Track and Field: Ottawa-Glandorf sweeps WBL meet

BATH TOWNSHIP – Winning can be contagious.

Heading into Friday’s finals of the Western Buckeye League Championships in track and field at Bath High School, the Ottawa-Glandorf boys team knew it had to step it up if a WBL team title was going to be within reach.

The Ottawa-Glandorf girls team came into Friday’s finals seeded high in nearly every event.

On Friday night, the second and final day of the WBL Championships, the O-G boys team rose to the occasion on the track, en route to winning the team title over Shawnee, 112-99.50. Celina finished third (72), while Bath (48) and Van Wert (48) tied for fourth in the 10-team field.

On the girls side, O-G left no doubt as the Titans scored 128 points, compared to Bath’s 82 points. Celina (63.50) and Van Wert (59) rounded out the top four teams.

This was the O-G girls third consecutive WBL team title.

For the Bath girls team, this was the best finish at the WBL Championships in school history.

Ottawa-Glandorf’s Ty Rosengarten sparked his team on Friday, as he won the 1,600 and 800 in thrilling fashion.

In the 1,600, Rosengarten outkicked the field and crossed the finish line in 4 minutes, 22.51 seconds. Van Wert’s Owen Scott finished second in 4:24.03. Shawnee’s Noah Williams, who was in contention for the majority of the race, finished a close third (4:25.11).

Later in the 800, Rosengarten pulled away from the field for a winning time of 1:58.04. Van Wert’s Rylan Miller finished second (1:59.88).

“Noah Williams is a great runner,” Rosengarten said. “I was just preparing for his kick (in the 1,600) because he’s a kicker too. It just went really well.”

O-G boys head coach Brian Heebsh said his leaders stepped up on Friday.

“Our emotional leader is Ty Rosengarten. He’s just a great competitor. He does everything the right way – both during the season and the off-season. He’s been helped along with a solid group of junior and senior leaders in raising the bar. We just started to get some momentum (on Friday),” Heebsh said.

“Another guy, Dane Duling, who got injured a little bit last Friday night, came back and got second in the 110s (110-meter hurdles) and first in the 300 (hurdles). He (Duling) was on both relay teams (400 relay, 800 relay) that won the WBL, so (he got) three firsts and a second. Ty Rosengarten also had three firsts and a second. So, those two guys, along with quite a few other guys, showed great leadership. Guys started to follow suit and stepped up. Once the momentum got going, it started snowballing.”

Rosengarten also was on the 1,600 relay (Masen Vogt, Isaac Macke, Ethan Metzger, Rosengarten) that finished second (3:27.19).

On Wednesday, the O-G boys 3,200 relay (Masen Vogt, Ethan Metzger, Isaac Macke, Rosengarten) won in 8:08.96.

For the O-G girls, Wednesday and Friday were record-breaking days.

“I think we got points in 15 out of 17 events. Some girls really stepped up,” O-G girls head coach Matt Burwell said. “Our relays were really outstanding. The four-by-eight (3,200-meter relay; Madelyn Hovest, Liana Fortman, Corinne Closson, Anna Buddelmeyer; first, 9:28.97) broke the WBL record on Wednesday. The four-by-one (400 relay; Savannah Recker, Alivia Grothause, Delaney Duling, Averie Fox; first, 49.00) and four-by-two (800 relay; Laney Hedrick, Savannah Recker, Alivia Grothause, Averie Fox; first, 1:43.72) broke it (WBL meet record) on Wednesday, and then broke it again today. The girls broke the school record in the four-by-one (400 relay). They just missed it in the four-by-two (800 relay). And the four-by-four (1,600 relay; Brea Recker, Averie Fox, Emma Heringhaus, Corinne Closson; second, 4:03.69) dropped almost three seconds off their PR today.

“In the field events, Savannah Recker got first (long jump;16 feet, 10.5 inches). Gracie Lammers (third in long jump, 15-11.5) had like an eight-inch PR today and finished third. Everything went well. The girls came out to compete. I gave them one goal today, ‘Come out, compete and see what happens’. They really took it to heart and really did well. I know we’re hungry. I know we’re going to celebrate, but on Monday we’re going to get ready for the (Division II) district meet (Wednesday and Friday at Defiance High School).”

In Friday’s finals of the girls 800, it was a one-two finish for O-G.

O-G freshman Liana Fortman edged out teammate Corinne Closson for the win. Fortman’s winning time was 2:18.66, while Closson crossed the finish line in 2:18.87.

O-G’s depth in the 800 is starting to pay huge dividends.

“It definitely helps to have each other to push at practice,” Fortman said. “You just know that we’re going to get better every day. So, we have that competition at meets and at practice.”

O-G’s Emma Hoffman won the discus on Wednesday (133-3) and finished second in the shot put on Friday (37-0.5). Bath’s Claire Foust won the shot put (38-0).

Walsh and Cole stand out on the track for Bath

Bath’s Tatum Walsh won Friday’s 400 (57.93), finished third in the 100 (12.41), third in the 200 (25.59) and was the anchor of the winning 1,600 relay (Hailey Hale, Isabella Bartlett, Gwyneth Foust, Walsh; 4:03.37). O-G’s 1,600 relay finished a close second in Friday’s finals (4:03.69).

“We were prepared that we would be battling with O-G. … We knew that,” Walsh said about Friday’s 1,600 relay finals. “It’s so fun to win with the team. That team (1,600 relay), I love them all. We have a freshman, sophomore, junior and I’m a senior. So, it’s a really cool mix. It’s a really fun dynamic.”

Bath’s Ethan Cole won the 200 (22.58), placed third in the 300 hurdles (39.73) and fourth in the 110 hurdles (15.33).

“Last year, I didn’t really run the 400 or 200. I was mostly a four-by-two (800 relay) guy and a four-by-one (400 relay) guy,” Cole said. “I won three of those and got second in the 110s (hurdles) last year at WBL. So, it’s been a change going to the four-by-four (1,600 relay) and just a straight 200. It has been a lot of fun though.”

Shawnee shines in the field events

On Wednesday, Shawnee’s Akyus Richardson won the shot put with a mark of 58-8.25. On Friday night, he placed second in the discus (146-07).

Last season as a sophomore, Richardson placed seventh in the shot put at the Division I state track meet.

On Wednesday, Richardson fouled on a throw that traveled over 60 feet.

“It was a very satisfying day. … I’m back,” Richardson said with a grin. “I’m back to where I was a few weeks ago. I know what I can improve on, things I can fix and things I can change.

“The last two years haven’t been too great when it comes to shot put at the WBL. Last year, I fouled on all three of my throws. The year before, I didn’t even make varsity. So, to come back here and get a big win like I did, I really feel happy about that.”

Also on Wednesday, Shawnee’s Joel Stirn won the long jump with a mark of 22 feet, 3 inches. O-G’s Gavin Morman finished second (21-1 ½).

Stump scores big for Shawnee

Shawnee’s Jenna Stump won the 1,600 (5:20.69) and finished second in the 3,200 on Friday (11:58.69). Kenton’s Addi Manns won the 3,200 (11:49.92), while O-G’s Madelyn Hovest was a close third (11:59.12).

“I was hoping to get first in both of the events,” Stump said. “With the mile (1,600), I had a mental plan. I was going to stay with the first-place girl and then try to pass her at the end.”

**Full results of the Western Buckeye League Championships are on milesplit.oh