St Ignace Returns to D2 Title Height

By John Vrancic
Special for

June 4, 2017

KINGSFORD — The St. Ignace girls returned to familiar territory Saturday, earning their first Upper Peninsula Division 2 track title in three years with 110 points.

Munising took runner-up honors at 102, and two-time defending champion Ishpeming took third this time with 91.

“We have a great group of girls who work well together,” said St. Ignace coach Trudy Olsen. “They came here hungry. They wanted to regain the title. They did amazing. It’s all about them.”

Prior to 2015, the Saints were crowned champions five years in a row, including a Division 3 title in 2013.

St. Ignace junior Linnee Gustafson matched the meet record in high jump at 5 feet, 4 inches, which she shares with Nicole Vanderlin of Norway from 2011 and 2012.

Gustafson’s winning leap also set a school record, an inch higher than her previous best (5-3) from this year’s Regional meet on May 19.

“I’m excited,” she said. "Today my steps felt perfect. It was a relief to set the school record in the Regional. Now I’m mostly competing with myself.”

Sophomore teammate Emily Coveyou anchored the winning 1,600 relay, clocked at a season-best 4:23.12, and placed second in the 200 (27.86) and 400 (1:01.70)

“It feels good to get the title back.” said Coveyou. “We felt we had a pretty good chance coming in. I think this gives us motivation for next year.”

Classmate Libby Becker held off Iron River West Iron County senior Emmy Kinner for the 800 title. Becker was clocked at 2:27.19, followed by Kinner in a school-record 2:28.02.

“This is very, very, very exciting,” said Becker. “I heard her coming behind me. I was feeling a little pressure, but I turned that pressure into energy. The 800 is a very tough race. The last 200 meters is the most challenging. You get tired, but have to find a way to overcome that.”

Munising senior Michaela Peramaki, who will continue her track & field career at Central Michigan University, won pole vault (8-6), long jump (15-8¾) and the 100 (12.79), the last ahead of Kinner – who had won the 100, 200 and 400 the last two years.

“I had never beaten her (Kinner) before,” said Peramaki. “I did not expect that. I knew if I was going to beat Emmy, I needed a good start and I executed that. In long jump, I didn’t jump as far as I usually do, but it still went well. I want to thank my parents (Matt and Ann) for giving me the God-given talent and all the encouragement they gave me. They have helped me so much.”

St. Ignace senior Alysse Bentley, who was runner-up in pole vault at 8-0, described what it was like to jump with Peramaki.

“It’s good competition,” she said. “I knew I was seeded second and just wanted to finish as high as I was seeded. I was impressed with how hard she runs and her swing up. You can tell she puts a lot of time into it.”

Freshman Madeleine Peramaki (Michaela’s sister) won the 1,600 (5:38.69) and 3,200 (12:58.11) and placed third in the 800 (2:32.13). Junior teammate Alyssa Webber was runner-up in the 3,200 (13:17.80) and third in the 1,600 (5:50.41).

Ishpeming’s Marissa Maino swept the weight events, taking shot put (36-6¼) and discus (108-9½).

Kinner set a meet record in the 400 (59.18), topping the previous (1:00.30) by Kara Dale of Ishpeming in 2010. She also won the 200 (27.25) and was runner-up  in the 100 (12.87).

“This is the first time breaking a minute in the 400, and having all the competition helped me get the school record in the 800,” she said. “I was in lane 2 in the 100, which makes it tough because you’re not next to the fastest runners. Breaking a minute in the 400 is something I really wanted to do, and I had a good day for it.”

Kinner then described how her track career began.

“When I was in eighth grade, I ran track to get out of school,” she said. “Mrs. B (coach Kristi Berutti) saw me running and wanted me to run against some of the high school runners. She believed in me and convinced me to come out. At first I didn’t like it, but it grew on me.”

Newberry senior Taylor Bryant captured the 100 hurdles (16.56) and 300 (49.18), helped the Indians take second in the 800 relay (1:54.40) and placed third in the 100 dash (13.52).

“My starts were okay,” said Bryant. “It felt good coming out in the hurdles. My start could have been a little better in the 100 dash, but it still went all right.”

Ishpeming’s Katie Loman took second in the 100 hurdles (17.07) and 300 (49.33) and anchored the winning 800 relay (1:53.77).

Click for full results.

PHOTO: (Top) St. Ignace's Linnee Gustafson pushes the pace during the 800 relay. (Middle) Newberry’s Taylor Bryant breaks away on the way to winning the 100 hurdles. (Photo by Cara Kamps.)

Performance of the Week: Onsted's Emmry Ross

June 6, 2024

Emmry Ross headshotEmmry Ross ♦ Onsted
Junior ♦ Track & Field

Ross became just the third girl in Lower Peninsula history – and one of eight statewide – to win four individual events at an MHSAA Track & Field Finals, as she finished first in the 400 (56.25), 800 (2:10.74), 1,600 (4:57.81) and 3,200 (10:55.27) on Saturday at the LP Division 3 championship meet at Kent City. She was the only member of her team to qualify for the Finals, but her 40 points earned in those races placed Onsted second in the team standings.

Her 400 time was a season-best, and her 800 and 3,200 times were personal records – which is saying even more considering she also won the 400 and 800 as a sophomore and the 400 (and ran on the winning 1,600 relay) as a freshman in 2022. Ross also runs cross country and finished fifth at the LPD3 Final this past fall.

@mhsaasports 🏃‍♀️‍➡️POW: Emmry Ross #trackandfield #onsted #letsgo #champion #running #part1 #highschoolsports #tiktalk #interview #performanceoftheweek #mistudentaid #fyp #MHSAA ♬ original sound - MHSAA

@mhsaasports 🏃‍♀️‍➡️POW: Emmry Ross #tiktalk #questiontime #part2 #nerdgummyclusters #culvers #austinandally #friends #emoji #performanceoftheweek #mistudentaid #fyp #MHSAA ♬ original sound - MHSAA

Follow the MHSAA on TikTok.'s "Performance of the Week" features are powered by MI Student Aid, a division within the Department of Lifelong Education, Advancement, and Potential (MiLEAP). MI Student Aid encourages students to pursue postsecondary education by providing access to student financial resources and information. MI Student Aid administers the state’s 529 college savings programs (MET/MESP), as well as scholarship and grant programs that help make college Accessible, Affordable and Attainable for you. Connect with MI Student Aid at and find more information on Facebook and Twitter @mistudentaid.

Past 2023-24 Honorees

May 31: Isaac Sturgess, Flint Powers Catholic baseball - Report
May 30:
Abby Russell, Allen Park track & field - Report 
May 23:
Isabel Thelen, St. Johns tennis - Report
May 16:
Ally Katinas, Novi lacrosse - Report
May 9:
Peter Roehl, Rochester Adams golf - Report
May 2:
Lilah Smith, Richland Gull Lake soccer - Report
April 25:
Mason Mayne, Lawton track & field - Report
April 18:
Alli Wright, Jenison softball - Report
April 11:
Chloe Wishart, Trenton soccer - Report
March 28:
Jenna Maki, Ishpeming basketball - Report
March 22:
Jaremiah Palmer, Niles Brandywine basketball - Report
March 15:
Leah Hodge, North Farmington gymnastics - Report
March 8:
Darius Marines, Detroit Catholic Central wrestling - Report
March 1:
Rylee Smith, Zeeland West bowling - Report
Feb. 22:
Caleb Lewandowski, Traverse City West skiing - Report
Feb. 15:
Jadin Mix, Onaway basketball - Report
Feb. 8:
Onalee Wallis, Cadillac skiing - Report
Feb. 1:
Abbey DeGraw, Rochester Hills Stoney Creek competitive cheer - Report
Jan. 25:
Ewan Todd, Riverview swimming - Report
Jan. 18:
Ashley Weller, Jackson Northwest basketball - Report
Jan. 11:
Michael Baldwin, Saginaw Arthur Hill wrestling - Report
Dec. 15:
Jena Fijolek, Fenton bowling - Report
Dec. 8:
Sophia Wagner, Escanaba gymnastics - Report
Dec. 1:
Isaiah Marshall, Southfield Arts & Technology football - Report
Nov. 24:
Sarah Bradley, Clarkston Everest Collegiate volleyball - Report
Nov. 17:
Kalieb Osborne, Waterford Mott football - Report
Nov. 10:
Tekalegn Vlasma, Muskegon Western Michigan Christian soccer - Report
Nov. 3:
Colton Kinnie, Birmingham Seaholm football - Report
Oct. 27:
Lauren Timpf, Macomb Lutheran North golf - Report
Oct. 20:
Alena Li, Okemos golf - Report
Oct. 13:
Seth Norder, Grand Haven cross country - Report
Oct. 5:
Paige Anderson, Muskegon Reeths-Puffer golf - Report
Sept. 29:
MacKenzie Bisballe, Lake City volleyball - Report
Sept. 22:
Jhace Massey, Gladwin football - Report
Sept. 15:
Kaylee Draper, Sturgis swimming - Report
Sept. 8:
Owen Jackson, Traverse City St. Francis tennis - Report
Sept. 1:
Rachel Forsyth, Ann Arbor Pioneer cross country - Report

(Photo by Jamie McNinch/