OVP athletes place at state

By Paul Boggs - [email protected]

COLUMBUS, Ohio — A total of five individuals from the Ohio Valley Publishing coverage area captured a place on the awards podium as part of Saturday’s Ohio High School Athletic Association state track and field meet.

Two individuals placed in the top four, the Meigs High School girls 4x100m relay team took eighth, and three 800m senior boys also competed — inside steamy Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium in Columbus.

Meigs sophomore Kassidy Betzing was the state runner-up in the Division II girls long jump, posting a personal-best jump of 18-feet and nine-and-one-quarter inches.

Betzing —who placed seventh in the same event a year ago —briefly held the lead for the state championship, but ended up as runner-up to two-time state champion and last year’s runner-up Jamari McDavid of Springfield Kenton Ridge.

On McDavid’s second-to-last jump, she exploded for a leap of a razor-thin one-quarter inch (18-9 1/2) better than Betzing’s best.

In addition, Gallia Academy senior Madi Oiler — a three-time state meet qualifier in the Division II girls 300m hurdles — amassed a fourth-place finish in that event on Saturday.

After placing sixth as a sophomore yet missing out on the finals last year, Oiler ran the race in a personal-record time of 44.05 seconds— becoming the highest-placing girls 300m hurdler in Gallia Academy history.

Betzing, before Oiler’s event and after her historic long jump showcase, joined her Lady Marauder teammates to run the girls 4x100m relay.

She joined fellow sophomore and anchor leg Taylor Swartz, along with seniors Devyn Oliver and Sky Brown, in reaching the podium with a school-record time 49.93 seconds.

The Lady Marauders finished eighth, as the top eight placers in each event at the state meet earn points — as well as all-Ohio honors.

Gallia Academy seniors Kaleb Crisenbery and Isaiah Lester landed the 11th and 12th-places respectively in the Division II boys 800m run.

In the Division III boys 800m run, Eastern senior Jett Facemyer finished 12th out of 16 runners.

A complete report on Saturday’s action at the state track and field meet will appear in Tuesday’s editions of OVP.

Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106

By Paul Boggs

[email protected]