continuing with the theme of the return of the Ohio’s distance runners, Annie Beecham and Juli Accurso both finished in second place in their events. Accurso did so in the 1500-meter run and Beecham in the 3000-meter run.
Emily Pifer finished in seventh in the 10,000-meter run.
“Great to have them (distance runners) back in the mix, they made the difference for us in the meet,” Calkins said.
While the distance runners placed high in the standings, the throws and jumps were not able to follow suit.
With the exception of javelin, Ohio only had one other thrower finish in the top 10 and that was Emily Woods, who finished eighth in discus.
In the event, sophomore Lauren McCullough took second place with a throw of 38.39 meters. Hope McCarty took fourth place.
There were a few top 10 finishes in the jump event but they did not add many points to Ohio’s total for the meet.
McCarty finished in seventh in the high jump to add 1.5 points to the total. Alexis Geiger finished in ninth in the long jump and Katie Eastman took tenth in the triple jump.
Calkins said throws and jumps were where the upside could happen and it might happen this year from the young group.
For the second straight week, Ohio’s 4x400 meter relay team finished high in the standings. The group of Kiley Matthews, Kara Jackson, Courtney Weiss and Danielle Winningham finished in third with a time of three minutes and 57 seconds.
Calkins told his team after the meet to not worry too much about marks or times, as the weather did not cooperate for the duration of the meet.