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New Albany survives Floyd after DQ

Girls' Track Sectional

May 27, 2009
The New Albany Bulldog track team survived the Corydon Central Sectional last Tuesday afternoon following a major disqualification in the 300-meter hurdles to edge out runner-up Floyd Central. In what was already a tight race to begin with turned into a neck-and-neck horse race down to the final events, New Albany winning by a slim three-point margin.

"We made them nervous, I hope, a little bit," Floyd girls' coach Sarah Harkema said. "We had a good meet. That's all we could do. She (New Albany coach Casey Hanger) has some nice runners."

Floyd Central’s Meghan Jones breaks both the sectional record and her own school record with a time of 58.11 seconds in the 400-meter dash. Jones also won the 200 meters. Photo by Wade Bell
The field events got the Lady Highlanders to a solid early lead. Meghan Jones was second in the high jump, and Brigid Morrissey and Nikki Roberts finished second and third, respectively, in the long jump, won by New Albany's Anjelicia Groves. The throwing events weren't kind to New Albany, who finished eighth in both the discus and shot put. New Albany had no competitors in the pole vault.

Morrissey had hoped to win the long jump with her 16-foot leap, but Groves was a few inches better at 16-5 1/4.

"I just felt bad that I got second," Morrissey said. "I always feel like I can do better. It wasn't even close. I started out pretty well for my first jump. I knew I could work my way up and get better. I just kind of looked as far as I could in the sand pit before I went and just focused and tried to jump as far as I could."

Corydon Central's Meghan Bussabarger beat out Jones in the high jump with a height of 5 feet, 4 inches. The senior wasn't happy however, after missing at 5-6.

"It's just frustrating when you get it in practice and you don't get it in a meet," she said. "It's OK. I'm happy. I just need to step up. I just need to get over it mentally and step up. Physically, I think I'm OK. It's a lot warmer and keeps it loose, which is nice."

Corydon Central's Heidi Zimmerman grabbed the top spot in the discus in the early throws with a distance of 97 feet, 5 inches and was fourth in the shot put (29-6). North Harrison's Amanda Hartley finished second is the discus at 95-1 1/2.

"Me and my dad (Kerry Zimmerman) tried some new things and he filmed me at practice the other day and we watched the films," Heidi said. "We picked out what I needed to worked on, and that helped a lot. We worked on speeding up and getting more aggressive in the ring, and also keeping my thumb down because that's been a problem."

Bussbarger had the first of two sectional records when she flew through the 100-meter hurdles at 15.15 seconds. The time also met the state standard automatically qualifying the senior for the state meet in Bloomington.

"I only clipped one hurdle with my knee but it still felt good," Bussabarger said. "I didn't think I'd beat (New Albany's Hali Alexander) by as much as I did. I'm just shocked, but I'm glad I won. It feels good to win."

South Central's Rachel Pease qualified for the Bedford regional finishing third in both the 1,600-meter and 800-meter runs.

"I just wanted to get out," said Pease, who had to use an inhaler for exercise-induced asthma following the 1,600. "That's my goal, and I did it, so I'm fine with that. I just couldn't stay with (winner Stephanie Cave). She had a fast pace and my lungs just kind of shut off."

Floyd Central's Meghan Jones may have finished second in the high jump, but the junior made up for it in both the 400- and 200-meter dashes with first place finishes. In the 400 meters Jones's time of 58.11 seconds set both a school and sectional record.

"It was all about time," Jones said after her 400 run. "I got a :58 at conference and I broke the school record. I was hoping to get a low :58 or a :57 today. You want to be in the fast heat (at regional) because you have your competition right there with you in order to pace yourself."

North Harrison freshman Emily Giles also had plenty to smile about following the 200 meters when she placed fourth in 27.89 seconds.

"I'm excited," Giles said with a broad smile. "It was tiring. I just wanted it to be over. I wanted to get them all. I wanted to go to Bedford real bad. I was thinking in my head, 'They're going to get me. I've got to go.' "

Then came the 300-meter hurdles, where it first appeared that Hali Alexander had won over Floyd Central's Nikki Roberts. The disqualification came when Alexander made an illegal lane switch during the race. New Albany lost 10 points in what was already a tight race for the championship. Roberts got those 10 points after being declared the winner, and teammate Marissa Samons added even more by placing fourth. New Albany's Hannah Finchum scored, but was on the low end at seventh.

"Awesome," Roberts said after the run, but before finding out she had been declared the winner. "I was in the lane right next to Hali which pushed me that much more. At the end of the (first) 100, I could hear her right behind me I picked it up a little bit and she passed me in the turn. It was all I could do to stay with her. It felt like one of my better races."

"Everybody steps it up so much for regional," she said of her next meet. "You know all the people there are good no matter what. You've just got to be mentally tough."

With four events remaining New Albany had a double-digit deficit to make up. Kimberly Condra first won the 800 meters while Kaitlin Hein and Jessica Foster placed fourth and sixth, respectively. After making no gain in the 200 meters, Stephanie Cave and Saisha Rairdon took the first two spots in the 3,200 meters with Floyd settling for fifth and sixth. The final event of the 1,600-meter relay secured the meet win as New Albany won the event, with the Lady Highlanders finishing second.

"We've got a lot of people going," Harkema said. "We get to take a big bus, which is more fun to drive than the short bus. It was a good meet, and hopefully we made them a little nervous. It would have been a little more fun if we'd have won."

"We're hoping to get a couple of people through to state," she said. "We think Meghan can make it through in three events. Meghan has probably the best chance. Nikki has a shot in the hurdles. Our 4x100 has an outside, outside, outside, outside shot. We'll just go up there and see what happens."

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Girls' Scores - New Albany 148, Floyd Central 145, Corydon 82.5, Providence 70.5, North Harrison 51, South Central 39, Borden 36, Lanesville 19, Clarksville 7, Crawford County 6, Christian Academy 1

Girls' Results (Top 4 to regional) - 3,200-Meter Relay-1. New Albany 10:25.21, 2. Corydon 10:33.87, 3. Floyd Central 10:50.98, 4. Providence 11:03.61; 100-Meter Dash-1. Hannah Finchum (NA) 13.34, 2. Kellybrooke Lane (NA) 13.40, 3. Amanda Jones (Co) 13.62, 4. Ryan Meza (FC) 13.67; 100-Meter Hurdles-1. Meghan Bussabarger (Co) 15.15*, 2. Hali Alexander (NA) 15.49, 3. Nikki Roberts (FC) 17.25, 4. Olivia Allen (FC) 17.67; 200-Meter Dash-1. Meghan Jones (FC) 26.74, 2. Kellybrooke Lane (NA) 27.08, 3. Sierra Walsh (FC) 27.80, 4. Emily Giles (NH) 27.89; 1,600-Meter Run-1. Stephanie Cave (NA) 5:32.62, 2. Sasha Rairdon (NA) 5:36.53, 3. Rachel Pease (SC) 5:44.25, 4. Linden Spalding (Prov) 5:58.56; 400-Meter Relay-1. New Albany 51.50, 2. Floyd Central 51.85, 3. Corydon 53.78, 4. Providence 54.63; 400-Meter Dash-1. Meghan Jones (FC) 58.11**, 2. Brandi Waller (NA) 1:00.72, 3. Sarah Fray (Prov) 1:03.03, 4. Kelsey Mayfield (FC) 1:03.96; 300-Meter Hurdles-1. Nikki Roberts (FC) 49.53, 2. Shelby Miller (SC) 50.78, 3. Mallory Allgeier (NH) 52.51, 4. Marissa Samons (FC) 53.24; 800-Meter Run-1. Kimberly Condra (NA) 2:33.91, 2. Olivia Wiseman (Co) 2:34.62, 3. Rachel Pease (SC) 2:35.70, 4. Kaitlin Hein (FC) 2:36.30; 3,200-Meter Run-1. Stephanie Cave (NA) 12:43.26, 2. Saisha Rairdon (NA) 12:50.29, 3. Kallie Ash (Prov) 13:12.10, 4. Miranda Kaake (Lnsvl) 13:17.83; 1,600-Meter Relay-1. New Albany 4:13.86, 2. Floyd Central 4:23.58, 3. Corydon 4:24.61, 4. South Central 4:26.09; High Jump-1. Meghan Bussabarger (Co) 5-4, 2. Meghan Jones (FC) 5-0, 3. Jensen Ricke (NA) 5-0, 4. Alex Roden (Prov) 4-8; Long Jump-1. Anjelicia Groves (NA) 16-5-1/4, 2. Brigid Morrisey (FC) 16-0, 3. Nikki Roberts (FC) 15-6-1/2, 4. Alexis Very (Prov) 15-4-1/4; Discus-1. Heidi Zimmerman (Co) 97-5, 2. Amanda Hartley (NH) 95-1-1/2, 3. Sara Hausz (Lnsvl) 91-3-1/2, 4. Sierra Martin (Bor) 88-7-1/2; Shot Put-1. Melissa Hunt (Bor) 35-1-3/4, 2. Abigail Day (SC) 33-1-1/4, 3. Kayla Meisner (Prov) 29-9-1/4, 4. Heidi Zimmerman (Co) 29-6; Pole Vault-1. Britany Newton (Bor) 8-0, 2. Sarah Schraffenberger (FC) 7-6, 3. Payton Rice (FC) 6-6, 4. Caitlyn Byrd (Co) 6-0

*State Standard and Sectional Record

**Sectional Record

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