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Tigers third, Spartans fourth in 2008 MBC girls track meet

The anticipated four-team battle for the Middle Border Conference girls track championship was everything fans could have hoped for.

The results were so close that the final decision on the meet championship wasn't completed until two days after the meet.

Osceola ending up winning the 2008 girls championship, by two points over Ellsworth. New Richmond and Somerset also put up strong challenges in an attempt to win the 2008 title.

Osceola won the meet with 142.9 points, while Ellsworth finished at 140.9 points. New Richmond was third at 120 and Somerset, the defending champion, was fourth at 117 points. The conference meet was held last Tuesday in Somerset, with much of the meet being conducted in a steady downpour.

The drama over the championship came because of conflict over the tie-breaking system in two events. After Osceola had been declared the champion, the two events were questioned. The following day, changes in the scoring in those events were announced. The changes left Osceola and Ellsworth in a tie for the title.

Again, the results were questioned. This time, the head of scoring for the WIAA State Track Meet was consulted. It was his opinion that the scoring in both events was originally correct. That conclusion turned the title back over to Osceola.

New Richmond and Somerset were hoping to win the title, but didn't quite have the depth this season to match Osceola or Ellsworth. The New Richmond girls were able to win two event championships, both of them coming in the sprints. Sophomore Krissy Atterholt was the winner in the 100 meters and senior Maggie Demulling was the champion in the 200 meters. Demulling was also the champion in the 200 meters last year.

The Tigers couldn't get enough finishers among the top three finishers in events to contend for the title. The Tigers had three second place finishes (Demulling in the 400, 800 relay, McKenzie Kelly in triple jump) and four third place finishes (Atterholt in 200, 3200 relay, Lindsey Novitzke in pole vault, Brenda Croes in shot put).

The story is much the same for Somerset's girls. The Spartans knew they would need to rely heavily on their elite athletes (Gina Hanzlik, Christina Flandrick and Megan Plourde). That trio produced eight top three individual finishes, plus Hanzlik was part of Somerset's winning 400 meter relay team.

Flandrick was the conference champion in the pole vault and Plourde earned her fourth straight conference championship in the pole vault. Hanzlik was the conference champion in the 100 meter hurdles. She joined with Ali Marson, Kellie Ring and Lauren Westerdahl to win the 400 meter relay.

One bright spot for the Spartans was the return of sophomore Alicia Potting. Two weeks after having her appendix removed, Potting was back competing. She took second place in the 100 meter dash and was part of Somerset's 800 meter relay team.

"Her fast healing and ability to tolerate pain was inspiring," said Somerset coach Dave Praschak. "There was discomfort, but it was hard to keep Alicia from the competition."

Praschak said the fact that four girls teams scored more than 100 points showed how strong the competition level was in this year's girls meet.

Two long-standing MBC records that had been held by New Richmond athletes were broken by Amery freshman Kelly Stewart. Stewart set a new record of 59.3 seconds in the 400 meters. That Broke the record that was set by New Richmond's Karen Musch in 1982. Stewart also set a record with her time of 2:21.3 in the 800 meters. That broke the record that New Richmond's Missy Tarman had set in 1996.

Middle Border Conference 2008 Girls Track Championships

Boys Team Scores: Osceola 142.9, Ellsworth 140.9, New Richmond 120, Somerset 117.5, Amery 63.5, Baldwin-Woodville 62.2, Prescott 29, Durand 20

New Richmond placewinners

100 Meter Dash: 1. Krissy Atterholt 13.1; 5. Kassie Kunz 13.5

200 Meter Dash: 1. Maggie Demulling 27.1; 3. Krissy Atterholt 27.4; 7. Kassie Kunz 28.3

400 Meter Dash: 2. Maggie Demulling 1:01.8; 4. Anna Zietlow 1:03.4

800 Meter Run: 8. McKenzie Kelly 2:33.2

1600 Meter Run: 4. McKenzie Kelly 5:37.7; 6. Hayley Peterson 5:41.6

3200 Meter Run: 7. Hayley Peterson 13:24.6; 8. Maria Soderquist 13:58.1

100 High Hurdles: 4. Katrina Ripley 17.3

300 Low Hurdles: 7. Katrina Ripley 53.2

400 Meter Relay: 4. NR 54.3 (Mary Balow, Lindsey Novitzke, Alina Stai, Kassie Kunz)

800 Meter Relay: 2. NR 1:52.2 (Mary Balow, Krissy Atterholt, Lindsey Novitzke, Alina Stai)

1600 Meter Relay: 4. NR 4:18.3 (Mary Balow, Anna Zietlow, McKenzie Kelly, Maggie Demulling)

3200 Meter Relay: 3. NR 11:09.41 (Hayley Peterson, Maria Soderquist, Alexis Taubman, Maggie Evans)

High Jump: 7. Molly Holland 4-8

Pole Vault: 3. Lindsey Novitzke 7-6

Long Jump: 7. Krissy Atterholt 15-2.25

Triple Jump: 2. McKenzie Kelly 31-5.5

Shot Put: 3. Brenda Croes 32-9.5; 5. Molly Heintz 30-10.75

Discus Throw: 4. Brenda Croes 96-10; 7. Kari Peirson 90-4

Somerset placewinners

100 Meter Dash: 2. Alicia Potting 13.1; 3. Lauren Westerdahl 13.3; 6. Christina Flandrick 13.5

200 Meter Dash: 2. Gina Hanzlik 27.4; 8. Lauren Westerdahl 28.9

400 Meter Dash: 8. Anne Sullivan 1:06.3

3200 Meter Run: 6. Johanna Smith 13:06.8

100 High Hurdles: 1. Gina Hanzlik 16.2; 3. Christina Flandrick 16.9; 6. Britni Weise 17.7

300 Low Hurdles: 3. Christina Flandrick 51.7; 5. Britni Weise 51.9

400 Meter Relay: 1. Somerset 52.5 (Lauren Westerdahl, Kellie Ring, Ali Marson, Gina Hanzlik)

800 Meter Relay: 7. Somerset 2:01.4 (Kaitlyn Beauvais, Monica Emerson, Alicia Potting, Johanna Smith)

1600 Meter Relay: 5. Somerset 4:27.4 (Anne Sullivan, Kellie Ring, Ali Marson, Monica Emerson)

3200 Meter Relay: 6. Somerset 12:03.58 (Briana Crichton, Taylor Thell, Alexandra Butler, Megan Mitchell)

High Jump: 1. Megan Plourde 4-10

Pole Vault: 1. Christina Flandrick 9-0; 7. Britni Weise 7-6

Long Jump: 3. Gina Hanzlik 16-0; 8. Lauren Westerdahl 14-8.75

Triple Jump: 3. Megan Plourde 31-3.5

Shot Put: 4. Britni Weise 31-7.5

Dave Newman
Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
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