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Branche sets school mark at All-Ohio meet

Wallace Branche broke Scott Shorney's 26-year old school record in the triple jump at Saturday's All-Ohio Championship.
Wallace Branche broke Scott Shorney's 26-year old school record in the triple jump at Saturday's All-Ohio Championship.

Denison sophomore Wallace Branche broke the 26-year old school record in the triple jump at the 2014 Division III All-Ohio Championships on Saturday in Westerville. As a team, the Big Red took 15th place after compiling 12 points.

Entering Saturday's event, Branche ranked fourth on the school's all-time performer's list with a personal-best performance of 45'6.25" at the last weekend's Bob Shannon Invitational at the Mitchell Fieldhouse in Granville.  Exactly one week later, the sophomore went head-to-head with some of the best Division III triple jumpers in the state of Ohio.

After qualifying for the finals with a solid preliminary showing, Branche soared to the school record with his second leap of the finals.  He penciled his name in the record books with a combined for a leap of 46'8". That mark eclipsed the previous school record set by former Denison All-American Scott Shorney during the 1988 season (46'5").  Branche's jump landed him in second place, besting third place Ahmed Abdel Halim of Ohio Wesleyan by four inches.  The sophomore's performance on Saturday also moved him into 16th place on the national triple jump list.

Sophomore Quenton Richards and freshman Jake Dennie also scored for Denison at the All-Ohio Championship.  Richards took sixth in the 60-meter dash after posting a time of 7.05.  Dennie posted the eighth-best time in the 5,000-meter run after crossing the finish line in 15:35.42.

Mount Union cruised to the team title after scoring 132.50 points. Ohio Wesleyan finished second with 93 tallies, while host Otterbein took third with 65 points.  John Carroll (50) narrowly edged Ohio Northern (49.50) for fourth place in the team standings.

DU returns to competition next weekend when they send the majority of their team to the Kenyon College Classic on Saturday. In addition to competing in Gambier, DU will also send select athletes to the Kent State Tune Up.