Monday, May 23rd, 2011
By Bruce Monnin
Minster sweeps district team titles
Division III District Track at Minster
  MINSTER - For the second year in a row, Minster was able to use the home track advantage to sweep both halves of the Division III district track meet.
The Wildcat boys cruised to an easy 135-83 win over runner-up Delphos St. John's, with fellow MAC teams from Parkway, St. Henry and New Bremen finishing third through fifth in the standings. The girls' portion of the meet saw the Wildcats win by a closer margin, outdistancing the runners-up from Marion Local by a score of 122-93.
Minster managed to hold its lead from Thursday's preliminaries without winning any events on Saturday. However, the Wildcats did manage to place in the top four during nine different events, thus ensuring a full bus for the trip to Troy for this week's regional competition.
The Wildcats' day started with freshman Paul Dues setting a personal best of 6-0 in the high jump, finishing in second place. Both the 800- and 1,600-meter relay teams earned second-place finishes to score big team points.
The largest haul of points for the Wildcats came in the 400 meters when Korey Schultz and Troy Kaufman finished second and third. Schultz also qualified for regionals with a fourth-place finish in the 100 meters.
Francis Slonkosky was another double qualifier for Minster in the distance events, placing third in the 3,200 meters and third in the 1,600 meters. Other qualifiers for the Wildcats were Oliver Barga (third place in the 800 meters) and Derek Collins (fourth in the 200 meters).
Parkway finished third in the team standings, also without the benefit of an event win on Saturday. Hank Bevington garnered the most points for the Panthers as he finished in second place in both the 110- and 300-meter hurdles behind Joe Haggard from Delphos St. John's.
Bevington will be joined next week in regional competition by Panthers' teammates Shawn Miller, Phillip Schlemmer and Cameron Strunk. Miller finished third in the 100 meters, Schlemmer was fourth in the 800s and Struck was fourth in the 3,200 meters.
St. Henry, which finished in fourth place, benefitted from several high placings. Mitchell Schulze started things off for the Redskins by winning the 1,600 meters with a personal and school record time of 4:28.04. Ryan Goettemoeller also won an event, setting a personal record in the 400 meters with a time of 51.26 seconds.
St. Henry also had a pair of second-place finishers, Jacob Rindler in the 800 meters and Aaron Hemmelgarn in the 3,200 meters. The Redskins' 1,600-meter relay team will also compete at regionals thanks to their fourth-place finish.
Likewise, New Bremen won two events to help the Cardinals finish fifth in the team standings. One win came from the Cardinals' 1,600-meter relay team. The other New Bremen win came from Dillon Webster, who set a new meet and school record in the 800 meters. Webster's goal was to run the race in a time of 1:55.00 or faster and stopped the clock at 1:54.99, which appears to be the fastest time run in this event by a Division III athlete this season.
The Cardinals also finished in the top four in three other events. The Cardinals' 800-meter relay team finished third, as did Ben Chaney in the 110-meter hurdles. Elliott Westerbeck tacked on a fourth-place finish in the 400 meters.
Coldwater will be sending two athletes to the regional meet. Mike Seas was dominant while winning the 3,200 meters by a margin of 19 seconds over the second-place finisher. Seas will be joined by teammate Aaron Mestemaker who finished fourth in the high jump. Mestemaker just beat out teammate Kyle Bergman for the final regional-qualifying spot thanks to the tiebreaker for having fewer misses.
Minster's girls came into Saturday in sixth place after Thursday's preliminary action but went on to capture the championship. The Wildcats began their charge to the top with the first event of the day, the pole vault.
Kayla Wuebker easily outvaulted her closest competition as no one else was able to clear a height above 9-3. Wuebker first broke the old meet record of 10-6, and then cleared 11-3 to set her new personal best for the season. Wuebker also finished second in the 300-meter hurdles for another spot in the regionals.
Maria Dahlinghaus chalked up the next win for the Wildcats as she won the 800 meters for the third consecutive year. In a remarkable showing of consistency, her times for all three years were within one second of each other.
Also victorious for Minster was Averie Bornhorst for the second consecutive year in the 3,200 meters. While her time was about four seconds slower than last year, it was 24 seconds faster than any of her competitors on Saturday.
Minster finished the meet in style, as the 1,600-meter relay team not only won the race, but set a new meet record by shaving 0.18 seconds off the previous record set by another Minster squad back in 2001.
Other regional qualifiers for the Wildcats included Samantha Hoelscher and Olivia Enneking finishing second and third in the 400 meters, Natalie Fausey placing second in the 1,600 meters, Hannah Butler finishing third in the 800 meters run, Leah Niekamp placing fourth in the 3,200 meters and the 800-meter relay team crossing the finish line in third place.
Marion Local was able to finish second in the team standings with just one event win. Senior Rachel Hess improved on last year's fourth-place finish by winning the 400 meters with a personal best of 59.50 seconds.
Much of the Flyers' success came from their relay teams. Both the 400- and 800- meter relays finished in second place behind Delphos Jefferson, while the 1,600-meter relay finished third.
The Flyers' Brianna Hess qualified for the regional meet in two individual events, placing first in the 100 meters and fourth in the 200 meters. Mindy Hartings and Olivia Hemmelgarn also moved on in the pole vault thanks to second- and fourth-place finishes in the event.
New Bremen finished sixth and advanced athletes in three events. Kyleigh Suchland improved on last year's fourth place in the 200 meters, this time topping the entire field to finish in first. Suchland's time of 26.70 seconds was just short of setting a new personal best and a new school record.
Elaynne Speckman advances to the regional meet in both hurdles events for the second year in a row. Speckman was second in the 100-meter race and third in the 300-meter hurdles.
Seventh-place Fort Recovery will be sending three girls to regional competition. Elle Sutter and Sam Tobe finished second and third in the 3,200 meters while being joined by another distance runner, Jessica Vogel, who placed fourth in the 1,600 meters.
Parkway provided the final local qualifiers on the day. Bailey King finished fourth in the 100-meter hurdles, while the Panthers' 400-meter relay team finished in third place.
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