Kimmel, Clyne, Strobel earn D-I state berths at regional meet


HUBER HEIGHTS — Tippecanoe freshman Landon Kimmel knew it was going to take his best race.

And he delivered Friday night at Wayne High School at the D-I regional track and field meet, joining teammate Stanley Clyne and Troy’s Devon Strobel in advancing on to the state track and field meet at Jesse Owens Stadiun.

In a loaded field where the top five were separated by less than three seconds, Kimmel showed maturity beyond his years finishing third in 9:18.82 to gain one of the four automatic berths for the state meet.

“There were five of us,” Kimmel said. “So, I knew four were going to make it and one was going to get cut. I had to run a very strategic race.”

Kimmel moved to the front as they headed to the final lap, with Evan Trapp of St. Xavier, Innocent Ntwall of Miamisburg, Wyatt Houchens of St. Xavier and Isaac Schachletter of Masonall close on his heels.

Trapp would win in 9:17.04, Ntwall was second in 9:18.34, Houchens was fourth in 9:19.13 and Schachletter was fifth in 9:19.90.

“I knew I had to go when I came off the backstretch,” Kimmel said. “I knew if I got the one guy, I was going to make it and I did. I was pretty sure I was top four when I crossed the finish line. It feels really good to make it to state.”

Clyne and Strobel had earned state berths on Wednesday.

Clyne a standout athlete in football and basketball as well — who will play football for the University of Cincinnati next fall — will now finish his high school career at Jesse Owens Stadium after taking third in the long jump in his first year of competing in track and field.

“I had never done track before,” Clyne said. “I never really thought about making it to state. I thought I could do well. Honestly, I thought the 200 would be the race (that would get him to state).”

But, Clyne has stepped it up in the long jump the last couple of weeks, hitting new PRs.

After winning the district meet, he finished third Wednesday at the regional with a distance of 22-4 1-2.

“I think I just started working on it more the last couple weeks,” Clyne said. “I got that jump on my second jump in prelims. We weren’t sure if it would hold up or not. I had to get my jumps in and go run the 4×200, so I wasn’t following that closely where I stood. I just want to get over 22 feet at state and see where that puts me.”

It is a perfect ending to his high school career.

“I don’t know what to expect since I have never been there,” Clyne said. “But, it is Jesse Owens Stadium, so that will be pretty special.”

Strobel, like Clyne, has taken things to a new level in the discus the last couple of weeks.

He topped his previous best by almost 20 feet at district to break a 45-year old school record.

Then, he followed it up by nearly matching it at the regional, throwing it 172-0 to get the fourth and final automatic berth.

“I think I had been throwing that far all along,” Strobel said. “It was just a matter of being consistent with it.”

He got the 172-0 on his first throw in prelims.

“I think it was important just to get a good throw early and relax,” he said.

He then had to watch through finals to see if his throw would hold up.

“I was (nervewracking),” the junior said. “Especially, with Ryan Johnson of Springboro. I knew he could hit a big throw. The goal all season was to get to state. I want to be top three and have a PR at state.”

And all three will have one more opportunity this season to perform after shining in the biggest moment.

Sports Editor Rob Kiser can be reached at [email protected]

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