State track title too for Cardinals?Anyone who’s been paying attention to the results is well aware that the Carrington Cardinal girls’ track and field team is a pretty darn good group of athletes this season. Carrington has finished near or at the top of every meet they’ve competed in this spring, and in some instances the Cards have just downright dominated the competition.
By: Michael Savaloja, The Jamestown Sun
Anyone who’s been paying attention to the results is well aware that the Carrington Cardinal girls’ track and field team is a pretty darn good group of athletes this season.
Carrington has finished near or at the top of every meet they’ve competed in this spring, and in some instances the Cards have just downright dominated the competition.
Such was the case on May 4 when they racked up 267 team points to win the Stutsman County meet by 155 markers over Harvey-Wells County in Carrington, and just Tuesday the Cardinals took top honors at the Harvey-Wells County Invite by posting 55.5 more points (144.5) than second-place Rugby (89).
But after talking to Carrington track and field coach Greg Hoeckle, those results might just be the tip of the iceberg as the Cards prepare for Saturday’s Region 3 meet in Fessenden.
“In most of our meets we’ve just wanted to accomplish getting better. We don’t worry about scoring points until it gets down to these last two meets,” Hoeckle said. “It’s been progressing well. We’ve just been taking our time and making sure we’re getting ready to peak at the right time.”
Assuming the team that finished fourth in last year’s state track and field meet does peak this weekend during the regional, the number they’ll put up on the board will mostly likely be a pretty impressive one.
The Cardinals currently have nine athletes already qualified for the state meet, which will get underway May 27 at the Bismarck Community Bowl, and leading the pack are junior thrower Sierra Rosenau and sophomore sprinter Josey Page.
Rosenau is within striking distance of the state Class B javelin record of 143-02 set by Bottineau’s Sara Neubauer back in 2006. Rosenau is tops in the state this season with a heave of 140-06, which is comfortably ahead of her freshman teammate Kayla Hochhalter who holds the second best toss in the state so far at 129-10.
The state’s overall javelin record is held by Katie Wilson, who tossed a 148-03 for Grand Forks Red River in 2002.
Rosenau and Hochhalter have impressed this season, qualifying for state in all three throwing events: the shot put, discus and javelin.
Hochhalter currently has the sixth best toss in the discus (116-2) and the 10th best toss in the shot put (37-6), while Rosenau’s mark of 115-10 1/2 in the discus is eighth best in the state.
Rosenau, who was voted co-MVP of the state Class B girls’ basketball tournament this past season, finished second at state in the javelin and fifth in the discus one year ago.
“They’ve been progressing each meet. The big thing with throwing is being consistent and both Sierra and Kayla have been pretty much consistent all year,” Hoeckle said. “Both of those two are qualified in all three throwing events and you don’t see that a whole lot these days ... each event has become a little more specialized.
“That’s big for us as a team that those two do well.”
Page set the bar high for herself last season as a freshman, sprinting to a third-place state finish in the 100-meter dash and a fifth-place finish in the 200. Page also ran legs on the team’s 400 and 800 relay teams that placed second and fourth, respectively at last year’s state meet.
So far, Page is once again qualified in the 100 (12.77) and 200 (25.74), and she is also qualified in the 400 (1:01.50) and both the 400 and 800 relays.
“She’s well prepared and ready to go,” Hoeckle said. “As a team we’re expecting to go in and of course try to do our best and hopefully we are competing for a top five spot (at state). Josey is confident and has a lot of experience behind her even though she’s only a sophomore. She knows what it takes to do well.”
Page has the second quickest time in the state in the 200 and has the eighth fastest time in the 100.
Carrington’s 400 and 800 relay teams are poised to do very well at the state meet, with remaining members Jacey Engelhorn, Noelle Braaten, Hannah Lipetzky, Lynzee Hagemeister and Maartje VanBedaf. Carrington has the top 400 relay time in the state at 51.34, and the team’s 800 relay time of 1:48.44 sits third.
Hoeckle said the plan for Saturday’s Region 3 meet is to get more Cardinals to state.
“We’re hoping to qualify our two longer relays and maybe get some of our distance runners in. We have some other throwers, too,” Hoeckle said. “Megan Harrington is really close to qualifying in the discus and it would be nice if we could get a little more help in those throwing areas.
“In the javelin and discus anything can happen. Last year, Sierra didn’t qualify by distance in the discus she qualified by finishing second in the region and ended up taking fifth.”
The Cardinals are also hoping to get a few more on the boys’ side qualified for state.
So far, Carrington’s Scott Burnham has the second best leap in the long jump at 21-3. Carrington’s Jordan Mittlieder is also qualified in the 110 hurdles with the third top time of 15.64.
Mittlieder placed seventh at state in the 110 hurdles last season.
One Carrington athlete who should qualify for state this weekend is long-distance senior runner Easton Page. Page finished fourth at state in the 1600 and 3200 one year ago.
“Easton should get in during the region. He’s been having a tough year, but his times have been progressively coming down,” Hoeckle said.
Rain is once again in the forecast for Saturday’s meet, but with the way this spring has gone that’s no surprise.
“It’s been tough, but the kids have been told this week to be prepared. Everyone is going to be in the same boat and there’s nothing you can do about it,” Hoeckle said. “I believe our team is ready.”
Sun sports writer Michael Savaloja can be reached at (701) 952-8461 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org