Wassell, relays state bound

Published 12:00 am Sunday, May 28, 2000

ZANESVILLE – On to Dayton.

Sunday, May 28, 2000

ZANESVILLE – On to Dayton.

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For several local track stars, the goal of a state meet appearance was achieved Friday at the Division II regional meet.

Ironton long jumper Jason Harmon had already qualified by winning his event on Wednesday, but the second day was a full schedule of running event finals and a handful of field events.

Chesapeake senior Danny Wassell earned a second straight trip to the state meet and he did it in two events. However, neither event is the same as last year.

Wassell reached the state meet by clearing 6-foot-3 to win the high jump, and he was a member of the 4×400 meter relay team that finished fourth.

Wheelersburg’s Andy Gill also went 6-3, but Wassell won on fewer misses.

"That’s a hard place to jump. Their high jump is a little downhill. A 6-3 is more like 6-4, and he was clearing it pretty easy," Chesapeake coach Phil Davis said.

Ryan Slone, Brad Fulton, Scott Perry, and Wassell had a school record 3:25.8 clocking in the 1600 relay to secure its spot in the state meet. Wassell had a 49.4 split, Slone 50.2, Perry 52.2, and Fulton 53.0

"We’ve broken that thing five times in the last three years, and it was up there for 25 or 30 years," said Davis. "Those guys responded real well. They were seventh coming into the finals and barely made fourth in their heat. They all ran their personal best."

Last season, Wassell qualified for the state meet in the 400 meter dash. He reached the regionals in the event, but a prolonged time in starting the race caused him to lose his balance, he slightly moved his back foot, and officials disqualified him.

The Ironton Lady Fighting Tigers 4×100 relay team also came away with a first place finish and a qualifying spot in the state meet.

Sarah Herman, Christy Lilly, Alisa Philabaun, and Rachael Perry ran a blistering 50.71 time to win the race ahead of Steubenville.

Ironton coach Tim Thomas said that winning the race was quite an accomplishment coming on the heels of two earlier fifth place finishes by the Lady Tigers 4×200 and Perry in the 100.

"We thought we’d be in the top four of the 800 relay and the 100 meter dash, but we seemed a bit rushed or nervous," said Thomas. "I just reminded them of what coach (Mike) Burcham told them before they left.

"He told them to run their race. He told them that they represented