Two Bulldogs win state track titles 2012.06.06

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

It’s not over ‘til it’s over, and for Morenci’s two state champions, it certainly wasn’t over until the end.

brooke.boveeNeither Brooke Bovee nor Austin Sandusky had the lead heading down the final stretch of their races Saturday at the state track and field finals at Jenison High School.

Bovee, Morenci’s junior hurdler, had the race tied by her second to the last hurdle of the 300-meter race and was in control at the final hurdle to claim her victory.

For Sandusky, the freshman sprinter, it wasn’t until he lunged with his head at the finish line to win his 400-meter dash race, but even that wasn’t the end. He found out later that his time tied a runner from the first heat and the two shared the prize.

For Morenci coach Brad Brown, it was the first state title since 2003 when Ryan McDowell took the 300-meter hurdle championship. And with Bovee’s accomplishment, it marked the first time a female title was won since Brown started coaching here.

“Brooke was considerably behind the first-place girl going into the home stretch,” Brown said. He figures she was at least 10 meters behind with 100 yet to run.

She slowly pulled away from another competitor and with two hurdles yet to go, she pulled even with the leader. At that point, Brown was sure he had a winner.

“She had a look on her face that I hadn’t seen before,” he said. “I really thought she was going to get the job done.”

The win was a little unexpected because Brown thought Bovee had her best shot in the 100-meter hurdle race earlier in the day. Her 100 time was right there at her best for the season, but she still came in third.

She knew she ran a good race, Brown said, and that helped her prepare mentally for the next one.

“She went into the 300s with a better perspective,” he said. “I think that mindset helped her win it.”

Austin.SanduskyBovee recorded a time of :15.58 in the 100-meter race, behind the leader at :15.37 and second place at :15.58. In the 300s, she crossed the line at :47.55, with second place trailing at :48.42.

At the start of the season, Coach Brown was worried about Bovee’s chances in the 300-meter race because she lacked conditioning after choosing not to play basketball. Hard work brought her back into shape at the right time.

Coach Brown can’t recall ever hearing of a tie between two runners in different heats, with the time the same to three decimal points, but that’s what happened to Austin Sandusky.

Brown wasn’t even sure if the freshman won his own heat when he saw him cross the line. Less than a quarter of a second covered the first three runners.

His winning time through the fully automated system was :50.917.

Sandusky got a break when another runner scratched out of the race. This moved him from lane six to lane two where he could keep an eye on the competition.

“It’s definitely a benefit to watch the others,” Brown said, “but I think he ran it pretty much as he normally does.”

“Normal” might be an odd word to use since Sandusky is still fairly new to the 400-meter event and practice time was limited since he was a starter on the baseball team.

Sandusky began the day with 100-meter dash runs. He placed fourth in his first run to advance to the semifinals, then took a third to move on to the finals.

He placed fourth overall at :11.40, edging out familiar foes from Addison and Summerfield.

“That’s what it takes at the state meet,” Brown said about Sandusky’s preliminary races. “You need to run your best in each one.”

Nine year had passed since Morenci had a state champion.

“To get two on one day is something special,” Brown said.

PLESS—Sophomore Tatyana Pless got off to too fast of a start in the 1600-meter race.

“She got caught up in the adrenaline of the race and she paid for it by the third lap,” Coach Brown said. 

She finished the race at 5:46—not her best of the season—but got the experience of running in the state meet, Brown said, and now has the incentive to return and improve.

GLECKER—Morenci nearly had two medal-winners in the 300-meter hurdlers. Freshman Madi Glecker placed third in her heat, but the two ahead of her were top-eight medal-winners.

Her time of :50.1 was good for ninth place, just 0.3 second away from all-state status.

Two Div. IV records were set Saturday. Jacob Patrick of Litchfield threw the discus 190 feet and Adam Abbott of Detroit Cristo Rey long jumped 22-3.75.

  • Front.tug
    MORENCI pep rallies generally end with a tug of war. The senior class entry, shown above, did not advance to the finals. Griffin Grieder, Alaina Webster, Kyle Long and Jazmin Smith are shown at the front of the rope, giving it their best effort.
  • Accident
    FAYETTE resident Patricia Stambaugh, 64, was declared dead on the scene of a single-vehicle accident Friday morning south of Morenci. Rescue units were called around 9 a.m., but as of Tuesday, law enforcement officers had not yet determined the time of the accident. According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stambaugh was driving west on U.S. 20 when her Chevrolet Malibu traveled off the north side of the road and down a steep embankment, coming to rest in Bean Creek (Tiffin River).
  • Athletic Fields
    SPORTS COMPLEX—Fayette’s outdoor athletic facilities will include three ball fields for summer recreation leagues at the southwest corner of the school. The baseball and softball fields, along with the running track, will be constructed on the east side of the school. Outdoor athletic fields were not part of the new school project from 2007, but voters approved a $1.4 million levy for a school addition and the sports fields last August. Both projects are scheduled to be complete by July 20.
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.band
    TROMBONISTS Jake Myers (left) and Max Baker perform Friday at the annual Senior Citizens Luncheon at Fayette High School. The National Honor Society and the FFA chapter teamed up to serve a meal to area seniors and to provide musical entertainment. Both the school band and choir performed. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.

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