BHS track teams enjoy weather for Girard Invite

May 7, 2009

It doesn’t seem to matter on which day the Baldwin High School track and field teams compete because they continue to improve times and marks each week.

On Friday, the Bulldogs were scheduled to run at the Girard Invitational. However, weather in southeast Kansas forced officials to postpone the meet until Monday.

Despite a few less teams, the meet went on as scheduled Monday. The Bulldogs returned home with handfuls of medals, season-best marks and a pair of top-two team finishes.

“We finally had nice weather and we had some good competition,” BHS girls’ coach Ted Zuzzio said. “We had our best competitive meet of the season. I think the weather helped us perform well. We had many personal and season bests.”

The BHS girls cruised to the team championship with 179 points. Pittsburg placed second with 125. Baldwin won five events and placed second in 10 events.

“We won 34 medals, which is pretty cool since we didn’t have our entire team there,” Zuzzio said. “We had a great meet and everyone gave great effort all night.”

Both BHS teams were missing a few students. Most of those missing were participating in the BHS Fine Arts Night. However, the BHS boys finished runner-up to Pittsburg (194) with 89 team points. The BHS boys won five events Monday.

“We had a really good meet,” BHS boys’ coach Mike Spielman said. “We finished second and we had some really good times and PRs. We had some kids hurt and some had other obligations, but the ones we brought did really well.”

On the girls’ side, Baldwin racked up points in the hurdle races as it’s done every meet. In the 100-meter hurdles, sophomore Ramie Burkhart won and sophomore Myranda Behrens placed second. Burkhart ran 16.67, while Behrens ran 17.01.

In the 300-meter hurdles, it was just the opposite, with Behrens winning. She won in a time of 47.46, with Burkhart on her heels at 47.95. Senior Olivia Catloth finished fourth in both races.

Sophomore Heather Karlin won both distance races. In the 1,600-meter run, she ran 5:47.06 to edge out freshman Abi Hartzell (5:50). Karlin later won the 3,200-meter run in a time of 12:42.05. Fellow sophomore Allison Howard placed second in the discus with a throw of 115-feet-9.

Zuzzio’s surprise of the meet was freshman Carol Whaley. She placed second in the 800-meter run by running her personal-best time of 2:32.51. Whaley also ran her best times in the 1,600 and 3,200-meter relays.

“We had some kids run very well,” Zuzzio said. “Carol Whaley ran unconscious. She had a tremendous meet. She ran in the first two JV meets, but now she’s made a mark and is running with the best varsity girls.”

Baldwin won the girls’ 400-meter relay, running 52.35. Relay members were junior JaBryanna Wellington, Catloth, Burkhart and Behrens. BHS finished runner-up in the 1,600 and 3,200 relays.

On the boys’ side, Baldwin dominated the distance events. Baldwin won the 800-, 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs, along with the 3,200-meter relay. Senior Connor Wright easily won the 800 in a time of 2:02.89.

Sophomore Tony Weiss ran two of his best times ever in the 1,600 and 3,200. In the 1,600, Weiss ran 4:36.79, before coming back and running a 10:04.10 in the 3,200.

“Tony is starting to feel stronger and he’s doing a really nice job,” Spielman said. “He’s running well right now.”

The 3,200-meter relay team of senior Andy Thurlow, senior Chris Hecker, freshman Brian Wright and C. Wright ran an 8:33.64 to win the race. Baldwin’s other victory came in the pole vault. Senior Logan Schiller cleared 13-0 for the first time ever.

“Logan Schiller cleared 13 feet in the pole vault,” said Spielman. “That was the first time he’s made 13 feet, so that was good.”

The BHS boys finished runner-up in the 400 and 1,600 relays by a combined time of 0.15. BHS was edged out in the 400 relay by Colgan (Mo.) and by Pittsburg in the 1,600.

“It was a great battle that came down to the end,” Spielman said of the 1,600 relay. “Pittsburg edged us out again. They did that at the home meet, too. Connor gave it a great run at the end, but just got edged out.”

Baldwin will head to Wellsville for the Red Bud Classic on Friday. The action begins at 3:30 p.m. with field events. The 3,200 relays will start at 4:30 p.m. with the prelims at 5 p.m.

“We continue to improve our times at each meet,” Zuzzio said. “We’re just getting ready for league, regional and state.”

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