The Boardman girls track and field team advanced five events and eight girls to the regional meet by virtue of their top four finish at the district meet, which took place at Austintown Fitch on May 23. The top four from the regional meet will advance to the State Championship meet in Columbus.
All of the distance events at the district meet advanced on to the regionals. The 4x800 meter relay team of juniors Heaton O’Hara and Regan O’Hara and seniors Trista Cunningham and Emma Schwendeman raced to a season best time of 9:44.06 and placed second to secure their spot at the regional meet. Regan O’Hara came back in the 800-meter run and placed third with a career best time of 2:21.26 and Schwendeman raced to fourth place in the 3200-meter run also running a career best time of 11:30.02. Senior Katelynn Morrell placed third in the 1600-meter run with a career best time of 5:23.09 to earn her first trip to the regional meet. The 4x400 meter relay team of Regan O’Hara, senior Jada Redd, junior Alison Green and sophomore Arianna Cuevas placed third with a season best time of 4:06.74.
“To have every distance event get to the regionals is a tribute to the girls who have really peaked in the past week due to their outstanding work ethic and to their distance coach, Stacey Hunter who has led these girls to the tremendous performances they had to advance to the next level,” Head Coach Denise Gorski said. “The 4x800 relay dropped their time by eleven seconds, Morrell dropped her mile time by three seconds, Regan O’Hara dropped her 800 time by four seconds and Schwendeman dropped her 3200 time by 21 seconds. Every girl in the 4x800 relay and both girls entered in the open distance races ran season or career best performances and again a lot of that is due to Coach Hunter’s distance training knowledge and her preparation to peak them at the right time. The girls in the 4x400 relay also dropped their overall time by five seconds from the semi’s run on Wednesday and ran season best splits to take them to the Regionals. Regan, Jada, Alison and Arianna have continued to improve in this relay and they were all tired going into the race as most of them had at least two events to run before the 4x400 was run, but they showed their talent and heart as they raced hard to gain their regional spot. Coach Rick Sypert and Coach Whitney Resch deserve a lot of this credit too as Jada and Arianna ran the short sprints for Coach Sypert and his expertise in that area certainly helped with their training for the 400. Coach Resch has volunteered her time this year to help in the entire sprint area and has contributed to their success as well.”
The entire team competed at the district meet and the team finished in fifth place behind first place Solon who had 154 points. Austintown Fitch was fourth with 63 points and the Lady Spartans had 51 points. Even though these events didn’t qualify to the regionals, they helped secure the team points for the fifth place finish.
In the 4x200 meter relay, the team of seniors Morgan Hambrick, Nikki Hillard, Redd and sophomore Cuevas placed fifth running 1:47.02, just missing the Regional Meet by one place. Junior Alison Green placed sixth in the 400-meter dash racing to a personal best time of 61.66 and juniors Brittany Chamberlain and Brooke Harsh both vaulted a height of 7 feet to tie for sixth place in the pole vault. The 4x100 meter relay team of Hambrick, Senior Briana Fonderlin, Hillard and sophomore Caitlynn Conner raced to seventh place in a time of 52.07. Trista Cunningham raced to seventh place in the 800 with a career best time of 2:26.31 and Arianna Cuevas raced to seventh in the 200-meter dash running 26.93. In the shot and discus, junior Ka’nisha White placed seventh in both events throwing 35 feet 1 inch and 106 feet and Redd completed the scoring for the team by placing eighth in the 400-meter dash with a time of 62.44.
In the running and hurdling events, senior Brandi Gatte ran a career best of 5:40.25 in the 1600; juniors Hope Landers ran 17.05 and Stephanie DeMain 17.16 in the 100 high hurdles; Caitylnn Conner ran 13.58 and Briana Fonderline ran a season best of 14.03 in the 100 meter dash; Landers ran 52.36 in the 300 meter hurdles; Conner a season best of 28.76 in the 200 and freshmen Abbey Evans ran a career best of 12:34.34 in the 3200. In the field events, Hambrick jumped 5 feet and senior Kelly Tomcsanyi 4 feet 6 inches in the high jump; freshmen Logan Mitchell long jumped 14 feet 5 inches and Hillard jumped 13 feet 2 1/2 inches; junior Faith Twyman threw 31 feet 5 inches in the shot put and sophomore Alexis Martinez threw 74 feet 2 inches in the discus.
“I know how badly these girls wanted to advance to the next level and they just fell short,” Gorski said. “But many of them including Landers, Hambrick, Hillard, Brandi Gatte and White, gained All-Federal League honors and had a very successful season. It’s still hard to watch the disappointment they had when they just missed getting to the next level. I again credit the event coaches for leading all of their girls to the outstanding season they had, including coach John DePietro in the hurdles, coach John Phillips Sr. in the jumping events, coach Dayna Daltorio in the throwing events, coach Ashlee Frazzini and coach George Mavrikis in the pole vault, and as I mentioned earlier Coach Hunter in the distance, coach Sypert in the sprints and coach Resch in the long sprints.”