Baldwin sweeps 4A regional titles
There were two impressive teams Friday at the 4A regional track and field meet at Baker University’s Liston Stadium, and both were wearing the purple and white of Baldwin High School.
Boosted by a home crowd, Baldwin boys and girls teams both cruised to team titles in regional competition, qualifying deep teams for this weekend’s state finals in Wichita.
The boys team scored 119 points to claim the title, outdistancing the 63 points of second-place Ottawa. The girls totaled 123 points, which was 45 points more than that earned by runner-up St. James Academy.
Six Bulldog boys will compete at Wichita in individual event, while nine individual girls will vie for medals. In additional, all three boys and girls relay teams earned spots in the state finals. In all, 10 boys and 12 girls plus two alternates will make the trip to Wichita.
“We did a great job of getting better and qualifying as many as possible for state,” boys coach Mike Spielman said. “We have 14 chances to score at state. That gives us lots of opportunities to do well at state.”
Spielman pumped up his winning 4-by-400 relay team for the last event of the meet by telling them the crowd would be behind them. The boys also had the example of the girls’ team for the same distance. The girls threatened the state record in breaking their own week-old school record with a time of 3:59.15.
Girls coach Ted Zuzzio said team members Kaitlyn Barnes and Elizabeth Sigvaldson had personal-best times of 59.5, and Carol Whaley ran her best leg ever at 1:01.9.
The boys delivered, too, winning the race with a time of 3:25.08.
The relay team had three of its members claim individual titles. Neither Hannon’s gold-medal performances the 100- and 400-meter dashes (11.19 and 50.22) nor the first-place finish of Mihesauh in the 800-meter (2:01.7) were unexpected, but less anticipated was Berg’s victory in 200 meters. The sophomore edged out Julian Cole of K.C. Piper at the finish to claim gold with a personal-best time of 22.82. He was also second in the 100 meters.
The girls 4-by-400 relay team had two individual champions — Glenn Kelly McCabe in the 400 and Barnes in the 800.
Helping the girls to the title was a Bulldog sweep of the throwing events. Junior Katie Kehl was first in the shot put and discus and junior Jesse Katzer brought home gold in the javelin. Also helping the Bulldogs pile up points in the throws was Alexia Stein’s second-place and Katzer’s fifth-place finish in the shot put, as well as Jordan Hoffman’s second-place toss in the javelin and sixth-place effort in the discus.
“Katie competed like the gold-medal winner she is,” Zuzzio said. “Alexia had her best toss of the year going 37-10 in the shot, and it was nice to have the two javelin girls making the trip and in the hunt for state medals and points.”
Dayton Valentine once again claimed first in the shot put and discus, in which he broke his own school record with a throw of 175 feet. Senior Jake Mindez recorded his second 50-foot performance of the year, claiming third-place in the shot put. Mindez also earned a trip to the state finals in the javelin with a second-place effort of 161-7.