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MC boys give Eagles first loss, Central girls complete sweep
The Manheim Central boys and girls track and field teams swept Cocalico Monday afternoon in Manheim to remain undefeated atop Section Two.
The Baron boys (3-0 L-L) scored a 95.5-54.5 win to hand the Eagles (2-1 L-L) their first loss. Central was led by senior Cole Sunderland, who won both the 800 and 1,600-meter runs while anchoring the winning 4×400 and 4×800 relays.
The Lady Barons (3-0 L-L), meanwhile, led the Lady Eagles (0-3 L-L) wire-to-wire for a 103-46 win. Manheim was paced by junior B.J. Bollinger, who captured both the High Hurdle and 300 Hurdle events. She also showed her versatility by winning the high jump and anchoring the 4×400 relay.
In the boys meet, MC won all three relays, while the two teams split the eight individual track events. Overall, the Barons outscored Cocalico 57.5-29.5 on the track. The highlight of the afternoon was Manheim’s 1-2 punch of Gunnar Royer (11.0) and Brock Hochstetler (11.2) in the 100. Royer’s time was tied for the best finish in the L-L League this season.
“He got off to a really great, explosive start,” MC coach Russ White said of Royer. “He maintained his drive phase and got into a nice rhythm into the finish line.”
Cocalico senior Demetrius Whitsett captured both hurdle events (110, 15.5) (300, 42.0) while also winning the long jump with a distance of 19-11 ¼.
“I was very happy with our kids approach to the meet,” Eagle coach Ron Derr. “I saw good preparation, good competitiveness.”
In the field events, MC continued the advantage, outpointing Cocalico 38-25. A spirited javelin competition saw several lead changes and two L-L League top-five finishes for Baron Jay Barreto (177-3) and Eagle junior Brad Heck (176-2).
“There are times when kids challenge each other,” Derr said.
“They kept trading off the lead,” White added. “They kept out-doing each other. It was some real tough, friendly competition.”
Sunderland’s most impressive finish came in the 4×800, as he received the baton more than 100 meters behind the competition. He made up the difference in the first lap, then pulled away at the end for the win.
Turning to the girls, Manheim Central dominated on the track, winning each of three relays and all eight individual contests, giving them a big 75-12 advantage.
In addition to Bollinger’s heroics, senior Kiera Wells swept the sprints, winning the 100 (12.6) and 200 (27.0), while anchoring the 4×100 win.
“I wondered how she would respond to returning from a sore hamstring,” White said. “I think her performance answers the question whether she’s ready to go or not.”\\
Sophomore Mallory Sunderland showed the Lady Barons also have strength in the distance events, taking both the 1,600 (5:37.9) and the 3,200 (12:59) while also anchoring the 4×800 victory.
Coach Derr knew this would be an uphill climb for his girls.
“They don’t have a real big team, but the quality of the girls is just tremendous,” he said. “There are no real holes in their lineup.”
The Lady Eagles more than held their own on the field side, outscoring the Lady Barons 34-28. Cocalico won four of the seven events as freshman Jayden Sweigart won the triple jump at 31-1/2, junior Franny Martin captured the pole vault with a PR of 7-0, junior Mackensie Hainley outdistanced the field in the javelin (119-11) and junior Katie Carrasco dominated the field with another PR in the discus at 121-6.
The Lady Barons were victorious in the long jump behind Codi Bollinger (15-4 3/4), Elsie Kline in the shot put (31-5), and B.J. Bollinger in the high jump (4-8).
“When we saw the forecast,” White said, “we were excited that this would be a great opportunity for personal records. And there were many. For us, it’s team balance. We’ve tried to spread our athletes out to cover most of the events. To be a good dual meet team, that’s one of the keys.”
White’s boys team has won the Section two championship the past two seasons, while the girls have not won since 1989.
“I know Joe Zimmerman had a PR in the triple jump and one of our milers, Dylan Becker had a PR there (4:46.4),” Derr said. “Hopefully, at this point they are still hungry to go higher and faster.”
Up next for the Eagles is a home meet with Solanco next Tuesday afternoon. The Barons go on the road this afternoon (Wednesday) with a non-league meet at Elco and return to section play next Tuesday at Lebanon.