VANDALIA — It was a special day at Butler High School on Saturday as the Aviators hosted the Butler Invitational Track and Field Meet. Gorgeous weather and stirring performances made for an ideal day.
Prior to the meet, senior athletes and their parents were honored. Also, midway through the meet, Xenia Christian Para-athlete Grace Norman shattered her own world record in the 1500 meter run with a time of 4:52.16.
Norman credited Butler’s star distance runner with helping her achieve the mark.
“I was really nervous coming into this, I didn’t think I would do that well. Emma Bryant from Butler said she would pace me and that calmed me down by knowing I would have someone there with me. It was awesome having her there. It was incredible the way the crowd got behind me.”
The Lady Aviators placed third overall at the meet with 62.5 points while the boys team placed ninth with 32 points.
Leading the way for the Lady Aviators was the 4×800 meter relay team of Abbie Schoenherr, Olivia Schoenherr, Maddie Mitchell, and Corina Kreill who kicked off the running events with a win in 9:59.82.
“We have an awesome mix of very young and talented ladies and a strong upper class,” said girls track coach Kathy Schoenherr. “Our 4×800 relay started the meet with a bang and won.”
The Schoenherr sisters combined for a 3-4 finish in the 800 meter run with Olivia running in 2:31.85 and Abbie posting a 2:33.14.
Bryant also place third in the 1500 meter run with a time of 5:06.98.
Senior Natalie Thompson placed in two hurdle events. She was third in the 300 meter hurdles (49.78 seconds) and sixth in the 100 meter hurdles in 16.87 seconds. Fellow hurdler Brooklyn Warren was sixth in the 300 meter race (51.45) and eighth in the 100 meter race (17.23).
“Natalie Thompson and Brooklyn warren both had strong showings,” said Schoenherr.
Thompson, Sydney Baker, Anna Minier, and Kreill placed fourth in the 4×200 relay with a time of 1:50.89. Kreill also tied for fourth in the high jump with a leap of 4 feet, 10 inches.
Alyssa Burley, the Shoenherrs, and Kreill combined to place fifth in the final running event of the day, the 4×400 meter relay in a time of 4:21.55. Lora Burris also placed fifth in the pole vault with a height of 9-09.
Sarah Hickle placed sixth in the 3200 meter run in 12:45.36.
Rounding out the scoring for the Lady Aviators was Baker, Alex Kapis, Tyree Fletcher, and Minier who placed seventh in the 4×100 meter relay.
“That is a very young group that will only get better over the course of the season while gaining those much needed reps and chemistry that it take for relay teams to be successful,” said Scoenherr.
“We are very blessed with talented student-athletes and a tremendous coaching staff,” she said. “The coaching staff would like to thank the school and community for the strong support of Butler Track and Field.”
The boys were led by Caleb Colon’s fourth place finish in the 1600 meter run (4:49.16), Austin Whisman’s fourth place in the 400 meter dash (52.54 seconds), and Kyle Wertz who placed fourth in the 3200 meter run (10:11.78). Teammate Gabe Warren was sixth in the 3200 meter run in 10:24.21.
Fifth place finishers were Daiton Sharp in the long jump (20-00.75). Also, the 4×200 meter relay team of Sharp, Whisman, Kenneth Roberts, and Sebon Graus placed fifth in 1:35.29.
In the discus, Curtis Davis placed fifth with a throw of 123-07 and Daniel O’Leary placed seventh with a throw of 120-05.
“I was very please with the performance of the boys 4×200 relay placing fifth overall,” said boys head coach Greg Bergman. “In particular their exchanges were very smooth, which allowed for the impressive PR in the event.”
Butler will return to action Friday evening at the Springboro Invitational.
Reach Darrell Wacker at 937-684-8983 or on Twitter @VandaliaDrummer.