Whippet boys set for Tide challenge
At last year’s Rock Valley Conference track and field meet, East Troy High School’s girls ended Whitewater’s string of 15 straight conference titles, including the Southern Lakes.
Will the Edgerton boys put an end to Whitewater’s stranglehold this season?
The answer will come Saturday as the Whippets host the co-ed meet, beginning with field events at 9 a.m.
Edgerton’s boys won their first dual meet title since 1982 by going 5-0 in the Rock Valley North and are poised to make it a sweep at the conference meet. The Crimson Tide also won its last conference meet championship in 1982.
Crimson Tide coach Jason Knott said dethroning the Whippets is going to be a tall task.
“Right now, and I’ve told some of the other coaches this, I really believe Whitewater is going to win the Division 2 (boys) state title,” Knott said. “That’s how strong they are.
“The only way somebody is going to beat them, or the East Troy girls, is with a couple of false starts or dropped batons.”
Whitewater has returning boys conference champions in six events. They include double winners Tony Floyd in the high and intermediate hurdles, and Jake Dennis in the 100 and 200. Dennis is the defending Division 2 state champ in the 200.
Edgerton is led by defending 800-meter champion Lucas Langer and pole vaulter Brent Samuelsen, who has cleared a school-record 14-1 this season, which tops the Division 2 honor roll.
East Troy’s girls, led by Jasmine Haines, will be heavily favored to repeat. Haines, a senior, was the Outstanding Female Performer at last year’s conference meet after winning the 100 and 200, along with anchoring the victorious 800 relay team.
Haines will be tested in the 100 and 200 by Clinton’s Laura Popanz. The Cougar junior has the second-fastest time in the state in the 100 (12.52) in Division 2 and the sixth-fastest in the 200.
Haines has the third-fastest time in the 100 (12.54) and is tied with Popanz for sixth-fastest in the 200.
“There are an awful lot of excellent sprinters for both the boys and the girls,” Knott said. “That is going to make for really exciting races, especially in the 200 and 400 for boys.
“But team-wise, Whitewater’s boys and East Troy’s girls are head-and-shoulders above everybody else.”
Whitewater sophomore Molly Griep is the defending champion in the shot put and discus, while Walworth Big Foot’s Jordyn Courier is set to defend her triple jump title.