By Jordan Miller
Carrollton junior Cole Lovett earned two berths in the Division II Ohio State High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) state track meet last weekend, including a thrilling last second win in the 1,600-meter run.
Lovett trailed Unioto’s David Magda heading down the final stretch of the 1,600 run. With a burst of speed, Lovett surged past Magda in the final two strides of the race to capture the regional championship. Lovett finished with a time of 4:21.23.
The top four finishers in each event qualified for the state meet, scheduled June 3 and 4 in Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium on the Campus of The Ohio State University.
Lovett also earned a bid to the state meet in the 3,200 run with a third place finish in a time of 10:17.30.
He is also a member of the 4×8 relay team that earned regional championship and a berth in Columbus. Other team members include Jon Goffard, Adam Shaw and Quinton Huggett. Their winning time of 7:57.07 broke a 26-year old Division II Region 7 record of 7:57.2, set by Indian Valley.
“With the 4×8 relay team we expected a drop, but not really a 7:57.07, we were just hoping to be under eight minutes and challenging the record, they really stepped up,” said Head Coach Mike Aukerman.
“Cole Lovett is a competitor, finishing all the way through the line in the mile, he’s a kid who works hard and does everything right,” mentioned Aukerman. “It’s nice to see him rewarded for that.”
As a team, the Warriors finished sixth at the regional meet, held at Athens, with 33 points.
Fairfield Union and St. Clairsville tied for the top spot with 50 points each.
Warriors ending the weekend on the podium but not advancing to the state meet in their respective events include: Dakota Jenrett, sixth in the long jump with a jump of 20’ 8.5”; Shaw, eighth in the 800 with a time of 2:01.17; and the 4×2 relay team of Calob Dalton, Bryce Mohn, Chase Flanagan and Brenton Miller, seventh with a time of 1:33.27.
Division II running preliminaries begin at 1:30 p.m. June 3. Finals begin June 4 at 1 p.m.