Ben Starling

Lexington's Ben Starling competes in the 100 yard breaststroke at the sectional meet at Malabar. 

ASHLAND — Rylan McDaniel will try to add another gold medal to the family collection.

The Ashland junior has the top qualifying time in the 100 yard breaststroke headed into this week’s boys Division II state meet at Canton’s C.T. Branin Natatorium. McDaniel won a district title last week at Bowling Green in 56.35 seconds.

McDaniel is the younger brother of current Ohio State breaststroker Hudson McDaniel. The older McDaniel won Division II state titles in the 100 breast in 2016 and 2017 and, after Ashland moved up to Division I the following year, placed third in the 100 breast in 2018.

Rylan McDaniel

Rylan McDaniel

The younger McDaniel will have plenty of company from around north central Ohio in the 100 breast. Lexington’s Ben Starling is seeded 15th (59.85) while Ontario’s Evan Trumpower is seeded 22nd (1:00.85) and Mansfield Senior’s Chase Blackstone is seeded 24th (1:01.28).

McDaniel also qualified for state in the 200 individual medley and is seeded 11th (1:59.57). He’ll be joined in the event by Ashland teammate Daniel Cho, who is seeded 10th (1:58.83) and Lex’s Starling, who is seeded 13th (2:00.27). Cho also qualified in the 100 backstroke and is seeded 16th (53.82).

Ashland’s Bailey Parsons and Lexington’s Lucas Starling both qualified in the 200 and 500 freestyle events. Parsons is seeded eighth in the 200 free (1:43.31) and fifth in the 500 (4:43.67) while Lucas Starling is seeded 15th in the 200 (1:46.65) and 16th in the 500 (4:52.99).

Lexington’s Jadon Wyant will join Parsons and Lucas Starling in the 500. Wyant is seeded 23rd (4:55.34).

Lexington’s Tanner Holmes is seeded 11th in the 50 freestyle (22.03) and 16th in the 100 free (48.24). Teammate Jacob Hathaway is seeded 11th in the 100 free (47.86) and 13th in the 100 backstroke (53.15).

Ashland’s Cho also qualified in the 100 back and is seeded 16th (53.82). Ashland’s Seth Will is seeded 16th in the 50 free (22.19).

He’ll be joined in the 50 by Ashland’s Seth Will, who is seeded 16th (22.19). Lexington’s Jacob Hathaway will join Holmes in the 100 free. Hathaway is seeded 11th (47.86).

Three Lexington divers qualified for state, along with Mansfield Senior’s William Payne. Max Roth is seeded fifth (440.90), while teammates Bobby Keller (379.55) and Greyson Howe (357.70) are seeded 12th and 15th, respectively. Senior High’s Payne (331.40) is seeded 17th.

Ashland and Lexington have the top two seeds in the 200 medley relay. Ashland is first (1:36.10), followed by Lex (1:36.20).

All three of Lexington’s relay teams qualified for state. In addition to the medley relay unit, the 200 free relay team is seeded 20th (1:31.43) and the 400 relay team is seeded sixth (3:16.18).

Ontario’s 200 free relay team is seeded 19th (1:31.26). Ashland’s 400 free relay unit is seeded 14th (3:19.25).

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I have covered high school sports in Richland County since 2000. Email him at or follow him on Twitter: Follow @curtjconrad on twitter.

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