Boys state track: Eastwood finishes third; Eagles' 1,600 relay finishes first (6-7-14) PDF Print E-mail
Written by KEVIN GORDON, Sentinel Sports Editor   
Sunday, 08 June 2014 00:23
Eastwood's Grant Geiser (right) hands off the baton to teammate Devin Snowden (left) during the Division II boys 4x100 meter relay Saturday, June 7, 2014, at the 2014 OHSAA State Track and Field Tournaments in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo: Enoch Wu/Sentinel-Tribune)
COLUMBUS — Eastwood’s boys track and field team enhanced its already impressive résumé Saturday.
The Eagles had four All-Ohio finishes — including a championship in the 1,600 relay — en route to a third-place finish Saturday in the Division II state meet at Jesse Owens Stadium. MEET RESULTS
Eastwood finished with 38 points — the same point total it had when it won its second state championship in 2010.
Dayton Dunbar won the state title with 47 points, edging Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy by one point.  PHOTO GALLERY
The Eagles’ 1,600 relay team of junior Tim Hoodlebrink, senior Joe Salinas, and juniors Brennan Seifert and Devin Snowden won in 3:18.09 to edge Dunbar at 3:20.06 and CVCA at 3:20.18.
Also for Eastwood, the 400 relay team of junior Grant Geiser, Snowden, Seifert and senior Jake Hoodlebrink was third in 43.15; Tim Hoodlebrink was third in the 800 (1:53.88); and Snowden was sixth in the 300 hurdles (38.65).
On Friday, Snowden was fourth in the long jump and the 3,200 relay team of Gabe Fredericks, freshman Logan Baugher, junior Noah Smith and Tim Hoodlebrink finished second.
All-Ohio honors go to the top eight finishers in each event.
Otsego also had All-Ohio finishes with sixth-place efforts from junior Brandon Avers in the 1,600, and  senior Cole Gorski in the 200.
“An awesome day. I couldn’t be any happier,” Eastwood coach Brian Sabo said. “We’ve had a great day. Every person who came down here was All-Ohio.”
Dunbar edged CVCA at the finish line for second place in the 1,600 relay and the team standings. Had CVCA finished second in the 1,600 relay, it would have won the state title. CVCA was second in the state outdoor meet last season.
“Those are two great teams,” Sabo said. “We just talked we were going to come down here and perform and get as many points as we can and see where we finish. We were phenomenal all day — the way they performed, the team spirit. I couldn’t be any prouder of them than I am right now.”
Eastwood won the 1,600 relay with a flawless performance. Tim Hoodlebrink kept Eastwood near the front on the first lap, Salinas and Seifert had the team in front during the next two laps, and Snowden increased the lead to a comfortable margin during the final 400 meters.
Eastwood’s best previous finish in the 1,600 relay was second in 2003.
Snowden and Salinas returned from last season when the Eagles were fourth.
“The 1,600 relay — that’s the staple of what we do at Eastwood and we wanted that state championship,” Sabo said. “They wanted to win so badly. They really went after it.”
“That was a heck of a race,” Seifert said.
As Snowden finished the final 100 meters, he was greeted by a large Eastwood cheering section at the finish line.
“I heard the cheering, but I didn’t know why they were cheering – I didn’t know if we were ahead or someone was coming after me,” Snowden said. “I tried to look back, but I couldn’t tell. We didn’t have to change much. We just had to go out and do what we do.”
In the 400 relay, Eastwood was edged by Columbus Bishop Watterson (42.37) and Cleveland Orange (42.67).
“To be third in the state and run the time we did is awesome,” Jake Hoodlebrink said.
“We didn’t run our best race, but it’s still great to be in this race,” Geiser said. “Our handoffs weren’t great, but we were more jacked up than normal because of the atmosphere and being the state final.”
Snowden ran his third-fastest time in the 300 hurdles, won by Norwayne senior Kaleb Harris in 37.25. Snowden was seventh last year in 39.43.
“I didn’t run my best race, so this will be motivation for next year,” Snowden said.
Tim Hoodlebrink finished third in the 800 behind CVCA junior Ryan Adams (1:52.59) and Dunbar junior Brian Bell (1:53.54).
Adams also won the 1,600.
“I knew who I was running against and I knew the competition was going to be good,” said Tim Hoodlebrink, who was fourth in the race last year with a time of 1:55.11. “I just wanted to run the first lap and if someone was going to kick I was going to try to stay with them. I tried, but at the 500 mark (300 to go), they went harder than I did and they maintained it. I knew if I could run 1:55, I’d be pretty close to winning.”
Avers had a time of 4:22.16 in the 1,600.
“I came into the the race hoping I’d run a little bit faster than I did, but the positive is last year I didn’t even make it to state,” Avers said. “To come down here for the first time and get on the (awards podium) is a huge step forward and something to build on for next year.”
Gorski, who won the pole vault on Friday, came back to finish sixth in the 200 in 22.35 and ninth in the 100 in 11.29.
Last Updated on Monday, 09 June 2014 08:17

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