Battling through a crazy regular season with constant schedule changes and adjustments, the Stow-Munroe Falls boys track and field squad is starting to heat up as the temperatures increase.
For the Bulldogs, the timing is good and it's good for veteran head coach Mike Drozin as the post season approaches.
The Suburban League Championships were set to conclude Thursday at Nordonia’s Boliantz Stadium.
Stow will also compete at Nordonia for the Division I district championships May 16 and May 18 for rights to qualify for the Austintown Fitch Division I regional championships May 23 and May 25.
Placing seventh overall, the Bulldogs had a solid showing at the 38th annual Optimist Meet May 5 at the Austintown Fitch Greenwood Falcon Stadium, which is also the site of the regionals.
"Now that the nice weather has finally arrived, we are seeing some good times and distances," said Drozin.
Junior Adrian Woliver continues to be one of the Bulldogs who is scoring well.
Woliver captured the shot-put title at the Optimist Meet as he had a throw of 53 feet, 6 inches.
A strong sprinter as well, Woliver also placed third overall in the discus with a toss of 153-2 feet.
"Adrian Woliver continues to be one of the backbones of our team both in the throws and the sprints," said Drozin, who expected Woliver to score big in the weights the league meet.
Senior Luke Black also performed well at Fitch in the pole vault as he placed fourth overall with an effort of 11-6 feet.
Jason Anzaldi, a battle-tested distance and middle-distance runner for the Bulldogs as a junior, added the 400-meter race to his event list.
At the Optimist, Anzaldi finished fourth overall in the 400-meter race with a strong time of 52.17 seconds.
Drozin is excited about Anzaldi in the open 400 race.
"Jason, who has been running mostly the 800- and 1,600-meter races, discovered a new event in the 400 recently and I am really excited to see what he can do when he learns a little more about how to run that race come league and the districts."
Junior Kyle Sommer also grabbed fourth-place in the 200-meter dash with a blazing fast time of 22.81 seconds.
"Kyle is shaking off a short illness from this past week and ran personal best times in both the 100 and 200 meters," said Drozin. "Brian Cartwright also ran a personal best in the 200."
In the 100, Sommer crossed in 11.37 seconds to place sixth overall while Cartwright is a junior who is making an impact in a host of events.
Stow's young 3,200-meter relay ran sixth at Fitch in 8 minutes, and 55.20 seconds.
Comprising the 3,200-meter relay was freshman Aaron Gluth, sophomore Matthew Duffy, freshman Luke Novak, and sophomore Ethan Hearty.
Juniors Bryce Sheppert (jumps, sprints and sprint relays) and Cole Shawala (distance open races and relays) will also be big contributors along with Stow's deep throwing corps.
"Heading into the conference meet this week we are looking to score big in the throws," said Drozin.
"We should also score big in sprint events with Sommer, Woliver, Cartwright and Sheppert leading that group in the 100, 200, 400-meter relay, and 800 relay."
"Bryce [Sheppert] will also be in the long jump and high jump," said the coach.
Freshman Clayton Mosher placed seventh in the long jump at Fitch as he reached 19-3 feet. Junior Joe Gresser added a ninth-place in the 300-meter hurdles in 44.03 seconds.
"The distance group, led by Cole Shawala, is starting to post some better times so I hope they can surprise us," said Drozin.
Stow's final dual meet record was 4-3. After a recent loss to Brecksville, the Bulldogs ended up have three league dual meets in three days to cap the regular season.
The Bulldogs beat Twinsburg 70-67 on May 2 and North Royalton 72-65 on May 3 to finish the regular season strong.
Reporter Michael Leonard can be reached at 330-541-9442, firstname.lastname@example.org or @MLeonard_RPC