Whittell, South Tahoe track teams to compete at NIAA state tournament
South Tahoe and Whittell high schools are both one step closer to their respective state championship meets.
Athletes from both schools competed and qualified at the May 12 and 13 NIAA regional meet hosted by Carson High School. South Tahoe competed in the 3A division and Whittell, 1A.
The South Tahoe girls team placed seventh out of nine teams and the boys team placed ninth out of nine teams. The Whittell boys team placed third out of 15 teams and the girls team placed fourth out of 12 teams. At the NIAA state championship on May 19 and 20, South Tahoe will have two athletes competing and Whittell will have 15.
“We’re right where we want to be and we’re approaching state at the same level,” said Whittell head coach Phil Bryant. “We expect to have a really good showing with the boys team and as well with the girls.”
The Whittell girls team had an impressive showing this past weekend — setting school, regional and divisional records in events.
According to Bryant, the girls relay team is one of the strongest he’s seen as a coach. The 4X100 relay team of sophomore Anna White, seniors Michelle Barnes and Samantha Forvilly and freshman Kyla Rippett set a divisional record with their combined finishing time of 52.53 seconds. The same team shattered a school and regional record in the 4X200 relay with their time of 1:50.41 seconds.
“Their domination in those events is very significant,” said Bryant. “We’re hoping and expecting to win in the girls relays and sprints.”
The girls also had some top finishers in several other events. Rippett finished third in both the 100 and 200 meters with times of 13.43 and 27.66 seconds, respectively. White took first and set a personal record in the 400 meters with her time of 1:01.20 seconds. Forvilly took home bronze and set a personal record in the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 50.80 seconds. Forvilly also snagged fourth in the long jump with a distance of 14 feet 9 inches.
The boys weren’t far behind the girls, qualifying several athletes and adding top times. Their 4X400 relay team of senior Pierce Manchester, sophomore Isaiah Womack, senior Dismas Womack and junior Nick Petty struck gold with their time of 3:42.4 seconds.
The 4X800 team of Petty, junior Andrew Carlisle, sophomore Jamie Harrison, Dismas Womack and Isaiah Womack finished second with a time of 1:36.64 seconds — just barely missing the first place finishing time of 1:36.61.
Dismas Womack showed he can jump, taking the top spot in the long jump with a distance of 19 feet 4.25 inches. Isaiah Womack enjoyed a season record and second place in the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 17.96 seconds. Sophomore Dalton Warsick set a personal record and took first in the 12-pound shot put. His distance was 42 feet 10.75 inches.
Bryant said he’s trying to keep his athletes prepared, but not overdoing it with practice.
Bryant said that his team has been getting some assistance in certain areas from South Tahoe. He said being able to practice with the Vikings has been a lot of help in developing some of the talents on his team.
South Tahoe head coach Hannah Greenstreet said her team didn’t send many athletes to the regional meet, but everyone competed at the level she expected.
“We walked into regionals and there was a great energy,” said Greenstreet. “The team was really pumped and ready to go so it was nice to be in a high-level, competitive meet. Overall, our team was much healthier that previously in the season. We had some issues and injuries in the beginning of the season that weren’t present, which is nice.”
At the regional meet for South Tahoe, senior Maya Brosch was leading the pack and showing those who will be at state that she’s a force to be reckoned with. This year will be the fourth time Brosch has competed at the state championship. Right behind her to qualify for state was freshman Carissa Buchholz. This will be Buchholz’s first time competing at the state meet.
Brosch had top finishes in the 200 and 400 meters and the 100 and 300 hurdles. Her finishing times were 26.62, 59.02, 15.18 and 44.86 seconds, respectively.
Buchholz placed second in both the 1,600 and 3,200 meter races with times of 5:18.67 and 11:43.22 seconds, respectively.
“She’s a very talented runner,” said Greenstreet about Buchholz’s abilities. “She’s a leader in our region so at the state meet she will get the experience of competing against some heavier competition. I’m really exited for her to be exposed to that competitive environment.”
The boys team had a little more difficult time finding their pace. Although none qualified for the state meet, athletes from the boys team had some solid finishes.
Junior David Holmes came close to inching into the top five for the 3,200-meters race, but fell just short. He placed sixth, overall, in the event with a time of 10:22.44 seconds. Holmes also placed ninth in the 1,600 meters with a time of 4:57.01 seconds.
Going into state, Greenstreet said she is having her athletes hone in on their talents as much as possible. “Both Carissa and Maya are familiar with the level of competition they will be facing and the competitors that will be right next to them,” said Greenstreet. “Our workouts this week will definitely be strategic to help them stay consistent with their current times and make sure that they’re healthy and ready to go.”
Greenstreet said that the team had some obstacles to overcome early in the season, but the athletes displayed a lot of heart.
“I have a group of athletes that are very driven and very positive,” she said. “Their work ethic and the training that they’ve done has shown to pay off.”
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