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Branch 4th for Bucks at Big Ten track meet

COLUMBUS — Tyler Branch is putting up a lot of numbers these days.

During last weekend’s Big Ten Track and Field Championships at Jesse Owens’ Stadium, Branch finished fourth in the shot put for the Ohio State Buckeyes.

The red-shirt sophomore threw 18.02 meters or 59-feet, 1.5 inches, a personal record.

The performance not only helped Ohio State finish third in the conference but it left Branch ranked 18th in the East Region and No. 32 nationally.

The top 48 throwers qualify for the regional meet May 28 in Greensboro, N.C. The top 16 finishers in the regional meet will advance to the nationals.

Minnesota won the meet with 145 points followed by Wisconsin with 124 and Ohio State had 115.

The former Coal Grove Hornets football and track standout was the 2007 Ohio High School Athletic Association Div. III state shot put champion with a throw of 57-4.25.

As a red-shirt freshman last season, Branch finished ninth in the Big Ten shot put with a heave of 17.32 meters (56-10) and was 11th at the Mideast regionals at 17.01 (55-9.75).