Trio Of Locals Advance To Girls Track State Finals

By Dale Hubler, Times-Union

BREMEN – The time of year track coaches often use the phrase survive and advance, two local girls did just that Tuesday at the Bremen Regional while another ran her way to a pair of championships.

With the top three individuals or relay teams in each event, as well as those meeting the automatic quailfying time, height or distance, advancing to the state finals, Wawasee’s Rachel Stichter and Jessie Spearman and Warsaw’s Julie Seiss will compete June 4 at Indiana University in Bloomington.

Just as she did in the Northern Lakes Conference Meet and the Warsaw Sectional, Stichter won the 1,600- and 3,200-meter events in rather dominating fashion Tuesday in the Bremen Regional.

Stichter, who last week set a Warsaw Sectional record in the 1,600 with a time of 5:06.87, won Tuesday’s one-mile race in a blistering time of 5:00.47. The junior crossed the line eight seconds ahead of runner-up Megan Jackson of Northridge and 16 seconds ahead of third-place finisher Jessie LaFree of Northridge.

“We had a good feeling Rachel would win both events,” said Wawasee coach Kevin Gilbert. “She’s worked very hard to get here. I think she’ll do whatever she has to do (at the state finals). I don’t know what the other regionals are gonna produce, I but I know she’s gonna go for it.”

Stichter picked up her second regional championship Tuesday by winning the 3,200-meter run in a time of 11:12.66. She crossed the finish line 13 seconds ahead of runner-up Stephanie Swendsen of Northridge and 29 seconds ahead of third-place finisher LaFree.

Tippecanoe Valley senior Laura Lash competed in the two-mile event and finished sixth in a time of 11:57.47.

As has been the case with Stichter all season long, and even in cross country, when she crossed the finish line Tuesday it was as if she was ready to keep running, while her competition appeared tired.

“A lot of the credit goes to Grace Stichter (Rachel’s aunt),” said Gilbert. “She’s done a great job with the distance runners. A lot of the credit goes to her.”

Another aunt was also present for a Wawasee competitor Tuesday, as Lorene Teel held the blocks for Spearman, a sophomore.

Teel, formerly Lorene Spearman, was a state champion for Wawasee and still holds school records.

Tuesday her niece advanced to the state finals in the 200 with a third-place time of 26.3 seconds. Caity Lauer of South Bend Adams won the event in 25.93 seconds, while Plymouth’s Ali Burroughs edged Spearman at the line in a time of 26.2 seconds.

The lone Warsaw competitor to advance was Seiss, who finished third in the 800 with a time of 2:20.38.

Seiss, a sophomore who finished fourth in the state in the 800 last year, led the pack after the first of two laps and was passed by Mishawaka Marian’s Megan Flynn with 200 meters to go. Flynn won the event in a new record time of 2:17.04, breaking the old record of 2:17.29 set by Fairfield’s Renee Schlabach in 1998.

As Flynn ran through the finishing area, Jackson and Seiss battled for second behind her, with Jackson finishing in a time of 2:19.88 and Seiss a time of 2:20.38.

Seiss, who won the high jump regional championship last year as a freshman but finished fifth Tuesday, was rumored to be sick.

“She had a good practice yesterday (Monday),” Warsaw coach Scott Erba said of Seiss. “My family has been sick all week so I know how that goes. I think it’s something she’ll get rid of and be ready for the state finals in a week and a half. I talked to her afterward and she said she got sick before the race. Her teammates said she wasn’t feeling well.”

Seiss also ran the anchor leg of the 1,600 relay, teamming up with Katie Furnivall, Ashley Kitchens and Karrie Burch to finish fourth in a time of 4:04.08. The Tiger foursome missed out on a state finals berth by one spot, trailing the third-place team of Elkhart Central which finished in 4:02.35.

At last week’s Warsaw Sectional, Central won the 1,600 relay while Warsaw was second.

Northridge won the regional team championship Tuesday for the second year in a row, finishing the evening with 51 points. Marian was a close second with 50 points, followed by Adams (47), Elkhart Central (44), Wawasee (37), Logansport (31), Penn (31), Riley (29), Elkhart Memorial (28), Mishawaka (26), Plymouth (26) and Warsaw (22) in the top 10.

Triton scored six points in the meet, while Whitko scored four points and Tippecanoe Valley three points.

Terrin Meister led Triton with a fifth-place finish in the 300 hurdles, while Angie Juricak led Whitko with a fifth-place finish in the 800. Lash’s sixth-place finish in the 3,200 led the way for Valley.


TEAM SCORES –ÊNorthridge 51, Marian 50, Adams 47, Elkhart Central 44, Wawasee 37, Logansport 31, Penn 31, Riley 29, Elkhart Memorial 28, Mishawaka 26, Plymouth 26, Warsaw 22, Washington 21, Kokomo 20, St. Joseph’s 16, Clay 13.5, Maconaquah 12, Western 10, Pioneer 10, NorthWood 9, Culver Academy 8, Bremen 7, Triton 6, Madison-Grant 5, Fairfield 5, Goshen 4.5, Eastern 4, Whitko 4, Tippecanoe Valley 3, Glenn 2, Concord 1, Northfield 1, North Miami 1.


4x800 relay: 1. Northridge 9:27.18, 2. Marian, 3. Penn, 4. Elkhart Central, 5. St. Joseph’s, 9:59.87, 6. Mishawaka, 7. Goshen, 8. Concord

100 hurdles: 1. Brandi Huddleston (Logansport) 14.93, 2. Maggie Scheiman (Kokomo), 3. Brittney Bolden (Adams), 4. Jami Kizinski (Elkhart Central), 5. Ann Bedwell (Eastern), 6. Renaye’ Davis (Elkhart Memorial), 7. Aimee Sheaks (Glenn), 8. Elizabeth Zaseck (Penn)

100: 1. Ali Burroughs (Plymouth) 12.44; 2. Sherice White (Washington), 3. Margaret Harris (Riley), 4. Tiffany Miller (Clay), 5. Krystol Hines (Maconaquah), 6. Pia Perez (Riley), 7. Jessie Spearman (Wawasee), 8. Danika Pettis (Elkhart Central)

1,600: 1. Rachel Stichter (Wawasee) 5:00.47; 2. Megan Jackson (Northridge), 3. Jessie LaFree (Northridge), 4. Annina Gruber (Western), 5. Julie Rodriguez (Plymouth), 6. Megan Malone (Penn), 7. Lindsey Gilman (Marian), 8. Nan Hammel (Northfield)

4x100 relay: 1. Elkhart Central 49.37; 2. Adams, 3. Riley, 4. Marian, 5. Wawasee (Haviah Rensberger, Claire List, Gloria

Boesenberg, Jessie Spearman), 6. Kokomo, 7. NorthWood,8. Warsaw (Jessica Garcia, Mariel Land, Tiffany Shepherd, Karrie Burch)

400: 1. Caity Lauer (Adams) 57.09, 2. Susan Pinnick (St. Joseph’s), 3. Mary Cate Quiett (Marian), 4. Kerri Goodrich (Logansport), 5. Katherine Petersen (Elkhart Memorial), 6. Nicole Mady (Elkhart Central), 7. H. Temi Adeniji (Culver Academy), 8. Courtney Smith-Powell (Kokomo)

300 hurdles: 1. Brandi Huddleston (Logansport) 44.23; 2. Margaret Harris (Riley), 3. Tiffany Aikin (Elkhart Central), 4. Brittany Gangloff (Fairfield), 5. Terrin Meister (Triton) 6. Chelsea Slaggert (Penn), 7. Gloria Boesenberg (Wawasee), 8. Emily Kolbus (Goshen)

800: 1. Megan Flynn (Marian) 2:17.04, 2. Megan Jackson (Northridge), 3. Julie Seiss (Warsaw), 4. Lynn Pezzanite (Northridge), 5. Angie Juricak (Whitko), 6. Shelby Morrow (Mishawaka), 7. Meredith Scott (Bremen), 8. Julie Rodriguez (Plymouth)

200: 1. Caity Lauer (Adams) 25.93; 2. Ali Burroughs (Plymouth), 3. Jessie Spearman (Wawasee), 4. Latrice Sanders (Elkhart Central), 5. Brandi Huddleston (Logansport), 6. Sherice White (Washington), 7. Krystol Hines (Maconaquah), 8. Sam Smogor (Marian)

3,200: 1. Rachel Stichter (Wawasee) 11:12.66; 2. Stephanie Swendsen (Northridge), 3. Jessie LaFree (Northridge), 4. Brittany Stellhorn (Western), 5. Ashley Clifford (Culver Academy), 6. Laura Lash (Tippecanoe Valley), 7. Kelsey Nielsen (Bremen), 8. Laura Carr (Penn)

4x400 relay: 1. Marian 3:57.78, 2. Adams, 3. Elkhart Central, 4. Warsaw (Katie Furnivall, Ashley Kitchens, Karrie Burch, Julie Seiss) 5. St. Joseph’s, 6. Wawasee (Brooke Mark, Brittany Winchester, Gloria Boesenberg, Jessie Spearman), 7. Logansport, 8. Goshen

SHOT PUT: 1. Andrea Horban (Mishawaka) 43-4, 2. Monica Macellari (Clay), 3. Marie Doan (Penn), 4. Natasha Mills (Elkhart Memorial), 5. Audrey Duncan (NorthWood), 6. Elaine Hessel (Plymouth), 7. Ashley Sparks (Warsaw), 8. Sara Chalk (Kokomo)

HIGH JUMP: 1. Kylie Swisher (Pioneer) 5-3; 2. Renaye’ Davis (Elkhart Memorial), 3. Betsy Freeman (Penn), 4. Ali Beaudway (Penn), 5. Julie Seiss (Warsaw) 6. Lisa Barrett (Kokomo), 7. Liz Scott (Bremen), 8. Kendra Ellington (Goshen), 8. Monica Macellari (Clay)

DISCUS: 1. Andrea Horban (Mishawaka) 126-7; 2. Hayley Boling (Elkhart Memorial), 3. Jocelyn Cook (Maconaquah), 4. Holly Austin (Madison-Grant), 5. Sara Chalk (Kokomo), 6. Deanna Kronk (NorthWood), 7. Carly Feldman (Triton), 8. Holly Farrer (Bremen)

LONG JUMP: 1. Sherice White (Washington) 17-2.5; 2. Megan Bormann (Marian), 3. Reneeda Berry (Riley), 4. Brittney Bolden (Adams), 5. Mariel Land (Warsaw), 6. Tiffany Aikin (Elkhart Central) 16-4; 7. Kelly Norton (Culver Academy), 8. Felicia Brown (North Miami)


POLE VAULT: 1. Lindsay Johnston (Penn) 10-6, 2. Virginia O’Bryan (Elkhart Memorial), 3. Cara Reedstrom (Penn), 4. Lauren Kelly Livingston (Culver Academy), 5. Nichole Hinton (NorthWood), 6. Dara Minglin (Taylor), 7. Nicole Anderson (Elkhart Central), 8. Stephanie Wagner (Jimtown)

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