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State Track: Ottoville’s Mangas denied a third state HJ title

Riverdale’s Carrol Pauley lets the discus fly on her way to a second-place finish in the event at Friday’s OHSAA state track meet. (Photo by Matthias Leguire.)

Staff Writer
COLUMBUS — Brooke Mangas didn’t win a Division III high jump championship at Friday’s OHSAA track and field championships.
Don’t feel bad for the Ottoville senior, though, because she wasn’t too downcast afterward.
“It’s a little disappointing, yeah, but sometimes you have these days,” said Mangas, who cleared 5-6 and finished sixth in the event at Ohio State’s Jesse Owens Stadium.
Mangas has the resume to take the sting off one defeat. She won a high jump championship in 2015 and defended it last year with a Division III state-record leap of 5-10. She played in a final four this past winter on the Big Green basketball team and will attend and high jump at Ohio State beginning in the fall.
“I didn’t get what I wanted today,” said Mangas, who will run today in the finals of the 1,600-meter relay. “I know I have four more years now that hopefully I can make count even more than this.”
Arlington’s Lauren Willow wrapped up her career with a personal record of 5-5 that matched a school record. Willow was seventh in the high jump and was part of a solid day for Division III girls in the field events.
Riverdale’s Carrol Pauley, fourth in the discus throw the past two years, bumped up to second this season. Her best throw of 139-8 was bettered only by McComb’s Molly Leppelmeier (159-11), a double winner Friday in the discus and shot put.
“I started off my first throw and it wasn’t really what I expected it to be,” she said. “It was kind of a nervous throw, but I got one in. Just a mark.
“Second throw, I picked it up a little bit. I kind of felt myself hopping through the middle of my spin, which I didn’t like. I tried to fix it in my third throw and got it pretty good. I felt good with the footwork and I’m very glad I finished second.”
Pauley, who will throw at Ashland, finishes her career with three outdoor discus medals and three weight throw titles in the Ohio Association of Track and Cross Country Coaches indoor meet. She held her own throughout her career against the likes of Leppelmeier, 2016 discus champion Lynea Diller of Columbus Grove and 2015 champ Holly Averesch of Leipsic.
“I’m glad I competed against them,” Pauley said. “I like to compete against the best, and if I have to lose I want to lose against the best. I think they have made me who I am in the throwing world. Being able to compete against them, I wouldn’t change it for the world. I’m kind of sad that it’s over, but those relationships will stay locked in.”
Leipsic’s Grace Riegel, second in the shot put last year with a PR of 45-3, fell only two inches shy of that mark Friday. In a display of how strong the shot field was, Rigel finished fourth in an event in which three throwers exceeded 47 feet. Leppelmeier won at 49-6.
“That’s intense,” Rigel said of the marks put up on Friday. “That’s great. I’m pumped to just get right back into it next week and keep going.”
Rigel said watching a couple of competitors best her at state will add fuel to the competitive fire.
“I’m excited to throw next year,” she said. “I’m a little sad that my seniors, Molly and Carrol, are leaving me, but they have to move on. I get to make new friends now.”
Leipsic’s Carlee Siefker, in her first state meet, placed seventh in the long jump at 16-11¼. Siefker said she was nervous, but she still put out her best jump on her first attempt in the preliminary round.
“I got my first jump down, and I knew that would get me in the finals,” she said. “Once I got in the finals, I knew I had to pick it up if I wanted to place. I fouled all three, again, but that’s OK because I still made it.”
Chalk it up to a learning experience. Siefker, a junior, is ready for another try.
“I was a lot more nervous today than I’ve ever been,” she said. “Next year, I won’t be as nervous and scared of what’s going to happen.”
SHOT PUT — 11, Carrol Pauley (Riverdale) 39-3¾.
DISCUS — 12, Brynlee Hanneman (Ottoville) 117-8.
LJ — 14, Bailey Jameson (Hopewell-Loudon) 16-¼. 15, Hannah Willow (Arlington) 15-8½.
HJ — 10, Hannah Willow (Arlington) 5-5.
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