Niles track team wins regional title for first time in 20 years

Published 2:15 am Monday, May 23, 2005

By By SCOTT NOVAK / Niles Daily Star
NILES - It was 20 years in the making, but the Niles boys' track team can once again call itself regional champions.
The Vikings, who captured the Big 16 West Division title this season with a perfect 4-0 record, was the class of the field Friday night at Allegan High School.
Niles won three out of the four relays on its way to scoring 78 points. Vicksburg was second with 69 points, while West Division foe Lakeshore was third with 63.5 points.
West Division foes Dowagiac and St. Joseph finished tied for ninth with 24 points.
The Vikings won the 3,200-, 800- and 400-meter relays Friday night.
The 3,200-meter relay team of Logan Todd, Austin Neilson, Nick Schuck and Dan Geiger posted a time of 8:15.67.
Niles ran 1:31.54 to win the 800-meter relay with the team of Quinten King, Craig Rumph, Otis West and Isaiah Glaze.
The unit of King, West, Robert Cinninger and Glaze won the 400-meters with a time of 43.8.
Niles also picked up regional championships in the 100-meters with Glaze, who ran 10.9 and West in the 200-meters. West was clocked at 22.3.
The Vikings earned one regional championship in the field events where Kurt Poehlman cleared 6-4.
The Vikings finished third in the 1,600-meter relay with a time of 3:32.4, while King was fourth in the fourth in the 100-meters with a time of 11.3. Geiger took fourth in the 800-meters with a clocking of 2:01.8, while West finished fifth in the long jump with a leap of 20-2.75.
Also finishing fifth was Steve Scally in the 3,200-meters with a time of 10:18.9.
Todd said their first goal is to finish higher than any other Niles team at the Big 16 Conference meet on Wednesday at St. Joseph High School.
Todd said that winning the conference championship is a tall order considering all the Division 1 teams the Vikings will face.
The second goal is to make school history by winning the team state championship of the modern era.
The final goal is for Niles to have its highest finish at the MHSAA state meet (since the 1960s).
By winning the regional meet, Niles now qualifies for the MITCA team state finals which will be held after the Michigan High School Athletic Association finals in June.
The Niles girls' team finished 13th with 16 points.
West Division champion St. Joseph won its third consecutive regional championship as the Lady Bears amassed 65 points.
Paw Paw was second with 62 points. Host Allegan finished third with 58.5 points.
West Division foes Lakeshore and Dowagiac finished sixth and 11th respectively with 36 and 21 points.
Niles did not have a regional champion in the girls' meet and none advanced to the state finals.
The Lady Vikings did get a third place finish from Chelsea Bennett in the discus where she finished with a distance of 106-7.
Samantha Brawley finished fourth in the 3,200-meters with a time of 12:25.9.
Ashley Austin was fifth in the shot put with a toss of 33-7.25. The Lady Vikings were also fifth in the 3,200-meter relay where it ran a time of 10:49.61.
The Vikings, Bears, Chieftains and Lancers will all return to the track on Wednesday when they head to St. Joseph to compete against the East and Central divisions in the Big 16 Conference track meet.
Field events begin at noon.
Boys results
Niles 78, Vicksburg 69, Lakeshore 63.5, Plainwell 56, Gull Lake 46.5, Otsego 34, Three Rivers 31, Allegan 25, Dowagiac 24, St. Joseph 24, Hastings 23.5, Mattawan 19, South Haven 18, Sturgis 22 .5, Paw Paw 2
Winners and area placers
High Jump: 1. Kurt Poehlman (Niles) 6-4
Pole Vault: 1. Jarrod Tuinstra (PW) 13-3, 2. Kyle Bennettt (D) 12-9
Long jump: 1. Isaiah Jones (D) 20-10 1/2, 5. Otis West (Niles) 20-2 3/4
3200 relay: 1. Niles 8:15.7 (Logan Todd, Austin Nielson, Nick Schuck, Daniel Geiger)
100 dash: 1. Isaiah Glaze (Niles) 10.9, 4. Quinten King (Niles) 11.3
800 relay: 1. Niles 1:31.50 (King, Craig Rumpf, Otis West, Glaze)
400 relay: 1. Niles 43.80 (King, West, Robert Cinninger, Glaze), 3. Dowagiac 45.2;
800 run: 1. Roberts (V) 1:55.60, 4. Daniel Geiger (Niles) 2:01.8
200 dash: 1. West (Niles) 22.30
3200 run: 1. Roberts (V) 9:40.7, 5. Stephen Scally (Niles) 10:18.9
1600 relay: 1. Hastings 3:30.5, 3. Niles 3:32.4 (King, Rumpf, Schuck, Todd)
Girls results
St. Joseph 65, Paw Paw 62, Allegan 58.5, Vicksburg 55, Gull Lake 51, Dowagiac 36, Otsego 34.5, Plainwell 32, South Haven 30, Sturgis 23, Lakeshore 21, Mattawan 19, Niles 16, Three Rivers 15, Hastings 9, Comstock 0
Winners and area placers
Shot put: 1. Hillary Weyenberg (V) 36-2.5, 5. Ashley Austin (N) 33-7.25
Discus: 1. Rachel Denison (ST) 110-11, 3. Chelsea Bennett (N) 106-7
Long jump: 1. Jasmine Martin (SH) 16-3.25, 3. Ashley Urbanski (D) 15-6, 4, Sada Nealey (D) 15-5.5
Pole vault: 1. Ann O'Keefe (D) 10-0
3200 relay: 1. Allegan 9:49.59, 5. Niles 10:49.61
100 dash: 1. Jasmine Martin (SH) 12.34, 3. Ashley Urbanski (D) 13.13, 5. Tasha Webster (N) 13.38
400 relay: 1. Dowagiac 51.2 (Ann O'Keefe, Sada Nealey, Katy Stuppy, Ashley Urbanski)
3200 run: 4. Samantha Brawley (N) 12:25.9