BOYS TRACK: Lake Orion repeats as regional champion | North Oakland Sports
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BOYS TRACK: Lake Orion repeats as regional champion

| May 17, 2014 | Comments (0)

BY DAN STICKRADT

SENIOR EDITOR

Dan.stickradt@northoaklandsports.com

Twitter: @LocalSportsFans

 

BLOOMFIELD HILLS — Lake Orion sent quite a message to the rest of the track and field community: The Dragons are still one of the state’s best.

State champions in 2012 and a third-place finisher in 2013, Lake Orion put on a display of talent, versatility and depth Friday at Bloomfield Hills High School. The Dragons captured their second Division 1 straight regional title and fourth in 10 years, scoring an impressive 120 points over 17 events to win by 50 points.

Waterford Mott was a distant second with 70 points, while Clarkston, Rochester Adams and Waterford Kettering all scored 60 to tie for third. Oxford (56), Holly (53), Bloomfield Hills (52), West Bloomfield (39) and Romeo (30) rounded out the top 10 in the 14-school field.

“We have that really solid core of seniors who stepped up to lead us,” said Lake Orion boys head coach Stan Ford, whose team won league, regional and Oakland County titles last season. “Two years ago as sophomores, they helped the seniors out and we won the state. This year our seniors led us but we had a lot of underclassmen contribute. As a team, we scored a lot more points than I anticipated.”

Lake Orion’s foursome of Zack Arnold, David Diaz, Sheldon Drake and Kirk Hanson led virtually the whole way to end the meet with a win in the 1,600 relay (3:26.61).

Jacob Hatcher had a personal best by more than a foot to win the long jump (22-3.75), leading four qualifiers in the event, while Jacob Mauer won the pole vault (12-0) for Lake Orion.

“We had guys that had very good days and we scored in (13) events,” said Ford. “We had guys like Jacob Hatcher who had his best in the long jump by more than a foot and Jacob Mauer won the pole vault and we were finally able toscore pole vault because we can’t in the leage. We won five events and had a bunch of seconds and other guys placing. It was a great team effort.”

Michael Bonnici, Jacob Arenz, Diaz and Hansen teamed up to win the 3,200 relay in 7:58.84, leading a group of five qualifiers. In seventh place after four laps, Diaz’s 1:54 split gave the Dragons the lead and Hansen held off the rest of the pack.

Drake, Matt Krause, Hatcher and Arnold also won the 800 relay (1:31.06), while Drake was second in the 200, Arnold placed second in the 400 and Andrew Lorant claimed second in the 1,600 for Lake Orion.

Elsewhere, Rochester Adams’ Jordan Shive won both the 110 hurdles (14.95) and 300 hurdles (39.28) and ran the anchor leg on the Highlanders’ runner-up 1,600 relay.

“I feel really good right now,” said Shive. “I placed third in the state (in the 300 hurdles) as a sophomore. Last season. I didn’t run so well. This year I hope to go up there and medal in the hurdles.”

Oxford’s Connor Bandel won both the shot put (53-1.5) and discus (156-8), as the Wildcats scored plenty of points in the field events. Bandel was one of many athletes who won at least two events.

Kettering’s Danotiss Smith broke the tape in both the 100 (11.31) and 200 (22.78), and joined Keiron Payne, Connor Oshaughnessy and Ajjahe Berry for a 43.87 clocking in the 400 relay. Jacob Netschke had a season-best effort of 6-5 to take the high jump honors, as the Captains won four events.

Romeo’s Jacob Domagalski pulled away to win the 1,600 (4:18.82), pacing three qualifiers, while teammate Alec Torecki ran 9:26.37 in the 3,200, chasing down Clarkston’s Grant Henley in the final 10 meters for the win.

Mott, the state runner-up in cross country, picked up its only win in the 800, where Brennan Munley clocked 1:54.52, holding off Lake Orion’s Hansen and Diaz down the final stretch as the trio all qualified. Munley’s anchor in the 3,200 relay helped the Corsairs take second in that event.

“(Winning) the regional was our goal,” said Lake Orion’s Hansen, who has committed to Notre Dame. “We wanted to win the regional again and we’re going to go after the county next week. We have a lot of good athletes on this team, guys stepping in and scoring all over.”

The two finishers in each event, plus others that reached the pre-determined additional qualifying standard, advance to the Lower Peninsula Division 1 state finals May 30 at Rockford High School.

 

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About Dan Stickradt: DAN STICKRADT | SENIOR EDITOR dan.stickradt@northoaklandsports.com View author profile.

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