Big Red’s Lavender, Redskins’ Lewis lead local boys

BYESVILLE – Good competition, ideal weather and the Ohio postseason.

You probably can’t come up with better factors to compete with as the Division II Eastern District Track and Field Championship wrapped up at Meadowbrook High School.

It was clearly evident as several area thinclads punched their ticket to the regional meet, which moves to Muskingum University in New Concord after spending two years in Athens. The next level of competition begins on Thursday afternoon.

Steubenville finished with 57.5 points.

Big Red was led by senior speedster Ja’Quan Lavender, who continues to run like a man on a mission in the 400. He turned in a 50.32 to win the lap dash by more than a full second.

On Thursday, senior Arin Goldsmith posted a mark of 154-feet to win the discus.

Big Red’s high hurdling duo of Joey Nodianos and Oko Anyabwile finished second and fourth, respectively to advance. The latter also qualified in the intermediates. Nodianos advanced in the high jump, too.

Steubenville qualified its 4×4 team to the regional in a time of 3:36.54.

Indian Creek’s Max Lewis basically sprinted two laps for the victory in the 800 meter run. He posted a sizzling time of 1:58.87.

The Redskins’ 4×4 team took the fourth and final spot with a 3:37.92. During the first day of competition, the Redskins were third in the 4×8.

St. Clairsville’s boys track team was a little bit under the radar through much of April. However, the Red Devils have simply turned it up a notch since the calendar has flipped to May.

After winning the Buckeye 8 and OVAC 4A and overall titles, the Red Devils haven’t looked back and that trend continued Saturday afternoon.

Coach Ben Frye, who recently became a new father, watched his boys ring up 128 points, which was 30 better than runner-up Martins Ferry.

“Our kids have come on strong in the championship part of the season,” Frye said. “That’s the part of the season that matters the most. We experiment a lot in the early part of the season and our kids understand that and are receptive to trying new things and it’s paying off for them now.”

The Red Devils set the tone for the district during Thursday’s opening round and simply never looked back. All told, St. C. won five events, but qualified well thanks to their depth.

“Advancing is the name of the game,” Frye said. “As long we keep moving on, we’re alive and have a chance.”

After laying the foundation during the first night of competition, the Red Devils handed it over to senior speedster Jaylon Brown, who didn’t disappoint.

Brown notched yet two more district championships, winning the 100 (10.81) and the 200 in a personal best effort of 21.80.

“I ran well and that 200 was a great time for me,” Brown said. “Getting back to the regionals, as the top qualifier, will be nice. Since it’s my last season, I am trying to go out with a bang. I know on an any given day, someone can bust out a crazy time, so I just want to get ahead and stay ahead.”

The Red Devils did heavy damage in the field events, scoring 56 of their points before the meet shifted to the oval.

Sophomore Josiah Rhodes soared over the bar at 6-2 to capture the high jump on Saturday. Freshman Jordan Vincent and Brown went 1-2 in the long jump during Thursday’s action.

St. Clairsville picked up a victory in the next-to-last event when junior Alex Timko turned in a 10:35.19 to capture the 3200 meter run.

The Red Devils advanced in both the 4×1 and 4×2 relays. The 4×1 team comprised of Isiah Green, Vincent, Shane Peroni and Brown turned in a 43.83 for the silver medal.

The quartet of Peroni, Blake Peroni, Brandon Bosworth and Green, who also advanced in the 100, was fourth in the 800 relay, posting a 1:35.15.

Junior Chandler Kilburn continued to turn it on in the intermediate hurdles. He finished third to advance with a 41.56. He also punched a ticket in the high jump by virtue of a fourth place finish at 5-10.

In the distance races, sophomore Logan McCort was third in the 1600, posting a 4:43.50.

Senior Michael Eaton also advanced in the pole vault along with classmate Colby Lindsay in the discus.