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Sentinel girls make it four straight

Sentinel girls make it four straight

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Hellgate boys back on top for first time since '97

What makes the Greg Rice city track meet special? Being true to your school.

"This meet is more about team than any we compete in all season," said Missoula Sentinel standout Amy Flaig on a blustery Thursday afternoon at Missoula County Stadium. "The personal stuff, your times, that's not so important here. It's what you do to help the team."

Flaig, who won three events, and fellow senior stars Tassie Souhrada and Lindsey Egeland were bursting with pride after claiming their fourth straight city championship against cross-town rivals Big Sky and Hellgate.

"Those are the three we kind of built around when they were freshmen, and they've made a heck of a difference for us," said Sentinel coach Gary Little after the Spartans rolled up 75 points, followed by Big Sky with 56 and Hellgate with 50.

The Hellgate boys felt the same way after capturing their first city crown since 1997 with 901/2 points, hammering defending champion Sentinel (58) and Big Sky (321/2).

"Tradition means a lot in our sport," said Hellgate coach Ron Jones, whose Knights claimed their 12th Greg Rice title in 20 years. "You've got to just say, 'Hey, there's been kids that have sweated, fainted, fallen down. You have to be one of them.' That's what we talked about."

No one epitomized that credo better than Hellgate senior Ty Felton, who literally ran his guts out while contributing to four victories. He swept both hurdles races - setting the lone meet record in the 300-meter hurdles - and ran legs on Hellgate's winning relays to go with a runner-up finish in the 100 dash. He capped his day with a 50-second anchor split in the 1,600 relay, bringing Hellgate from behind in a dramatic stretch duel against Sentinel. Then Felton vomited into a nearby garbage can.

"He's a winner," Jones said with admiration.

The first, and most important, upset of the day was the weather. The competition was held in dry, mostly sunny conditions, despite a forecast that had predicted possible rain or snow showers.

"It was windy, but we're not complaining," Flaig said.

Flaig established personal bests with a 5-foot-6 clearance in the high jump and a 47.84-second clocking in the 300 hurdles. She also won the 100 hurdles and placed second in the triple jump.

Egeland won the 800 and anchored the winning 1,600 relay, while Souhrada came through with a surprising win in the long jump and led Sentinel's 1-2-3 finish in the triple jump. Melissa Kleschen successfully defended her city 3,200 title, and was second in the 1,600.

"The long jump was a surprise for us," Little said. "We thought we'd throw Tassie (Souhrada) in there and see if she could sneak a point for us - and she wins it. That was awesome."

The only other multiple girls' winner was Hellgate senior Karensa Woirhaye in the shot put and discus. The Knights ruled the sprints, with Erin Schoen claiming the 100 dash, and freshman Kelsey Cooley winning the 200 and placing second in the 400.

The Big Sky girls spread their points throughout the 17-event program. Shannon Sorenson won the pole vault at 10-0, two inches short of the meet record.

But the day belonged to Sentinel. Its four-year streak matches the longest since the meet expanded to three teams, tying the Big Sky girls (1983-86, 1988-91, 1993-96) and Hellgate boys (1985-88).

"After winning it the previous three years, we were saying, 'There's no way we're not getting it this year,' " Egeland said with a smile.

The Hellgate boys forged their title with depth in the sprints, a sweep of the relays and domination of the field events. Alex Boggs had a big day, copping the 100 and 200 dashes, while Levi Bessette and Boggs placed 1-2 in both the long jump and triple jump.

Under the category of "pleasant surprise," Knight newcomer Jory Barefield moved into the state title picture in the shot put, tossing a personal-best 52-1, and also won the discus. Hellgate took three places in the javelin, and went 1-2 in the high jump behind Ian Cooke and Evan Smith.

Felton's 39.78 clocking in the 300 hurdles broke the meet record of 39.8, set by Hellgate's Sean Harrington in 1988. The 5-foot-6 Felton was up to the task, despite running a less than perfect race.

"I stuttered my steps on probably five (of the 10) hurdles," Felton said. "But I felt great coming around the final curve, and I really pushed it hard. I knew I was capable of breaking the record."

The Sentinel boys performed well on the track, where Mike LaForest and Steven Flink took the top two spots in both the 1,600 and 3,200, and Nick Doherty (800) and Chris Polhemus (400) added victories. But the Spartans couldn't muster enough punch in the throws and jumps.

Big Sky competed without two of its top athletes, Rob Curran and Dustin Maier, but had two excellent individual efforts. Class AA pole vault leader Gabe Womack won his specialty, clearing 14-0, and Bob Pollock repeated as city javelin champ with a season-best 183-10.

This was the teams' final tuneup before the Western AA divisional next weekend at Kalispell. The state meet is May 26-27 in Bozeman.

GIRLS

Team scores: Sentinel 75, Big Sky 56, Hellgate 50

100 - 1, Erin Schoen, H, 13.58; 2, Melissa Paske, BS, 13.67; 3, Kelsey Cooley, H, 13.70; 4, Leslie Lott, H, 13.76.

200 - 1, Kelsey Cooley, H, 27.6; 2, Melissa Paske, BS, 27.7; 3, Susan Paulson, S, 27.9; 4, Dalynn Bunch, S, 28.0.

400 - 1, Kelly Smith, BS, 63.79; 2, Kelsey Cooley, H, 64.73; 3, Dalynn Bunch, S, 64.91; 4, Haley Doyle, S, 65.34.

800 - 1, Lindsey Egeland, S, 2:32.06; 2, Jessica Moquin, BS, 2:35.32; 3, Lea Feasline, S, 2:36.50; 4, Felicia Foote, BS, 2:38.19.

1,600 - 1, Felicia Foote, BS, 5:46.91; 2, Melissa Kleschen, S, 5:54.19; 3, Jessica Moquin, BS, 6:00.12; 4, Rachael Lukomski, BS, 6:06.84.

3,200 - 1, Melissa Kleschen, S, 13:04.1; 2, Caryn Johnson, H, 13:40.6; 3, Emmie McPherson, S, 13:51.6; 4, Marille Randall, BS, 14:01.4.

100 hurdles - 1, Amy Flaig, S, 16.41; 2, Leslie Hane, H, 16.48; 3, Desi Stensland, S, 18.24; 4, Brittany Maxson, S, 19.13.

300 hurdles - 1, Amy Flaig, S, 47.84; 2, Erin Schoen, H, 51.05; 3, Desi Stensland, S, 53.03; 4, Meredith Griffin, H, 53.89.

400 relay - 1, Hellgate (Leslie Hane, Leslie Lott, Kelsey Cooley, Erin Schoen) 51.77; 2, Big Sky 52.65; 3, Sentinel 54.60.

1,600 relay - 1, Sentinel (Haley Doyle, Kate Ewing, Lea Feasline, Lindsey Egeland) 4:23.3; 2, Big Sky 4:24.0; 3, Hellgate 4:25.8.

Javelin - 1, Jesse Potter, BS, 107-5; 2, Allison Brown, S, 105-0; 3, Sarah Condon, BS, 103-3; 4, Alisa Anderson, H, 102-4.

Shot put - 1, Karensa Woirhaye, H, 36-2; 2, Heidi Kahler, BS, 34-0; 3, Anne Regal, BS, 30-6; 4, Allison Brown, S, 30-3.

Discus - 1, Karensa Woirhaye, H, 114-9; 2, Heidi Kahler, BS, 110-3; 3, Katie Clegg, H, 105-1; 4, Lea Feasline, S, 97-3.

High jump - 1, Amy Flaig, S, 5-6; 2, Tassie Souhrada, S, 5-0; 3, Katrina Dahlgren, BS, 5-0; 4, Jen Nelson, S, 4-8.

Long jump - 1, Tassie Souhrada, S, 15-111/4; 2, Whitney Caron, BS, 15-7; 3, Jenna Joslyn, S, 15-1; 4, Patricia Schwenk, BS, 14-51/4.

Triple jump - 1, Tassie Souhrada, S, 33-8; 2, Amy Flaig, S, 33-6; 3, Lindsey Egeland, S, 33-51/2; 4, Leslie Hane, H, 33-51/4.

Pole vault - 1, Shannon Sorenson, BS, 10-0; 2, Andrea Hall, H, 9-6; 3, Laura Winstead, H, 9-0; 4, Jamie Souhrada, S, 8-6.

BOYS

Team scores: Hellgate 901/2, Sentinel 58, Big Sky 321/2

100 - 1, Alex Boggs, H, 11.46; 2, Ty Felton, H, 11.75; 3, Kyle Sillars, S, 11.99; 4, Jared Pierce, BS, 12.25.

200 - 1, Alex Boggs, H, 22.6; 2, Levi Bessette, H, 22.8; 3, Chris Polhemus, S, 23.0; 4, Craig Jones, H, 23.4.

400 - 1, Chris Polhemus, S, 52.00; 2, Lucas Beede, S, 52.96; 3, Craig Talarico, H, 53.28; 4, Scott LaForest, S, 53.66.

800 - 1, Nick Doherty, S, 2:02.69; 2, Bryan Davis, BS, 2:04.90; 3, Andy Fischer, H, 2:08.31; 4, Brian Haviland, S, 2:08.34.

1,600 - 1, Mike LaForest, S, 4:52.46; 2, Steven Flink, S, 4:56.56; 3, Ryan Archibald, S, 5:00.13; 4, CeeJay Brown, BS, 5:01.67.

3,200 - 1, Mike LaForest, S, 10:02.62; 2, Steven Flink, S, 10:26.21; 3, CeeJay Brown, BS, 10:33.43; 4, Brett Sproull, H, 10:42.13.

110 hurdles - 1, Ty Felton, H, 15.67; 2, Josh Schaefer, BS, 16.22; 3, Chris Mosbacher, S, 16.40; 4, Brandon Flaig, S, 16.85.

300 hurdles - 1, Ty Felton, H, 39.78 (meet record; old record 39.8, Sean Harrington, Hellgate, 1988); 2, Josh Schaefer, BS, 42.67; 3, Tyce Velde, H, 43.01; 4, Chris Mosbacher, S, 44.19.

400 relay - 1, Hellgate (Carrier Morrell, Craig Jones, Ty Felton, Alex Boggs) 44.02; 2, Sentinel 45.60. Big Sky disqualified.

1,600 relay - 1, Hellgate (Craig Talarico, Andy Fischer, Josh Eder, Ty Felton) 3:31.2; 2, Sentinel 3:31.3; 3, Big Sky 3:43.1.

Javelin - 1, Bob Pollock, BS, 183-10; 2, Paul Weber, H, 174-7; 3, Chris Hathaway, H, 166-3; 4, Kris Schmautz, H, 163-2.

Shot put - 1, Jory Barefield, H, 52-1; 2, Cory Arnson, H, 46-4; 3, Matt Thompson, BS, 45-81/2; 4, Tyner Kuehn, H, 45-3.

Discus - 1, Jory Barefield, H, 146-10; 2, Matt Thompson, BS, 143-6; 3, Taige Smith, S, 141-4; 4, Cody Mecham, BS, 128-6.

High jump - 1, Ian Cooke, H, 6-2; 2, Evan Smith, H, 6-0; 3, Cody Mecham, BS, 6-0; 4, Brian Beebe, BS, 5-8.

Long jump - 1, Levi Bessette, H, 20-10 1/4; 2, Alex Boggs, H, 20-3; 3, Tyler Brewington, S, 19-9; 4, Kris Marshall, S, 18-81/2.

Triple jump - 1, Levi Bessette, H, 41-11; 2, Alex Boggs, H, 41-11/2; 3, Tyler Brewington, S, 40-13/4; 4, Chris Mosbacher, S, 39-3.

Pole vault - 1, Gabe Womack, BS, 14-0; 2, Cody Ball, S, 12-0; 3, Matt Hall, H, 12-0; 4, (tie) Jesse Conner, H, and Josh Schaefer, BS, 12-0.

Reporter Rial Cummings can be reached at 523-5255 or rcummings@missoulian.com

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