high jumper Amelia Serrat clears the bar last Friday at the
Berea Kiwanis Relays. Serrat and the Demons took third in the
high jump relay with a combined effort of 14-08. (West Life
photo by Larry Bennet)
girls on a roll
By Jim Horvath
Published May 7, 2008
the Westlake Relays and the Southwestern Conference Meet looming
just ahead, the Westlake girls track team showed it will be a force
to be reckoned with at those meets and beyond.
Last Friday, the Demons finished a strong third at
the 52nd annual Berea Kiwanis Relays at George Finnie Stadium. Powerhouse
Medina topped the strong field with 96 points, followed by North
Royalton with 94.17 and Westlake and Highland with 92 points each.
Westlake’s boys team finished 10th in the meet with
45 points, with Medina’s boys winning it all with a score of 129.
North Olmsted’s boys finished fourth with 73 points, while the Eagle
girls were sixth with 80 points.
sophomore Grace Pophal (above) clears the bar in the pole vault
“Right now, I like our depth as a team,” said Demons
head coach Duane Miller. ‘I also like the individual performances
we’re getting. I think we’re rounding into form. We’ll use the Westlake
Relays next week to make some minor adjustments and prepare for
the conference meet.
“Medina is a tough team. Not only do they have depth,
but they have a lot of talented athletes as well. They’ve been very
impressive this spring, and I think they’re going to represent Northeast
Ohio well when the state meet rolls around,” he said.
Westlake grabbed a pair of first place finishes at
Berea, where weather caused the cancellation of a number of events.
The Demons won the discus relay with a 318-08 behind
the performances of Bridget McNeill, Emily Stephenson and Katie
Vivona. The team score set a new school record, while McNeill again
broke the school record with her individual performance.
Hanna Dixon helped the Demons’ long jump relay to a second place
finish at the Berea Kiwanis Relays last Friday.
“With Bridget being a state qualifier and Katie and
Emily each throwing over 100, when you put them together you’d expect
them to do well,” said Miller. “As a rule, athletes usually pick
up 10 feet per year. Bridget still has about four or five feet to
“If they’re all on at the same time, then we’re really
going to have a strong showing there,” he added.
The other first went to the 4 X 1600 relay team of
Megan Dunlap, Lauren Ledek, Jen Tomasch and Allisonn Beverly. They
came across the finish line first with a time of 22:59.49 after
not doing nearly as well the prior week at the Comet Relays, according
“Our distance coach made an adjustment in the order,
and we’re really happy with the results,” said Miller. “In the past,
we’ve had some talented distance runners, but because of injuries
we didn’t have the depth to be successful in this event. We’ve been
developing that depth again, and it showed on Friday.”
The Demons’ overall depth showed throughout the meet.
The long jump relay finished second with a score of
46-4.5 and the shot put relay was third with an 89-0. The high jump
relay took third with a score of 14-8 to close out the scoring for
Eagle girls win shot put again
The tandem of Christine Kanis, Amanda Taylor and Carla
Bittner followed their win at the Comet Relays with another strong
showing at Berea. They won the shot put relay with a combined effort
of 97-11.75. Kanis had the top throw of the day with a 35-0.
The 4 X 1600 relay team of Alex Goots, Melanie Trefny,
Vanessa Gut and Philly Dixon took third with a time of 23:28.25,
while Andria Bazilevich finished third in the 3200 with an 11:50.04.
She was only five seconds off the school record, which was set in
“With such a young and inexperienced team, I wasn’t
sure what we could do in such a competitive meet like this,” said
Eagles head coach Lisa Pochatek. “I’ve told them all along we’re
not going to be a very good dual meet team, and that chipping away
at events in the big meets is where we are going to see the most
North Olmsted also got a pair of fourth place finishes
in the discus relay of Mary Bridges, Therese Madden and Bittner
and the 400 relay of Sarah Whitney, Breanna Castaneda, Meghan Drews
and Morgan Pochatek.
North Olmsted, Westlake boys score
The North Olmsted boys team won the 400 relay with
a time of 45.01 thanks to the efforts of Phil Tomko, Cory Molnar,
Pat Tomko and Jordan Hoppel. Westlake was third with a time of 46.31.
Chris Arlinghaus tied for the best individual effort
in the high jump relay with his leap of 6-2. That tied him with
Jerry Koenig of North Royalton and Kenny Stephens of Willoughby
South. Willoughby south won the event with a combined score of 18-0.
Westlake’s shot put relay came in second with an effort
Zangmeister second in 3200
In the girls meet, Fairview’s Jessica Zangmeister
finished with a strong showing in the 3200 run with a time of 11:18.10.
The only girl who was better that day was North Royalton’s distance
ace, Hannah Neczypor, who set a new meet record with a time of 10:48.66.