Whitehall-Coplay Press

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Girls 400 relay still working on form

Thursday, April 4, 2019 by Steve andres Special to the Press in Sports

Senior sprinter Helen Davis admits that their 4x100 relay team doesn’t have their legs under them quite yet, but she believes it’s only a matter a time until they get where they want to be.

That was evident in their meet against Emmaus on Monday as they fell to the Hornet foursome of Madison Brown, Alanna Smith, Mackenzie Dries and Kayla Smith, who finished in 51.1. The Zephs foursome of Davis, Rebecca Ganthier, Kate Bonshak and Emily Wells crossed in 52.8.

They were out of sync with an awkward handoff, and just didn’t have enough firepower to overtake the Hornets who won last year’s EPC Championships.

Still, it’s early and Davis is confident they’ll fine their groove.

“Right now we’re just settling in,” said Davis.

She said they’re working to get a feel for the track, following their steps, and working hard to become a medal contender.

Davis said that the uncertainty of spring weather plays a role, as well the new regular season format which has disrupted practices. They were used to having tri-meets, averaging one contest per week that featured two opponents. This season they’ve switched to individual meets and those are now twice a week, and that leaves little practice time.

“All we can do right now is practice our handoffs, practice our speed, our movement, just everything else,” said Davis.

Davis is in a different spot this season. Last year she ran the second leg, while this year she’s occupying the starting spot. Running the second leg meant that she just had to deal with a straightaway in her 100, but now she has to negotiate a turn.

“I’m getting used to it,” said Davis. “I’m trying to get that curve, that right kind of angle, and try and move with the curve instead of running straight through the lines.”

She said that the final spot remains a challenge as they’re looking to fill that role with someone who can solidify their veteran squad. They’ve looked at middle distance runners and hurdlers, trying to find that perfect fit.

“We just need that strong leg who can finish and tie it all together,” said Davis.

She believes it will eventually come together and that means they’ll be in good shape once the postseason championships roll around.

It’s just going to take work, she said.

Along with the 4x100, the Emmaus girls claimed a number of firsts en route to the 113.50-36.50 win over the Zephs.

The Zephyr girls earned first place in a number of events, including the 400 where Lindsay Solderitch was tops with a 1:02.9 mark.

Also finishing first was Hope Millets in the high jump with a 5-2 leap. Millets was a multiple winner, taking the top spot in the pole vault as she cleared the bar at 8-0.

Autumn Dragovits also won her event, finishing first in the javelin with a 99-06 toss.

The boys had a strong meet, claiming nine first-places finishes. But the Green Hornets overwhelmed them with depth, especially in the distance and mid distance races, as they lost 83-67.

Still, the Zephyr boys were strong in the throws and sprints, flexing their muscles in both those disciplines. They rolled up 18 points in the sprints, and a whopping 27 points in the throws, sweeping all three events.

In the 100, Chad Hussett was tops at 11.2, while Kresstoph Whittick was second at 11.3. Whittick won the 200, crossing the line in 23.1. Both runners were part of an electrifying win in the 4x100 as Jaiden Lee and Niko Nomura joined them to finish in 45.3, beating Emmaus by 1/100th of a second.

In the pole vault, Marcus Hamscher vaulted to the top with a 10-03 mark.

Chris Perez was best in the long jump with a 20-02.75 leap, while Andy Margarin won the triple jump with a 36-11.50 mark.

In the shot put, Justin Santiago was first with a 39-03 toss, while Javal Reyes was second (39-01.50), and Liam Sullivan was third at 39-00.

In the discus, Izak Bright was the winner with a 120-01 mar, while Eli Nuscher was second (103-02), and Lucas Souders was third with a 96-11 toss.

Souders also nabbed points in the javelin, winning the event with a 163-01 mark. Second place belonged to Jacob Heffner at 132-10, while Santiago was third with a 131-09 toss.

Head coach Tyler Miller was pleased with how they competed, especially in the throwing events.

“I’m happy with how we performed, our throwing events really performed well for us,” said Miller. “We are still building up a bunch of you athletes though so times and distances are a little down.”