Schachne, Troelstra lift Lady Wreckers to 7th at LL
Updated 5:53 pm, Thursday, May 31, 2012
Lexie Schachne and Emily Troelstra delivered victories for the Staples girls outdoor track team Wednesday at the Class LL championships.
Schachne and Troelstra won the pole vault and 300-meter intermediate hurdles in scoring 20 out of the 38 points seventh-place Staples scored at Manchester High School.
Norwich Free Academy (110.5) won convincingly, Glastonbury (85.66) took second and Amity (71.5) was third. Sixth-place Simsbury (43) beat out the Lady Wreckers.
"I'm really proud of the girls," Staples coach Jesse McCray said. "We had great performances. Going in, we figured the most points we could score was 41 and scoring 38 was good. There were events where we could have done better, but for what we had, we did well. The girls did great."
In the pole vault, Schachne was pushed by the defending champion Allison Sullivan of NFA and Newtown's Lauren O'Connell. All three attempted to clear 12-0, but Schachne was the only one who was successful in this endeavor, equaling her personal best. Sullivan and O'Connell were tied for second (11-6).
"I'm really happy to clear 12 feet," Schachne said. "I had great competition from Newtown and NFA, and they made me want to clear it. My grip on the pole helped me clear it."
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Troelstra was undefeated in the 300 hurdles going in and claimed victory with a personal-best 45.27 seconds, edging out Glastonbury's McKenzie Hollenbaugh (45.35).
"It was pretty awesome to be undefeated, and I knew I had to run a new personal best to stay undefeated," said Troelstra, who won the FCIAC championships May 22 by running it in 46 seconds. "I warmed up out of the sun, I stayed hydrated, and I ran my race."
"We pushed each other hard," Troelstra said. "We didn't think we'd get it, but we ran our best and got it. Hopefully, we'll do very well at State Open."
Popkin placed fourth in the 800 meters (2:20.22) and qualified for State Open. Misha Strage took fifth in the triple jump (33-2.5), and Scanlin was seventh in the 400 meters (59.89).
Although the 4x800 meter relay team of Mullen, Georgia Kursten, Jamie Tanzer and Erica Hefnawy didn't score with its 10th-place finish, McCray was happy because the quartet was four seconds faster than it was at FCIACs. Moreover, he inserted two freshmen, Tanzer and Hefnawy in place of Popkin and Scanlin so he could rest them for the 4x400 and their two individual events.
Last year, Staples was ninth at Class LL with 26 points. McCray hopes his four entries at Monday's State Open will do well.
"We feel good about where we're at, and the girls are doing a great job," McCray said. "We hope to run the best race possible and hope it takes us to New Englands. It's all about confidence. Once we take off, it gets better and better. The key is you work hard and see the results of their hard work."
Schachne said, "Obviously, we wish we placed higher, but we had good performances on the team. Emily did well in the hurdles, and our 4x400 team also did well."
Although the seeds haven't come out yet, Schachne and Troelstra are expected to be seeded at or near the top. Popkin will compete in the 800, and the 4x400 hopes to break its record.
"Hopefully at Opens, I'll jump even higher," Schachne said. "The key is to stay focused and train hard this weekend."
Troelstra said, "I definitely hope to win in the hurdles, and I'll try to run another personal best. I hope the 4x400 places in the top six."
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