Vikings too deep for Dowagiac

Published 1:22 pm Thursday, May 6, 2004

By By DAN WEISS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- The Niles-Dowagiac rivalry is alive and well, only this time it was played out on the track.
The Niles track and field teams swept visiting Dowagiac Wednesday afternoon in Big 16 Conference West Division action. The Niles boys beat Dowagiac 106-57 and the Niles girls beat Dowagiac 133-33.
Both Dowagiac teams were seriously outnumbered, but that didn't stop members of all four squads from pushing themselves.
The Lady Vikings improved to 3-1 overall and 2-1 in the West Division. The Niles boys remain undefeated this season at 4-0 including 3-0 in the division. The Dowagiac girls and boys are both 0-3 in the West Division.
The Chieftains enjoyed several bright spots but the Niles boys dominated the meet overall, taking at least three of the top four places in nine events and sweeping the relay races.
The Lady Vikings also used their depth to outdistance Dowagiac. Niles took three or more places in 10 events and also swept the relays.
Niles sophomore Ashley Austin tied the school record in the shot put with a toss of 33-8. Freshman Chelsea Bennett won the discus with a throw of 94-2.5.
Individual event winners for the Niles girls included Austin, Bennett, Amanda Britton in the long jump (13-8.5), Alex Ranft in the high jump (4-6), Angel Brown in the 100-meter hurdles (19.84), Tasha Webster in the 100-meter dash (13.15), Kristin Lamarre in the 400-meter dash (1:09.72), Elle Glueckert in the 800-meter run (2:53.02) and Mariette Strauss in the 200-meter dash (27.52).
Brown's winning time in the 100-meter hurdles and Samantha Schaller's second-place time of 20.19 were both personal bests.
The Niles relay teams, especially the sprint relays, have been dominant this season and continued that trend Wednesday with winning times of 56.0 in the 400-meters, 1:55.25 in the 800-meters, 5:59.5 in the 1,600-meters and 13:51.95 in the 3,200-meters.
Individual event winners for the Dowagiac girls included Amanda VanHusan in the 1,600-meter run (6:21.36) and the 3,200-meter run (15:10.65) and Anne O'Keefe in the 300-meter hurdles (56.26)
Individual event winners for the Niles boys included James Edwards in the shot put (42-7) and discus (135-9), Otis West in the long jump (19-0), Kurt Poehlman in the high jump (5-6), Josh Mann in the 800-meter run (2:05.83) and Logan Todd in the 3,200-meter run (11:02.56).
Dowagiac senior Devon Jackson, who came into Wednesday's meet undefeated in dual meets in the 100-meter dash, 200-meter dash and 400-meter dash, swept all three races.
Jackson edged Niles freshman Isaiah Glaze in the 100-meters with a winning time of 10.64. Glaze's time was 10.7. Jackson won the 200-meters with a time of 21.97 and the 400-meters with a time of 51.88.
Dowagiac freshman Donta Young won the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 15.51 and the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 42.19. Bradley Lee won the 1,600-meter run with a time of 4:58.55.