STATE TRACK AND FIELD: Second place medal in 4x400 highlights Central’s experience

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Jaydin Dettman, Delaney Scherf, Kaitlyn Wiley and Hannah Asche made up Central’s 4x400 relay team, which placed second in Class 1A at last week’s state meet. (Photos by Bev Hamann)

The Warriors’ sprint medley relay team of Tori Sylvester, Grace Kuehl, Jaydin Dettman and Delaney Scherf finished 20th at state.

Tori Sylvester, Grace Kuehl, Kaitlyn Wiley and Hannah Asche ran to 11th in the 4x200 relay.

Delaney Scherf placed 24th in the 800 meter run. It was her second time competing in an individual event at state.

Hannah Asche turned in a 17th place time in the 200. She was just the fourth runner in Central history to qualify in the event.

By Willis Patenaude, Times-Register

 

In the words of coach Martha Bauder, the Central girls had a “very successful state meet.”

 

“Before we look at results, the first thing that comes to my mind is what a fine group of girls we have who could withstand the mental and physical grind of the three-day state meet,” she said. “It is absolutely an amazing and awesome atmosphere with the way our state meet is set up and with the magic of Drake stadium and the unforgettable voice of the announcer, Mike Jay. But it is also sometimes a miracle that these athletes can make it through the extreme emotional highs and lows, the weather, the long waits between events, planning when to eat, when to warm up, how much is enough, how much is too much, the anxiety over making one tiny mistake that could ruin everything, disrupted routines of eating, sleeping and time of day for competing.” 

 

It’s a huge accomplishment to have anything left in the tank by 4 p.m. on Saturday, Bauder continued. 

 

“So, the first thing to remember is what a great group of girls and parents of these girls for their showing at the state meet,” she said. 

 

As for those results, Central finished with eight points, tied for 27th out of 55 total teams. The Warriors had a total of six girls competing across five events. 

 

One of those events was the 800 meter run featuring Delaney Scherf, who qualified for an individual event for the second year in a row.

 

This time, it was “from a district that was loaded with state quality mid-distance runners,” according to Bauder. Scherf finished the race 24th. 

 

The Warriors’ sprint medley team of Tori Sylvester, Grace Kuehl, Jaydin Dettman and Scherf, entered the state meet ranked 24th and managed to raise that mark to 20th, running their third best time of the season. 

 

In the 200 meter dash, the focus was Hannah Asche, who became just the fourth runner from Central since 1976 to qualify for state in that event. Asche placed 17th, running the fourth best time of her career. 

 

The 4x200 relay team of Sylvester, Kuehl, Kaitlyn Wiley and Asche ran their second best time of the year to finish in 11th. The time of 1:50.35 was just 1.2 seconds off the school record. This group also ran a 1:50.33 during the season, which put them in seventh on Central’s all-time, top-10 list. 

 

But the highlight for Central was undoubtedly the 4x400 relay, where the Warriors entered the state meet ranked first. 

 

As the race got underway, Dettman got behind early before handing the baton off to Scherf, who made up some ground on race-leading Riverside. Wiley took over the third leg, but Riverside’s Lydia Erickson took control of the race during the leg, leaving too much distance for Asche to make up heading into the anchor leg. There, Asche had to fend off Nashua-Plainfield to secure second place, which represents the second highest state finish in the event. The 4:08.13 time was the group’s second best of the season. The team ran a 4:07.88 during prelims, which crushed their season best time. 

 

Bauder pointed out that, regardless of what place the runners finished, simply getting to state is an accomplishment. There were over 130 schools in Class 1A that could have entered a team in the state qualifying meet on May 12, said the coach, so making it to state means the team is already in the top 24 of those 130-plus schools. 

 

In an individual event, you have to double that number because each school could have entered two runners for each event at the state qualifying meet. 

 

“I told the girls to try to relish the moment, be excited for the opportunity to compete with the best girls in the state and that they are there because they belong in that top 24,” Bauder said.

 

With another season finished in Bauder’s long, storied career, she wanted to thank the athletes who make it possible. This year, those athletes include Scherf, Asche, Dettman, Kuehl and Sylvester, who “all had a great state meet, learned from their experience and will be all the more motivated to get there again next year with even higher expectations,” she said.

 

It also includes senior Haley Mueller and junior Eva Embretson, who served as alternates and were able to see the action first hand, and senior Brandy Beatty, who unfortunately was out due to injury. Bauder was confident she “most certainly would have been a qualifier.” While Beatty didn’t run, she went to state with the team “to help as our manager and team enthusiast,” Bauder said. 

 

As for the other senior on the team, Wiley, Bauder was effusive in her praise. 

 

“We are sad to see Kaitlyn Wiley graduate, as she was one of the most dependable meet day runners we have ever had here at Central. She has left an outstanding career here for the underclassmen to look up to and a huge opportunity for some determined runners to try to fill her shoes next season,” Bauder said. 

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