Parker boys win Cougar Relays title
JANESVILLE The boys pole vault relay at the 64th Cougar Relays may never have been more popular than it was Friday night under the lights at Monterey Stadium.
Janesville Parker, which appeared to be cruising to a resounding victory in the boys competition, saw its lead shrink to just two points over Middleton with one event to go after the Vikings were disqualified in the 1,600 relay. That left the pole vault as the deciding factor in the winner of the state’s oldest high school track and field meet.
But the Vikings managed to fight off the Cardinals in the pole vault and outlasted Middleton, 111-107, in the team scoring.
“Unfortunately, we got thumbed (disqualified) in the final relay, but that’s part of the deal,” Parker boys coach Joe Dye said. “It’s got to be a learning situation for us.’’
The Parker boys won four events, including the 300 intermediate hurdles, the high jump, and the 800-meter relay.
“I’m so proud of the way our kids competed on the track,” Dye said. “It’s just fun to compete at this meet.”
The meet also was a lot of fun for Janesville Craig athlete Cy Badertscher, whose sizzling triple jump of 45-7 helped the Cougars claim victory in the event.
“Cy was unbelievable,” said Cougar coach Jeff Deininger, whose team finished fifth overall with 94 points. “He broke our school record again by a foot. He’s just a very good athlete.”
Craig pole-vault specialist Tom Kitching also proved to be a pretty good athlete. He tied with Waterford’s Keith Knurr for first, clearing 12 feet, 6 inches.
The Cougars also won the shot put and distance medley events.
“In areas that we’ve done well in the past, we performed unbelievable today,” Deininger said.
The Cougar girls also had a strong meet, but they had to settle for second place with behind 112 points behind a deep Sun Prairie squad, which rolled up 126.5.
“We did about as well as we could,” Craig coach Mark Marsden said. “We had a couple disqualifications, but even if we didn’t have those, we wouldn’t have caught Sun Prairie.
“Team depth is extremely important in relay events, and Sun Prairie is extremely deep.”
The Cougars, however, showed plenty of depth of their own, posting victories in the 300 low hurdles, triple jump, pole vault, long jump, and 800 relay.
Maggie Slatter led the Cougar charge as a member of four of those victories.
The Parker girls, meanwhile, finished fourth with 84 points.
Paige Demos led the way by winning the high jump, clearing 5-2.
Parker coach Dave Lehmann said improved weather helped his team yield an impressive effort.
“We finally got a good day, weather-wise, and our kids had a lot of personal records today,” Lehmann said. “We not entirely healthy, and we have just had some lousy weather days for meets, but the kids really just had a good meet.
“To place where we did today, I give our kids a lot of credit,” Lehmann said. “The good weather was a welcomed sight to everyone.”