Warren, Marietta impress at Erickson Invitational

JAY W. BENNETT The Marietta Times Marietta High’s Meadow Benton, right, and Courtney Schuck run side-by-side in the 100 meter dash during Thursday’s Erickson Invitational in Parkersburg.

PARKERSBURG — The 20th annual Erickson Invitational had a little bit of everything on Thursday night and that included eight new meet records.

Led by high-point freshman Allie Germann (32 points), Winfield’s girls rolled to the team title with 169.5 points. The Generals topped host Parkersburg South (84) on its senior night while Marietta (74), Warren (69.5) and Parkersburg (56) rounded out the top five.

Despite having 300 hurdles champ Justin Lough getting disqualified, the Warren boys managed to tie the Big Reds of Parkersburg, 114-114. The host Patriots checked in with 75 points for third while Winfield (70) and Ravenswood (55.5) followed.

“No, I wasn’t expecting that,” said Parkersburg South freshman Samara Nunn of winning the 400 with a new personal best time of 58.93, which just edged Winfield’s Baylee Adkins’ effort of 58.99.

“My coaches and my mom tell me stuff that I need to work on, like my start.”

Not only did Nunn win the race, but she broke the previous record of 59.41 set by Waterford’s Heather Fulmer back in 2001.

“Really? That’s great. That’s awesome,” Nunn replied when she was informed of her record-breaking performance.

The Patriot girls of head coach Tara Swiger also had the high jump champ in Erin Williams, who cleared 5 feet before runner-up and fellow Patriot Madi Gersper did the same.

“She’s been working really hard in the high jump and the long jump,” coach Swiger said of Williams. “She broke the school record a couple of weeks ago in the long jump. Samara is actually like .81 away from breaking the school record in the 400.

“Samara had the goal set. I think it’s great when she has someone to push her. She’s a competitor and doesn’t like to lose. She had a goal set for under a minute and she did it. That’s awesome.”

Warren’s Trent Sayre captured high-point honors for the boys by besting Parkersburg’s Aaron Kupfner, 25-24. Kupfner swept the hurdles. The Big Red topped South’s Haden McConnell in the 110 hurdles (15.38 to 15.56) and his time of 41.66 was good enough to best Wirt County’s Joey Schmidt (43.10) in the 300 hurdles.

Sayre established a new meet record in the mile with a time of 4:24.9 as Warrior teammate Jake Herriott was second in 4:28.00. In fact, third place finisher Anthony Siler of John Marshall (4:30.41) and fourth place finisher Benjamin Lake of PHS (4:30.68) also broke the old Erickson Invite mark of 4:31.42 set in 2000 by Huntington’s Larry Atkins.

Sayre also ran a leg on the Warriors’ victorious 4×400 team which allowed WHS to tie the Big Reds. Warren’s time of 3:28.19 with Sayre, Isaiah Kitts, Ethan Yost and Lough broke the PHS old mark of 3:32.31 set in 2014.

Warren’s dominance in the 4×800 continues to grow this spring. After breaking the Rocky Brands Invite stadium and meet records earlier this spring, the quartet of Yost, Brennan Perdue, Jake Herriott and Sayre did the same with a final clocking of 8:13.30. South held the old mark of 8:17.56 since 2000.

Yost also topped Kitts in the 400 (50.86 to 51.67) while Sayre held off a late charge from Ravenswood’s Bryce Jarrell to capture the 800 (2:00.97 to 2:01.58). Red Devil Austin Garrett sped to victory in the 200 with a clocking of 23.26, which was good enough to beat South’s Levi Rice (23.53).

Parkersburg’s Tyler Moler crossed the finish line in the 100 with a time of 11.67, which was just ahead of runner-up Garrett and (11.82) and third place Kitts (11.88).

Marietta’s girls also had a pair of meet records thanks to the foursome of Meadow Benton, Courtney Schuck, Lexie Mullen and Torrance Nonnenmacher. They finished the 4×100 in 50.92 and the 4×200 in 1:49.91, which broke PHS’ mark of 1:50.66 from 2017. The girls 4×100 mark of 51.58 was held by both Williamstown and Huntington from 2012.

Germann had top of the podium finishes in the 100 (12.76), 200 (26.97) and the long jump (17 feet, 5 inches). Benton (13.11) and Mullen (13.35) weren’t far behind in the 100 while Parkersburg Catholic’s Grace Wojcik (27.72) and Nonnenmacher (16-8.5) were runners-up in the 200 and long jump, respectively.

The General Adkins also broke two meet records, which included the 800. Former Buckhannon-Upshur standout Emily Godwin’s time of 2:21.21 went by the wayside in the 800 as Adkins clocked in at 2:16.35. Adkins’ effort of 47.14 in the 300 hurdles also erased the old record from 2015 held by Tucker County’s Kelsey Kyle (47.91). Big Red Emily Kupfner was runner-up with a time of 49.51.

Warren’s Millie Ryan swept the throws. She went 116 feet, 2 inches in the discus and had a 35-8.5 showing in the shot put.

Big Red Kendal Domenick (16.67) topped Kupfner (16.82) and Patriot Allie Perkins (17.51) for the 100 hurdles crown. PHS also won the shuttles with a time of 1:08.46 thanks to Kupfner, Delaney Cox, Holly Chapman and Caroline Bruker.

Marietta’s Baylee Brown finished runner-up in the pole vault to Winfield’s Dianna Goodman (11-3 to 10-6).

South’s Abby Herring and John Marshall’s Zara Zervos had quite the race in the 1600, but the Monarch managed a narrow victory — 5:28.16 to 5:28.60.

In the 2-mile, General Danielle Jividen (12:30.04) topped the field as Casey Brague of Warren (12:37.77) and South’s Shannon Ruble followed.

In the boys 3200, Big Red Anthony Bradford had enough in the tank to edge Jarrell, 10:01.65 to 10:04.85.

Despite having to settle for a tie, PHS veteran head coach Rod O’Donnell was just glad to have some solid competition.

“That was a good one for us,” admitted O’Donnell. “They are a good team. That’s a good group.”

Parkersburg South head coach Erwin DeGraef watched his shuttles team place first with a time of 1:02.49 thanks to Landon Francisco, Corey Beverage, McConnell and Mason Cheuvront.

Three other area boys won individual events with Belpre’s Hunter Gilbert besting Big Red Buddy Roberts in the pole vault (12-6 to 11-6), while Marietta’s Quintin Southerly went 18 feet, 11 inches to top Francisco (18-9.5) in the long jump. Warrior Landon Wigal threw 146 feet and 1 inch to win the discus.

Robert C. Byrd’s Brock Robey had a victorious shot heave of 49-3.5, which was enough to edge Big Red Shane Miller (46-6).

The other individual champ was Monarch Brennen Wright topping Patriot Levi Rice for the high jump crown. Wright was the first to clear 5 feet, 10 inches.


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