Reigning Champs Lead Again at Zeeland
By Tom Markowski
Special for Second Half
June 4, 2016
ZEELAND – Orchard Lake St. Mary’s coach Sean Clouse said his team felt the pressure of defending the school’s track and field championship all season.
Noah Jacobs of Corunna said the goal of breaking the nine-minute mark in the 3,200-meter run has been with him since the cross country season ended.
Both St. Mary’s and Jacobs made history Saturday at the Lower Peninsula Division 2 Track & Field Finals held at Zeeland Stadium.
St. Mary’s became the first boys team to win back-to-back titles since Farmington Hills Harrison won three straight (2001-03), as the Eaglets nosed out Mason, 46 points to 44. Zeeland East was third with 33 points, Macomb Lutheran North was fourth with 33 and Grand Rapids Kenowa Hills placed fifth with 29.5.
Kahlee Hamler of St. Mary’s won the 100 dash (10.99) and was on the winning 800 relay team that set a meet record with a time of 1:27.71.
Jacobs became the first LP Division 2 runner to break 9 minutes in the 3,200, as he won with a time of 8:55.57.
Alex Klemm of Macomb Lutheran North set the meet record in the high jump with a jump of 7 feet. Klemm’s previous best was 6-11. Klemm will attend University of Michigan on a track scholarship, and he said he hopes to compete in the long jump and pole vault in addition to the high jump.
“It’s pretty unreal right now,” Klemm said after winning his first individual title.
Both Hamler and Jacobs are juniors.
There were other strong individual performances, including the showing by Mason’s athletes in the field events and another of the state’s top distance runners, Morgan Beadlescomb of Algonac, taking the 1,600 run with a personal-best time.
But it was the Eaglets’ hurdlers and sprinters, led by Hamler, and Corunna’s Jacobs who rose to the top.
“As far as times, it was a bad day,” Hamler said. “But we got things done. It was one of my slower days. My personal best is a 10.75 (in the 100, two weeks ago in the Regional). I wasn’t loose enough. I wasn’t in my right mindset.
“Oh yeah, we had pressure. We worked hard to get here.”
In addition to the sprints, the Eaglets picked up valuable points in the 300 and 110 hurdles. Richard Bowen won the 300 (37.46) and Shermond Dabney placed third. Dabney was fourth in the 110, and both ran on the 800 relay.
Jacobs finished second to Beadlescomb at the LP Division 2 Cross County Final last fall by four seconds. Beadlescomb scratched from the 3,200 on Saturday, saying his right knee wasn’t 100 percent healthy. Jacobs won the event last season with a time of 9:27.49, but lost the competitor who might’ve helped him set a fast pace.
“The clock will tell you what I wanted to do,” Jacobs said. “I wanted to break nine (minutes). It makes it hard (when a runner is so far out in front). For me to reach my goal, that’s what I’ve got to do. They didn’t want to go out that fast.
“It’s so surreal. I’m so blessed. I’m so fortunate to stay healthy. The weather cooled down a bit. It was a perfect day. This is my favorite event. If I had to choose from running in the 3,200 relay with my teammates or this I’d take the relay and run with my teammates in a heartbeat. But, individually, this is it. It’s the kind of event I can thrive in.”
It was a bittersweet ending for Beadlescomb. He wanted to run both the 1,600 and the 3,200, but it wouldn’t have been the right decision.
“I won, but I wasn’t too happy,” he said. “I was tired. I don’t know how to explain it. It just happens. When I wanted to make a move it wasn’t there. I had to go back to third. The second time I tried it was there.”
When told he set a personal best in the 1,600 (4:13.18), Beadlescomb was flabbergasted.
“A good race for me is when I start at 2:07 (at the halfway point) and I would hold on from there,” he said. “Today I started with a 2:10. It was crazy.”
Justin Scavarda of Mason won the discus with a throw of 182 feet, 6 inches and the shot put with a put of 57-10½. Mason’s Jarrett VanHavel won the pole vault (15-3), providing the punch for the Bulldogs’ strong team total.
PHOTOS: (Top) The Orchard Lake St. Mary's boys team celebrates its second straight MHSAA championship. (Middle) Algonac's Morgan Beadlescomb leads the pack on the way to winning the 1,600. (Photos by Dave McCauley/RunMichigan.com.)
Preview: UP Boys Finals Loaded with Intriguing Opportunities
By Geoff Kimmerly
MHSAA.com senior editor
June 2, 2023
Saturday’s Upper Peninsula Boys Track & Field Finals can match storylines with any of the other events happening statewide on the busiest day of the school sports season.
The Division 1 meet will pit rivals returning after one point separated them a year ago, while Division 2 will see a pair of 2022 champions looking to win again.
Munising’s Micaiah Peramaki will compete in his last Finals after becoming the latest to win four individual events last spring, and Pickford’s David Kozisek will compete in his first and only Finals with a great possibility of becoming the next four-event champ.
All three divisions will again be contested at Kingsford High School, with preliminaries leading off the day at 9 a.m. local (Central) time. Tickets cost $11 and are available digitally only via GoFan.
MHSAA.tv will live-stream the meets beginning at 9 a.m. (CDT)/10 a.m. (EDT), viewable with subscription.
Following is a glance at team contenders and individuals to watch in all three divisions:
Team forecast: Marquette owns a two-year championship streak, but claimed last season’s title by a mere point ahead of Kingsford. The Flivvers will pose another challenge Saturday with a pair of relay favorites and strong field events hoping to counter Marquette’s distance stars and overall depth. Sault Ste. Marie, boasting excellence in the distance events as well, could factor significantly.
Matthew Colavecchi, Iron Mountain junior: Last season’s 100 and 200 champion in UPD2 will run on a contending 400 relay and had the sixth-fastest UPD1 Regional time in the 100 (11.85).
Will Fairchild, Iron Mountain senior: He finished fifth both in the 110 and 300 hurdles and eighth in long jump in UPD2 last season, but heads into these UPD1 Finals with the top Regional times for his division in both races – 16.05 and 42.48, respectively.
Michael Floriano, Kingsford junior: Last season’s 200 and 400 relay champion and 100 dash runner-up will run on two favored relays this time and also enters with the third-fastest UPD1 Regional times in the 100 (11.56) and 200 (23.94).
Drew Hughes, Gladstone senior: After running a relay at last year’s Finals, he’s set to run two plus enters with the top UPD1 Regional time in the 800 (2:05.23) and fourth-fastest in the 1,600 (4:38.46).
Gabe Litzner, Sault Ste. Marie freshman: The UPD1 cross country champion in the fall enters his first Track Finals with the top UPD1 Regional times in the 1,600 (4:35.42) and 3,200 (9:58.36).
Cole Myllyla, Kingsford senior: He’s another returning relay champ and also won the long jump and was sixth in the high jump last season. He’ll run on two favored relays and had the third-best UPD1 Regional long jump (20-¼).
Carson VanderSchaaf, Marquette senior: He’s a two-time 3,200 champion and also won the 1,600 and as part of the 3,200 relay last spring, and he’ll enter Saturday with the second-fastest UPD1 Regional time in the 1,600 (4:37.21) and third-fastest in the 3,200 (10:02.40).
Colin VanderSchaaf, Marquette senior: He’s also won races the last two Finals, the 800 last year and 1,600 as a sophomore (finishing second to his brother last year), and enters this meet with the second-fastest UPD1 Regional times in the 400 (54.11) and 800 (2:06.68) and third-fastest in the 1,600 (4:37.28).
Team forecast: Ishpeming has four won straight Division 2 titles (not counting canceled 2020), but Pickford – last season’s UPD3 champion – might be the favorite to continue its streak instead. The Panthers have contenders in several events and also will get help with a number of Bark River-Harris hopefuls slotting into possible high places as well. That said, the Hematites do have qualifiers in 16 events and depth to match anyone in the field.
Caden Awbrey, Pickford senior: He won the 300 hurdles in UPD3 and was second in the 110 last season, also running on championship and runner-up relays. He’ll run on two contending relays this weekend and enters with the UPD2 Regionals third-fastest 300 time (43.97) and fourth-fastest in the 110 (17.63).
Wyatt Demers, Manistique junior: He had a busy 2022 Finals with a relay championship, fifth places in the 100 and 400 and a third in the 200. He could top that as part of two contending relays and entering with the fastest UPD2 Regional times in the 100 (11.5) and 200 (23.24).
Tramon Gauthier, Ishpeming junior: He played a major role in last year’s team title with a win in the 110 hurdles, second in the 300 and fourth-place long jump, and this weekend he enters with the second-best UPD2 Regional long jump (19-3), second-fastest 110 (16.41) and 300 hurdles (43.34) times and fourth-fastest in the 100 (11.99).
Hayden Hagen, Pickford junior: After also running on a relay champ last year in UPD3 and finishing fourth in the 3,200 and ninth in the 1,600, he’s lined up for a huge meet entering with the top UPD2 Regional times in the 800 (2:14.15), 1,600 (5:03.16) and 3,200 (11:08.89).
David Kozisek, Pickford senior: He could cap his lone season of high school track with one of the most memorable as he enters with the top UPD2 Regional times in the 110 (15.39) and 300 hurdles (42.37) and top high jump (5-10) and long jump (20-7½) as well.
Owen Lester, St. Ignace junior: The reigning pole vault champion (and seventh-place finisher in the 300 hurdles) posted the top UPD2 Regional pole vault (11-6) by six inches.
Brayden Martin, Ishpeming junior: He had the farthest UPD2 shot put (43-8½) and second-longest discus toss (119-2) at Regionals, after finishing fourth in the shot put at last year’s Finals.
Team forecast: There will be a new champion with Pickford in UPD2, with 2022 runner-up Munising coming off a Regional title after falling just nine points shy of catching the Panthers a year ago. The Mustangs have favorites in several events and contenders in most others. Newberry, fifth in UPD2 last season, also looks capable of making serious noise.
Joe Kelley, Munising junior: He finished fifth in the 300 and sixth in the 110 hurdles last season, but could play a massive part Saturday entering with the fastest UPD3 Regional 300 (44.81) and second-fastest time in the 110 (17.06).
Kalvin Kytta, Chassell sophomore: He finished seventh in both the 1,600 and 3,200 and 10th in the 800 as a freshman and also will be expected to score entering with the fastest UPD3 Regional times in the 1,600 (4:48.91) and 3,200 (10:56.07).
Seth Mills, Paradise Whitefish senior: He could become his school’s first Finals champion in this sport as he enters with the top UPD3 Regional discus throw (149-4) by more than 21 feet – and with that toss nearly 40 better than his fifth-place finish in the event a year ago. He also enters with the sixth-best UPD3 Regional shot put (38-5).
Josiah Peramaki, Munising senior: The reigning pole vault champion also was third in the long jump and fifth in the 200 last season, and he’ll enter this weekend tied with the top UPD3 Regional pole vault (12-0) and also competing on a relay and in the long jump and 100, having posted the third-fastest time (11.73) in the sprint.
Micaiah Peramaki, Munising senior: He became the eighth boys four-time Finals individual champion last year winning the 100, 200, 400 and discus. He could add three more individual titles entering Saturday with UPD3 Regional bests in the 100 (11.24), 200 (23.47) and 400 (53.05) while also running on a contending relay.
Matthew Rahilly, Newberry sophomore: He was fifth in the long jump and ran on two scoring relays in UPD2 as a freshman, and enters this Finals with the best UPD3 Regional long jump (19-9) and tied for the second-best high jump (5-8).
Ian Sundling, Rapid River senior: The reigning long jump champ also finished seventh in high jump last season and will compete in both plus two relays, entering with the third-best UPD3 Regional long jump (19-1).
PHOTO Iron Mountain's Matthew Colavecchi (3) edges Pickford's David Kozisek (2) and Powers North Central's Luke Gorzinski (4) in a 200 heat at the April 17 Superior Dome Invitational. (Photo by Cara Kamps.)