By Rob Kiser
Russia junior pole vaulter Emily Bohman has a much difference confidence level returning to the state track and field meet next week.
Lady Raiders senior Grace York can’t think of a better way to finish her prep track career than running at Jessie Owens Stadium.
Both won regional titles Friday night at the Troy Division III regional track and field meet.
Bohman cleared 11-0 to win the pole vault. Gabrielle Goecke of Spencerville also cleared 11-0, but Bohman won on misses.
Ironically, it may have been a miss at 10-4 that sparked Bohman.
“I was a little nervous after that one,” Bohman said about her first attempt at the height. “I was pushing myself. I knew had to make the next one.”
Not only did she do that, Bohman then cleared 10-8 and 11-0 on her first attempt, giving her the advantage on misses.
“I think that (the second jump on 10-4) kind of relaxed me,” Bohman said. “When I got the first attempt at 10-8, I was thinking that might be the one. When I made it (at 11-0) I was thinking, this is going to be it (a regional title).”
Bohman hasn’t forgotten her experience at state a year ago.
“I will be prepared this year,” Bohman said. “We will have a camper there so I don’t get overheated. That is what happened last year. It was terrible.”
And she has a height in mind.
“I want to get 11-6,” she said. “That is my PR, but it wasn’t on Baums Page, so it didn’t count. But, I am not limiting myself to that. Who knows, anything can happen.”
York is ready to finish her track career at the state meet.
She was already assured of that when she teamed with Shaelyn Goubeaux, Claire Meyer and Rachel York for a fourth-place finish in the the 3,200 relay on Wednesday in 9:47.42.
“I am so proud of our relay team,” Grace York said. “This is Shaelyn (Goubeaux) and my third time running at state on the 4×8 (3,200 relay). It is great to be finishing our career at Jesse O (Jesse Owens Stadium).”
On Friday night, she broke former Russia state champion Katie Borchers record in the 800, winning in 2:13.47.
“The whole race, that is all I was thinking,” York said with a big smile. “I was just pushing and pushing. I wanted to get that school record. It feels great.”
Winning the race wasn’t bad either. York pulled away over the final 200 meters.
“I know all the girls were really good,” she said. “I knew it was going to be a tough race.”
They will be joined at state by teammate Cole Tebbe.
Tebbe finished third in the boys 110-meter high hurdles in 15.75 to advance.
Lehman Catholic junior Alanna O’Leary will be making her third straight trip to the state meet — and second straight in the 400.
O’Leary came charging down the backstretch to finish third in 58.33.
Bradford’s Karmen Knopp will be making her state debut in track after running at state in cross country twice.
Knepp finished fourth in the 3,200-meter run in 11:32.39 to advance.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.