The Ottumwa Courier


May 11, 2013

Mustang girls running to state; Five Bulldog girls qualify in three events

EDDYVILLE — Kate Birchmier would have enjoyed her second trip to compete at the State Track and Field meet no matter how many of her teammates came along with her.

As it would turn out Thursday, Birchmier won’t have to look far to find a familiar face competing alongside of her. In fact, the two-time state qualifier will be joined by a close friend in one of her two events next week.

Birchmier swept the district titles in both the shot put and discus for the second-straight year at the 2A state qualifying meet in Eddyville. Unlike last year, Birchmier will be joined by Mustang teammate in the shot put as senior Marissa Shuey followed Birchmier’s winning toss of 40-7.5 with a second-place throw of 36-0.25 to edge PCM’s Abbi Gilson for the second and final automatic qualifying berth.

“It’s really exciting because we’re teammates and because we’re so close and we want to see each other do so well,” Birchmier said after beating out Gilson for the discus title by over 20 feet with a toss of 132-8. “It’s great for the both of us. Getting to go state, for the both of us, makes it that much more special.”

“It’s exciting. Kate’s worked hard for what she’s accomplished and I’ve worked hard to get where I’m at,” Shuey added. “This is my first time going to state and Kate’s gone two times in two years. Seeing Kate succeed and do what she’s done has been really great to be a part of.”

Both Birchmier and Shuey were just part of a fabulous night for the Davis County girls, who automatically qualified 10 girls in seven different events through top-two finishes on the way to running away with the district team championship. The Mustangs beat out Mid-Prairie by 11.5 points and are in the running to qualify for four more events based on the final results that will be announced by the IGHSAU over the weekend.

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