Panthers set for state meet

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Fairbanks’ Kayla Green finishes the 300 meter hurdles during the 2017 state track and field meet. She has qualified for this year’s state meet in the same event.
(Journal-Tribune photo by Sam Dillon)
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A pair of veteran state track meet athletes from Fairbanks High School will line up against the top Division III runners from Ohio on Friday morning.
Beau Sloan, who was the D-III state runner-up in the 100-meter dash in 2017, and 300-meter hurdler Kayla Green will take to the track at The Ohio State University’s Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
Sloan will also be a member of the FHS boys’ 4 x 200 relay team that also qualified for the state meet.
All three events will be run as preliminaries on Friday.
The top two from each prelim heat will qualify for Saturday morning’s finals, along with the next five best times.
Sloan will begin the competition with the 100-meter dash at 10:25 a.m. on Friday.
He won’t have much time to rest as the prelims for the 4 x 200 are set for 10:40 a.m.
Green will finish Fairbanks’ prelims at 11:20 a.m.
“I think Beau will make Saturday’s finals and he has a very good shot at a state title,” said Panther head coach Jeff Powell. “That’s what his focus is after finishing as state runner-up last year.”
Sloan will compete during the second heat of the prelims from Lane 4 and brings with him a seed time of 10.90 that earned him a regional championship last week at Fairfield-Union.
Michael Nichols of Ottawa Hills and Justin Wright of Wellsville will also run during the second heat. They have respective seed times of 10.97 and 10.91.
Josh Verhoff of Kalida and Waynesfield-Goshen’s Tyler Eller have the only sub-11 seed times in the first heat respectively at 10.97 and 10.99.
“We’ve seen Eller before and have a running history with him,” said Powell. “It’s going to be a very competitive field with several sub-11’s.
“However, Friday is just all about qualifying for Saturday’s finals.”
Green, with a fifth-place regional time of 46.16, has the 11th best clocking of the 18 athletes who will compete in the 300 hurdles. She earned an at-large berth to the state meet.
Green, who like Sloan is a senior, will compete in the first heat and run out of Lane 9.
“Kayla is getting faster and faster as the season progresses,” said Powell.
Green placed sixth in the event during last year’s state meet and should not be intimated by the field.
“I told her she has to be reckless when she runs on Friday and take some risks,” said Powell. “Again, it’s about getting to Saturday’s finals and she can’t hold anything back.”
The best seed time for the event was turned in by Johnstown Northridge’s Olivia Carpenter (44.55).
Sloan will be joined in the 4 x 200 relay by Nate Timmons, Will Cochrane and Zach Stewart.
They will compete during the first prelim heat in Lane 7.
The foursome placed third during the regional with a time of 1:31.92.
The Panthers are in the same prelim heat with teams such as East Canton (1:30.07), Smithville (1:30.54) and Ft. Recovery (1:30.77).
The other teams in that heat are Spencerville, Crestview, Northmor, Youngstown Valley Christian and Liberty.
Of those teams, only Northmor has a better seed time (1:31.02) than FHS.
“I think our relay team is setting pretty good time-wise as far as making it to the finals,” said Powell. “These guys have very good chemistry and their handoffs have been solid.”



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