Jays soon to begin quest for SHAC title Western Brown to hold Meet the Teams Night and OHSAA parent meeting Aug. 8 Norville F Hardyman Carol J Tracy James Witt Ripley officer receives commendation for quick action Bicentennial at Ripley First Presbyterian RULH welcomes new school principals Aberdeen’s Police Dept. continues to grow Mary F McElroy Broncos out to defend SBAAC American Division soccer title Bronco 5K to take place Aug. 5 EHS volleyball team ready for new season Michael C Cooper Raymond Mays Harry E Smittle Jr Mary A Flaugher Western Brown’s Leto excels in Australia Rockets ready for 1st season in SBAAC Paddling, hiking activities available at Ohio State Parks SB Warriors get set to hit gridiron for 2nd year of varsity football Scotty W Johnson Glenna V Moertle Rickey L Hoffer Ruth E Ward David A Watson Janet L Dotson Vilvie S King Steven C Utter Cropper joins Fallis at Bethel-Tate Local kids find success in world of martial arts 13th annual Bronco 5K Run and Fitness Walk set for Aug. 5 Teams compete in memory of Randy Fulton Mike W Smith Roger Helton David A Borders Timothy E Argenbright Joseph W Sherrill Frances K Pedigo Water distribution plans for Ripley move forward Historic Trapp and Wilson building sold RULH graduate wins HFR Scholarship Blanche Malblanc Pauline L Kirk Over 70 take part in 11th Joe Myers 5K Classic Lions Club 4th of July Festival brings outdoor fun to Ripley ODNR reminds visitors to swim safe this summer Changes in high school track and field/cross country rules include school issued and approved uniforms Betty L Philpott Judy B Williams Billie J Russell Remembering Ravye 25 attend volleyball camp in Fayetteville Western Brown hosts Pee Wee Football Camp Eugene L Baumann RULH selects Wilkins as new superintendent Corps of Engineer to study erosion issue in Ripley More funds available through Revolving Loans Jack Hamilton Charles L Glover Maxine M Stires Western Brown youth basketball camps a success Leto to represent Team USA in Australia Broncos hard at work in preparation for fall season Eastern approves bowling team Phyllis Ruth Lois A Manley Eddie L Carr Thomas L Carnahan Cameron Barkley Walter J McGee Gary J Graham George D Johnson Walter F Crawford Jr Charles E Meranda Jr Historic home in Ripley is sold following renovations Hyde finds home at Midway Youngsters work to improve on hoop skills at Eastern basketball camps Sizer named All-District Honorable Mention Western Brown’s Barnes earns All-State, All-District honors Local players compete in SWOFCA Ron Woyan East/West All-Star Game 6th annual Ravye Williams Memorial 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament set for June 24 Clarence E Teal Rosie B Poe Monard C Boots James P Conrad James T Dinser Scott J Swearingen Eastern’s Farris earns award for top 2-point field percentage in Ohio Georgetown’s Seigla earns All-District honors OHSAA announces 2017 football regions and playoffs format Western Brown volleyball camps a success with over 100 in attendance Rigdon finishes high school running career with 10th place finish at state track and field championship meet Grace E Fite Students speak out in support of Skinner Ripley Council to pay half the cost for Air Evac services John McGee Timmy Burson Patricia A London Mary J Hall

Western Brown’s Leto excels in Australia

Sophia Leto, right, poses with another member of Team USA, Kenzie, of Texas, while in Australia to compete in the Down Under Sports Gold Coast 5.7K Marathon and All-American 5K Meet. Leto and Kenzie would become good friends during their time together in Australia.

By Wade Linville – 

Standout distance runner Sophia Leto has served as an outstanding representative of the Western Brown High School cross country and track and field teams over the past couple of years, and as she prepares for her junior season of high school cross country she decided to take a giant step forward in her running career.
During the last week of June, Leto packed up her bags and headed to Australia where she would represent Team USA in the Down Under Sports Gold Coast 5.7K Challenge and the All-American 5K Meet.
As expected by her coaches and family, Leto would excel in both races. Posting a time of 21:33 and placing eighth of the female runners in the All-American 5K, Leto earned a spot among the All-American Girls. She would compete for the winning Wombats team in the All-American 5K.
In the 5.7K Gold Coast Challenge, Leto posted an official finish time of 24:56 to place 33rd of 1,862 (98.23%) of all female runners. She would place 15th of 154 female runners ages 15-17 (90.26%).
After her time in Australia, Leto and some members of the USA Team ventured to Hawaii where they would enjoy some vacation time.
For Leto, the chance to compete in Australia was even more than she dreamed it would be.
“It was everything I hoped it would be. It was actually more,” said Leto.
Among the things she loved most was getting the opportunity to make some new friends who share the love of distance running.
“I made friends that have changed my life,” she said. “I won’t ever forget them.”
The chance to compete in such a large race against runners from around the USA and other parts of the world was not only a fun-filled experience for Leto, but also an opportunity to improve on her skills as a distance runner.
“It opened my eyes to see more than just runners from my state. I got to be on a team and compete with runners from across the nation,” Leto explained. “Competing with people from other countries really showed me that running is this amazing thing that brings everyone together, not just on teams, but worldwide. Nothing is more motivating than that!”
During the races, Leto competed as she always does, giving her all and coming away satisfied. But her work will continue after returning home to Ohio as she prepares for her junior season of cross country at Western Brown High School, recognizing there is always room for improvement.
“I was happy with my performances (in Australia), but I know that I have room for improvement and a lot more hard work to do,” said Leto.
During her off-time, Leto would enjoy the beauties of Australia and time on the beaches. She would even pay a visit to a kangaroo sanctuary.
Leto expressed her appreciation of those who made her trip to Australia possible and those who have supported her in her running career. To help raise funds for her trip, the Western Brown junior worked in landscaping and sold candles.
“So many people helped make this possible – my parents, grandparents and other family. Of course, my coaches and people who bought candles from me, let me help with landscaping, or just donated,” said Leto. “The support was endless! I’m so grateful for all the people who contributed.”
After such an enjoyable experience at this year’s Down Under Sports Gold Coast Marathon and All-American 5K, Leto can’t wait to return to Australia next year to represent Team USA.
“If I could do it all again next week, I would,” she said.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© Copyright The Ripley Bee