By GREG KEIM
THE GOSHEN NEWS
The Goshen Redskins made the long trip to Kokomo on Thursday night for the IHSAA boys track and field regional and brought home a regional championship and a runner-up finish.
The Redskin foursome of Ricardo Castillo, Alfonso Torres, Abraham Medellin and Reid Zimmerman placed first in the 4 x 800-meter relay (8.11.35).
“The 4 x 800 had a super night,” Goshen coach Brock Maust said. “We changed the order and it seemed to work. Reid ran a great anchor leg.”
The race came down to the anchor leg with Zimmerman just holding off Joshua Sommers of Eastern for the victory.
“I was feeling pretty confident,” Zimmerman said. “He (Sommers) had a really good kick at the end.”
The meet was held under adverse weather conditions with chilly temperatures and gusting winds.
“Running tonight was not fun,” Zimmerman said. “I’m happy the 4 x 800 got to state, but I also wanted to go in the 800 so I’m happy and disappointed.”
Also for the Redskins, Cristian Barron was second in the 300 hurdles (40.99).
“The weather was really unexpected after the way it was early in the week,” Barron said. “It’s unbelievable that I’m going to state. I wanted to thank my friends, my family and God. They are all amazing.
“I didn’t run the 4 x 100 tonight so it was different getting ready for the 300s.”
Warsaw won the team title with 76 points. Penn was second at 73 and Elkhart Memorial third at 41. Fairfield was seventh at 29, Northridge eighth at 24 1/2, Goshen ninth at 23, Wawasee and Elkhart Central 13th at 18, Elkhart Christian Academy 20th at 12 and NorthWood 27th at 4 1/2.
The top three finishers in each event advance to the state meet on Friday, May 31 at Indiana University in Bloomington.
Fairfield’s state qualifer was Kyle Ostrander, who was second in discus (156-5).
“Kyle threw well,” Fairfield coach Bob Miller said. “He is a two-time state qualifier.
“The rest of our kids are kind of disappointed, but we had a great season and the seniors have had a great career.”
Northridge has two state qualifiers in Devin Puckett second pole vault (13-6) and Michael Presnell third in the 300 hurdles (41.50).
“Getting to state is a relief,” Presnell said. “My plan was to stay loose. I wanted to push the pace at the start and then pick it up even more between the third and fourth hurdles.”
Joel Hartman of Elkhart Christian Academy became the first state qualifier for his school by placing third in both the 1,600 (4:24.47) and 3,200 (9:37.11).
“Joel ran super,” ECA coach Peter Casaletto said. “He was back about 10th in the 3,2000 before he moved up. He ran a personal best in the 3,200. His previous best was 9:39.”
Hartman said, “I hope I’m setting a bar for others to follow. I want them to say he made it to state so why can’t I?
During the race I didn’t think about the weather conditions. You have to get that out of your head before you run. That kept me focused on my goal. My goal was not winning, but showing that I serve a living God. I also have to thank my family for all the support they have given me and for all the people from school that came down tonight. It was great to hear them yelling as I was going around the track.”
Wawasee has a pair of state qualifiers in Jacob Gilmer first in high jump (6-6) and Clayton Cook second in the 110 high hurdles (15.05).
Elkhart Memorial had two regional champion relays. David Doyle, Claeb Platz, NcNeal Stewart and Davontea Millsaps won the 4 x 100 (43.53) while Stewart, Blake Kramer, Jared Peek and Millsaps took the 4 x 400 (3:24.43). Millsaps was second in both the 100 (10.85) and 200 (22.49).
Nicholas Gerber of Goshen placed eighth in discus (142-8).
“He had a personal best by six feet tonight,” Maust said. “That is 18 feet he has improved over the last two weeks.”