By David Fong
TROY — It was practically over before it really got started.
The Troy girls track and field team’s bid for an eighth-consecutive Greater Western Ohio Conference American North Division crown began with the field events at noon Wednesday at Troy Memorial Stadium. While the running events didn’t start until three hours later, by the time the five field events ended, the Trojans pretty much had the North crown wrapped up before the running events even began.
With two events — the 800 and 3,200 — remaining Friday, Troy already has clinched the crown with a whopping 183 points. Of those 183 points, 80 came from the field events alone. That field events score is significant in that the team in second place in the North, Greenville, has 75 points going into Friday’s events. Butler is third with 60.5 points.
“I don’t know that I’ve ever seen that before,” Troy girls coach Kurt Snyder said of Wednesday’s field event dominance. “The other good thing is that means we have all 10 girls in those events competing Friday.”
Troy will look to capture its second overall GWOC title in a row Friday. Only the top performers in each event Wednesday will get to compete in Friday’s meet.
Troy was loaded with top competitors in the field events Wednesday. Of the 10 girls competing in the five field events, all 10 finished fourth or higher in their respective events.
Leading the way was sophomore Lenea Browder, who won both the shot put (44-3, a new GWOC meet record) and the discus (127-1). Alaura Holycross was second in the shot put (34-10), while Kylee Brooks was fourth in the discus (102-10). Camryn Moeller won the long jump (17-0), while Annah Stanley was third (16-0).
In the high jump, Jessica Goodwin was first (5-1), while Hallie Westmeyer tied for second (4-11). In the p0le vault, Christine Moser was second (10-9), while Lilli Cusick was third (9-6).
“We’ve had so many kids step up this season. We go 1-2 in the high jump with two girls who didn’t jump varsity last year. Goodwin didn’t crack the varsity lineup and Westmeyer was in the eighth grade last year. The growth Lilli Cusick has made the past two weeks since she cleared 9-feet has been incredible. Her confidence and her vaulting have really improved.”
Troy had another surprise performance in the 300 hurdles, where sophomore La’Zaya Barger — who only began running hurdles a few weeks ago — won in 50.48 seconds. Goodwin was fourth in 51.84 seconds. Goodwin also was second in the 100 hurdles (16.29 seconds).
“She just started doing the hurdles two weeks ago,” Snyder said of Barger. “We threw her in a JV meet and she went out and ran outstanding. We put her in a this meet and she wins the North.”
Freshman Brennah Hutchinson won the 400 (1:01.00) and was third (13.29) in the 100, while Annah Stanley was fourth in the 100 (13.48). Moeller was third in the 200 (27.55). Olivia Tyre was fourth in the 1,600 (5:40.20).
The 4×800 relay team of Olivia Tyre, Dinah Gigandet, Ciena Miller and Megan Myers won the North in 10:27.11. The 4×100 relay team of Stanley, Moeller, Evelyn Plunkett and Laura Borchers also took first place (50.95). The 4×400 relay team of Hutchinson, Katie Lord, Borchers and Alekhya Gollamudi took first in 4:17.28. The 4×200 relay team of Plunkett, Hutchinson, Lord and Borchers was second (1:49.84).
“We had a lot of girls have an outstanding meet,” Snyder said. “Hutchinson, Borchers and Plunkett have both come a long way in a short amount of time. We put Moeller is so many events and she had a great night.”
All of which led to an eighth-straight North title, something no team has come close to accomplishing since the conference was formed in 2001.
“Every year, it feels like we have a different group of kids who are going for that goal,” Snyder said. “The kids who have been there before lead the way for the kids who haven’t. They have high expectations for themselves and the team and the younger kids follow them.”
Tippecanoe in fourth
The Tippecanoe girls track and field team is in fourth place with 47 points after the first day of competition.
In the 1,600, Katie Taylor was first (5:17.36), while Kaili Titley was second (5:33.39). Lydia Stueve won the 100 hurdles (16.10 seconds). Titley was fourth in the 400 (1:02.18).
The 4×800 team took third (10:43.75).
Contact David Fong at email@example.com; follow him on Twitter @thefong