The WIAA regional track meets were held Monday and New Richmond, St. Croix Central and Somerset all produced an excellent amount of success.
St. Croix Central produced a first, winning both team championships at the Division 2 regional meet that was held at Bloomer. Somerset provided some of the best competition at the meet, with the Spartan boys placing second. New Richmond had a strong performance at the Division 1 regional held at Menomonie, with the Tiger girls placing fourth and the boys finishing fifth.
New Richmond competed against lethal competition, with River Falls, Hudson and Eau Claire Memorial all fielding outstanding track teams this season. The Tigers showed they could compete quite well in that hotbed of track talent.
New Richmond’s girls team advanced six individuals and three relays and the Tiger boys advanced five individuals and three relays. Those Tigers will compete at the D.C. Everest sectional meet on Thursday, with the top two finishers in each event advancing to state.
The Tigers didn’t have any regional champions, but they produced several second place finishes. That included Addie Zinck in the 300 hurdles and Ashton Unruh in the high jump for the girls, and Alex Jarchow in the triple jump and Joe Charbonneau in the pole vault for the boys.
There were a number of surprises. Tiger boys coach Roger Reuvers said the 1,600 and 3,200 relay teams weren’t ranked among the top four teams heading into the meet, but both teams ran their best times of the season to earn a spot at sectionals. He said Max Blader in the 800, Emma McVitty in the 200 and Taylor Dean in the discus throw were all Tigers who improved their season’s best marks substantially to get to sectionals. He said Zinck deserved to be included in that group two, after she reduced her 300 hurdles time by two seconds to get a spot at sectionals.
Reuvers said he felt bad for senior Max Fore, who narrowly missed advancing in the 3,200. Fore ran the best time of his career, 10:02. That is the best time run by a Tiger in the distance event in 13 years. His time ranks eighth all-time in the Tiger record book.
Winning both team titles was frosting on the cake in a highly successful regional meet for St. Croix Central.
Central’s girls are advancing 14 individuals and three relays to the Division 2 sectional meet at Mosinee on Thursday. The boys team has 11 individuals and three relay teams advancing. The top four finishers at the sectional meet in Division 2 qualify for state.
“The kids performed really well, to be honest,” said Central coach Ben Lamb.
The boys championship wasn’t decided until the 1,600 relay. The Panthers knew they needed to defeat Somerset to win the team title. With Central athletes all around the perimeter of the track cheering, the Central relay team finished second, one spot ahead of Somerset, to lock up the team title.
The Panther girls are advancing 10 regional champion events. That’s led by the girls distance crew. Marie Hamlin won the 1,600 and 3,200 and Mya Kizer won the 800. They were both part of the Panthers’ 3,200 relay team which also won. The girls also won the 1,600 relay and Kolbi Juen was the regional champion in the triple jump.
The throws produced a pair of wins for the Panther boys. Joe Hueg won the discus title and Logan Knapton was the champion in the shot put. The Panthers were also champions in the 800 and 3,200 relays.
Somerset was also a strong presence at the regional meet. Defending state champion Eve Goldstein was as strong as ever, winning the regional titles in the shot put and the discus throw. Somerset’s other regional title came in the boys triple jump, where the Spartans finished 1-2-3, with Ty Madden, Roy Hale and James Schachtner all advancing.
Somerset’s boys produced the second place finish by getting 11 individuals and three relay teams to the sectional meet. The Spartan girls have four individuals and two relay teams advancing.
Somerset coach Brandon Berrey was quite enthused that the Spartans will have 23 athletes competing at the sectional meet. He said he’s hoping the Spartans can continue their progress to get a group of athletes to the state meet in La Crosse.
New Richmond boys tennis
The Tigers would have needed to pull off an upset to get any of their players through the WIAA Division 1 subsectional tournament hosted by Eau Claire Memorial on Monday. All of the Tigers saw their 2019 seasons end as none was able to advance to Wednesday’s sectional tournament.
Tiger senior Trent Ziebol came the nearest of any Tiger of advancing. He was the fifth seed at No. 1 singles, facing fourth seed Sean Martin of Chippewa Falls. They played a number of prolonged points, but Martin was able to eliminate Ziebol, 6-4, 6-2.
“They really had a good battle. Trent did a good job of mixing pace, mixing spin,” said Tiger coach Denise Devereux.
Devereux said she wouldn’t be surprised if all four No. 1 singles players from this subsectional win at the sectional meet to advance to state.
The Spartans were eliminated from the WIAA Division 2 regional tournament on Monday.
Somerset traveled to West Salem on Monday, losing in the second round of regionals, 6-0. West Salem is an outstanding team, with Monday’s win elevating their record to 22-3. West Salem was the undefeated champion of the Coulee Conference.
The loss leaves Somerset with a final 11-12 record. The Spartans finished 7-7 in the Middle Border Conference this season. Somerset was limited to two hits in the tournament game.