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Track and field athletes see PRs, ready for state this week

by WHITNEY ENGLAND
Whitefish Pilot | May 24, 2023 1:00 AM

Though the Whitefish track and field teams didn’t come out on top at the Western A Divisional meet last week, plenty of athletes showed stellar performances over the two-day competition.

Leading Whitefish was the performance by junior sprinter Brooke Zetooney who earned 36 of Whitefish’s 72 total points. Zetooney broke three records at the meet which ran Friday and Saturday in Corvallis. Her PR in the 200 (25.08) broke a divisional record and her prelim time in the 100 was a personal best of 12.37. She ran to first place in the 100 finals and broke a divisional and school record in that event on the weekend.

Zetooney also started the competition off right on Friday morning, placing second in the shot put with a PR of 36 feet, 9 inches; Frenchtown’s Sadie Smith won the event at 41-3.

“She (Zetooney) started us off on a great note on Friday and the rest of her teammates kind of just followed right along… Everybody was fast, everybody had a great weekend,” Whitefish girls track coach Matt Beckwith said.

Bulldog Junior Maeve Ingelfinger was another highlight for the green and gold. She narrowly lost to Columbia Falls’ Siri Erickson in the 1,600 on Friday, but came roaring back on Saturday to win the 800 over Erickson with a personal best time of 2:20.9, good enough for the second-best time in Class A this season.

Another Whitefish sprinter Rachel Wilmot showed her speed, placing fifth in the 100 and getting a PR in the 200 (25.87) for third place. In the 400, Zetooney was second and Wilmot was on her heels for third. Bulldog Drew Steele hit a PR in discus with a mark of 94-07 for sixth place and Bailey Smith took sixth in javelin.

On the boys side of the competition, Whitefish was yet again led by its distance crew. Bulldog senior Nate Ingelfinger took fifth in the 800 with a time of 2:01.76 and seventh in the 3200. Whitefish sophomore Ethan Amick clocked a PR of 10:23.05 in the 3200 for third place; Mason Genovese finished in sixth. In the mile, Genovese managed a personal best of 4:36.53 to place third; Simon Douglas came in fifth.

“The weather was really hot, especially on day two… But we still had some big performances, kids were able to persevere,” Whitefish boys track coach Willie Roche said. “Our distance crew absolutely tore it up for the guys which was nice to see. Most of those guys had already qualified (for state) anyway so it was good to see them compete.”

Bulldog junior Carson Krack had a good day both on the track and in the field events. He placed fifth in the 300 meter hurdles, sixth in the long jump and his third-place triple jump was a PR (42-00.25) and finally qualified him for state in that event.

Bowdrie Krack handled the competition in pole vault, taking second place, as expected, with a leap of 13-0; Hamilton’s Taylor Searle took first clearing 14-0.

“Even though some kids didn’t qualify for state, some of our younger kids PRed and that was important for us to see as well… Performances like that don’t appear in the paper or the state rosters, but they’re still what we’re about in building the program for the future,” Roche said.

In the team standings, Whitefish girls came in third behind Corvallis and Columbia Falls and the boys took sixth.

Both coaches believe they will finish higher in the team standings at state, given the way points matter differently on the big stage.

“We’re looking forward to this week and we’re reminding our girls that in 2019 we were third in divisionals also and got to come home with a state championship trophy,” Beckwith said. “That’s a goal we've set and that’s the horizon we’re looking at right now.”

Whitefish heads to the Class A State track meet on Friday and Saturday in Laurel.

Full results are available on athletic.net.

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Junior Bailey Smith jumps for a season best 15-07.00 in the women’s varsity long jump competition on Friday. (Matt Weller photo)

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Freshman Cooper Akey, clears 5-04 at the men’s varsity high jump competition on Saturday. (Matt Weller photo)

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Senior Bulldog Nate Ingelfinger competes in the men’s varsity 800 meter race in Corvallis on Saturday. (Matt Weller photo)

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Brooke Zetooney on the podium after breaking the school record and the Divisional record set in 2005 in the women’s 100 meter dash. (Matt Weller photo)