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Area Track Stars Head To State

Peshtigo's Motkowski Is Top Seed In Division 2 High Jump; Bhatoya Competes In 2 Events



Making her way to state for the third time, Peshtigo senior Nicole Motkowski will go in as the number one seed and favorite to win the high jump. Motkowski went 5’4 to purse the title at the Freedom sectional Friday. Last year at state, Motkowski tied for third place with a 5’2.

Other Bulldogs joining Motkowski at state are senior Aaron Bhatoya in 800 meter run along with the 1600 relay foursome of Jake Romenesko, Colin Hass, Connor Smith and Bhatoya.

The tireless Bhatoya put together a record run during his second place time of 1:56.00. Bhatoya broke the school record held by Gabe Wagoner as well as the M-O Conference mark of 1:57.01 set by Darren Vandenberg of Niagara at state in 2006.

“All of our athletes did a fantastic job,” Peshtigo co-head coach Rick Neumann said. “Nicole won the high jump at 5’4 and cleared it easily, then set the bar at 5’6 to go after the conference record which she holds at 5’5. She came really close to making it. Aaron, obviously ran his best time ever. Had a strong first lap and a great finish. The time for the 1600 relay was their best of the year by two seconds.”

The best time in the 1600 relay was turned in by Freedom at 3:22.76 followed by Little Chute 3:24.40 and Peshtigo 3:26.34.

The Peshtigo boys saw Zack Neumann finish 5th in the shot put at 47’7.25, Jordan Berth 7th shot put (46’8.25) and 13th discus (125’5), 800 relay 10th and 400 relay 14th at 46.53. Neumann just missed out on a trip to state as Jackson Kania of Seymour was fourth at 48’5.75. Deangelo Johnson of Brillion was first in the shot put at 56’0.75.

Marc Willame of Oconto was 8th in the 200 meter dash 23.84 while the Oconto Falls 3200 relay team finished 6th at 8:29.91.

The Peshtigo girls saw a number of sectional qualifiers come up short of state as 3200 relay team was 9th (10:25.40), Mariah McDonough 11th 3200 (12:35.79), Claire Neumann 13th 200 (27.51), Maggie Thill 14th 300 hurdles (51.41), 1600 relay 10th (4:19.35) and Amanda Emmes 16th discus 91’4.

The Marinette girls had a great performance in the weights as freshman Morgan Florek was second in the shot put at 39’0.25, junior Megan Wagner third 38’9.25 and junior Emily Conley 7th 36’4.50. In the discus, Conley claimed 7th at 113’4, trailing champion Kristina Herman of Seymour at 127’8.

Other Marinette sectional athletes were Olivia Alloy 100 hurdles and triple jump 5th (34’2.75), Abby O’Neil 100 along with the 400 (12th) and 800 relay teams.

The area also had the number two high jumper as Carly Lemke of Oconto Falls went 5’3 in the finals.

Tori Hipke of Oconto claimed 7th in the 400 with a time of 1:01.81 along with Oconto Falls athletes Meghan Vandenack 7th pole vault 9’0 and Bailey Wolf 7th 1600 (5:22.29).

In the final team standings, the Seymour won the girls meet with 67 points with Marinette 14th 22, Oconto Falls 21st 11.50, Peshtigo 23rd 10 and Oconto 30th 2.

The boys title went to Freedom at 95 with Peshtigo 11th 20, Oconto Falls 31st with 3 points and Oconto 33rd with one.

Maurer Qualifies

In 3 D-2 Events

Foreign exchange student Tarzis Maurer of Florence-Niagara will be competing in three events at the D-2 state meet after putting on an impressive performance at the Bloomer sectional.

The fleet-footed Maurer finished 4th in the 100 meter dash with a time of 11.54, 4th 200 22.96 while earning gold in the long jump at 21’8. The second place leap in the long jump was turned in by Ryan Hibbard of Ashland 21’6.

Jonah Bauer of Elk Mound won the 100 (11.23) and Eli Temanson of Stratford the 200 in 22.50.

Emma Baumgart will also be heading to state after finishing third in the 100 hurdles 16.79. The top two times were turned in by Jenna Franzwa of Mondovi 15.99 and Samantha Flandrick of Somerset 16.75.

Brooke Soderberg finished 14th in the 100 hurdles while the boys 800 relay was 9th at 1:37.47.



Coleman's Pillath Qualifies In Shot Put And Discus; Slaby Brothers, Fischer Pace Crivitz



Athletes from the M-O Conference will compete in 13 events in Division 3 action at the WIAA state meet in LaCrosse this weekend. The top four finishers in each event from the sectionals qualified for the state meet.

Leading the area will be five standouts taking part in multiple events. Coleman strongboy CJ Pillath will test his skills in the shot put and discus, Akeem Bates of Gillett tries his luck in the long and triple jump while Crivitz has a pair of dual competitors in Ben Fischer and Tyler Slaby. Fischer will compete in the 100 meter dash and 400 relay, being joined by Slaby who also earned a spot in the pole vault.

In the girls competition, Suring sophomore Az VanBellinger earned a spot in the 200 dash and on the 800 relay team.

Just a junior, Pillath claimed third place in the discus at 157’9, finishing behind Jacob VanAsten of Shiocton 165’5 and David Kornack of Edgar 163’5. Pillath hurled the shot put 52’2.5 for a runner-up spot behind gold medal winner Kornack of Edgar 56’7.5.

The talented Fischer capped a superb prep career by qualifying for a pair of state events and nearly made a third. Fischer was the third runner to cross the finish line in the 100 with a clocking of 11.64, trailing winner Jaron Olson of Marathon 11.45 and James Gordon III of Menominee Indian 11.55.

Fischer will also take part in the 400 relay with Tyler Slaby, Ryan Padgett and Micah Sessler as the foursome put together a 4th place time of 47.39. First place went to Marathon 44.64 followed by Newman Catholic 45.22 and Edgar 45.82.

Looking to qualify in three events, Fischer went 5’10 in the high jump for a 5th place mark. The top height was turned in by Morgan Malm of Loyal at 6’1 followed by Marcus Gabriel of Newman Catholic, Jacob Puent of Columbus Catholic and Andrew Pleshek of Greshman-Bowler all at 6’0.

The Slaby brothers continued the tradition of top notch pole vaulters for Crivitz, following in the foot steps of three-time defending state champion Jake Wiedemeier. Adam Slaby, a senior, earned third place points at 13’0 while sophomore Tyler went 12’6 for 4th place.

Gillett leaper Bates finished 4th in the triple jump at 41’4.5, one foot behind winner Drew Dix of Wild Rose 42’4.5. In the long jump, Bates sailed 20’6.75 for third place and six team points. Drew Payne of Gresham-Bowler was first at 21’9 with Kristian Welch of Iola-Scandinavia at 21’5.75. Creo VanBellinger of Suring was 8th at 18’11.

Roy O’Harrow of Lena-STAA came up with a third place time of 23.70 in the 200 meter dash to qualify for state. O’Harrow ran 24.00 in the preliminaries before cutting off .30 of a second. Tanner Hudziak of Wild Rose was first at 23.20 followed by Gordon of Menominee Indian 23.20.

Other Crivitz points came from Ryan Padgett with a 6th place time of 11.99 in the 100, Suring’s Creo VanBellinger 7th in the 400 at 54.42 and 8th long jump 18’11,Gillett’s Colin Weiss 6th in the pole vault (11’6), Mat Peterson 7th 110 hurdles and Alex Zeitler 8th 800 (2:12.55).

TIMESland area girls will represented in four events at the state meet...Suring’s 800 relay team, Brooke Gauthier shot put and Az VanBellinger 200 along with Taylor Kohls of Gillett in the discus.

Gauthier threw the shot put 34’5.25 for a fourth place finish. Ania Smith of Menominee Indian claimed top honors at 39’4 followed by Cassidy Detert of Marion 38’9.50 and Elizabeth Tess of Edgar 35’3.5.

A sophomore, VanBellinger earned a fourth place medal in the 200 meter dash with a time of 28.00, trailing the first place clocking of Alexand Hutchinson of Columbus Catholic 26.15.

The Suring quartet of Calley VanBellinger, Blake Seppel, Courtney Stelzer and Az VanBellinger checked in a 1:51.87 for 4th place. Wild Rose was first at 1:48.01 followed by Edgar 1:48.35 and Iola-Scandinavia 1:51.59.

Suring earned additional points from Katie Stegeman in the high jump with a 6th place effort of 4’10 and freshman Courtney Heimerl pole vault 6th 8’0.

Kohls qualified in the discus and nearly earned a shot put berth. In the discus, Kohls put together a throw of 119’3 with first place going to Ania Smith of Menominee Indian at 126’8.

The Suring girls had the top area finish at the Marathon sectional with a 22.33 points for 13th place, Gillett was 17th at 11 and Coleman 23rd with 2.33 points.

In the boys team competition, Crivitz placed 10th at 29, Gillett 15th 17, Coleman 18th 14, Lena-STAA 23rd 6 and Suring 26th 4.5.


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