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State Preview: 4 Highland County schools to be represented at ’23 OHSAA State Track and Field Championships

The Highland County Press - Staff Photo - Create Article
Highland County's 2023 OHSAA State Track and Field Championship qualifiers. Column 1: (top photo), Fairfield's Hallie Haines, 400m dash; (center photo) McClain's Brenna Wright, 100m hurdles; (bottom photo) McClain's 4x100 relay team of (l-r) Luca Matesic, Katie Cook, Wright and Ryan Butterbaugh. Column 2: (top photo) Hillsboro's Jailyn Williams, 800m run; (bottom photo) Whiteoak's Landen Eyre, 1600m run. Column 3: McClain's Lily Barnes, discus. (McClain photos by Jim Jones/The Highland County Press; other photos courtesy of local athletic directors)
Stephen Forsha, The Highland County Press

Eight Highland County track and field athletes are set to compete at the 2023 OHSAA State Track and Field Championships on Friday, June 2 and Saturday, June 3 at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, located on the campus of The Ohio State University in Columbus.

Athletes from Highland County scheduled to compete at state in Division II are McClain’s 4x100-meter relay team of senior Ryan Butterbaugh, sophomore Brenna Wright, sophomore Katie Cook and junior Luca Matesic. Wright — who is making her state debut — is also competing at Division II state as an individual in the 100m hurdles race.

This year in the 4x100m race, the McClain team had a time of 51.46 in the Frontier Athletic Conference meet (second place), and followed that at districts in Washington C.H. with a first-place time of 51.73. At regionals in New Concord, the team had a second-place time of 50.66.

Last year, three of the four members raced at state (Butterbaugh, Cook, Matesic, along with Iva Easter, who was a senior last year), where they finished 11th overall at 50.59.

The Division II 4x100m relay preliminary races are scheduled to start Friday, June 2 at 2:50 p.m.

Wright in her individual event (100m hurdles) was third at the FAC meet with a time of 16.47, but at districts she was first place at 15.66. At regionals in Division II, she also had a time of 15.66 for third place. Wright’s Div. II 100m hurdles prelim race is scheduled to start Friday, June 2 at 2 p.m.

Also from McClain in Division II competition is Lily Barnes, as she returns to state — she was a state qualifier in 2021 — in the discus event.

Barnes last competed at state her freshman year, where she finished in 16th place with a distance of 108-11. Fast-forward to 2023, and the McClain junior was FAC champion in the discus event with a distance of 111-08, followed by a district champion distance of 124-09.00. At regionals, Barnes was fifth place and earned her at-large state qualifier spot with a discus throw of 119-10. Barnes’ Division II discus throw event is scheduled to start Friday, June 2 at 9:30 a.m.

Hillsboro has one state qualifier, that being Jailyn Williams, who is making her state debut as a freshman in the 800m run.

In her first varsity season at Hillsboro, Williams won the FAC championship in the 800m run with a time of 2:25.42. At the district race in Washington C.H., Williams was third place with a time of 2:26.36, and at regionals she was fourth place at 2:20.39. Williams is scheduled to race Saturday, June 3 at 2:30 p.m. in the Division II 800m run.

In Division III, Whiteoak sophomore Landon Eyre became a first-time state qualifier in the 1600m run, and Fairfield senior Hallie Haines is also making her first trip to the state tournament to compete in the 400m dash.

In the 400m dash race, Haines of Fairfield was a SHAC champion in 2023 as her winning time was 1:00.82. The following week at districts in Nelsonville, Haines was second, with her time being 59.78. A week later at the regional event, Haines ran a fourth-place time of 59.94 to become a state qualifier. Haines’ 400m dash prelim race for Division III is scheduled to start Friday, June 2 at 11 a.m.

Eyre was a Southern Hills Athletic Conference champion with a 1600m run time of 4:47.23 and won a district championship at Nelsonville-York with a time of 4:25.00. At regionals in Heath for Division III, Eyre was sixth place and had a state-qualifying time of 4:28.11. Eyre is scheduled to race in the Division III 1600m run finals on Saturday, June 3 at 10:05 a.m.


FRIDAY, JUNE 2, 2023

9:30 a.m. — Lily Barnes, McClain, Discus Throw, Div. II (first round, then finals same day)

11:00 a.m. — Hallie Haines, Fairfield, 400m dash, Div. III (prelims)

2 p.m. — Brenna Wright, McClain, 100m hurdles, Div. II (prelims)

2:50 p.m. — (Ryan Butterbaugh, Brenna Wright, Katie Cook, Luca Matesic), McClain, 4x100m relay, Div. II (prelims)


10:05 a.m. — Landon Eyre, Whiteoak, 1600m run, Div. III, (finals)

2:30 p.m. — Jailyn Williams, Hillsboro, 800m run, Div. II (finals)

Possible finals events for Highland County

10:35 a.m. — 400m dash, Div. III (girls)

1 p.m. — 100m hurdles, Div. II (girls)

1:50 p.m. — 4x100m relay, Div. II (girls)

For a complete schedule of all OHSAA State Track events, click here.



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