Six county cross country runners qualify for state

Oct. 30—BOARDMAN — Cooperation was the theme of the day for four of the six Ashtabula County runners who qualified for the Ohio State High School Athletic Association state championships Saturday in Columbus.

Two of the six came from the same family as Grand Valley's David Steimle, a senior, finished ninth in the Division III regional cross country meet at Boardman High School. His sister, Anna, a sophomore, finished 15th with both earning a trip to Columbus on Saturday.

David Steimle earned a trip to the state meet last year when the Mustangs were in Division II. He kept rolling this year with a personal-record time in the Division III race.

GV coach Kurtis Fisher said he was proud of both runners and the races they ran. He found both qualifiers after the race and gave them big hugs.

"Top-10 is always the goal," Fisher said after David Steimle ran a time of 17:06 during the race.

Steimle finished 16th at the Division II regional meet last year and 72nd at the state meet.

Fisher said the two divisions aren't that different.

"We traded Woodridge for Maplewood and McDonald," he said of the powerhouses that often dominate the different division meets.

David Steimle said he was in pain for most of the race.

"I knew I was going to have to be uncomfortable to make it out," he said.

Fisher said Anna's task was going to be a little more challenging.

"We knew her race was a little bit harder. We knew she needed to be in the upper teens," Fisher said of the her qualifying by one place at 15th in the Division III regional meet with a time of 20:28. "She did her job."

Anna Steimle said it was a difficult race and she was glad to hold on and earn the trip to Columbus.

Edgewood's two underclassmen, sophomore Maddie Crooks and junior Tammy Liplin, also worked together to earn a trip to the Division II state championships on Saturday afternoon, along with Geneva's Mya Evangelista.

"We knew it was warming up a little bit so we decided to go out a little slower," Warriors coach Steve Hill said.

Hill said they ran a "perfect race" with Crooks finishing 13th and Liplin 15th.

He added Crooks was sick for awhile. but when she came back the two have been working well together.

"I am really happy I got out," Crooks said.

Liplin said she is excited to be going to the state meet.

Crooks qualified last year, but is excited to share the experience.

"It was lonely last year," she said.

Hill said his boys team ran well and knew it was a long shot to make it to Columbus as they finished 19th.

He said his son Granison Hill, a prospective state qualifier, was unable to finish the race on Saturday.

Evangelista finished 17th in a time of 20:06.30 and will head to Columbus as well.

The junior said she is excited to make it

so there isn't too much pressure.

"My plan was to go out with the upper teens because I have a really bad sprint so I wanted to have some [room]," Evangelista said.

Geneva coach Emily Long was proud of Evangelista.

"Mission accomplished," Long said.

She said the results were sort of what they expected with Evangelista running close to the Warrior runners as they had all year.

In other Division II boys action, Jefferson's Stephen Sly recovered from early season injuries to qualify for the state meet on Saturday afternoon. Sly finished 13th in a personal record time of 16:47.

Sly said he was excited to have the opportunity to go to Columbus.

"Very proud of this young man," Falcons coach T.J. Furman said. "He ran a very smart race. He learned from last year's regional race, and grew physically and mentally this past year.

"He came in with a great game plan and executed it exactly like we talked about."

In the girls Division II race, Jefferson's Mara Gilman notched 73rd place in a time of 21:58.20 while Conneaut's Kyndall Spring took 93rd at 22:33.50

In the Division III boys race, Pymatuning Valley was appearing at regionals for the first time in more than a decade.

The Lakers did not qualify anyone to the state meet, but coach Ricky Walters said he was proud of his team.

"It is the best team I have ever had. They have worked hard. ... This is my first regional team. It has been a blessing."

Austin Musgrave paced PV, running a 18:50.30 for 59th.

In the Division I girls race, Madison's Cara Klein finished 94th in a time of 21:13.80.

The Division I boys race saw Madison's Alex Kolhoff claim 49th in 17:07.60 and Izaiah Siler check in at 18:15.60 and Geneva's Donald Shymske take 124th in 18:03.60.

The state tournament is scheduled for Saturday Fortress Obetz and Memorial Park in the Columbus area.