News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Local Interest

May 22, 2012

Notable tradition bodes well for Riverton Parke

TERRE HAUTE — Located practically in the shadow of a high school that sets one state standard in track and field, Riverton Parke has a tendency to be overlooked in that sport.

But if past performances are an indicator — which is not always the case — the Panthers could at least have as good a percentage of athletes advancing from regional to state finals as any in the state this week.

Riverton Parke sends one girl — who has qualified in two different events — to tonight’s regional at Evansville Central, and one boy to the same location on Thursday. If those Panthers — Sara Dickey in girls shot put and 400, Riley Stohler in boys 800 — continue to the state finals in all three events, it would not be an upset.

Terre Haute North’s girls, who extended their state record of sectionals won last week, won’t get all of their regional entrants in the top three spots tonight, and neither the Patriots nor Terre Haute South’s Braves — who staged a spirited duel for boys sectional honors — will do so on Thursday.

Several Wabash Valley athletes have excellent chances to advance, however, including a few of the Putnam County athletes — if the trip doesn’t sap their performances — who will be new to the Evansville Regional.

Sprinters should make no long-range plans; Evansville athletes traditionally have the regional market cornered on pure speed, and should continue to dominate the 100, the 200 and the 400-meter relays on both nights this week.

In the longer races, however, North’s Chanli Mundy has the best sectional time in the 3,200 and Greencastle’s Colleen Weatherford the best in the 1,600 and one of the best in the 800. Northview’s Leeanna Knight may not advance in the 100, but she could win long jump (although a notoriously unorthodox pit at Evansville Central often makes that event a regional crap shoot).

Other contenders in girls events tonight are North’s Jessi Conley plus Dickey in the 400; North’s TaPring Goatee in the 800; South’s Nikki Thiede in the 1,600 and possibly the 3,200; North’s Keirra Porter in the 100-meter hurdles; West Vigo’s Janelle Lucas in the 300-meter hurdles; and Dickey in shot put.

Dickey, who apparently can do anything, hasn’t been a shot putter for long. She almost certainly won’t win tonight — Cassie Wertman of Southridge is one of the best in the state — but this will be just her third competition in the event, and she added four feet to her previous best at the sectional last week.

Boys going into Thursday’s meet with top marks include South’s Nick Jaeger in high jump and Tyler Seibert in the 400; Northview’s 3,200 relay foursome of Ian Heffner, Devon Cooksey, Damon Hyatt and Nic Yocom; and Cloverdale’s Joseph Rumley in the 800. Rumley pulled a star-studded sectional cast in that event to great times last week and the second, third and fourth-place finishers then — Stohler, Tyler Hudson of Greencastle and Nathan Kump of West Vigo — had faster sectional times than the rest of Thursday’s field at Evansville.

Other possible winners are North’s Connor Curley in pole vault, South’s Jackson Bertoli in either (or both) the 1,600 and the 3,200, North’s Tyeson Mundy in the 3,200 and South’s 1,600 relay team. Sectional hero Cole Seward of North has a chance to advance in either hurdles race, Seibert could contend in long jump, and throwers Nic Keller of South (discus), Ryan Chestnut of South Putnam (shot put) and Lee Davis of North (either) are also possibilities.

Top three in each event and relay plus those who meet state standards go on to the girls finals June 1 and the boys finals June 2, both at Indiana University.

IHSAA track regionals

At Evansville Central

GIRLS

Today

Field events, 6:30 p.m. EDT, with running trials at 7

BOYS

Thursday

Field events, 6:30 p.m. EDT, with running trials at 7

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