The transition from the Northeast Ohio Conference to the Suburban League was somewhat rocky for the Stow-Munroe Falls boys track and field team in terms of wins ands losses.
That said, the Bulldogs are determined to make more progress in the league in 2017.
In 2015, Stow finished 5-0 in the River Division of the NOC. The following year, the Bulldogs moved to the National Division of the Suburban League. In their first season in the National Division, they posted a mark of 3-4.
In addition, Stow finished in fifth place in the Suburban League Meet at the conclusion of the regular campaign.
The Bulldogs also enjoyed some success during the postseason. They qualified six athletes to the regional meet.
Those six athletes were Roman Lovell in the 800, Kyle Vantrease in the discus, Jeremiah Gyulai in the shot put, David Hall in the 3,200, Jacob Madgar in the shot put, and Dominic Bruner in the long jump.
The bad news for Stow is Hall, Madgar and Lovell were seniors a year ago and Vantrease graduated during the winter and is now attending the University of Buffalo.
However, Gyulai and Bruner are returning for the 2017 campaign.
According to Stow head coach John Roseman, other top returning athletes include Jonathan Holtz, Connor Jenkins, Scott Cunnington, Leandros Tosko, Nyigel Spann and Adrian Woliver,
Cunnington will compete in the sprints for Stow (100, 200, 400), while Holtz specializes in long distance running events like the 1,600. Tosko and Spann will contribute in the track relay events, and Bruner is slated to anchor the Bulldogs in the long jump.
According to Roseman, although his team lost some talent and experience to graduation, the Bulldogs still have plenty of strengths at the outset of the season.
"Our throwing events, high jump, and long jump are among our strengths," he said. "We're young in the distance running events for the most part."
Roseman once again expects the National Division to be tough in 2017. The Bulldogs have plenty of competition in this year's race for the division championship.
"Wadsworth is still very strong," said Roseman. "Nordonia should give them competition for the league title."
Stow will need to score enough points in its strong areas (throws and jumps) until the Bulldogs' young distance runners can mature and improve. If the latter can do so quickly enough, Stow might find itself also competing for the league title.
Roseman is entering his fourth year as the head coach at Stow. His assistant coaches this season are Mike Drozin and Todd Abell.