Howard, seniors go out with a bang on home track
The Brookhart-Crew Relays were the perfect setting for Fairfield seniors to shine bright, and none of them shone brighter Monday than Trojan senior Sydney Howard.
Howard handily won four events in her swan song, leading the Trojans to a third-place finish and 135-point total Monday at their only home meet of the year.
The Trojan senior won the 100-meter dash in 12.21 seconds, finishing more than one second ahead of runner-up Grace Redlinger, and she won the 200-dash by nearly two seconds with a time of 25.79. The senior also anchored Fairfield to wins in the 4x200 with Cierra Bielinski, Erin Thompson and McKenzie McClure (1:49.54); and 4x100 with McClure, Gabrielle Kuehl and Marisa Repp (51.08).
“This felt good. Tonight was a perfect night to run. There’s not that much wind ... and it was better weather than what we’ve had,” said Howard, who was only competing in her fifth outdoor meet of the season Monday.
And her races weren’t even that close.
Howard not only set season bests in the 100- and 200-meter dashes in front of her home crowd, she shattered her previous marks this year. The senior moved to the top of the Class 3A heap in the 100-dash with the fastest time of 2013, and her 200-dash time is the third fastest in Class 3A this season.
“I think people are going to start to realize Sydney isn’t any slower. She’s just as fast as she ever was,” Fairfield head coach Ron Hunerdosse said.
It was a bittersweet night for the Trojan seniors, and going out a winner didn’t alleviate Howard’s sadness.
“It’s an awesome feeling to win like this at my home stadium, but it’s sad, too,” said Howard. “I just literally ran my last race here. It’s pretty sad, but I’m happy I ended it with a bang.”
Of course, Howard wasn’t the only bright spot for the senior-heavy Trojan girls on Monday.
Bielinski and Thompson were on the winning 4x200, and they both helped the sprint medley relay to second place alongside McClure and Abby Melcher (2:01.37).
In the middle distances were senior standouts Jessica Lamb and Hannah Sobaski, both of whom were on the third-place 4x800 with Sesali Martin and Taylor Ferrel (10:07). Lamb helped the 4x400 to second place in 4:25 and she also finished third overall in the 800 in 2:28.28. Sobaski, meanwhile, was an integral part of the third-place distance medley relay (4:37) and finished fifth in the 1500 (5:27).
“I thought they were wonderful last night. Jess ran two good 800s and an outstanding 400, and Hannah’s versatility has been extremely important to us,” Hunerdosse said.
And in the field, Sidney Baumann set a new season best in the discus, placing runner-up behind Davis County’s Kate Birchmier at 118-feet, 6-inches.
Other seniors coming up huge for Fairfield were Sage Richmond, who finished fourth in the 3000 (12:59); and Danielle Garrison, who anchored the 4x400 to second place with a personal best split of 66 seconds. Grace Smith was on the third-place shuttle hurdle relay (1:13.77).
“The Brookhart-Crew Relays is a big deal for our seniors, and they really led the way last night,” Hunerdosse said. “I think it’s a testament to that class that they all hung in there all four years ... I’m proud to say I was a part of their life.”
The Trojans also received a win from Repp in the high jump (5’ 1”) and a second-place finish in the 400-hurdles (1:12.34). Melcher was fourth in the 400 (1:06.99), McClure finished fourth in the 200 (28.85) and Ferrel was fourth in the 1500 (5:24). Alexis Ring ended up fourth in the 100-hurdles in 16.96 ticks.
“I thought we ran phenomenally. We had personal bests across the board, and I thought they really laid it on the line,” Hunerdosse said of his team.
Mount Pleasant won the meet title with 178 points and Davis County finished second with 148.5.
The head coach added he chose not to alter his meet lineup following the announcement that the Southeast Conference meet would be moved up to Tuesday.
“Some teams altered their lineup dramatically, and I left mine the same deliberately. We had several seniors on the track for one last time, and I felt I owed it to them to have them run in front of a home crowd.
“I don’t think what happens tonight will affect us. Those kids are going to be hurting a little tonight but we’ll compete,” said Hunerdosse. “It’s hard to make it happen two nights in a row ... so we’ll take our lumps tonight in some respects, but I don’t think it’ll change our placing in the meet.”
The conference meet starts at 5 p.m. today at Case Field in Washington.
Fairfield Boys Individual Top-6
(Plus 1st Place)
Discus — 1. Kate Birchmier (DC, 137’ 11”), 2. Sidney Baumann (118’ 6”)
Shot Put — 1. Kate Birchmier (DC, 39’ 9.25”)
High Jump — 1. Marisa Repp (5’ 1”)
Long Jump — 1. Leslie Taylor (MP, 17’ 2.75”)
3000-run — 1. Chanda Smith (DC, 12:08), 4. Sage Richmond (12:59)
4x800-relay — 1. Mount Pleasant (9:51), 3. Fairfield (Ferrel, Lamb, Sobaski, Martin, 10:07)
Shuttle Hurdle-relay — 1. Mount Pleasant (1:07.09), 3. Fairfield (Ring, Smith, Wallerich, Ryan, 1:13.77)
100-dash — 1. Sydney Howard (12.21), 5. McKenzie McClure (13.31)
400-dash — 4. Abby Melcher (1:06.99)
4x200-relay — 1. Fairfield (McClure, Thompson, Bielinski, Howard, 1:49.54)
100-hurdles — 1. Leslie Taylor (15.19), 4. Alexis Ring (16.96), 5. Marisa Repp (17.01)
Sprint Medley-relay — 1. Mount Pleasant (2:01.07), 2. Fairfield (McClure, Bielinski, Thompson, Melcher, 2:01.37)
1500-run — 1. Ellie Conrad (MP, 5:21), 4. Taylor Ferrel (5:24), 5. Hannah Sobaski (5:27)
200-dash — 1. Sydney Howard (25.79), 4. McKenzie McClure (28.85)
400-hurdles — 1. Hannah Becker (MP, 1:09.96), 2. Marisa Repp (1:12.34), 5. Danielle Garrison (1:14.94)
Distance Medley-relay — 1. Davis County (4:31.57), 3. Fairfield (E. Kuehl, G. Kuehl, Sobaski, Ferrel, 4:37.53)
800-run — 1. Chloe Haffarnan (MP, 2:25.75), 3. Jessica Lamb (2:28.28), 6. Sesali Martin (2:44.73)
4x100-relay — 1. Fairfield (McClure, Repp, G. Kuehl, Howard, 51.08)
4x400-relay — 1. Davis County (4:23.74), 2. Fairfield (Lamb, Hoskins, Fitch, Garrison, 4:25.23)
Girls Team Standings
1. Mount Pleasant 178, 2. Davis County 148.5, 3. Fairfield 135, 4. Washington 53, 5. Fort Madison 37.5, 6. Centerville 22