Taylor Kroll has broken the shot put and discus records so many times for the Johannesburg-Lewiston girls track and field team that she can't remember which time this one was.
The senior once again broke the shot put record during an 11-team meet Monday at Bellaire.
Her throw of 36-10 eclipsed the record she set last season (36-01.25) by almost 9 inches, helping the Cardinals take first place as a team for the third-straight meet.
"It's got to be at least the fifth or sixth time I've broken it," Kroll said.
Kroll took second in the discus (104-00).
Getting either of those marks was a surprise to her, though.
The meet got off to a slower start than usual and the officials wouldn't let each thrower warm up.
Kroll, who has won five out of her six events so far this season, was worried.
"I'm going to be really honest: I have no clue how I broke the record," she said. "This meet started out not going so well. I didn't have time to warm up. They changed the rules half way through.
"It was not good."
At first, Bellaire's officials were having its throwers compete in flights. Then it changed. Then the crew wasn't measuring the distances correctly.
"It was very worrying," Kroll said. "My mom was like, 'Seriously, Taylor, don't hurt yourself today.' The (official) apologized to us, and I was thankful for that.
"But I think it kind of built up some frustration inside me. That helped with my throws."
Kroll also managed to keep her form intact, staying low to really got some oomph out of her throws.
She said the throw that got her the school record was one of her better form throws.
It's been only three meets for Kroll, and she has already snapped a school record. She's hoping it's not the last time before she graduates and begins throwing for Ashland University in Ohio next school year.
"I'm thinking my senior season is off to a really good starter, and it's been impressive," Kroll said. "I'm happy where my marks are right now, and I'm happy to keep them moving."
Local results from the Bellaire Invitational
Scoring: 1. J-L 162; 4. St. Mary 58
Discus: 2. Taylor Kroll J-L 104-00
High jump: 1. Jade Richter J-L 4-04
Long jump: 1. Destiny Sherbonda J-L 14-10; 2. Alicia Korff J-L 14-03.50; 3. Elizabeth Harbin St. Mary 14-00
Pole Vault: 2. Amelia Lawrence J-L 6-06; 3. Makenzie Sides J-L 6-00; 3. Taylor Peterson J-L 6-00
Shot put: 1. Taylor Kroll J-L 34-10
3,200 relay: 2. Makenzie Sides, Morgan Baughman, Taylor Peterson, Alyssa Bartle J-L 12:04.35
110 hurdles: 1. Alex Hunter St. Mary 18.92
100: 2. Destiny Sherbonda J-L 13.15; 3. Elizabeth Harbin St. Mary 13.36
800 relay: 2. Alicia Korff, Madison May, Hannah Collins, Grace Boden J-L 2:02.97
1,600: 3. Jersey Layman J-L 6:19.25
400 relay: 1. Alicia Korff, Madison May, Hannah Collins, Destiny Sherbonda J-L 54.97; 3. Alex Hunter, Olivea Jeffers, Maggie Schultz, Elizabeth Harbin St. Mary 58.06
300 hurdles: 1. Alex Hunter St. Mary 54.93; Jessika Dixon J-L 56.23
800: 3. Jersey Layman J-L 2:53.03
200: 1. Destiny Sherbonda J-L 28.67; 2. Olivea Jeffers St. Mary 29.12
By Brandon Folsom ~ Gaylord Herald Times
Leave it to a pair of runners from the Johannesburg-Lewiston and St. Mary boys track teams, respectively, to drum up a rivalry.
Through three meets this spring, J-L's Dominic Cassisi and St. Mary's Brody Markovich have battled back and forth in the sprinting events.
Cassisi has edged Markovich; Markovich has edged Cassisi. It's like the 1980s Celtics and Lakers come to life on a rubberized outdoor track.
But it was the Cardinal who got the better side of the Snowbird during an 11-team meet Monday at Bellaire.
Cassisi's four wins helped the Cardinals take first place in the meet.
"We were pushing each other tonight," Cassisi said. "It's a friendly rivalry. Our times are really close to each other. He comes from Texas (as a transfer student), and he just comes out of nowhere.
"But our times are pushing each other, and it's paying off."
Cassisi won the 100-meter dash (11.17), 200 (23.70), and 400 (53.46).
The senior joined Logan Finnerty, Mike Courtier and Jacob Marsh in winning the 400-meter relay (47.09).
"I think it's awesome competition," Markovich said. "He really does push me to do the best I can, definitely. I really think having him to be able to run with and having him running side by side the whole time has pushed me to be 100 percent better."
Markovich, a junior who had to sit out last spring's track season because of MHSAA transfer rules, was right behind Cassisi in both the 100 (11.19) and 200 (23.91), taking second place in each event.
Selfishly, Cassisi admitted he's excited Markovich has stepped up and challenged him during Ski Valley races.
He was worried he wouldn't have a rival to push him to perform at a high level entering this season. He was unsure he'd have a rival after the graduation of J-L's Ethan May and Troy Boughner and going back two years ago, the graduation of Inland Lakes star Danny Flowers.
"(Markovich) is pretty built," Cassisi said. "I kind of knew him a bit from football, but I never knew what kind of a runner he'd be.
"Now we hang out a lot at the end of track meets. It's always, 'You go me!' Or it's, 'I got you!' It's a great little rivalry."
Markovich's goal is to break the school's 100 record, which is 11.41 set by former Snowbird Clay Becker in 2010.
There's a good chance Cassisi will help push him to that mark.
"I'm just going to work as hard as I can," Markovich said. "I'm definitely going to hit the weight room a little more, and I know I'll get that little extra work from Cassisi to help me really do the best I can."
Local results from the Bellaire Invitational
Scoring: 1. J-L 156.50; 7. St. Mary 40
400: 2. Jacob Marsh J-L 54:14
800: 3. Kyle May J-L 2:18:58
3,200: 2. Brendan Delaney St. Mary 10:53.16
800 relay: 2. Jacob Marsh, Logan Finnerty, Tyre Curtis, Ron Saddler J-L 1:41.45
3,200 relay: Kyle May, Tyler Helzer, Nathan Idalski, Cody Layman J-L 9:29.39
Shot put: 2. Liam Beningo St. Mary 38-02; 3. McGwire Mathewson J-L 36-09
Pole Vault: 1. Mike Courterier J-L 13-00
High jump: 1. Mike Courterier J-L 5-06; 3. Lance Upplegger J-L 5-06
Long jump: 2. Lance Upplegger J-L 16-10.50
Cardinals' Courterier breaks pole vault record with family watching
JOHANNESBURG — Mike Courterier said he was happy he didn't choke with his family on hand watching him this time around.
The Johannesburg-Lewiston senior once again broke the school record in the pole vault during a boys track and field meet Wednesday, one in which the Cardinals scored 142.33 points to take first place in.
"This was unlike anything before," Courterier said. "It was cool that my parents were there as was my grandma, my brother and sister were there and my brother's girlfriend was there.
"All my friends and most of my teammates were there watching. I figured it'd be so cool to break the record with everyone I go to school with watching me do the pole vault."
Courterier cleared 14-03 to set the new record.
His old record was 14-00.
He was excited his brother, C.J., finally got to see him do well.
Courterier wasn't surprised he cleared the height. He had expected he'd do so sometime this spring. He didn't expect to do it in the season opener, however, because he had limited practice time before the meet.
Because of spring break and the weather, he had only practiced four times, plus he hadn't been working with the pole he regularly uses in most meets.
"I just had my first couple of practices, and I wasn't using my pole I get height on," Courterier said. "I was using my smaller, shorter and lighter-weighted pole to get back in the groove of pole vaulting.
"I just started using my normal pole again and started jumping on it. It felt really good. I was raising the bungee every 6 inches, and I started to clear 12 feet by a mile."
Courterier's next goal is to clear 14-6, which he thinks he can achieve within the next few weeks or so.
By the end of the season, he wants to break the Division 4 MHSAA record of 15-01.
"My main goal is to get to this point," he said. "My original high school goal was to get at least 14 feet. After breaking that record, I have to set another goal, so why not the state record?"
Dominic Cassisi helped Courterier and the Cardinals by winning all four of the events he competed in during the five-team meet.
The senior took first in the 100-meter dash (12.07), 200 (24.70) and 400 (55.15). He and Courterier were also on a team that placed first in the 400-meter relay (47.41).
Elijah Fisher won the 300-meter hurdles (50.21), while McGwire Mathewson placed first in the shot put (37-00.25) and third in the discus (96-40). Brad Cole was second in the discus (107-00) and third in the shot put (36-00.50).
Kyle May finished second in the 800 (2:21.34) and third in the 1,600-meter run (5:21.26), while Nathan Lawrence was second in the 110 hurdles (20.38) and third in the 300 hurdles (52.67). The duo joined Nathan Idalski and Tyler Helzer in taking second in the 3,200 relay (9:37.04).
Lance Upplegger took second in the high jump (5-02), Wyatt Lowe placed third in the pole vault (10-05) and Logan Finnerty tied third in the long jump (16-07).
The girls team won its portion of the meet, scoring 152 points and notching nine first-place finishes.
That included Jersey Layman winning the 1,600 (6:48) and the high jump (4-00). She joined Isabella Head, Alyssa Bartle and Taylor Peterson in 3,200 relay (12:34.78).
Taylor Kroll won both the discus (109-07.60) and shot put (35-08.50).
Destiny Sherbonda won the 200 (29.96) and helped Alicia Korff, Madison May and Hannah Collins in taking first in the 400 relay (55.44).
Jessika Dixon won the 300 hurdles (59.10), while Taylor Peterson placed first in the pole vault (7-00).
Lady Cardinals spectacular at Inland Lakes meet
• Sherbonda won four events and pushed the J-L girls team to a first-place finish in a five-team meet Thursday at Inland Lakes
Sherbonda won the 100 (14.07), 200 (29.99) and long jump (14-06). She helped Korff, May and Collins win the 400 relay (45.90).
Kroll won both the shot put (35-01.50) and discus (115-03).
Amelia Lawrence (7-00), Makenzie Sides (6-06) and Taylor Peterson (6-00) took first, second and third, respectively, in the pole vault.
Sides also won the 400 (1:11.46).
The boys team placed second in the meet.
Courterier won the pole vault (13-00), Upplegger took first in the high jump (5-03) and Cole placed first in the discus (108-01).
"My brother has only watched me once," Courterier said. "The one time he watched me, I was terrible. It was high-pressure, but I knew I had to do good, but I had to deal with a lot of pressure that meet."
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