By Josh Brown
TIPP CITY — The funny thing after winning something once?
It typically creates expectations the next time around.
“Last year, in the middle of the meet, we were like, ‘heck, we’re going to win this!’” Miami East boys track and field coach Steve Karnehm said of last year’s Miami County Championships win. “Today was a little more like ‘we’d better win.’”
The Viking boys practically led wire to wire during the Miami County Championships track and field meet during a frigid Tuesday night at Tippecanoe Middle School, winning their second straight team championship with 141.33 points as Milton-Union finished second and Troy finished third.
Miami East, which went on to finish as the runner-up in both its conference and at the district meet last year, will be looking to improve on those showing while also competing in Division II when the postseason arrives. But that’s not something that anyone on the team is shying away from — particularly after Tuesday’s win.
“The kids are great,” Karnehm said. “This is such a wonderful group of kids to coach. No one complains, even on a night like tonight. I’ve gotten no complaints.
The Vikings began the day with a win in the 4×800 relay (8:45.63), then Dalton Taynor (11.606 seconds) and Justin Brown (11.73 seconds) took second and third in the 100. The 4×200 relay team also won (1:36.62), as did the 4×100 relay team (45.22 seconds), and the 4×400 relay team completed the sweep at the end of the night (3:48.78).
Justin Brown added a win in the long jump (20-1.75) and tied for second in the high jump (5-9), Blaine Brokschmidt second in the pole vault (12-6) and second in the long jump (18-7.25), Gavin Horne added a second-place finish in the 1,600 (4:49.97) and was third in the 3,200 (10:40.08), Erik Austerman finished second in the 800 (2:12.41) and Taynor was second in the 200 (23.27 seconds).
Milton-Union, which finished third behind Miami East and Troy last season, finished second with 120 points.
“We were missing a couple of key kids and had some unfortunate things happen, but for the weather conditions — everybody is just out here competing and surviving, basically,” Milton-Union coach Michael Meredith said. “It’s survival of the fittest, and Miami East was definitely more fit today. But you know, it is pretty nice to be able to come into the County Championship, and two of the medium-sized schools are competing for titles.
“Compete and survive, that was tonight. We’re looking forward to warmer weather, that’s for sure.”
The Bulldogs were led by Robbie Grove, who won the 100 (11.602 seconds) and 200 (23.22 seconds), and Shannon Milnickel, who won the 1,600 (4:41.33) and the 800 (2:09.22). Sam Motz was second in the 300 hurdles (43.04 seconds), third in the 110 hurdles (16.31 seconds) and third in the shot put (45-3.75), and Trevor Grile was third in the pole vault (11-0). The 4×200 relay team was second (1:37.11) and the 4×100 relay team was third (46.73 seconds).
Troy, which was the runner-up last season, finished third with 110.33 points. Spencer Klopfenstein was second in the shot put (48-1.25) and third in the discus (134-3), Jaydon Culp-Bishop finished second in the 200 (23.27 seconds) and third in the 400 (55.12 seconds), Nick Mittelstadt tied for second in the high jump (5-9), Andy Smith finished third in the 1,600 (4:54.25), Noah Young finished third in the 300 hurdles (43.38 seconds), Kobe Feltner was third in the long jump (18-6.75). The 4×800 relay team was second (9:12.79), the 4×100 relay team was second (45.73 seconds) and the 4×200 relay team was third (1:37.85).
Covington was fourth with 74.33 points. Jett Murphy won the pole vault (13-6), Cade Harshbarger won the 110 hurdles (15.56 seconds) and 300 hurdles (41.25 seconds), Gray Harshbarger won the 400 (54.01 seconds) and Andrew Cates was second (54.41 seconds), and Zach Parrett tied for second in the high jump (5-9).
Piqua was fifth with 54 points. The 4×400 relay team was second (3:52.01) and the 4×800 relay team was third (9:18.66).
Newton was sixth with 49 points. Freshman Dawson Hildebrand won the shot put (49-5.25) and Cameron Stine won the high jump (6-0) and was second in the 110 hurdles (16.25 seconds).
Tippecanoe was seventh with 45 points. Matt Garber won the discus (145-6) and Ethan Heitkamp was second in the 3,200 (10:38.41).
Bradford was eighth with 35 points. Jacob McQuinn was second in the discus (144-7), Johnny Fike was third in the 800 (2:12.72) and the 4×400 relay team was third (3:54.12).
Troy Christian was ninth with 14 points.
Bethel was 10th with 10 points, with Korry Hamlin winning the 3,200 (10:17.26).
Contact Josh Brown at (937) 552-2132, or follow @TroyDailySports on Twitter.