By Chris Chaney
League champions, regional and state qualifiers dominated the Southern Buckeye Conference’s girls’ track and field All-Star lists, which was released by the league office at the conclusion of the season.
Members of the title-winning schools were honored above most others as Coaches of the Year from both divisions of the SBC were at the helm of squads who claimed conference championships.
Terri Flamm, the head coach at New Richmond, received her third consecutive Coach of the Year award in the American Division as her team similarly laid claim to the big-school title for the third time.
“It’s easy to win a Coach of the Year award when you have athletes like we’ve had the last three years,” Flamm said. “That award is a little misleading because at New Richmond we have five coaches — some of them are volunteers and some of them are paid — but all five of them contribute just as much to the girls’ program as I do, so I accepted that award on behalf of all five of them.”
Of those standout athletes that Flamm mentioned, nine competed for the last time in the red and black this season and they will leave a lasting impact on the program.
“I think most of (the nine seniors) have, at one point, gone to regionals,” Flamm said. “This team this year was the best track team that New Richmond has ever had. They had an undefeated season, which I don’t believe has happened at New Richmond and all nine of the girls, to speak of them off the track, are very involved in the school, in the community; they all are 3.5-plus GPA kids, honor students.
“They were just an exceptional class and over the course of four years, they’ve built a program that hopefully the kids behind them will continue to build upon.”
Leading that graduating class was a quartet of First Team selections, headed up by now-three-time Runner of the Year Olivia Behymer. Behymer, a league champion in the 100-, 200- and 400-meter dashes as well as a member of the league champion 4×400-meter relay team, capped off her career by finishing in fourth place in the 400 at state.
“Olivia has had a great career,” Flamm said. “She is the most decorated female athlete at New Richmond High School and in the realm of running, probably the most decorated runner in Clermont County. She bettered her spot on the podium all three years she went to state. Just a phenomenal career.”
Among the other three senior First Team selections from New Richmond was state high jump runner-up Hannah Hall and sprinter Paige Anderson. Other Lady Lions on the First Team were Claire Burns, Maren Hance, Lexi Forsee, Shelbi Simpson, Lindsey Williams and Emily Belmont.
Amelia’s Rachel Smith, Bethel-Tate’s Dakota Sicurella, Norwood’s Megan Grubb and Western Brown’s Holly O’Hara, Samantha Clark, Tori Patton, Brianna Pack, Michelle Goslin, Meggie O’Hara, Delanie Sharp and Destiny Anderson rounded out the American Division’s First Team.
In the National Division, the Lady Wildcats of Williamsburg continued their dynasty, winning their fifth consecutive league crown. For their accomplishments, head coach Karen Healey was named the Coach of the Year in the National once again.
The Lady Wildcats’ standout field athlete, Caley Pringle, was tapped as the Field Event Athlete of the Year for her eclectic accomplishments, which saw her finish no lower than second in the long jump, high jump or pole vault (league champion), not to mention her league championship in the 100-meter hurdles.
Clermont Northeastern’s Krista King took home Runner of the Year honors in the National Division for her four league championships — 100-meter dash, 200-meter dash, 4×100-meter relay and long jump.
The two individual honorees were joined on the league’s First Team All-Star list by Blanchester’s Ana Hosler, Brooke Gibbons, Mckenzie Hamm, Lizzy Holcumb and Kayla Nause, CNE’s Jenna Mummert, Quinn Reed, Hannah Hoerth and Lynzee Sullivan, Felicity-Franklin’s Christina Paskow, Georgetown’s Stephanie Ayers and Kelsey Crawford and Williamsburg’s Hope Schaljo, Dana Little, Lindsey Smith, Alexis Donthnier, Ashley Jermer and Alyssa Donthnier.
Second Team selections from the American Division were as follows: Bethel-Tate – Morgan Reinhart, Breanna Keyser, Haley Taylor and Taylor Fischer; New Richmond – Taryn Rupp, Laura Painter, Analiese Rohdes, Eleanor Wildey and Amanda Nguyen; Western Brown – Sierra Steppler, Ashleigh Richter, Marrisa Wood and Syndey Lucas.
Second Team selections from the National Division are as follows: Blanchester – Chole Caplinger; Georgetown – Kylie Watson, Kelsey Miller, Karrington Ecker, Savanna Swartz, Rachel Gibbons, Courtney Wiechman and Ashely Brandenburg; Williamsburg – Mallory Guess.
Complete All-Star lists for the girls’ track and field, as well as all other spring sports, can be found on sbaac.net.