The Centreville girls track and field team has won three regional titles and finished runner-up twice over the last five years, and with plenty of state qualifiers from last season returning this spring, the Bulldogs expect another successful year.
Though it’s a young squad with 14 underclassmen out of 27 total athletes, 15 letterwinners from 2013 will help steady Centreville, which is expected to give Mendon a run for the St. Joseph Valley League crown.
“Our goals are to be league champions, win regionals and have a great showing in the state meet,” said coach Shawn Hulin, who is in his 14th season at the helm. “I do believe Mendon’s girls are the team to beat in the league and at regionals. They should have another strong team this year.”
The Bulldogs were 3-6 in the SJV last spring, placed third at their home invitational, sixth at the John Greene Invite (Mendon), second at regionals and ninth at the Michigan Interscholastic Track Coaches Association state meet.
Junior Nellie Pence made it to the Division 4 MHSAA state finals in the long jump, 800-meter relay, 400 relay and 1600 relay. She tied for 13th place in the long jump (15 feet, 4.50 inches). Junior Jenna Beeker and sophomore Madison Hunter joined her in the 800 relay, which placed 18th overall (1 minute, 54.67 seconds).
Pence and senior Paige Kindig represented half a 400 relay team that clocked in at 52.30 seconds for sixth place and All-State status. Kindig turned in a fourth-place performance in the pole vault at the state finals, clearing 9-3.
Pence, Hunter and junior Annmarie Reed wrapped up the state meet in 25th place in the 1600 relay.
Lost to graduation were key point scorers Sage Pence (discus, 800 relay, 400 relay, 1600 relay) and Emily DeLeo (300 hurdles and 200).
“Nellie Pence will be a big factor in the long jump, 400 dash and sprint relays,” Hulin said. “Paige Kindig and McKinley Miracle (freshman) will be big factors in the pole vault. We will again have quality sprint relays. Rudie Crawford (senior) looks to be a threat in the shot and discus. Ann Marie Reed will be our experienced hurdler.
“Our strength is [the girls’] attitude and work ethic. The weakness is our depth in each event.”
A look at the Bulldogs
Returning letterwinners: Hunter Fales (So., throws); Madison Hunter (So., middle distance, sprints, relays); Jill Kuhl (So., middle distance, high jump, long jump, throws); Colleen Miller (So., throws); Jenna Beeker (Jr., sprints); Annmarie Reed (Jr., hurdles, throws, 400); Nellie Pence (Jr., sprints, relays, long jump); Amada Monsivaes (Jr., pole vault); Rudie Crawford (Sr., throws, hurdles); Bailey Kelley (Sr., throws, distance); Paige Kindig (Sr., pole vault, sprints, relays); Kaylyn Salmen (Sr., throws, sprints); Jasmine Long (Sr., sprints); Kaylyn Schultz (throws, distance).
Freshmen: Gracie Schrock (throws, hurdles, sprints); Andrea Bell (high jump, distance); Lexi Larrison (hurdles, sprints, high jump); McKinley Miracle (pole vault, sprints); Mindy Rank (sprints, middle distance); Sarah Snow (distance, sprints); Katrina Troyer (hurdles, high jump, sprints).
Sophomores: Morgan Kern (throws, sprints); Rachel Kroupa (throws, distance); Demiaha Taylor (long jump, sprints, relays).
Juniors: Rachel Sirna (sprints); Samantha Bell (sprints); Becky Clementz (sprints, distance, field events).
Seniors: No new seniors.