Medina Goes The Distance In Winning Own Invitational

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Medina Invitational
Medina’s boys track team will go to great lengths to achieve success.
Perhaps that's because the Bees have so much success at going great
lengths. With its distance runners leading the way Saturday, Medina won its own invitational. Where Medina’s boys are about distance, Wadsworth’s girls are about
depth. The Grizzlies finished with 51 points to edge the host Bees by a
pair.


Medina’s boys track team will go to great lengths to achieve success. Perhaps that's because the Bees have so much success at going great lengths.

With its distance runners leading the way Saturday, Medina finished with 65 points to win its own meet by 12 over North Canton Hoover. Wadsworth was third with 47, one more than Shaker Heights.

“It feels like we have a target on our backs every time we step up to the line,” said Medina senior Sam Maynard, who took part in two winning relays. “We’re the guys everyone wants to beat. There’s so much more riding on the races now.

The Bees’ distance teams won a pair of events, setting meet records in each. In the first, the quartet of Maynard, Hunter Heaton, Jeremy Arthur and Donny Roys combined to run the 4×1600 in 18:13.03, breaking a 20-year-old record held by Akron Buchtel by an astounding 23 seconds.

That race was quick overall, with three teams going lower than Buchtel’s mark, set in 1988, and a fourth coming within a second of it.

Tyler Gonzales, Dan Sloat, Maynard and Roys teamed to set a meet record in the distance medley, their 10:39.10 beating the old record by 10 1/2 minutes.

Medina’s distance domination should come as no surprise. Heaton, Arthur, Maynard and Roys were central figures on Medina's state championship cross country team last fall, with Roys winning the individual title.

Medina didn’t do badly at some shorter distances, either. Ruben Belen, Sam Chester, Clay Febus and Rob Wallover teamed to win the 110-meter shuttle hurdles. Medina also finished runner up in the pole vault relay.

“We were plagued with six of our guys taking the ACT test today,” Medina coach Bob Jenkins said. “We had a couple kids miss some field events, and that happens. I’m happy with all of them.”

Where Medina’s boys are about distance, Wadsworth’s girls are about depth. The Grizzlies finished with 51 points to edge the host Bees by a pair in the girls team standings. North Canton Hoover finished third with 48, with Warrensville Heights placing fourth with 44.

“You’ve got to be pretty deep, which we really weren’t today because of kids who were away on break, but I guess the depth speaks for itself,” Wadsworth coach John Burton said. “You’ve got (Cleveland) Collinwood, Euclid and Warrensville heights and they’re all top-notch as far as running events, but they’re not as deep as us in field events and that’s why we won today.”

The quartet of Jenny Harsh, Brittani Peltz, Ashley Berlin and Nicole Cargill teamed to run away with the 4×800 for the Grizzlies. That was their only win of the day, but their depth allowed them not only to overcome some absent top performers, but the rest of the field as well.

Their strength in the field events led the Grizzlies to the championship. They finished second in both the pole vault and shot put, the latter being the final event to finish and the one that gave Wadsworth the points it needed to pass Medina. The Grizzlies were also third in the discus, 4×200 and 4×100 shuttle hurdles.

Rocky River Magnificat set a meet record in the 4×1600 when Clare Fischer, Katherine McHenry, Katherine Stultz and Madeline Chambers finished in 21:43.60. That sawed 11 seconds off the old mark. Chambers will likely be a multi-event state qualifier in June.

Cleveland Heights Beaumont, led by standouts Aareon Payne and Emily Infeld, set a meet record of 12:35.40 in the distance medley, topping the school's 5-year-old mark of by 11 seconds.

Warrensville Heights girls missed a meet record in the 4×400 by four-tenths of a second, but still won the race by 20 seconds. That was one of three winning relays for Heights, which also captured the 4×100 and long jump relay.

Euclid’s girls won a pair of events, taking the 4×200 and 4×100 shuttle hurdles. Tamica Harbour ran a leg on each winning squad.

Host Medina won two events, as well, capturing the high jump and pole vault relays. In the high jump, freshman Taylor Burke, the 2007 junior high state champ, captured first place with a jump of 5 feet, 4 inches.

Shaker Heights was also a three-event winner on the boys side, taking the 4×100, 4×400 and 800 sprint medley relays. Wadsworth won a pair, capturing the 4×200 and long jump relay.

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