By David Fong
TROY — The Troy girls track and field team flexed its muscle.
Covington’s Breanna Kimmel showed her hustle.
In the end, both methods were effective in outdistancing their respective competition Tuesday at the Miami County Championships Track and Field Meet at Troy Memorial Stadium.
Kimmel was the individual star of the show, winning a pair of sprint titles and leading her relay team to another, while the Troy girls team took advantage of both its individual talent and overall depth to easily capture the team title.
“This feels really good; I’m really excited,” the Covington sophomore said after winning the 100-meter dash (13.31 seconds), the 200 (26.76 seconds) and teaming up with Rayna Horner, Ashlyn Plessinger and Victoria Lyle to win the 4×400 relay (4:14.65).
Although she was competing for one of the smallest schools in the county, Kimmel said she was not intimidated by the thought of competing against sprinters from bigger schools — and, in fact, relished the opportunity.
“I think I run better when I’ve got better people to run against,” she said.
While Kimmel stood out among the individual competitors by capturing three titles, Troy’s overall depth simply was too much for the other county teams to handle. The Trojans racked up 203 points, well-ahead of Tippecanoe, which finished second with 111 points. Covington was third with 109.5 points and Miami East was fourth with 108 points.
In addition to capturing seven individual titles, the Trojans had five events in which two competitors placed in the top three and several more in which three Trojans placed in the top eight, allowing Troy to rack up a huge cachet of team points, leaving no doubt it would walk away with the team title.
“Our depth really allows us to try new things,” Troy coach Kurt Snyder said. “We can move some people around and do some different things and not really worry about scoring enough points to win the meet. We had some kids running events they’ve never run before and they still ended up doing well. The depth we have really is the strength of our team.”
Which isn’t to say the Trojans didn’t also have a fair number of impressive individual performances, as well.
Sophomore distance runner Morgan Gigandet won a pair of individual titles despite not even competing in the 3,200, her best event. Gigandet won the 800 (2:22.24) and the 1,600 (5:06.93), while also helping the 4×400 relay team take second (4:19.76). Senior Kelsey Walters won the shot put (38-7.25), while also placing third in the 100 (13.62) and fourth in the 200.
Junior Ashley Barr won the 400 (1:00.91) and was third in the 200 (27.40). Celina Courts placed second to Kimmel in both the 100 (13.41) and 200 (27.05), while also teaming with Jordan Hoffman, Kayla Hemm and Monae Harrison to win the 4×100 (51.46). Caitlyn Cusick won the 300 hurdles (49.76 seconds), while taking third in the 100 hurdles (18.30).
Trojan Christine Moser won the pole vault (10-0), while teammate Lilli Cusick took third (8-6). Emma Shigley finished second in the 1,600 (5:30.4), while Alyse Holter was second in the steeplechase (9:02.70), Annah Stanley was second in the long jump (15-3.75) and Alaura Holycross was third in the shot put (36-1.75). Troy’s 4×800 relay team took second in 10:21.55.
Much like Troy, Tippecanoe was able to lean heavily on its overall team depth, taking second place despite just winning event, as the 4×200 relay team of Lunden Mason, Sammie Rowland, Tori Livesay and Taylor Prall took first in 1:52.42. Rowland also placed third in the long jump (15-3.25). Makenzie Dietz placed in a pair of events, taking third in the 800 (2:30.58) and third in the 400 (1:02.69).
Also for Tippecanoe, Annie Martino was third in the steeplechase (9:06.6), Jillian Brown was third in the 1,600 (5:40.93) and Katie Taylor was third in the 3,200 (11:59.14). The Red Devils also took third in the 4×100 (56.31) and third in the 4×400 (4:24.82).
In addition to Kimmel’s individual titles, Natalie Snyder won the 100 hurdles (17.61) and Anna Dunn won the 3,200 (11:44.66). The 4×800 relay team of Paige Boehringer, Dunn, Plessinger and Carly Shell also took home a title (10:09.6). Horner took second in the 400 (1:01.62) and Lauren Hebert was third in the discus (106-2).
Miami East was led by Lindsey Yingst, who won the steeplechase in 8:47.0. Kaitlyn Mack was second in the 300 hurdles (50.59), Megan Kinnison was second in the discus (112-09) and Marie Ewing was second in the 800 (2:29.59). Miami East also was second in the 4×100 relay (54.46), second in the 4×200 (1:56.7) and third in the 4×800 (10:25.13).
Bradford finished in fifth place with 38.5 points. Maia Stump won the long jump (15-10), while Kelly Moore was second in the pole vault (8-6) and Karmen Knepp was second in the 3,200 (11:55.07).
Milton-Union finished sixth with 38 points. The Bulldogs were led by Beyonce Bobbitt, who won the discus (117-02) and was second in the shot put (37-0.25).
Newton was seventh with 35 points. Aliya Stine was second in the 100 hurdles (18.14) and third in the 300 hurdles (51.18). Newton’s 4×200 relay team also took third place (2:04.71).
Piqua’s Ashley Ho won the high jump (5-0), while Bethel’s Alaina Hawthorn was second (4-10) and fellow Bee Bailey McCabe was third (4-8).
Contact David Fong at email@example.com; follow him on Twitter @thefong