All three local schools qualify athletes for track and field state finals
Grosse Pointe schools were well-represented at a Division 1 regional meet hosted by Grosse Pointe South May 17, as Grosse Pointe North’s boys team and South’s girls team each came away as regional champions.
The Norsemen’s boys title came after posting a score of 133.50, while South’s girls scored 226.50, which set a new school record.
North’s girls team also had a big day, finishing second to South with 88.50 points, while the boys from South finished second to North with 101.50 points.
Highlights for the Norsemen included first-place finishes by Taiwan Wiggins in the 110- and 300-meter hurdles, while South qualified 17 girls for the state finals, 13 of whom were regional champs, according to South coach Steve Zaranek.
South’s Hannah Meier took the top spot in both the 1600- and 800-meter runs.
With that kind of success, it is easy to understand why Zaranek came away with some positive impressions from the meet.
“We certainly displayed tremendous depth,” he said. “It’s very rare to get points out of all 17 events, and we did that. A very balanced win for us. The sheer volume of points we scored was amazing to me. I never thought we would top the 225 we had last year, and we did.”
South will seek to win its third consecutive state title, and according to Zaranek, his team will be ready.
“I’m very positive right now,” he said. “I feel we’re (going to) be in the thick of the race to win the state meet. I think we’re one of about five schools that has a legitimate chance this year. I think at the state meet, we will score a lot of points in the distance races. I’m even more encouraged about our opportunity in (the) sprint relays, and we have one of the best high jumpers (Aubryn Samaroo) in the state. So field events, as well, can contribute for us.
“I really like our team. It may be the best team we’ve ever had, here at South. I’m very confident we’re (going to) be ready.”
The boys and girls Division 1 state finals are scheduled to take place June 1 at East Kentwood.
In other local track and field news:
Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett’s boys and girls team each came away with fourth-place finishes at a Division 4 meet May 18 at Lutheran High Westland.
The boys team scored 52.50 points and the girls came away with 53.
Highlights for the Knights included second-place finishes for Will Gilbert (3200), Madison Jerome (long jump) and Ariana Castillo (100 and 200).
The Division 4 state finals are scheduled for June 1 at Hudsonville.