COLUMBUS — It was quite a first day at the Division III State Track Meet for the Anna boys team.
So much so that after Friday’s action concluded, the Rockets were the top team in the standings with 16 points.
All 16 came from two field-event performers, led by Logan Konst, who despite being just a sophomore, cleared 15-feet, 8-inches to win the pole vault.
In doing so, he became the first boy in Anna history to win an individual event at the state meet.
The other six points came from Blake Stephens, who cleared 6-feet, 6-inches to take third in the high jump and tie a school record..
Konst’s win might not be the only one of the weekend for Anna. The 1600 relay team of Shane Grieves, Nathan Arling, Luke Gaier and Grant Glover advanced to today’s finals with the fastest qualifying time in the prelims Friday of 3:24.22. In fact, it was nearly two full seconds faster than any other team in the field, and it also broke the school record by two seconds.
Meanwhile, Konst went to a bigger pole recently, and it paid big dividends Friday.
“It came down to four vaulters and two of them were the ones who finished third and fourth last year, and Logan was fifth,” said Anna head coach Dean Stewart. “The kid from Old Fort clear 15-4 on his first jump, and Logan got it on his second. Then they went to 15-8 and Logan got that on his second jump and was the only one to clear it.”
After that, all the attention was focused on the Anna vaulter, who went for the state record of 16-2. But he was unable to clear the bar at that height. “He was really close, though, and he’s only a sophomore,” Stewart said.
Stephens, meanwhile, brought a smile to the coach’s face. His best jump going into the meet was 6-2, and he got that early in the season.
“Blake played baseball before and decided to come out (for track) this year,” said Stewart. “We always knew he could jump, but he got 6-2 early and didn’t have his technique down real well. But these last couple weeks, our high jump coach has had more time work work with him. He just missed at 6-7 but he was on it. We think he has 6-8 or 6-10 in him.”
• Russia also had two field-event placers in David York, sixth in the high jump, and Nick Colby, seventh in the discus. Both are seniors.
It was two clutch jumps that got York to his final position. Having never cleared 6-4 before, York was down to his third attempt at that height and had to clear it to get to the podium. He did exactly that and then made 6-5 on his second attempt, when he brushed the bar, but it remained up.
“On that attempt (his third at 6-4), I remember a change coach had made this week,” York said. “I hadn’t been doing it and then he reminded about it before that jump. I’ve been working on standing taller and not arching my back as much.”
He was close on his attempts at 6-6.
“On the one, I thought the bar might stay up, but it didn’t,” he said. “This is a great way to go out. I’m pretty satisfied with what I did today. To get a PR and finish on the podium.”
Colby, who hadn’t lost all year before finishing second at the regional meet with a throw of 162-9, was hoping for a similar performance Friday. His best throw of 154-2 didn’t come until finals.
“It is disappointing coming off of a big regional,” Colby said. “I did the same thing last year over here. It was the first time being up against some ranked guys, which is tough. But, I just felt like I would follow up with another big meet after the regional.”
Colby showed marked improvement in the finals.
“I had figured out what I was doing wrong by the finals,” he said. “My last throw would have been even further, but it finished just outside the right sector (for a foul).”
The positive for Colby was to end his career on his podium.
“I didn’t get that last year when I finished ninth,” he said. “It was nice to be up on the podium in Jesse Owens Stadium.”
The girls 3200 relay two local/area teams place. Minster was second and Russia fifth.
Jackson Center’s Nicole Fogt, in her third state meet, finished fifth in the discus with a toss of 127-feet, 4-inches, and Fort Loramie had two girls place, including Olivia Quinter in the long jump and Andrea Meyer in the pole vault.
Minster’s Maria Heckman placed second in the pole vault.
State Track Meet
Friday in Columbus
Discus — 7. Nick Colby, Russia, 154-2
High jump — 3. Blake Stephens, Anna, 6-6, 6. David York, Russia, 6-5, 9. Tanner Lane 6-4
Pole vault — 1. Logan Konst, Anna, 15-8, 9. Colin Homan, ML, 13-6
3200 relay — Minster 11th, Versailles 13th
3200 relay — 2. Minster 9:18.37 (Barga, Jutte, Slonkosky, Francis); 5. Russia 9:32.62 (Goubeaux, York, Borchers, Heaton).
Discus — 5. Nicole Fogt, JC, 127-4
Long jump — 4. Allie Thobe, ML, 17-5.75, 8. Olivia Quinter, FL, 16-9.75
Pole vault —2. Maria Heckman, Minster, 12-0, t6. Anxdrea Meyer, FL, 10-6, 12. Celese Kuck NB, 15, LeAnn Huelsman, Minster
Shot put — 6. Emily Mescher, ML, 38-10.25, 14. Savanah Luthman, Minster, 36-5