Thursday, October 23, 2014
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Friday, Nov. 02, 2012

Fall sports notes: East girls win state cross country title

The Kansas City Star

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Winning the Kansas 6A state crown was far from a sure thing for the Olathe East last Saturday at Rim Rock Farms in rural Lawrence.

“We knew we had a chance, but so did five other teams,” Hawks senior Brenna McDannold said. “Everybody was going to have to run their best and run a gritty race, which we were able to do today.”

The result was East’s third championship in four seasons and the fourth since 2006.

“I was really overwhelmed for a little bit and still am,” Hawks coach Tony Bozarth said. “This one means a tremendous amount, especially the way they bounced back. It’s amazing what they’ve done.”

Just two weeks earlier, state-title dreams seemed far-fetched after a third-place finish during the Sunflower League championships, which also were run at Rim Rock.

Olathe Northwest beat the Hawks by 36 points and Shawnee Mission West finished comfortably ahead of Bozarth’s bunch as well.

Of course, that experience also fueled the East girls.

“I was running eighth up on the rim and I made a decision and told myself that I was not going to run like I did at league,” McDannold said. “I wanted to do better.”

Despite the burning legs and lungs, McDannold — who instructed friends to line the course and constantly remind her “this is your last race” — blew past three runners down the straightaway to the finish line, crossing fifth overall in 15 minutes, 13.5 seconds to pace the Hawks’ victory.

“They made a conscious choice to run tougher,” Bozarth said. “They made a conscious choice today not to settle, that they were going to run people down. They realized that to be at the level they wanted to be at that you have to run tough. You have to expect that it’s going to hurt and you have to expect that it’s going to require some sacrifice.”

Freshman Allison Vermillion also answered the call, chugging her way to 18th (15:39.3), while junior Kelsey Quiring (23rd, 15:51.3), senior Jennifer Hale (30th, 16:05.0) and senior Riley Gay (33rd, 16:08.7) rounded out the Hawks’ scorers.

Three other Olathe runners finished in the medals. led by Olathe Northwest freshman Cameron Gueldner, who finished ninth (15:21.3).

Finally, Olathe North junior Loretta Achoki (15:33.3) and Olathe South sophomore Kaylee Shanley (15:34.6) finished 14th and 15th, respectively.

Only two Olathe boys finished in the medals – Eagles junior Alex Finestead, who was 13th (16:20.8), and Hawks junior Nick Hinrichs, who was 18th (16:24.6).

Shain sets UCM assists record

Central Missouri midfielder Kayla Shain became the Jennies’ all-time leader in assists last Saturday when she floated a cross, which Alexis Robbers headed home in the 47th minute during a 4-0 win against Lindenwood.

Shain now has 23 assists, passing Teleshia Joseph’s record of 22 from 2001-03.

Shain also scored the game-winner Oct. 25 in a 1-0 victory against Truman State off an assist by fellow senior Kelsie Hanson, an Olathe South graduate, in the 19th minute.

Former Hawks’ duo earn accolades

Augustana junior Kara Bartels was a third-team All-Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference selection.

Bartels, an Olathe East graduate, started all 18 games in the midfield and scored three goals with two assists this season for the Vikings.

Her former high school teammate, Tulsa junior Claire Nicholson, was a second-team selection for the Conference USA All-Academic team, which was announced Wednesday.

Nicholson, a two-time C-USA All-Academic selection, maintains a 3.753 grade-point average in exercise and sports science. She has five goals and three assists this season.

South announce girls basketball youth camp

Olathe South girls basketball’s 18th annual Youth Girls Basketball Clinic is set for Nov. 17 at the high school.

Any girls in kindergarten through sixth grade is invited to the two-hour camp from 2:30-4:30 p.m.

Younger girls will use shorter goals with an emphasis on learning fundamentals and proper form.

The cost is $20 if preregistered or $30 at the door. Proceeds benefit the South girls basketball program.

To register or for more information, email Falcons coach Steve Ingram at singramos@olatheschools.org or by visiting Olathe South’s website.

To reach Tod Palmer, call 816-234-4389 or send email to tpalmer@kcstar.com. Follow him at twitter.com/todpalmer.

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