The best of the best competed in the Grand Rapids area Saturday at the Michigan High School Athletic Association track and field state finals. Hackett’s boys team repeated as Division 4 state champions, which included three individual victories by Heath Baldwin. Constantine’s Wyatt Alwine left his mark with a title of his own in Division 3 in the pole vault. The top eight finishers in each event were awarded all-state status. Here’s a look at those from Cass, St. Joseph and Kalamazoo Counties that made the all-state squad in their respective divisions.
At East Kentwood
Gull Lake sophomore Caleb Troyer was third overall in the high jump after being one of four competitors to clear 6-feet, 5-inches. His performance was just one inch from the winning height. Kalamazoo Central sophomore Jaden Blanchard tied for eighth place with a jump of 6-3 to secure the final all-state spot. Loy Norrix junior Jozef Meyers placed eighth in the 3200 with a time of 9:22.50.
Edwardsburg freshman Luke Stowasser proved he will be a high-jumping force for years to come after a runner-up effort with a height of 6-5, which was one inch from the top height of the day by Parma Western’s Matt Veneziano.
Junior Wyatt Alwine brought home a state title for Constantine after clearing 14-3 to win the pole vault by three inches.
Comstock senior Tyler Wright finished out his prep career with a trio of all-state performances, including a fifth-place finish in the 200 with a time of 22.60. He also joined teammates Adrian White, Evan Veenhuis and Venard Whitehead — all seniors — for a fifth-place time of 44.80 in the 400 relay. White, Whitehead, Veenhuis and Wright combined for a third-place effort in the 800 relay (1:31.03).
Schoolcraft senior Austin Webb boasted a height of 6-0 for fourth place overall in the high jump. Fellow Eagle River Fox (senior) was seventh in the shot put with a distance of 49-0.
Centreville senior Tyler Overholt ended his time with the Bulldogs with a third-place finish in the discus (160-0).
Backing up last year’s state championship was the boys team from Hackett Catholic Prep, which cruised to a repeat title Saturday at Hudsonville with 64 points. Southfield Christian was next in line with 46.
Heath Baldwin was a three-time champion, which included a victory in the high jump at 6-6, the 110 hurdles (14.84) and the 300 hurdles (40.13). The senior finished third overall in the long jump (21-2).
Hackett’s Gus Magnell took second in the 110 hurdles with a time of 14.96 and was runner-up in the 300 hurdles (40.68). Teammate Jacob Wells was third in the 100 with a time of 11.23. Wells, Christian Bartholomew, Matt Lugar and Magnell crossed the line in sixth place in the 800 relay (1:33.04). The same quartet was sixth in the 400 relay (44.69).
Kalamazoo Christian’s Josh Hoogenboom also made the all-state list as the junior was fourth in the discus (140-8). He was runner-up in the shot put with a throw of 50-7.75).
Colon senior Benden Shelton secured eighth place in the discus (132-0) to make it on the medal podium.
For the girls, Marcellus had a great showing in the high jump as Maike Mehlig and Mackenzie Buck took fifth and sixth, respectively, both with jumps of 5-0. Also for Marcellus, Emma Pachay, Amy Steinkraus, Lexi Bainbridge and Shoka Mitsunaga combined for a fifth-place time of 10:20.77 in the 3200 relay. Pachay wrapped up her senior year with a seventh-place effort in the 800 (2:27.42).
Hackett’s Sage Brown, a freshman, secured eighth place in the 400 (1:04.55). For Climax-Scotts, Peyton Nabozny, a senior, finished sixth in the 3200 (11:55.55).