Girls Track First; Boys Track Second In CIC Meet

Posted on May 13, 2017 in Boy's Track, Girl's Track, Spring Sports

MIER — It took more than 24 hours to complete, but in the end the pre-meet favorites rose to the occasion and the top of the class in the Central Indiana Conference track and field championships Thursday at Oak Hill.
The Eastbrook boys captured their second consecutive CIC crown, while the Oak Hill girls added their seventh straight conference title after the meet was abruptly halted with five events to complete Wednesday night by storms that moved through Grant County.
Eastbrook scored 192 to get past Oak Hill (162.5), Mississinewa (84) and Alexandria (60.5) in the boys competition. Oak Hill (160) held off Eastbrook (117), Elwood (106) and Mississinewa (79) for the girls title.
No less than seven different CIC meet records fell in the two days of competition, with Oak Hill’s standout distance runners, junior Margo Hornocker and freshman Mollie Gamble collecting three between them.
Gamble shaved nearly seven seconds off the meet standard in the 3,200, completing the race in 11:33.31 to best Sophie Seward’s 11:40.02 set in 2012. Gamble also finished second in the 1,600 to Hornocker.
Hornocker picked up the 1,600 win and CIC record on Wednesday, and somewhat surprisingly added the 800 title and conference record on Thursday. Her 2:20.45 was nearly three seconds faster than the previous best set by Oak Hill’s Shellan Lenhart in 2015. Hornocker’s new 1,600 (5:18.16) mark also eclipsed Lenhart’s previous record set in 2014.
Hornocker decided to forgo the basketball season at Oak Hill over the winter to concentrate on lifting weights and getting an early jump on training for track season. The decision has been paying dividends all spring for Hornocker.
“I feel a lot stronger and not playing basketball this year helped me to be able to start running sooner,” said Hornocker. “That has helped with my confidence. I feel really well prepared and I know I can run the times that I need to.”
Gamble and Hornocker, along with Savannah Hart and Camille Taylor, helped Oak Hill win the 4 x 800 relay on Wednesday, and Oak Hill got a win in the 300 hurdles from senior Olivia Garza (49.10).
Garza also anchored the Golden Eagles winning 4 x 400 relay team, with Morgan Wallace, Auja Smith and Ireland Dodson running the first three legs of the race. It was Garza’s first time running the relay race all season. Olivia Smith won the pole vault for Oak Hill.
Oak Hill has lost its top 400 runner, Adrianna Trexler, earlier this week to an injury and had already been missing Brittany McCorkle who’s battling an injury from basketball season. So even though its become commonplace for the Oak Hill girls to win the CIC, Golden Eagles’ coach Paige Brunner was pleased with his team’s performance and encouraged for its potential in Tuesday’s sectional.
“The biggest thing for us, when you’ve won all the meets you’ve been in this year and they’re so used to being up front, we were going to have to find a way yesterday and today and again next Tuesday to fight through and be able accept fifth, sixths sevenths and eights to get points,” said Brunner.
“We can’t just rely on our heavy hitters. Those are nice to have, but I thought they came back today and competed well.
“I’m excited where we’re at and happy for the girls to win our seventh in a row,” he continued. “It was kind of gut punch to us losing Trexler this week, but the girls responded. We’ll see if we can respond next Tuesday.”
Eastbrook’s boys finished the event with eight conference champions, and coach Stu Goble hopes his team can take some momentum from earning its second consecutive CIC title into next Thursday’s sectional at Indiana Wesleyan, where the Panthers will be looking to win the school’s first-ever championship.
“I started to wonder about a week or so ago if we were really in good focus and we got here (Wednesday) night, and you could just see it in their eyes that we were ready to go,” said Goble.
“Then you have a delay like that and it’s a four point meet – I knew we had some strong events coming – but you wonder how are we going to come back the next day.”
The Panthers came back Thursday with a meet record by senior Anthony Brown in the 300 hurdles (40.50), another performance that beat a previous conference standard, although Conner White finished second to Brennan Butche in the 3,200, his 9:39.10 is now the second-best time in CIC history, and the a new school record at Eastbrook.
Butche’s new conference standard in the 3,200 is 9:33.86, nearly nine second faster than the mark set in 1995.
For good measure, the Panthers set a new school record in winning the 4x 400 relay in 3:30.25, also a new Eastbrook school record.
“That’s a pretty good way to end a meet,” Goble said.
White won the 1,600, Brandon Huber and Blayne Altum finished one-two in high jump, Zach Reid won the pole vault and the Panthers 4 x 100 relay team of Davon Wallace, Logan Gunning, Brown and Saxon Malonek also took wins on Wednesday.
Cole Kennedy added the 800 title and Ethan Cramer, Malonek, Xaine Kirby and Ethan Keller ran to the 4 x 400 school-record for Eastbrook.
Oak Hill sophomore Sammy Sommers captured both the long jump (21-05.25) and 100 hurdles (15.59), sophomore Jon Holz captured the 100 (11.41) and 200 (22.86). Holz edged freshman teammate Tahj Johnson by .006 seconds to win the 200. Johnson captured the 400 (50.34).
Oak Hill also won the 4 x 800 relay with Silas Guyre, Colin Harts, Austin Fritch and JC Herring running an 8:23.74.
AJ Jones gave Madison-Grant a boys champion in shot put (46-01) and finished second in the discus.
The Argylls swept the throwing events on the girls side, with Savannah Leas winning both shot (38-00.5) and discus (111-00), while sophomore Payton Freel finished second in both events. Madison Purkey won the high jump (4-08) for Madison-Grant.
Brianna Stepp won the long jump (15-09) for the Eastbrook girls just beating Haleigh Skeens from Ole Miss.
Mississinewa freshman Carli Fones backed up winning the 100 on Wednesday by breaking the Ole Miss school record in the 200 (26.57) and finishing second to state qualifier McKenzie Wilson from Elwood.

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