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Fred Durkle Invitational - Fun in the Sun
J. C. Tilton

It was a great day for a track meet and the crowded stands reflected everyone's desire to get out and enjoy the sun at the Fred Durkle Invitational at Twin Valley South last week. The crew running the concession stand had long lines well into the evening. With the good weather, the performances were excellent - several meet records would be broken before the night was done.

Tippecanoe won the girls meet. Locally Valley View was 4th, TVS 5th, TCN 11th, Eaton 12th, Shawnee 13th, and Dixie 14th. On the Boys side Bethel won, Valley View was 3rd, Eaton 4th, TCN 6th, TVS 7th, Dixie 8th, Shawnee 12th. Some notable performances are covered in the coach's comments below, but here are a few others: Nathen Weller of Eaton ran for a trifecta, winning the 3200m, 1600m and 800m runs. Speedster Nick Landis of Tippecanoe set meet records in the 100m and 200m dashes, times were 10.7 and 21.6. Katie Gerhardt of Cedarville threw for a meet record 124'4” in the discus. Renee Otte of Covington set a record in the long jump, 16'7”. Andy Lammers of Tippecanoe set a record in the pole vault, 14'.

A common lament from several area coaches were the holes in their line ups from athletes who had left for spring break. It was not a mass exodus, but if you lose 2-3 key athletes, it definitely impacts a team. Still there were some good performances - TVS boys coach Franholtz pointed out a few, “We had good performances in the weight events [Jesse Simpson, Matt Koon, J.T. Stone] and we had some sophomores score. Joe Maleski was second in the 100m which was great and scored in the high jump. Matt Koon threw well in the discus and was 5th. Simpson's discus throw was a personal best 145'8”. We had some good things happen it's just disappointing when you don't have everybody here and you can't run all the relay teams. The 200m relay team did score - Joe Maleski, Ryan Jones, Justin Stebbins and Ryan Scott. One relay was a scratch, and the rest we cobbled together runners. Considering everything, I was pleased with the effort. Hopefully next week we will have everyone back together and we will be alright.”

“I'd like to see spring break moved back to the end of the previous 9 weeks,” stated TVS girls coach Mabry, “it really hurt us this year. Team wise we did finish 5th, but we're missing a couple of girls and we're a little short handed tonight. We had some good performances - a personal best in the shotput by Kate Ervin 34'10”, she was also 4th in the discus. Kate McCollum had a good night, winning the high jump and placing in both hurdles. She rolled her ankle last week and is coming back from injury. Amber Niswonger was also limited this week by a knee injury. With spring break and injuries we were kind of down a little bit. When I look at each relay we had one or two missing legs. The 4X100m relay team did place - McCollum, Niswonger, Ingram, and Meiner. Hopefully things will come around; injuries will heal, get everyone healthy. To me the season does not start until May anyway. But I've seen some positives tonight.”

Akron University signee Johnny Adams had a good night for Dixie. “He broke the record in the long jump held by Doug Overholtz with a 22'5” jump,” stated Coach Kirby, “then got the meet record in the high jump [6'5”]. He also anchored the 4X100m and 4X200m relays, both of those finished second. Jeremiah Johnson finished 5th in the 1600m run with a time of 4:50. Jake Seim did not place, but had a personal best of 5:19, and had the best splits in the 4X800 and 4X400m. We are missing a few kids tonight due to spring break. It did hurt us in the relays. We had a freshman thrower, Emily Shepard, that threw 91 feet in the discus and placed. Junior Morgan Williams placed in the 200m dash.

North coach Lisa Filburn was pleased with her two teams. The boys finished a repectable 6th place and the girls in 11th place, and there were some good individual performances. Junior Tiffany Daughtery finished 3rd in the 1600m run and 4th in the 800m run. Teammate Megan Werner finished 4th in the 1600m run. The girls 4X800m relay team finished first. While the Boys 4X800m team managed a 6th place finish. Rachel Brooks placed in the 100m hurdles. Ty Dunham finished 3rd in the 100m dash and also the 200m dash. The North Boys 4X100m relay team finished first. Laura Green placed in the 300m hurdles. Nathan Wirrig finished second in the 3200m run. Drew Heindl finished 2nd in the high jump with a 6'2” leap and third in the long jump 20'1”. Freshman Sarah Whitaker placed in the long jump. Comments

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