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A look back at girls track and field sectionalPosted Friday, May 22, 2009, at 9:16 PM
TERRE HAUTE -- A rumor was floating around the girls track and field sectional at Terre Haute North on Tuesday night that the regional might start rotating between North and Evansville Central.
Since the late 1980s and maybe long before that, the qualifiers at North have always advanced to the track and field regional at Evansville Central, both boys and girls, a week after the sectional.
Coaches seemed excited about the possibility of not having to make the trip to the Pocket City (nothing against a great city like Evansville), but those rumors were quickly shut down as just idle talk or wishful thinking.
The consensus was that more schools from the Evansville area would have to make the trip to Terre Haute than the opposite and it was unlikely to ever happen because of that fact.
Another reason for the status quo might be that many schools in that area are on Central Time and it would be harder for them to travel to the Wabash Valley and lose an hour in transit than the reverse.
Both sectionals likely have schools that finish the year before Memorial Day and after, negating a possible point of travel on a school night. High schools like Linton-Stockton and Shakamak are usually finished before the regional so travel on a week night is not a problem. But kids from Terre Haute likely have to go to school the next day after getting back from Evansville near midnight or later.
There were many fine performances by area athletes at the girls sectional Tuesday night. The top four in each event qualified for the regional.
Although she stumbled and fell at the finish line, Shakamak's Samantha Ellis finished fourth in the 100 meter final and qualified for regional next week. Her time was 13.73 seconds.
"I was just giving it my all at the end of the race," said Ellis, whose left knee was scraped and bleeding after her fall. "I just kept my eye on the girl in front of me because I knew I would have to stay with her in order to have a chance to make it out to the regional.
"I just lost my balance and fell as I finished. I am just glad that I placed fourth and will be running again next week."
Showing class and sportsmanship, Linton-Stockton's Alex Daluga, who was beaten out of a regional spot by .06 seconds, had nothing but praise for her competitor.
"Sam ran a really good race," said Daluga, who placed fifth in the 100. "I'm glad that she wasn't hurt very badly.
"I was just trying my best to keep up with her."
Even though Daluga lost out on her chance in the 100, she qualified for the regional in the 200. Her time of 28.84 in the finals was good for third place.
Teammate Brooke Haldeman qualified for the finals in the 200 and placed seventh.
"It was great to have two girls in the finals in the 200," said Linton-Stockton coach Britney Lynn.
Daluga had an effort of 15 feet, 1 inch in the long jump, which was good for fourth place, earning her another spot at the regional.
"I really did not have one of my better performances," Daluga said of the long jump. "My personal best was 15-8, but I am happy to have another chance to jump at the regional."
Shakamak's Jade Gambill cruised to a third-place finish in the 400. Her time was 1:03.08, a new school record.
Shakamak's Holli Moore placed second in the 300 low hurdles.
Moore, Gambill, Taylor Myers and Riley Montgomery placed fourth in the 1,600 relay with a time of 4:26.17.
"We have a junior, freshmen and sophomore among our regional qualifiers," said Shakamak Coach Zack Whitkanack. "So we should be good for a couple more years at least.
"Last year, Micajah Greene was the only one to make it out in the long jump. She made the finals and I think she finished seventh. We have three girls that made it as individuals and got a relay team out as well. The program is going in the right direction."
Bradlea Beard, a sophomore at Linton-Stockton, qualified for the regional with an effort of 7-6, which was good for fourth place in the pole vault.
"I am really excited about going to the regional," Beard said. "My personal best is 8-0, but I am glad that 7-6 was good enough to make it.
"I hope to jump at least 8-0, if not 8-6 next week."
Lady Miner Tricia Emmons cleared 4-10 in the high jump, placing third. It is the second time she has qualified for the regional in that event.
"I came into this meet like every other one -- to do the best I can," said Emmons. "I know what I am capable of and I just went out and did the best I could.
"It was nice to finally be able to jump on a really nice day and not have to worry about it being wet and windy. I am looking forward to having another chance to compete."
Field events will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday at Evansville Central.
The top three qualifiers or those achieving state standards will qualify for the girls state finals, set for Saturday, June 6 at Indiana University in Bloomington.
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