The Ottumwa Courier

Sports

March 25, 2013

Bulldog track teams prepare for first outdoor meet

OTTUMWA — Now it gets serious for the Ottumwa boys and girls track and field teams.

The Bulldog squads have had about three weeks to refine their skills and fix any perceived dents in their collective armors.  Their indoor track meets are in their rearview mirror and the the outdoor track world awaits. Today the Bulldogs find themselves at the threshold of their first outdoor track meet — the teams compete Thursday at the Mount Pleasant Invitational.

The girls team is filled with and ornamented by several Bulldogs who have already seen their share of success in their still-young seasons. The 4x400 team of Charlette Flanders, Ashlyn Thompson, Ellie Hammack and Sydney Strunk has already made great progress. Despite it being a shorter (only 200 meters) — and therefore harder — track to  run on than the one the girls ran in their previous meet at the Iowa State campus (300 meters), they still managed to lower their time at Central College in Pella March 14. They finished with a time of 4:22.68 — the girls completed their race in 4:47.80 at Iowa State — which was good enough to net them a first place finish. The girls' superb time drew praise from Ottumwa girls coach Steve Green.

“For them to run a time faster than at Iowa State is pretty remarkable considering the track they were running on,” Green previously said.

Strunk in particular has impressed Green with her leadoff runs for the team. He was especially pleased with her performance at the Iowa State Indoor meet, where she ran her portion of the race in 60.6 seconds.

“That’s really remarkable for this early in the season,” Green previously said.

Ellie Hammack, along with Sarah Schulz, Sarah Thordarson and Erin Sheehy snared first in the 4x55 shutter relay at Central with 30.37. In addition, Hope Bitner has performed admirably in the high jump and Schulz and Katy Fish have looked strong in the long jump. The girls’ long distance runners include Sarah Keith, Sydney Cloyd, Claire Carlson and Jessie Lott.

For the boys, Cody McConnell, a star runner on the Bulldog’s cross country team,  qualified for state his sophomore year;  returns to the track for his junior campaign. McConnell’s sophomore season was cut short by a calf injury that sidelined him for the rest of the season. But today he’s healthy and ready to go.

“We’re looking for great things in the future out of him,” Nickerson previously said.

McConnell ran well at Mount Pleasant last season, as he finished second in the 3,200 meter run with 10:13.76 on a chilly day.

Cody McConell is joined by his younger brother Collin McConnell in the 3,200 and the mile this season.

The shuttle relay team of Seth Griffiths, Shawn Foster, Isaiah Hutchison and Terrance Smith turned in a strong performance at Pella, as it placed first with 27.30.

The Bulldog girls team returns a surplus of state qualifiers including Strunk, Kelsey Guyette, Chloe Davis, Ashlyn Thompson and Katy Fish. While the girl’s squad is brimming with runners with state experience, the four boys who qualified last season — Zach Messer, Spencer Hammack, Ben Kramer and Patrick Peters — all graduated.

Other prominent performers for the boys this season include Shawn Foster, Logan McCarty and Seth Griffiths. Griffiths and McCarty teamed up with Messer and Hammack to take first at the 4x100 relay at Mount Pleasant last spring.

The boys squad also is overflowing with runners that specialize in the half-mile including Isaac Ramos, Kaleb Norris, Jianwa Bennett, Shane Riley, Brandon Bullock, Connor Hanson and star Ottumwa wrestler Karsten Van Velsor. The group has been dubbed the wolfpack. In field events, Chris Peden and Aaron Roane are two of the main discus throwers and Jonah Wright and John Torres are two of the main shot-putters. Peden placed third in the discus (117-1.75) at Mount Pleasant last season.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • 0731 OTT Sports Kassidi Henderson mug Three Bulldogs make all-state OTTUMWA — The Ottumwa softball team had three of its players named to a Class 5A All-State team by Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union.Bulldog second baseman Ashlyn Thompson and Kassidi Henderson were voted to the all-state second team and Alexis W

    July 30, 2014 3 Photos

  • Prep Softball All-State Team Class 1A 1st Team All State Name School Grade Kayla Tindall Akron-Westfield 12 Dana Hedlund Akron-Westfield 12 Renee Maneman Newelll Fonda 12 Rachel Smith Exira/EHK

    July 30, 2014

  • 0731 OTT Sports Austin Gridley Fairfield baseball photo Oh So Close! DES MOINES — Becoming the first Fairfield pitcher to start a state tournament game in 35 years didn’t seem to faze Trojan senior pitcher Joseph Hietpas. In fact, taking the mound at Principal Park in Des Moines seemed to only help Hietpas as he made

    July 30, 2014 4 Photos

  • Cedar Creek Ladies battle for low net score OTTUMWA — The Cedar Creek Ladies played "event low net score" on Tuesday. The medalist for the day was Carole Meredith while Patti Meyer and Ann Allison tied for low putts. In Flight A, Margo Sears finished in first place while Meredith finished seco

    July 30, 2014

  • 0731 OTT Sports Twin Cedars baseball photo 2 Twin Cedars just two wins from perfection DES MOINES — The 33 wins in 33 games to get to state was nice. So was the 34th-straight win, earned Saturday over Underwood in the Class 1A State Baseball Quarterfinals. But as he walked through the stands with his team at Principal Park following th

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0731 OTT Sports Bill Huisman photo Huisman wraps up successful 38-year career at Centerville FAIRFIELD — Sometime later this summer, Bill Huisman will look back on his 38 seasons as Centerville head baseball coach with a big smile. In the immediate aftermath of what proved to be his final game as Big Reds head coach, however, all Huisman wan

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0731 OTT Sports Ottumwa Little League photo Ottumwa Little League team ends terrific season OTTUMWA — Chris Becker doesn't think it's sunk in yet. Becker, the coach of the Ottumwa 9-10 Midwest All Stars, said his players have yet to fully grasp the depths of what they've accomplished this season. With time, however, he thinks they will und

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • On Tap Thursday Prep Baseball Class 1A State Semifinals Twin Cedars vs. LeMars Gehlen at Des Moines (Principal Park), 2 p.m.

    July 30, 2014

  • 0730 OTT Sports Ottumwa Babe Ruth 14 All Stars Ottumwa Babe Ruth team dominates at state OTTUMWA — The Ottumwa 14 Babe Ruth All-Stars team bore a striking resemblance to absolute domination at the state tournament in Ottumwa this season."The longest game we had was six innings," Conner Sheehan said. "We still 10-run ruled that team it ju

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0730 OTT Sports Shrine Bowl photo Bulldogs have fun at Shrine Bowl CEDAR FALLS — Ottumwa football coach Zach Pfantz had a blast serving as one of the coaches of the South team at the 42nd Annual Iowa Shrine Bowl at the UNI Dome Saturday. "It was a really awesome and wonderful experience and I was very thankful to ha

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

Sports photo reprints


Obituaries

Facebook