Girls Middle School Track, Girls Varsity Track · On Sr. Night, KV’s Girls’ Track and Field Team Wins KV Invite With Excellent Performances

Tonight KV celebrated the accomplishments of seniors Kara Gouwens, Shanan Patrick, Jenna Musall and Haylie Chapman.  They also performed very well as a team to win their Invite with 183 points.  A fine River Forest team had 99, an excellent Covenant Christian-DeMotte team had 57, followed by Knox with 51, Boone Grove with 42 and Century 21 with 21 pts.  On a beautiful weather night for the meet, KV tuned up for the sectional with several personal records (PR).  The 3200 relay team of K. Gouwens, Allison Schultheis, Crystal Benitez and Julianna Colon took 1st in a time of 11:53.5, with Schultheis running a very strong leg as she continues to recover from knee surgery.  Patrick bested a terrific hurdle field, winning the 100’s in a PR tying time of 17.1, nearly breaking 17 seconds! Fr. Brooke Pumnea, in the best meet of her career, was 5th in a huge PR time of 18.3.  The 100 was a very strong field, featuring CC’s Whitney Rouster, last year’s 400 sectional champion, and KV’s Raegan Walther, NCC champ in the 100 earlier this week, and several others.  Rouster edged Walther, 12.67 (hand-held-hh) to 12.75, a PR tying 100 for Walther.  Abbey Babe also ran a huge PR of 13.2, (13.11 hh) good for 6th.  Allie Tokarz and Brittany Kent worked together very well in the 1600, Tokarz just edging her pal in a time of 6:02.10 to 6:02.11.  The discus event featured two fine young ladies, Nina Freund and Kirsten Hentschel, Hentschel winning the event with an awesome toss of 96′-7″, with Freund a strong 3rd with a throw of 92′-1/2″, both PR’s for these two throwers! The 400 relay finished 3rd, and ran their best time of the year, 53.0 (52.93).  That foursome was K. Gouwens-Colon-Leah Gouwens and Walther.  Abby Klemp continued her fine season, tying her PR in the pole vault at 7′-6″ to win that event, with Erin Gouwens a strong 2nd at 7′-0″.  These 1-2 punches in many events has been KV’s trademark the past several years.  L. Gouwens hopped right back on the track for her first open 400 this season, and ran very well, taking 3rd in 65.30, with Rouster, the High Point Scorer of the meet, winning in 60.29.  Fr. Kara Strong, another fine teammate, hustled home 6th in a fine PR time of 68.6.  Fr. Madi Fisher PR’d in the long jump with an excellent leap of 15′-2 1/4″, good for 4th place.  Alyssa Eger and Emma Fase went 1-2 in the shot, Eger throwing 33′-8″, and Fase 30′-5″.  Asst. Coach David Veldman’s throwers once again were very important for their team, scoring 34 huge points.  The 300 hurdles was a thriller with CC’s Eades and KV’s Babe, battling right down to the wire, Eades edging Babe, 49.44, to 49.84, another PR for Babe tonight!  Patrick was 5th, also in a PR time of 52.9, a terrific meet for the sr. Patrick.  Colon ran her first-ever open 800 and ran awesome, winning in an excellent time of 2:38.5.  Kent moved down to the 200, her first open 200 as well, and ran great also, winning over a very tough field in 26.92, showing her versatlity!  Nicole Nannenga ran an outstanding 200, taking 6th in a PR time of 28.6.  Tokarz, KV’s high point scorer tonight with 20 points, won her second event of the evening, taking the 3200 in 14:07.2.  The 1600 relay featured all the Gouwens’ sisters, sr. leader Kara, and twin jrs. Erin and Leah.  Kara has meant so much to the KV track and field program with her desire, talent and effort.  In her career she has thrown the shot, pole vaulted, run the 100, 200 and 400 and this year has been a vital part of all three relays.  She has received many awards and honors, and has been a major part of three of the four straight team sectionals KV has won in a row.  She again led off the 4×400 relay with a very strong leg, followed by gutsy runs by E. Gouwens and Klemp, as KV battled a fine River Forest 4×4 squad.  Leah once again came through as anchor, with a perfectly timed lean to edge River for the blue ribbon in a fine time of 4:25.89 to 4:25.97.  Probably the highlight event tonight was the high jump as Pumnea caused cheers and received a big hug from Asst. Coach Page Walczak with her HUGE PR leap of 5′-1″, to win a loaded event of excellent jumpers!  Musall, having a stellar sr. year, was 4th at 4′-8″.  KV finishes the regular season with a sparkling 13-1 regular season record, 118-15 over the past 11 years.  Head Coach Lane Lewallen commented: “It’s been another terrific season.  We have exceeded (early-season) expectations with such fine team and individual performances and three relay titles already.  We look forward to many more fine performances.  Now we look to continue building, improving, and performing our best, as the post-season approaches.  These young ladies are doing their part and then some, to continue the tradition that is Lady Kougar Track and Field.  As a coaching staff, we are all very proud of them.”  They return to action next Tuesday, the 19th, as they host the KV Sectional.  (Note:  On Monday we will pass out ribbons from the KV Invite and review the sectional procedures, (very similar format to the NCC meet.)  Also, we are missing two very important items, a starting block and a gift bag.  Please let Coach Lewallen or Coach Walczak know right away, if you have any information about either item.  Thank you.)