Turpin head coach Brian Weaver has 17 starters returning from last season coupled with a distance team that won the Eastern Cincinnati Conference during the cross country season.
Alex Tanner, Andrew Patty, Dante Marcon, Graham Weaver and Ryan Wiesman all finished in the top 10 of the conference cross country meet. All five are running track this season.
In addition to that strong core of distance runners, Weaver highlighted Andrew Molloy, Drew Spencer and Isaiah Bostic.
Bostic was a regional qualifier in the high jump last year and has designs of making it to the state meet this season.
“I think its a realistic goal,” Bostic said. “I’m determined and a hard worker.”
Rivaling the Spartans’ distance prowess is Anderson.
The Redskins have a pair of junior runners in Nick Stone and Josh Gittelman. Both finished higher than any Turpin runner in the ECC cross country meet.
“Our strengths are going to be middle distances such as the 800 and the mile,” Anderson head coach Andy Wolf said. “We are also strong in pole vault, shot and we have some decent young hurdlers. They only problem with that is, can the good young ones beat the good older guys?”
The Redskins are looking for contributions from Hartley Stevenson (pole vault), Jake Bridges (shot put), Will Schweitzer(hurdles) and Austin Fucito (sprint relays).
“It should be an interesting year,” Wolf said.
Last year, the McNicholas Rockets boys track and field team was stymied by its small number of participants.
Second-year head coach Kyle Jepson said the team couldn’t send a full complement of athletes to the district meet. This year, that changes a bit.
“This year, we’ve had a larger interest in track and field,” the coach said. “We’ll still be a very young team, but we should be vastly improved. It’ll be nice to be competitive again.”
Keeping the Rockets competitive will be senior thrower Will Allgeier, distance runners Jackson Durm and freshman Mason Elmer, junior sprinter Jonathon Wenzel and freshman pole vaulter Thomas Moore.
Allgeier and Moore are closing in on school records for the shot put and pole vault, respectively.
The Miami Valley Christian Academy track boys are coached by Steve Krebsfanger. Austin Privett and Adam Budzynski return as starters for the Lions.
MVCA will participate in the Deer Park Invitational on April 7. The coed squad will also be in the CCD Invitational April 11, the Reading Invitational April 24, the Seven Hills Invitational April 27, the Batavia Invitational April 29, the CHCA Invitational May 6 and CNE Invitational May 8.
The Walnut Hills boys are coached by Bill Valenzano and will look to fill some holes in throwing events since shot put and discus expert Ellery Lassiter has graduated.
Senior Darien Jackson, junior Jon Mason and sophomore Dyami Davis-Spence return from their first-team ECC 4×200 relay, with senior Myles Harper returning from the second-team 4×400 relay. Jackson also took honorable mention in the 100 meters for the Eagles and will be handling the 100 and 200 again this spring.
Davis-Spence will be a factor in the 200 and 400 meters, along with senior Terrance Sims. Senior Max Weiskittel leads the 1,600 and 3,200 meter pack and sophomore Michael Davenport moves from jumping toward the basketball rim to over the bar with a fiberglass pole.
“Our sprint and distance crew returns many seniors to lead the team,” Valenzano said of his squad. “We also have a strong pole vaulter in Michael Davenport.”
Davenport was third in the ECC last season at 12’ 6”.
The biggest hurdle at Walnut Hills is not always on the track. The athletes on both the boys and girls’ teams have to balance their track and field time with taking multiple Advanced Placement courses.
Walnut Hills is in the Middletown Showdown April 2, followed by the Coaches Classic meet at Winton Woods April 8-10.
ATHLETES TO WATCH
Turpin’s Alex Tanner, Andrew Patty, Dante Marcon, Graham Weaver and Ryan Wiesman: All five finished in the top 10 of the conference cross country meet and are running track this season.
Turpin senior Isaiah Bostic: Was a regional qualifier in the high jump last year.
Anderson juniors Nick Stone and Josh Gittelman: Both finished higher than any Turpin runner in the ECC cross country meet and should help Anderson excel in the middle distance and mile races.
McNicholas senior Will Allgeier: The senior thrower is approaching the school record in the shot put.