COLUMBUS – Swanton seniors Hannah Grabke and Dylan Gilsdorf both wrapped up their high school careers over the weekend at the Ohio High School Athletic Association Track and Field Championships at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium in Columbus.
In the Division III girls pole vault competition on Friday, Grabke tied for 10th with Caitlin Green of Newcomerstown. Each athlete cleared 10 feet.
Gilsdorf had to wait until Saturday where he took part in the boys 1600 meter run in Division II. He placed 14th with a personal best time of 4:33.27.
Bobbie Oberle of Swanton took part in the girls 100m hurdles. However, she finished 16th in the preliminaries Friday and did not qualify for Saturday’s finals.
Evergreen got fourth place finishes from Mason Loeffler in the high jump and Reece Serna in the 200m. This enabled the Vikings to place 24th with 9.5 points in the boys team standings for Division III.
Loeffler, whose shin was bothering him Friday before competing, battled through the pain as he cleared 6 feet, 4 inches on his second attempt to secure All-Ohio honors.
“Relief,” he said on his feelings after learning he would make top four. “I knew I could do it but I wasn’t sure. The way I’ve been jumping the last few weeks at districts and at regionals. I haven’t been jumping as well as I could.”
Furthermore, to help stave off the pain, he took medication in the day and hours leading up to the event.
“Before I went to bed (last night) I took two Aleve,” noted Loeffler. “When I woke up I took two. Took some Advil before I jumped. Icy Hot, I put it on my shin. Numb it a little bit.”
But outside of dealing with the pain and the pressure of competing at such a big venue, Loeffler enjoyed his time in Columbus.
“It’s big. I didn’t realize it was gonna be this big,” he said of the state meet. “There’s hundreds of people in the stands. There’s a lot of pressure. But it’s fun at the same time.”
Serna, who qualified in both the 100m and 200m, made the finals in the 200m. He would finish fourth with a time of 22.4.
“That’s definitely what I could hope for. I was seeded fifth, so, I was exceeding expectations,” said Serna of his fourth place finish.
He was able to edge Harry Mills of Columbus Academy and Robby LeFevre of Fort Recovery who finished in 22.45 and 22.47 respectively.
“I just knew I had to kick it in,” said Serna on the end of the race. “I saw LeFevre on my outside. I was like, I got to catch this kid. I’m not letting him beat me again.”
Being able to share the experience with Loeffler, and get the same placement as well, makes it even more special. It is not lost on the Evergreen community either, says Serna.
“It means a lot,” he said. “I know I’m not in school right now. I can’t see them (fellow classmates) physically. But on Twitter and Instagram, I’m getting good lucks from people I don’t even know. It’s great.”
Hunter Tresnan-Reighard of Delta finished fifth in the boys discus in Division III. His best throw was 159 feet, 11 inches.
Tresnan-Reighard also placed 11th (50-6) in the shot put, while teammate Nate Kohlhofer was 15th (48-7.5).
The Panthers tied for 43rd with four team points.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010