All the pieces in place for St. Mary’s track to repeat as D-2 champs

By: Mike Moore | West Bloomfield Beacon | Published May 26, 2016

 Orchard Lake St. Mary’s Tyler Cochran is pictured during an event against Birmingham Brother Rice earlier this spring. The Eaglets are the defending D-2 state champs.

Orchard Lake St. Mary’s Tyler Cochran is pictured during an event against Birmingham Brother Rice earlier this spring. The Eaglets are the defending D-2 state champs.

Photo by Donna Dalziel

Advertisement

ORCHARD LAKE — Sean Clouse wasn’t going to shy away from the challenge, and his guys made it their top objective as soon as last year’s track and field state final came to a close.

The 2015 state champs were going to set out to do it all over again a year later.

Well, a year later, the Orchard Lake St. Mary’s squad is in prime position to do just that.

“We’re excited,” Clouse said of the Division 2 finals, set for June 4 at Zeeland High. “We’ve been talking about this all year. We have to come out, perform, and make the most of the opportunity. It’s been in our minds since last year. Now we have the chance to go out and finish this year the right way.”

The Eaglets certainly made a statement at the May 21 regional run at South Lyon East.

St. Mary’s finished the day with a team score of 172.

Second-place Beverly Hills Detroit Country Day scored 103.5.

“It was a very satisfying day,” Clouse said. “We kind of had everything come together. We probably had one stronger showing, in Saline earlier this year, but this was pretty darn good too.”

By the time the regional was over, St. Mary’s had qualified 12 guys in 24 different slots for the June 4 final.

Kahlee Hamler won the 100-meter dash in 10.78 seconds, while Richard Bowens was second in 10.95. Shermond Dabney took home a regional title in the 110 hurdles in 14.55 and the 300 hurdles in 39.24.

The 400 and 800 relay teams each picked up a regional title and will be seeking a third consecutive state title.

The 1600 relay team also won a regional title.

“We have a great group of sprint guys, and that’s key,” Clouse said. “We have some great hurdlers. We have a couple guys in the middle distance holding things down. We have some guys in the field events. We have the relay teams. In general, we’re a great group and solid up and down the lineup.”

So, as the prohibitive favorites, what will be key in Zeeland?

“We have to be healthy,” Clouse said. “We have a few guys beat up right now. We have to find ways to get guys healthy, figure out where certain guys are going to run, and go after it.”

Advertisement