Miami County Boys Cross Country Preview

Phillip Matthews returns as Troy cross country coach.

The Trojans won the MVL last season.

Returning letterwinners include Gavin Hutchinson, Kyle McCord, Matthew Spayde, Luke Plaisier, Cooper Gambrell and Noah Zink

Those runners will lead the Trojans will be joined by Chet Snyder, Gavin Romberger, Ryan McChesney and Ethan White.

“We want to continue to compete at a high level in the MVL and postseason meets,” Matthews said. “The MVL will be a healthy competition among all teams.”

TIPPECANOE

Byron Kimmel returns as coach.

The Red Devils were Miami County champs, MVL runner-up and regional qualifier in DI.

Returning letterwinners include seniors Kalib Tolle and Elliot Murray and sophomores Will Hept and Ethan Berning.

The top newcomer is freshman Landon Kimmel.

“Landon (Kimmel) is my youngest son,” Kimmel said. “He won every meet last year including the middle school state championship meet in Division I. He also won the 1,600 in track at the OHSAA junior high state meet with a state meet record time of 4:26. This time ranked him second in the nation in the 1,600 for junior high runners. He ran a 5K road race in mid-May in 15:47. So, he is definitely going to help us and Luke Schwieterman is another freshman that will challenge for a varsity spot.”

Kimmel has high expectations for the season.

”We might field one of the youngest varsity teams in the last decade,” he said. ‘There is enough talent to compete for a league title and a regional berth.”

PIQUA

The Piqua boys cross country team returns juniors Simon Baker, Tommy Grise, Jackson Lyman and Thurston Rampulla and sophomores Brycen Angle, Noah Burgh, AJ Burroughs, Evan Clark, Owen Fast, Spencer Ford, William Gillespie, Braden Holtvogt, Ty Pettus and Owen Quinter.

BETHEL

The Bethel boys cross country roster includes senior Alex Lyall; juniors John Daugherty, Landon Endsley, Austin Hawkins, Ethan Moore, Gavyn Mullins and Bryce Schweikhardt; sophomores Bronson Mansfield and Caleb Wrobel and freshman Patrick Firstenberger and Kade Schweikhardt.

COVINGTON

Josh Long returns as Covington coach.

The Buccaneers return a talented group of runners, as well as some strong newcomers.

“We have five of our top seven runners returning from last year’s league championship team and they have really picked it up a notch this summer,” Long said. “We are really excited to see what we can do this season.”

Junior Asher Long, was the TRC runner of the year in the league and finished All Ohio in the state meet.

He will lead the way once again for the Buccaneers.

Also returning is senior and fellow all-league runner Mic Barhorst.

Sophomores Beck Wilson, Calub Hembree, and Tanner Palsgrove all return from last year’s top seven.

Runners looking to make their way into the top seven this year include, Junior DrewGessner, Sophomores Noah Chaney, Chris Deaton, Avery Gooding, Wyatt Parker, Preston King,and Freshmen Isaac Angle, Deonte Baker, Brock Gessner, Chris Ha, Will Hand, Caleb Ryman, Zach Steele, and Colt Williams.

“We have a solid group returning and we have some young runners that are going to challenge for a varsity spot, which will make everyone better in the end,” Long said. “Our league will be competitive thisyear, but if we work hard and stay healthy we could be in the mix for our third straight league title.”

LEHMAN CATHOLIC

Nick Wolters is the Lehman Catholic coach.

Seniors Hezekiah Bezy and Mark Moloney II will lead the team.

Junior Logan Linson returns for his third season and sophomore Brennan Potts returns as well.

“Freshman Chris Galbreath, Adam Flood and Calvin Linson have all been putting in strong summer work and will round out the team,” Wolters said.

MIAMI EAST

Alan Russell returns as coach.

The Vikings finished second in the TRC a year ago.

“Senior Elijah Wilmeth and junior Andrew Crane both finished in the top-ten of the league race last year,” Russell said. “They both look to be in good condition this summer. Our junior high boys team were League champions in 2021. Several of these young men will be running with the high school this year.”

Russell has high hopes for the team.

” I hope all of our runners continue to put in a good effort and show great improvement throughout the season,” he said. “I hope that we can be at or near the top of the Three Rivers Conference when it comes time for the championship meet. I think we will be near the top of the conference again this year. Covington and Milton-Union are always respectable competitors.”

MILTON-UNION

Michael Meredith returns as coach.

Milton-Union finished third in the TRC meet a year ago and looks to improve on that.

TROY CHRISTIAN

Jeff McDaniel returns as Troy Christian coach.

Freshman Landon Patel will lead the Eagles this year and senior Jason Shaffer is a new runner, running cross country for the first time.

“Landon (Patel) will be working hard to qualify for state this season with the other guys pushing hard to have great seasons in their first year,” McDaniel said. “We will compete as individuals at the conference meet and work to get into the first or second conference team.”

BRADFORD

Athena Beachler is the coach.

Returning letterwinners are Owen Beachler, Stephen Stewart, Ethan Brogan, Hayden Nicodemus and Dalton Reck.

They will be joined by Owen Canan and Zage Harleman.

“We hope to be a contender for the WOAC this season,” Beachler said. “A small but mighty team.”

NEWTON

Aubrey Hughes returns as coach after Newton won the WOAC a year ago and had regional individual qualifiers.

Sophomore Seth Coker was WOAC champion last year and was a regional qualifier in track as well.

Sophomore Liam Woods is coming off a strong track season and even better summer.

”His summer training has already made a huge difference in his cross country season and we are only two weeks in,” Hughes said.

“Sophomore Jaden Deaton has also put in a lot of work this summer,” Hughes said. “He will be a top five contender on our team. Sophomore Dylan Bauer had a personal breakthrough this last track season. He was solely a distance runner and he consistently dropped his two mile time, which will definitely be seen while racing his 5K.”

Hughes has high expectations for the season.

“The guys team have set high expectations for themselves,” Hughes said. “They are an extremely young team, Five of the seven are sophomores. Their goal is a team regional appearance as well as a second WOAC title.”

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