DASH High School Track 2017 St John NW Military Academy Meet Report

Hello DASH families,

The DASH varsity high school track and field team was found in Delafield last Saturday, competing in a 10-team meet at St John’s NW Military Academy. The team has been training hard, and gearing up for this meet all season. The weather was absolutely gorgeous. There would be nothing like a head wind keeping us from posting some fast times. And fast times would be needed to bring home our share of individual medals and keep us in contention for the team awards.

The 4×800 relay got the big day of racing started. Kayla Walters looked like her old self as she got the girls off to good start. Emma Taylor ran the second leg and ended up with the fastest split among the girls. Add another event to Emma’s growing list. Jessy Homa ran a nice two laps and then Zipporah Caspers finished off a 2nd place finish for the girls. Caleb Schaber got our boys 4×800 team into the lead. Then Brian Durbin ran the next two laps and kept us on a DASH record setting pace, but we still fell behind the Living Word Lutheran team. Vincent Maurer then kept us a few steps off the lead before handing off to Drake Hacker. Drake crossed the finish line in 2nd place with a time of 9:20. That is the new DASH record, and an unexpected one. The boys were outstanding. In the 100 hurdles, Grace Zinkgraf used a personal best 21.68 to edge Ella Johnson by .01 second. Elisabeth Krmpotich stayed right with them until she took a spill midway. Elijah Edlund had a great race going, but his landing on the last hurdle slowed him some. He still set a DASH record of 21.15. That time will be going lower soon. Joshua Below almost matched Elijah with his 21.36. Our hurdlers are working hard and are fun to watch. Grace Zinkgraf got the 100 meters started by winning her heat with a personal best 15.56. Zoe Smith looked fast and placed 7th overall, and Kayla Bruton got her day started by earning the 2nd place medal with a time of 13.57. Samuel Zinkgraf posted a nice 12.42 to place 8th. Jared Aguilar broke 13 seconds for the first time with a 12.80, and Will Farrell posted a 13.40 in his first race of the season. The much awaited 1600 was next. Olivia Chapman stayed in the lead pack early. The pack eventually dwindled to three girls, and in the end no one was able to stay with Olivia. Olivia’s 5:40.54 won the meet and lowered the DASH record by a fraction of a second. Very nice! Abby Chu did a 6:11 to get her day started. I know she can even go lower as she gains experience in the event. Becky Tabler looked much better this week and earned us the 8th place point. Every point would be important. In the boys 1600, six guys went under 5 minutes including senior Justin Chu. Justin was pushed to a 4:52 to earn the 3rd place medal. His times are really getting low. Caleb Schaber did a personal best 5:11 as he continues to amaze. Brian Durbin’s 5:20 gave us 3 in the top 8. No other team could match our depth. Our girls ran well in 4×200 relay, but we had a handoff outside of the exchange zone missing out on some 2nd place points. The boys 4×200 team of Jared Aguilar, Joshua Schaber, Ben Hughes, and John Klaves set a DASH record of 1:46 to place 4th. This year’s group of boy sprinters are the best we’ve had. We placed three girls in the top-6 in the 400. Kayla Walters was 6th, Kayla Bruton 4th, and Rebecca Doak 2nd. Rebecca is now number 2 on the DASH record list with her 1:09.12. She really heads down the home stretch fast. Elijah Edlund matched his 1:02 from the week before for the boys. Joshua Below had a personal record 1:01. He is catching the DASH fans attention. Joshua Roets broke a minute to be the team leader. The 4×100 was next, and the girls team got DQ’d again. They kept going and had a great time, but we obviously have to work on our handoffs. The boys team was helped by another teams’ DQ to earn the 3rd place medals. Jared Aguilar, Ben Hughes, and John Klaves were joined by Will Farrell to break yet another DASH record with their 51.05. Our hurdlers were back running and jumping through 300 meters. Alivia Kempf and Ella Johnson just missed going under a minute, also just missed the DASH record. Emma Taylor did both and ended up 3rd overall with her 59.11. I am looking forward to the 300 meters like never before. Elijah Edlund did a nice 54.92 in his first attempt at the event. Joshua Below did a 51.97 to place 8th. Elijah and Joshua would have done a little better if the coach could have left them off the 400 team. Olivia Chapman took over the girls 800 race in the second lap giving her a second victory on the day. Abby Chu had a great finish, moving all the way up to 3rd in a photo finish. Zipporah Caspers gave us a 3rd girl in the points with her 2:55. The field for the boys 800 race was particularly strong, partly because of our boys. Justin Chu was back giving the team another 3rd place finish with a personal best 2:13. Brian Durbin’s 2:18 effort nailed down 6th, and Caleb Schaber held off a couple older boys at the end to finish behind Brian. Our 800 teams were outstanding. The event that gave us the most team points was the girls 200. Rebecca Doak and Katie Gorectke went stride for stride to the finish to take 4th and 5th. Rebecca came out .01 seconds ahead in another photo finish. Kayla Bruton did a personal best 28.30 and kept all the other girls behind her. That adds up to 19 points for the girls in one event. In the boys 200, Joshua Roets came in just ahead of Joshua Schaber with both boys breaking 27 seconds for the first time. Samuel Zinkgraf powered his way to a 25.68 to place 8th. Kayla Walters placed 5th overall in her first attempt at the 3200. Becky Tabler finished close behind with some good racing, and Zipporah Caspers also made it through in less than 16 minutes. Drake Hacker paced himself very well and moved himself up into 4th place on the last lap in his 3200. Vincent Maurer did well with his 12:45.

The 4×400 teams will get their own paragraph. Nothing can beat a close 4×400. Going full speed for a mile, with new athletes taking their turn each lap, keeps the tension and excitement building throughout the race. We got that twice on this day. Julia Radewahn went first for our girls, and after the first turn we found out the Brookfield Academy team was going to be our competition. Despite a 1:10 split from Julia, the first BA girl got a step ahead down the homestretch. Emma Taylor would then take her turn at her favorite event. Emma was running about even with 100 meters to go, but the BA girl, (who happened to be former DASH star Sammie Ronge), was able to get a step on her before the next handoff. Another 1:10 split down and we were still a step back. Abby Chu took the baton and the chase was back on. Abby got right on the girls heals on the backstretch and the girls were running side by side around the last turn, but once again the BA girl was able to stay a step ahead before the handoff. We would get one more chance to get ahead. The pressure and the baton went to Rebecca Doak. Rebecca paced a step or two back, but then finally the BA team cracked. Rebecca surged around the last turn and the Brookfield Academy girl had no answer. To great fanfare, Rebecca sped down the home stretch to victory. The girls clocked in with a new DASH record of 4:39.73 with all the girls doing about 1:10 splits. Justin Chu took the baton first for the boys. Justin’s 57 second split got us into the lead a few steps ahead of the Messmer team. Joshua Roets took his turn and increased our lead to a little over 10 meters. We were in very good position, but Messmer was staying within striking distance. John Klaves raced around in 57 seconds, but even with that pace our lead shrunk. Samuel Zinkgraf would get the finishing duties and try to hold off the Messmer anchor. Down the back stretch our lead dwindled some more, and after the last turn it was down to a step. 1500 meters were behind us. It was now a 100 meter race with Samuel a step ahead. Samuel could feel the Messmer boy close, and tried to kick it up another notch, while the Messmer athlete who had worked so hard to catch Samuel started showing some fatigue. In a wild finish Samuel refused to be passed, literally falling over the line to victory. What a finish! And yes, it was a new DASH record – 3:48. Like the girls, the boys all clocked in with even splits. It was definitely a team victory, and one we will be talking about for a long time.

While I did not get to witness many, we had a pretty good day in field events. Alivia Kempf made 4’2″ and Ella Johnson 3’10” in the high jump, both personal bests. Will Farrell and Brendan Sanchez reached upper 60’s in the discus. Our girl discus throwers, Elisabeth Krmpotich, Grace Zinkgraf, and Zipporah Caspers placed 4-5-6. Very nice. Kayla Bruton jumped 13-09, and Rebecca Doak just under 12 feet. The long jumping boys had a very good day. Joshua Below did a 14’07”. Joshua Schaber landed an unexpectedly good 16’8″ jump, and John Klaves hit 17 feet for the first time. Zoe Smith and Emma Taylor threw the shot put in the low 19’s, and Elisabeth Krmpotich had a nice 21’3″ throw. The shot put boys had the best day in DASH history. Brendan Sanchez had a personal best 28’8″ throw. Elijah Edlund was over 30 feet again, this time hitting the 30’6″ mark. And after a long wait, Samuel Zinkgraf did it. He is now the new shot put DASH record holder – 33’2.25″. We had one more DASH record in the triple jump. Katie Gorectke, in just her first try at the event, made it to the 27’5.5″ mark. Very nice!

The team scores came in and our boys finished a strong 4th. Our girls came close to catching the very good Living Word Lutheran team, but they nipped us again. The final score was 159-141 in their favor. I thought the team was outstanding. We can hold our heads up high, and start thinking about what we can improve on to be a little stronger next year. I know I am already thinking about it. It will be all about the team again this Friday at the Pacer Relays. I hope to see you there.

Thanks to Ed Beck, Chuck Maurer, Garrett Missiaen, and Greg Kempf for their help with the coaching. Thanks to Hataya Johnson and Faith Caspers for taking another set of great photos. Thanks to the DASH fans for helping the athletes give us their best. And thanks to Lee and Connie Krmpotich for opening up their home for the great post-race festivities. It was a special way to end a great day of DASH racing.

Take care,
Jim Caspers

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