COLUMBUS — Two Beavercreek athletes seemed surprised at their own All-Ohio caliber performances, during the final day of the Ohio High School Athletic Association state track and field championships, June 3 at Ohio State University’s Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
Jay Drennen said he was just elated to be throwing the discus with the best Division I competitors around. So when he placed sixth overall to earn All-Ohio recognition, the Beavercreek senior was equally proud.
“It feels really great. It’s always something I wanted to do, since about my sophomore year. In my freshman year, I never imagined I would even get here,” Drennen said, moments after posing for photos next to the discus scoreboard with his name up in lights. “This was a great way to finish out my high school career.
“I’d like to thank my dad, Phil Drennen, and my coach, Kevin Tritschler. They’ve both been a big influence in my career.”
Drennen, who plans on continuing his throwing career at Campbellsville (Ky.) University, hurled the disc 166 feet and 7 inches to finish sixth in the field of 16. The top-8 finishers in each event earned All-Ohio honors for their efforts.
For fellow Beavercreek senior Ian Johnson, it took an encouraging shout from one of his Beavercreek coaches to give him that added boost, during Saturday’s D-I boys 800-meter state final.
Johnson pulled out wide down the backstretch and passed almost the entire field soon after.
“To be honest, I just didn’t want to be last,” Johnson said. “I like to make my move on the backstretch of the second lap, so I started going, and I heard my coach yelling to me that I could win it. That thought just went through my mind.
“I’m still speechless. I didn’t expect to do that well, no.”
Beavercreek was the only Greene County Division I high school to qualify any athletes to the state meet.
Freshman Eileen Yang placed ninth in the girls pole vault competition with a vault of 11 feet, 6 inches. Senior Ben Ewert placed 11th in the boys 1,600-meter final, and junior Stephanie Pierce placed 13th in the girls 800-meter run.
The boys team placed 38th out of 80 Division I teams that scored at least a point in the two-day event; the girls team did not score.