The following story originally appeared in the May 26 edition of The Press.
The Brookside High School boys and girls track and field teams faced some stiff competition at the Midview Division II track districts last week, including Bay, which took first in girls and second in boys. The Cardinals did however advance one girl and one boy to this week’s regionals.
Brookside junior Kayla Chrosniak set a new personal best and broke her own school record in the 400, taking second overall with a time of 1:03.13, behind Bay’s Kelsey Barnes. AuBree LaForce of Vermilion (1:03.56) and Mackenzie Mielcare of Clearview (1:04.14) finished third and fourth, respectively.
Chrosniak, whose previous personal best was 1:04, admitted the stiff competition made her nervous entering the race.
“My main goal was to see how far I can take it and if I could get out to regionals,” she said. “I was actually really nervous because the girls that I raced against, they’ve all run 62 seconds before. My main goal was to stick with them and try to gut it out at the end.”
Chrosniak, who was surprised she finished so high in the final standings, said she didn’t believe she took second.
“I felt the girls finished with me,” she said. “I was very surprised. At the end I felt like I wasn’t going fast enough because I was getting tired. It felt really good, like I accomplished something.”
Chrosniak said she’s aiming to get her time down to 1:02 at regionals this week. A regional qualifier her freshman year, she is also hoping to make it to her first trip to states.
“Most of the girls at the regional competition are running close to 62 seconds,” she said. “My main goal is to advance to the next round.”
Junior Robert Taw advanced to regionals in discus, taking fourth with a career record throw of 138-9. Taw’s previous best this season was 134-6. He’s shown great improvement in the past year, after reaching 123-0 in 2009.
“I was kind of shocked when I realized that I was going to be advancing,” Taw admitted. “I did not know if I was going to advance this year or not because there is a lot of stiff competition. I was kind of nervous going in, but I had a lot of confidence in myself.
“My coaches and teammates had a lot of faith in me getting out, so that really helped me out a lot.”
Taw had a suspenseful afternoon after hitting his high throw early on, forcing him to wait to see if anyone else would surpass his mark or bump him out of the fourth, and final, qualifying spot.
“I got my 138-9 early, and when I went into the circle, I was the last one to throw in my flight,” he said. “Going in I saw everyone else throw after that one throw I was sitting in second place. From what I saw, nobody was throwing very high. They were all throwing close, so I just had to wait it out.”
Taw said he’s aiming to hit the 140-0 mark and hopes that will be enough to advance him to states.
“I am going to continue striving to hit 140-0,” he said. “That was my goal all season and I came just short, but I’m hoping I can hit it at regionals.
“In practice I have gotten between 140 and 145 consistently. I’m hoping I can pull it out this week.”
Courtney Neigh placed fifth in the girls 3,200 (13:29.18), just missing a trip to regionals by a few seconds. Other Brookside boys athletes to score points for the Cardinals include Zach Bradley (seventh in the 3,200, 10:55.96) and Keyonte Francis (eighth in the high jump, 5-6).