PEMBERVILLE - Tony Miller can't recall the last time Old Fort's boys won a district title, only that it was several decades ago. What he does know, however, is the effort the Stockaders put in Saturday to earn one.
"The whole team was fired up and ready to go. Hunter [Perry] taking fifth in the long jump Thursday, then coming back to take third and qualify in the high jump was really good for us. The 4x100 ending up second was a good asset. It was a whole team effort," the 28-year mentor said after Old Fort beat Calvert 103-91 1/2 for its first district crown in more than 50 years.
"They worked; they wanted it and they wanted it bad," Miller said. "Calvert is one tremendous team. It was stressful watching the teams go back and forth. I can't ask much more of those boys, they gave it everything they had."
That started Thursday.
Nathan Alexander cleared 15 feet to set a meet record in winning the pole vault, and younger brother Adam Alexander qualified for the regional by taking fourth (11-4). The top four in each event advanced to the regional at Columbian.
Zach Alexander, Marcus Meyers, Luke Edgar and Brad Bannister added a second in the 4x800 (8:30.14), and Bryce Taylor (19-5 1/2) and Perry (19-4 1/2) took third and fifth in the long jump to help the Stockaders end the first day atop the team standings with 33 points, six points ahead of their nearest competitor and 19 points in front eventual runner-up Calvert.
It continued Friday.
Zach Alexander doubled up wins in the 1,600 (4:30.05) and 800 (2:00.89), Meyers claimed the 3,200 (10:19.0) and Cody Garn added a victory in the high jump (6-1).
Jeff Koebel, Taylor, Bannister and Nathan Alexander added a second in the 4x100 (45.55).
Thirds came from Perry in the high jump (5-8), Nathan Alexander in the 200 (23.14) and the 4x400 team of Bannister, Zach Alexander, Meyers and Nathan Alexander (3:31.4).
Bannister also ended sixth in the 1,600 (4:53.4) and Taylor took eighth in the 100 (12.43).
While Old Fort celebrated its first district title in more than a half century, Calvert also found plenty of joy.
The Senecas not only qualified for the regional in all four relays, but won three of them and set records in two.
"To have four teams make it out in the relays, I don't know if I've ever done that. In 17 years of coaching I don't think I've had all four make it out before," Calvert coach Stewart Behm said.
"You always hope as a coach, but on paper I knew a couple races would be tight. The kids performed outstanding today," he said. "The one relay I thought would be close, the 4x2, they ran almost a second and half faster than they've run before. I was a little overwhelmed by how much they won by."
The Senecas opened the meet Thursday with Jared Thompson, Ren Boehler, Joe Brodman and Steve Smith cruising to victory in the 4x800 (8:20.73).
Friday, Calvert set meet records of 1:30.68 in the 4x200 and 44.04 in the 4x100, while also ending fourth in the 4x400 (3:33.15).
Smith, Ren Boehler, Nate Ritzler and Shane Boehler ran the 4x200.
Austin Kontak, Ren Boehler, Ritzler and Shane Boehler ran the 4x100, with that group - a different lineup than the one from the league meet a week prior - also setting a school record of 44.27 in Thursday's preliminaries, lowering a mark last set in 1999.
"To run the time that they ran and set a meet record and to break a school record Thursday that stood for 13 years, ... it's very humbling as a coach," Behm said. "It's very humbling as a coach to have this much talent on a team to spread out over a variety of events."
Smith, Dan Reineke, Ren Boehler and Brodman handled the 4x400 duties.
Six individuals also earned another week of competition, led by Brodman's runner-up finish in the 1,600. His time of 4:30.88 bettered a school mark set in 1997.
Other seconds came from Shane Boehler in the 100 (11.57) and Ritzler in the 200 (23.09).
Smith added a third in the 800 (2:02.98) and Nate Mathias did the same in the discus (140-0), while Austin Schultz ran fourth in the 3,200 (10:40.15).
Several other area entries also gained regional berths.
Hopewell-Loudon's Avery Gatchell captured the 400 (52.46), and Aaron Lucius finished second in the 3,200 (10:20.89).
Ben Bodart, Travis Ardner, Gatchell and James Roush ran second in the 4x400 (3:30.72).
Chieftains Tayler Bustillos, Gatchell, Roush and Travis Ardner claimed third in the 4x200 (1:33.58), while Marcus Ardner, Robert Kniss, Alex Wood and Lucius took fourth in the 4x800 (8:50.05)
Timothy Reinhart ran second in the 300 hurdles (40.84) and third in the 110 hurdles (15.64) for New Riegel.
Teammate Ryan Schalk took third in the 400 (53.87) and Brent Orians did the same in the shot (46-1).
Lakota got fourths in the 110 hurdles (16.43) and 300 hurdles (41.48) from Logan Greiner.
Hopewell-Loudon ended sixth in the team standings with 55 points, New Riegel came in eighth (34 1/2) and Lakota claimed 10th (26).
SE boys win Bucyrus
BUCYRUS - Seneca East's Zach Gregg won the pole vault, and Jamie Schafer won the 400, leading Seneca East to a win at the Bucyrus district with 124 points.
Buckeye Central finished seventh at the meet with 37 points, while Mohawk took 12th with more than 19 points.
The Tigers qualified numerous athletes for next week's regionals. Jake Michaels and Ben Hahler finished second and fourth in the shot, respectively, while the 4x8 team of Brad McConnell, Jason Willman, Jeff Briggs and Jamie Schafer took second in 8:24.57.
Kevin Moore (14.99) and teammate Nick Hughes (15.64) finished second and third for the Tigers in the 110 hurdles, while Jason Willman took second in the 1,600 in 4:37.19. Willman also qualified in the 3,200, placing second in the 3,200 in 10:00.68. Also qualifying for regionals was teammate Wesley Pipher, who took fourth in the event in 10:32.38.
Hughes advanced in the 300 hurdles (third, 40.82), while SE's Brad McConnell took second in the 800 in 2:01.25.
Finally, Seneca East's 4x100 squad of Jordan Phillips, Kevin Moore, Schafer and Brad McConnell placed third in the 4x400 to advance.
For Buckeye Central, the 4x200 team of Austin McDonnell, Stone Wurm, Ricky Ziegler and Dustin Snyder took fourth in the event to advance, finishing in 1:34.59. Ziegler finished second in the 400 in 50.99. In the 300, McDonnell took third in 40.92.
In the 4x400, Buckeye Central's team of McDonnell, Wurm, Snyder and Zeigler took second in 3:32.14. Jordan Wright finished fourth in the discus (143-0).
The top four finishers advance to regionals next week.
Mohawk had some fifth place finishes, including Alex Hoerig in the 3,200 (10:47.48).
Carey boys, girls take fourth
FINDLAY - Carey's boys and girls each took fourth at the Division III district meet at Liberty-Benton, and a number of additional regional qualifiers to those who advanced on the first day of competition Thursday.
Taylor Decker completed a sweep of the throwing events. Two days after winning the discus, she came back to win the shot put with a toss of 35-2 . She'll have a teammate along side of her as Dana Newell finished third, throwing 34-9 .
The top four in each event moves on to next week regional meet.
Newell also qualified in the high jump, clearing 5-3 for a second place finish.
The Blue Devil girls also qualified three more relay teams in addition the 4x800 team that qualified Thursday. Oriana Billock, Lauren Wenner, Gwen Wentling and Amber Spurlock teamed up for second place finishes in both the 4x100 (51.40) and 4x200 (1:48.17). Wentling and Spurlock teamed with Jenna Jesko and Joanna Worst for a fourth place finish in the 4x400 (4:12.81).
On the boys side, Carey got a pair of individual qualifiers as Brandon Distel qualified in the 800 finishing second in 2:02.33, and Tommy Arredondo finished fourth in the high jump clearing 5-10.
Arredondo joined Sam Saenthavisouk, Cory Larick and Tyler Cusac for a third place finish in the 4x100 (45.11).
St. Wendelin's boys also competed at the meet. Its lone qualifier was Austin Reinhart who finished third in the 200 (23.66).
Daniel wins a pair
BUCYRUS - Julie Daniel figured in two wins to help Mohawk end fifth Saturday at the Division III district meet at Bucyrus.
Daniel captured the 3,200 (12:21.78) and led off the victorious 4x800 (10:13.57), which competed on Thursday.
Warriors Lynsey Trusty, Ashley Parker and Kayla Risner rounded out the relay to help Mohawk score 58 points.
Heather Daniel added a second in the 3,200 (12:37.47) for Mohawk, and Aubrie Flood, Parker, Trusty and Erika Coldiron did the same in the 4x400 (4:17).
Trusty also ran third in the 800 (2:29.72).
The top four in each event qualified for the regional meet.
Seneca East took seventh overall (48) and Buckeye Central ended 13th (21).
Ashton Daniel claimed the shot (38-8 1/2) for Seneca East, and thirds came from Kaylyn Goshe in the discus (112-0) and Marissa Willman in the 300 hurdles (49.91).
Anna Willman, Jaclyn Willman, Jessica Lucius and Jenna Larick added a fourth in the 4x800 (10:51.87), as did long jumper Megan Felter (17-6 1/2).
Katie Martin ran second in the 800 (2:26.35) for Buckeye Central.
Buckettes Samantha Rietschlin, Laura Metzger, Katie Martin and Marla Richards took third in the 4x800 (10:34.55).