Bulldogs blaze home meet
Baldwin High School track and field teams came blazing out of the blocks at their first meet Friday.
Every spring, the Bulldogs begin the season with the annual Baldwin Invitational. This year was no exception as both squads excelled at the opening meet.
“It was a wow meet,” BHS girls’ coach Ted Zuzzio said. “Everybody competed at a really high level for the first meet. They weren’t hesitant. They just ran really well.”
The Bulldogs won eight events and placed an individual in the top three of 15 events. All six BHS relay teams finished in the top four.
Both Bulldog teams placed in the top three out of the 14 teams. The BHS girls cruised to its team victory by scoring 152 points, while the BHS boys’ squad finished in third place with 100.5 points.
“There were 14 teams and some really great teams were here,” BHS boys’ coach Mike Spielman said. “It was really neat to perform well against some great kids.
“It was really nice weather,” he said. “It was a smidge windy, but that’s OK, because the sun was shining and it was really nice. We’re not going to get nice days like that all season, so we were happy to start the year with a nice day.”
On the girls’ side, BHS dominated in events where hurdles or barriers were obstacles on the track. BHS won the 100-meter hurdles, 300-meter hurdles and the 2,000-meter steeplechase.
In the 100 hurdles, sophomore Lyndsey Lober sprinted to victory, followed by sophomore Ramie Burkhart in fourth place. Burkhart came back to win the 300 hurdles as she edged out sophomore Myranda Behrens and senior Corinna Papps, who finished second and third.
Papps earned her victory in the first race of the day. She narrowly missed the school record in the steeplechase, but she helped BHS sweep the event. Junior Connor Twombly finished second and freshman Abi Hartzell placed third.
“We swept the steeplechase and did really well in both hurdle races.” Zuzzio said. “We had six girls place in the two hurdle races. Our relays also ran really well. We exceeded most of the marks that we turned in for the meet.”
The Bulldogs also won gold in the 400-meter relay and the 1,600-meter relay. In the 400 relay, Behrens received the baton narrowly behind Eudora and Lansing, but blew them away in the first 30 meters as she crossed the finish line in first. Her teammates were junior JaBryanna Wellington, Lober and Burkhart.
Freshman Elizabeth Sigvaldson joined Behrens, Lober and Wellington on the 1,600 relay team. That relay team cruised to a three-second victory to end the night.
“That was the biggest surprise of the night,” Zuzzio said of the 400 relay. “We haven’t won that race in a few years. They just hit their handoffs and it just happened.”
Baldwin’s boys didn’t quite have the success as their counterparts did on Friday, but they had enough to score 100.5 points and place third. The Bulldogs won three events in the process.
Senior Logan Schiller won the pole vault, as he cleared 12-foot-6. Senior Connor Wright brought home gold in the 800-meter run and he anchored the 3,200-meter relay to victory. His teammates on the relay were freshman Brian Wright, freshman Tosh Mihesuah and sophomore Carson Barnes.
“We had a really good meet. We scored 100 points, but we scored in a lot of different events,” Spielman said. “We had a really good day in the field events. Carson had a big jump, Logan in the pole vault, Isaac (Twombly) in the discus and Patrick (Pinault) in the javelin were all great performances. I was really happy with the field events.”
Senior Isaac Twombly and junior Patrick Pinault each placed third in the discus and javelin. Barnes also placed third in the long jump.
Sophomore Tony Weiss finished third in the 1,600-meter run and second in the 3,200-meter run. B. Wright followed him in third in the 1,600. Mihesuah placed 10th in the 3,200.
Baldwin will be competing in the KT Woodman Invitational or the Shocker Pre-State Challenge today and Friday in Wichita. BHS will be back home Tuesday for the Baker Relays.
“They have a new twist where they are throwing us in with 5A and 6A and having an elite race in each event,” Zuzzio said. “We will get to run against some great teams and compete against some of the state’s best.”