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Highlanders second to New Albany


June 05, 2019
The Evansville Central boys' track regional made it a tough day for some and a good day for others Thursday as the New Albany Bulldogs ran to a 30-point win over the Floyd Central Highlanders 83-53. The Highlanders qualified a number of runners into this weekend's state finals while others were shut out of the party.

STROUD
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Crawford County's Nick Stroud just missed getting regional spots in both the shot put (above) and the discus finishing fourth in each event. Photo By Wade Bell
It began with the field events and the discus where Floyd Central's Cameron Sturgeon finished second behind Southridge's Jaden Hayes with a distance of 151 feet, 1 inch to claim one of early state finals positions.

"My throws were working better and feeling better than they had before," Sturgeon said. "They just didn't have much on them as power goes. So, technique was there but the power was missing. I ended up being pretty consistent but just not enough to get over the hump. It was definitely a winnable meet."

"I've got another shot at it," he said. "I'd have liked to have had a regional championship under my belt ... I'm happy with it for sure, but I would have liked to do more. I'm definitely happy to get another shot at it next week."

Crawford County's Nick Stroud finished in the fourth spot, missing a state berth by just over four feet with a distance 144 feet, 5 inches. Floyd Central's Austin Gootee finished seventh at 139-7. Stroud continued to struggle with his spins with his power throws being the most consistent.

"It's a little muggy, and my hands were all clammy and I just couldn't get a hold of that disc," Stroud said. "I didn't get a 144 till my second-to-last throw. I got a 132 in another power throw, and that got me into the finals."

In the long jump, the local jumpers struggled to get the distance they needed to advance. Floyd Central's Wenkers Wright was well out of contention, finishing 13th at 19-5-1/4 with Perry Central's Andy Graves right behind in 14th (19-4). Corydon Central's Jacob Eve had problems with his steps and fouled on all three preliminary jumps.

In the high jump, Perry Central's Cain Hohne made the cut to Bloomington finishing third with a height of 6 feet, 4-1/2 inches. Eve was among five others who missed the opening height of 6 feet and out of the scoring.

Devon Montgomery gave the Highlanders another spot in the state finals with a height of 14 feet to finish third. North Harrison's Colby Whittaker scored a point for the Cougars in the event, finishing eighth at 12 feet, six inches.

"Today, I had some really good jumps," Montgomery said. "I didn't miss a thing till 14-4. That is consistent. I had some really good jumps on 14-4, but I couldn't figure out the standards. I was way over it."

"I didn't have the outcome I wanted," Montgomery said. "I was going for 15 (feet) today, but I'm still going to state so I'm excited. I have a whole week to fix things and get things right and stay healthy. I'm bringing it at state."

When the throwers came back later for the shot put, both Stroud and Sturgeon found themselves on the outside looking in. Sturgeon struggled with throws in the mid-40s and finished fifth with a distance of 49 feet, 4-1/2 inches. Stroud, who had several throws at 51 feet during the season, needed every throw to get to 50 even to finish fourth in the competition.

"I was in third place for a throw 30 seconds," Stroud said. "I had to have (50 feet), so I threw it. It wasn't enough. It sucks.

"It felt so much better than all the other ones, way better," he said of his final throw. "I should have opened up more and used the hips. That's what you're supposed to do, and I did it. It just felt good. (Boonville's Reed Overton) just had a 51. Congrats to him though. That was a good throw."

"I was right close to having a big throw every single time," said a disappointed Sturgeon. "If I was having just a bad overall day, I'd be fine with it. I was so close to having the great throw. I wasn't finishing it right. Everything else was good. I was focused on the back and the middle of the throw, and then the finish was lacking. If I would have had another throw, but it is what it is."

There was high drama in the first running event of the 3,200-meter relay that involved the Floyd Central Highlanders. As third leg runner David Heinemann tried to deliver the baton to anchor Ross Ellis, the baton slipped out of Heinemann's hand. The Floyd Central junior dove to catch the baton and landed hard on the track. Heinemann kept his head in the race, however, and reached up to make the handoff to Ellis. Ellis then raced to keep the Highlanders in the third position and into the state finals with a time of 8 minutes, 11.68 seconds.

"When we came across the end, and I had messed this up in practice a couple of times, I took off too fast," Ellis said. "I don't know what happened, but he dropped it. He didn't trip or anything. He dove to catch the baton so we'd still be in it. So, he got it and got it to me and we still finished it out."

Ellis said he thought of his teammates to keep his focus.

"Keeping everybody else in mind," he said. "If it had been any of those three, they wouldn't have slowed down. We still got it, so we'll come back and get a better time."

South Central finished well back in the event, in 14th, in a time of 8 minutes, 53.73 seconds.

Last week, in the Corydon sectional, Lanesville's Luke Collins cracked the 11-second barrier with a time of 10.99 seconds to win the 100 meter dash. In the preliminaries, the Lanesville freshman ran an 11.49 to qualify for the finals. The finals went better for Collins but only slightly, with the Eagle runner sprinting to a time of 11.41 seconds for fifth place.

"I think I was a little out of it today," Collins said. "Whenever I was doing my 200, I didn't even make it to the finals. In that race, it felt better than my prelim but I don't think I was at full speed today."

Collins admitted the meet was a little overwhelming.

"It was a little bit when I got here and saw all the competition," he said. "It was a little nerve-wracking, so that probably played a part in some of it. I'm going to run AAU track and then indoor track in the winter and just keep training and get faster and prepare for next year."

For Floyd Central's Jon Gunn, it was a good day with the senior finishing second in 11 seconds flat.

"It felt a lot better than last week," said Gunn, who suffered a hamstring injury the week before. "This whole past week it just kind of sucked for me. I've been down. They haven't let me do anything in practice. It's just been a bunch of therapy and rehab type stuff. It's nice to be back out here racing and feeling good again."

In the 1,600 meters, Corydon Central's Camden Marshall finished fifth in a time of 4:36.26 and North Harrison senior Isaac Gleitz was 15th in 4:54.01. In the 110-meter high hurdles, Floyd Central's Wright finished at sixth in 15.72 seconds. In the 300-meter hurdles, Floyd Central's Talon Hutto was fifth in 40.96 seconds.

In the 200-meter dash, Floyd Central's Zac Hustlar finished fifth in a time of 23.34 seconds. Ellis managed a fifth-place finish (2:02.23) for the Highlanders in the 800-meter run with Corydon Central's Camden Marshall 13th in 2:13.02.

The Highlanders finished fifth in the 400-meter relay in a time of 44.41 seconds. In the 1,600-meter relay, the Panthers missed a regional spot by just 0.24 of a second, finishing fourth in 3 minutes, 29.40 seconds, just behind Evansville North in 3:29.16. Floyd Central was well back in 11th in 3:36.70.

"It was great competition out there," Corydon Central anchor Jacob Eve said. "We came prepared. We ran a hard race. We ran good."

Eve passed three runners on his last lap leg.

"I needed to get those guys in front of me," he said. "There were still quite a few guys in front of me. I had to make up as much ground as I could. My teammates did a good job putting me in a place to make that move at the end and taking us up there."

The boys will compete in the state finals at Indiana University's Robert C. Haugh's track and field facility on Friday with the field events starting at 3 p.m. The girls will compete on Saturday at the same time.

Boys Scores - New Albany 83, Floyd Central 53, Evansville Central 52, Jasper 46, Evansville North 44, Evansville Bosse 42, Borden 29, South Knox 28, Gibson Southern 26, Evansville Mater Dei 25, Princeton 23, Southridge 21, Christian Academy 20, Heritage 18, Tell City 13, South Spencer 13, Castle 11, Crawford County 10, Corydon Central 9, Pike Central 9, Providence 8, Boonville 7, Forest Park 7, Perry Central 6, North Daviess 4, Evansville Reitz Memorial 4, Lanesville 4, Evansville Harrison 3, Evansville F.J. Reitz 2, South Central 2, North Harrison 1, Washington 1.

Boys Results (Top 3 to State) - 100-meter dash-1. Jalen Bowman (EC) 10.85, 2. Jon Gunn (FC) 11.00, 3. Jalen Layne (EB) 11.16; 200-meter dash-1. Jalen Bowman (EC) 22.22, 2. Eli Grose (SS) 22.85, 3. Easton Bair (Jspr) 22.90; 400-meter dash-1. Micah Gamble (NA) 48.71, 2. Brayden Cosby (NA) 49.29, 3. George Madison (EB) 49.76; 800-meter run-1. Will Smith (Jspr) 1:59.55, 2. Grant Lashley (HH) 2:00.60, 3. Drake Dickens (EN) 2:00.98; 1,600-meter run-1. Caleb Futter (CAI) 4:18.54, 2. Tanner Schickel (EM) 4:22.33, 3. Jackson Krieg (Prnctn) 4:22.69; 3,200-meter run-1. Caleb Futter (CAI) 9:18.50, 2. Dean Schmidt (EN) 9:50.99, 3. Drew O'Neil (Jspr) 9:58.83; 110 high hurdles-1. Ndubisi Eze (NA) 14.65, 2. Eric Wheatley (Bor) 14.74, 3. Dylan McKinney (EN) 14.81; 300-meter intermediate hurdles-1. Steven Burkhart (SK) 38.80, 2. Eric Wheatley (Bor) 29.69, 3. DeAndre Stroud (NA) 39.84; 400-meter relay-1. Evansville Central 42.45, 2. Evansville Bosse 42.95, 3. New Albany 43.78; 1,600-meter relay-1. New Albany 3:21.95, 2. Jasper 3:25.59, 3. Evansville North 3:29.16; 3,200-meter run-1. New Albany 8:03.16, 2. Jasper 8:07.44, 3. Floyd Central 8:11.68; high jump-1. Garrett Voegerl (SR) 6-7, 2. Ndubisi Eze (NA) 6-6, 3. Cain Hohne (PC) 6-4-1/2; pole vault-1. Erick Wheatley (Bor) 15-6, 2. Tyler Kirby (PC) 14-4, 3. Devon Montgomery (FC) 14-0; long jump-1. Kyle Stewart (EC) 23-4-1/2*, 2. Javen Layne (EB) 22-8, 3. David Payne (EC) 22-0; shot put-1. Noah Singer (GS) 53-4, 2. Zack Dove (Prnctn) 53-1-1/2, 3. Reed Overton (Bnvl) 51-9; discus-1. Jaden Hayes (SR) 157-11, 2. Cameron Sturgeon (FC) 151-1, 3. Zack Dove (Prnctn) 148-0.

*Regional Record

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