By Garth Shanklin
MOUNT ORAB — The Western Brown Broncos track and field team returned to action last Friday at the Dehart Invitational, hosted by Walnut Hills High School. Several athletes posted solid performances.
Sophomore Autumn Boothby and senior Tori Patton placed fifth and sixth, respectively, in the 100 meter hurdles event. Sophomore Audra Compton finished the 300 meter hurdles in 53.09 seconds, good for seventh place. Patton placed 14th. Senior Hayley Clark posted a time of 12:51.28 to place eighth in the 3200 meter run while Amanda Woodyard placed 11th, 20 seconds behind Clark.
In the 400 meter dash, freshman Sophie Leto clocked a 1:04.01 to place eighth, .41 seconds ahead of St. Ursula junior Sophie Austin. The Lady Broncos 4×200 meter relay squad finished sixth, four seconds behind Gamble Montessori for fifth place. The Lady Broncos also placed seventh in the 4×400 meter relay and eighth in the 4×800 meter relay event. Junior Sierra Steppeler paced the Lady Broncos in the 800 meter run, crossing the line in 2:47.50 to finish 11th.
In the field events, junior Brianna Pack finished second in the discus with a 120 foot, seven inch throw. Pack also earned a top-three finish in the shot put with a distance of just over 37 feet. Teammate Ginny Pollard placed eighth with a throw of 30 feet, 2.5 inches. Freshman Taylor Barthel won the girls’ high jump, besting Mount Notre Dame freshman Anna Colby in the process. Barthel’s teammate and sophomore Rylie Young placed third.
Audra Compton placed fourth in the long jump, leaping 14 feet, 10.75 inches to edge Summit Country Day’s Niah Woods by 1/4 of an inch. Boothby rounded out the scoring for the Lady Broncos by placing second in the pole vault to Walnut Hills senior Rachel Berndsen.
As a team, the Lady Broncos placed sixth with 62 points. Walnut Hills won the event with 116 points while Highlands finished second with 91.5.
Gabe O’Hara began the scoring for the boys’ team by placing fifth in the 100 meter dash. Lane Sexton placed seventh in the 110 meter hurdles for Western Brown and senior Brandon Brown ran to an eighth-place finish in the 1600 meter run. O’Hara continued his solid performance by wining the 200 meter dash by .66 seconds over Walnut Hills junior Dyami Davis-Spence.
Hunter O’Hara placed fifth in the 300 meter hurdles, just .02 seconds behind teammate Seth Becker. A pair of freshman, Chase Easterling and Blake Hurt, placed seventh and eighth respectively in the 3200 meter run. Sophomore Rob Contay finished the 400 meter dash in 55.23 seconds, good for sixth place.
In the 800 meter run, Aaron Fischer placed fifth and Maxwell Brunk ninth for Western Brown. Logan Hunley led the Broncos to a victory in the high jump, clearing the six-foot, two-inch mark. Teammate Austin Kirker placed ninth in the long jump with a mark of 16 feet, 6.5 inches.
Two Bronco athletes competed in the pole vault and both finished in the top four. Matt Arnold and Jacob haggerty finished second and fourth, respectively, in the event which was won by Walnut Hills junior Michael Davenport. Brandon Huddleston’s fourth place finish in the shot put was the final point-scoring finish for Western Brown.
In the team standings, the Broncos placed fourth overall, four points behind Highlands for third. Walnut Hills won the boys’ title, 44 points ahead of St. Xavier. Western Brown’s 78 points as a team put them 28 points ahead of Purcell Marian, who finished fifth.
The Broncos return to action on Friday, May 6 at Mason High School in the team’s final meet before the Southern Buckeye Athletic and Academic Conference meet at New Richmond on Monday, May 9 and Wednesday, May 11.