Local girls claim seven events at War Eagle Conference track meet

Friday, May 6, 2022
(Sentinel Photo By Allen Hamil) Above, Hinton’s Lauren Kounkel makes a discus throw in the conference meet. She won the event with a toss of 129-feet. She also won the shot put for the Blackhawks.

HINTON — Local girls claimed seven event wins at the 42nd War Eagle Conference track meet hosted at the Held Sports Complex on Tuesday.

Hinton dethrones Unity

The Hinton girls track and field team dethroned Unity Christian from their perch atop the conference. The Knights had won the girls title in each of the last nine runnings and had won 23 of the previous 25 times the meet has been held. Hinton was the last team other than Unity to claim the conference title, doing so in 2011. The only other time Unity hadn’t won since 1996 was in 1998 when South O’Brien claimed the title.

“We did a great job in the WEC meet,” Hinton Head Coach Robin Mohr said. “What a great team success for us to win the conference on our own track. The girls did a great job. We placed in the top three in 13 events.”

Hinton was able to edge out the team title by four points over second place Unity as they scored 136 compared to 132 for Unity.

The Blackhawks got out to a good start in the field events with a pair of wins from Lauren Kounkel. She claimed the discus with a throw of 129-feet, one of just two throwers out of 16 who surpassed the 100 foot mark. Kounkel had the winning shot put distance as well, finishing with a top throw of 37-07.75 as one of just three out of the 14 thrower field to surpass 30 feet.

The Blackhawks added a second place high jump result as Anna Coffee ended at a height of 5-02, finishing behind only Unity’s Molly Zylstra who won with a height of 5-04.

Coffee finished first in her other individual event, the 100 meter hurdles, as she had the fastest time out of 16 participants in the event. She finished in a time of 15.60 to claim first by over a second.

Distance events key for Blackhawks

The team also found success in the distance events, including winning a pair of relays. The team had the winning time in the 4x800 as Kaci Allen, Kyra Peters, Kadence Peters and Gabbie Friessen finished in 10:55.06. The other win was in the distance medley as Coffee, Ashlyn Kovarna, Rylee Faith and Kyra Peters posted the winning time of 4:36.54.

In the individual 800, Hinton had the second and third place times behind Unity’s Jaelye Woudstra who won in 2:26.54. Kadence Peters and Gabbie Friessen had a photo finish for the silver and bronze with Peters finishing .09 in front of Friessen with a time of 2:29.97.

Unity’s Olivia Hoogland won the 1500 and 3000 races, but Hinton took second and third in the 1500 and second in the 3000. Allen finished in 5:33.87 in the 1500 while Kyra Peters was about a second behind that. Hoogland won in 5:26.13. Ava Lang took second in the 3000 with a time of 12:11.38, trailing Hoogland’s 11:37.46.

Hinton added a runner-up finish in the 4x400, just a fraction of a second behind the Knights. Faith, Friessen, Kadence Peters and Kovarna ended in 4:17.94 which was just behind Unity’s 4:17.52.

Hinton added two other runner-up results in the 4x200 and shuttle hurdle relays.The 4x200 team was exactly two seconds behind Unity’s time of 1:53.56. Kyra Shaw, Kovarna, Carly Hicklin and Burgad were the runners on that race.

The team trailed Remsen St. Mary’s in the shuttle hurdle for their other second place finish. Hicklin, Hannah Poulsen, Madalyn Fox and Coffee completed the flights of hurdles in 1:13.91.

While the distance events were some of the best for the Blackhawks, Mohr said all of the events were needed to come away with the conference title.

“The strong point of our team is that we have quality in all events,” Mohr said. “We talked about finishing races and did a great job of that. The girls continue to get better as the season progresses.”

Hurdles, throws among top results for Gehlen

(Sentinel Photo By Allen Hamil) Above, Gehlen Catholic’s Sophie Ruden goes over the final hurdle in the 400 meter hurdle race which she won in a time of 1:09.33.

The Gehlen Catholic girls finished fifth in the team standings as they got a good chunk of their points from the hurdle and throwing events.

“I was pretty pleased with the effort we got out of our girls. We put together a more complete team effort than what we have seen so far this season, so there is reason to be optimistic going into our final two meets before the district meet next Thursday,” Gehlen Head Coach Travis Westhoff said.

Sophie Ruden had the team’s only event win of the night as she came away with the fastest time in the 400 meter hurdles. She won the event by over six seconds over the next-best time as she complete the race in 1:09.33. Ruden added a third place finish in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 17.26. Teammate Lauren Heying was next to finish in that event as she ended in a time of 17.83.

Those two made up two of the legs of the shuttle hurdle relay along with Cadence Goebel and Emerson Schmidt. The Lady Jays took third in the event with a time of 1:15.05.

“I thought Sophie Ruden and Lauren Heying had one of their best nights hurdling this season,” Westhoff said.

The team’s throwers also contributed to point scoring. Miyah Whitehead was the runner-up in the shot put and discus. She ended with a 33-09.50 result in the shot put and hit 101-04 in the discus. Teammate Nevaeh Hodgson was fifth in both events with a 29-07.25 distance in the shot put and 83-08 mark in the discus.

RSM is small but mighty

(Sentinel Photo By Allen Hamil) Above, Claire Schroeder goes over a hurdle for Remsen St. Mary’s in the shuttle hurdle relay. The Hawks had the winning time in the event of 1:09.82. Schroeder also finished second in the individual 100 meter hurdles and was third in the 100 meter dash.

The Remsen St. Mary’s girls don’t have the biggest team, but were able to score a solid amount of points in the 10 events they competed in.

The team got a win in the shuttle hurdle relay with a time of 1:09.82 which was over four seconds faster than the runner-up time from Hinton. Halle Galles, Mya Bunkers, Whitney Jensen and Claire Schroeder made up the winning combination.

The team added a runner-up relay finish in the 4x100 as Carmindee Ricke joined Galles, Jensen and Schroeder for a time of 53.78, just behind the winning time of 53.12 from Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn.

Individually, Schroeder had a pair of top three finishes. She was second in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 16.68 and took third in the 100 meter dash in a time of 13.40.

Jensen added a bronze in the 400 meter dash with a time of 1:03.37. McKenna Loutsch took fourth in the 800 with a time of 2:52.74 and Mya Bunkers was fifth in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 17.84.

Dreckman, Neddermeyer lead MMCRU

(Sentinel Photo By Allen Hamil) Above, MMCRU’s Emily Dreckman competes in the long jump. She finished fourth with a leap of 14-01. She also took fourth in the high jump.

The MMCRU girls finished in seventh place in the team standings with Emily Dreckman and Hannah Neddermeyer leading the team in point scoring.

Dreckman had a pair of fourth place finishes in the jumps. She cleared 4-10 in the high jump and reached 14-01 in the long jump.

Neddermeyer finished right behind Dreckman in the high jump with a height of 4-08. She was fourth in the 400 meter hurdles with a time of 1:18.33.

The two were also members of the team’s best finishing relay in the distance medley. Arianna Chiechio and Natalie Plagman were the other runners on the team which finished in 5:04.25.

4x200 leads Akron-Westfield

(Sentinel Photo By Allen Hamil) Above, Akron-Westfield had their best finish in the 4x200, a race run by Josie Jacobs, Brylie Johnson, Addison Naslund and Jacey Myers. They clocked a time of 2:01.74 in the event.

A fourth place finish in the 4x200 was the top finish for an Akron-Westfield team which finished ninth in the team scoring. The group of Josie Jacobs, Brylie Johnson, Addison Naslund and Jacey Myers finished in a time of 2:01.74 for fourth place out of 10 teams in the event.

Individually, sixth place results were the top finishes for the Westerners. Michaela Everingham was sixth in the 800 with a time of 2:46.34. Lauryn Saathoff placed sixth in the high jump as one of three individuals to finish at 4-08. Ciara Baron added a sixth place long jump of 13-07.

Team scores: Hinton 136, Unity Christian 132, Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn 83, South O’Brien 74, Gehlen Catholic 70, Remsen St. Mary’s 45, MMCRU 23, West Sioux 14, Akron-Westfield 7, Trinity Christian 4.

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