As the Grove City track and field program prepared for the season, coach Jane Taylor held a customary event by paying tribute to the seniors.
After not having a season a year ago because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, Taylor admitted this year’s ceremony was more impact.
“The kids are so excited,” said Taylor, who is in her 15th season. “We got a little bit emotional. We were doing our senior paws and then we put our senior banners up. The kids didn’t get to do any of that last year. My seniors this year realize how big of an opportunity that is, considering how quickly it can be taken away.”
The boys team will compete in the Best of the South-West meet April 16 at Franklin Heights.
“We have a really good core group,” Taylor said. “We have about 70 (boys and girls) out, so that’s pretty good.”
Leading the sprinters should be senior Caden Gordon, a returnee from 2019, along with classmates Dillion Braddock and T.J. Franklin.
Senior Dylan Boso and junior Brian Ransburgh will compete in middle distance and distance events, and other key middle-distance and distance runners include junior Devin Dawson and sophomore Nick Fisher.
Taylor noted that sophomore Tyson Evans is a versatile athlete who will compete in the hurdles, pole vault and 400-meter relay, while juniors A.J. Jones and Dawson Smith and sophomore Quintez Sellers will throw the discus and shot put.
INSIDE THE GREYHOUNDS
•Coach: Jane Taylor, 15th season
•Next meet: April 16 at Best of the South-West meet at Franklin Heights
•Key athletes: Dylan Boso, Devin Dawson, T.J. Franklin, Caden Gordon and Brian Ransburgh
battle early injuries
Central Crossing has been battling injuries heading into the season as three sprinters – seniors A.J. Farmer (hamstring) and Conner Hewlett (quad) and junior Alec Boyd (hip pointer) – are working to get back on the track.
“A.J., Connor and Alec should be key contributors when they get healthy,” fourth-year Reggie Cannon said. “They’re three horses you can generally count on.”
Cannon also is counting on junior distance runner Joey Taylor, who led the cross country team last fall.
“Our strength is in our sprints and with Joey in middle distance,” Cannon said. “I tell Joey that he still can be much better and that he has to challenge himself to get better. He needs to go out early and see what kind of kick he has left at the end.”
Senior Dylan Adams, junior Josh Codjoe, freshman Dominique Wilkins are sprinters, and seniors Jonathan Carroll and Cam Kulp and freshman Jordan Neihaus are middle-distance and distance runners.
Kulp and junior Santiago Sierra have been competing in the throws, and sophomore Braylon Cornell will high jump.
“We’re not deep in the field events, so it’s a work in progress,” Cannon said. “We’re still trying to get kids in the jumps. Our best shot throw is around 31 feet, and after having (2019 graduate) Luis (Bolanos-Cruz) throwing (and placing fifth in the Division I state meet with a 56-3 1/2) in 2019, it’s quite a difference.
“We have a young team and we’ll see what we can do. We’re still trying to get some semblance of a team together. So many parts on the team are hard to know because of the kids’ inexperience.”
INSIDE THE COMETS
•Coach: Reggie Cannon, fourth season
•Next meet: April 16 at Franklin Heights for Best of the South-West
•Key athletes: Dylan Adams, Alec Boyd, A.J. Farmer, Conner Hewlett and Joey Taylor
Grove City Christian
coach excited for season
Fourth-year Grove City Christian coach Mindy Bankey is looking forward to the season.
“We’re excited about the season and hoping we can stay healthy and away from quarantines,” Bankey said.
Bankey expects junior Jaylin Walker to be the top sprinter, and he will join seniors Christian Lautenschleger and Collin May and sophomore Jimmy Suhayda on the 400 relay.
Junior Dylan King will compete in the 800 and 1,600, with juniors Andrew Chalupa and Jon Frush (discus) running the 400.
Freshmen Elijah Call and Elijah Tomlinson will be in the middle-distance events and throws.
Junior Tyler Richmond (discus, shot put) and freshmen Josh Moening (throws) and Ilya Paul (800, 1,600) also should contribute.
INSIDE THE EAGLES
•Coach: Mindy Bankey, fourth season
•Next meet: April 15 at Berne Union with Corning Miller and Millersport
•Key athletes: Dylan King, Christian Lautenschleger, Collin May, Jimmy Suhayda and Jaylin Walker