Archive for Thursday, June 16, 2011

History was made with BHS track, cross country state titles

Off the Rim column

June 16, 2011

Whew! It’s time to catch my breath and relax a bit after a busy month of June, which included some wacky weather and two more state championships for Baldwin High School.

The 2010-2011 school year included a lot of success by many BHS teams and athletes. Several teams improved their records from a year ago as the players grew a year older. There were more state qualifiers in tennis and track this year.

The big successes came in the running sports, which has become the Bulldogs’ forte for state championships. Other sports have been successful on the state and regional level, but cross country and track and field have put Baldwin High on the map.

In the fall, the BHS cross country teams won the boys and girls state titles together for the first time since 2005. It was the first boys’ championship since that year, which was the last of the eighth straight for the Bulldogs. The BHS girls have their own streak of four titles in a row now.

Baldwin High’s spring season ended with a bang, too. It’s been well-documented during the past two weeks that the BHS boys and girls track and field teams tied for the state championship. They needed heroic last races to do it, and just like they’ve done all year, the Bulldogs ran well in the 1,600-meter relays.

Congrats to the Bulldogs! The BHS girls are back-to-back state champs. They have a solid chance of repeating next year if sophomore Katie Kehl returns healthy.

On the boys’ side, it was the Bulldogs’ first title since 2002. They were loaded with a phenomenal class of talent that won titles in 2001 and 2002. I’m not sure Baldwin will ever see a class of talent like the 2002 graduates. Regardless, the Bulldogs who were a part of the championship have won more championships than NBA great Lebron James.

After researching the state’s list of teams cross country and track champions, I found out the Bulldogs made history this school year. Baldwin High became the first school in Kansas history to win the boys and girls state titles in cross country and track during the same school year.

A handful of schools have won boys and girls titles in the same sport during one season. A couple have swept the titles in one sport and won a boys or girls crown in the other sport, but none have swept both championships until the Bulldogs did this year.

Now it’s time to enjoy the summer warmth and work toward next fall. I know the BHS teams are conducting camps, practices and lifting weights in preparation of the fall and winter seasons.

The upcoming fall could be another good one for BHS. Keep working hard Bulldogs. You’re making alumni, like myself, very proud to be a Bulldog.

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