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TRACK & FIELD: North Oldham makes adjustments, confident in return to state

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By Elliott Pratt

 LOUISVILLE - North Oldham’s mission last season was to make noise in the regional tournament. Consider that mission accomplished with a dominating team performance to claim the Class 2A, Region 3 track and field championships for the boys and girls teams. For the girls, that success carried over into their first state title with the boys finishing runner-up. 

Expectations for 2015 are nothing short of another trip to Lexington to capture another championship.

“This year our focus is clearly on the state meet and doing everything we can to field for that,” boys track and field coach David St. Louis said.

The Mustangs will rely on proven runners like Trenton Fryman, who won the state title last year in the 1,600 run, and Arien Beasley in the field events after claiming third last year in the long jump.

Senior David Terkula will lead North in the 800 meter after finishing third in the state last year.

Terkula showed his endurance in the 1,600 run Saturday at the Harry Gerschel Invitational at Christian Academy of Louisville, finishing second behind South Oldham’s Cole Dowdy with a time of 4:30.15. Terkula also placed third in the boys 800-meter dash.

St. Louis said the emphasis for the boys’ team is to keep the athletes focused on their strongest events and to continue to build skills with the underclassmen running in their first invitational. The Mustangs have already hosted their own tri-meet on March 16 with Eastern and Ballard. 

“Now it’s about getting things into place so they know what to do when they come to invitationals,” St. Louis said.

Other solid performances at the invitational at CAL was Samuel Pyle placing fourth in the 200-meter dash and third in the 400-meter dash with Beasley placing second in the long jump at 20-feet-8-inches.

For the girls team, piecing together holes left from last year’s state championship squad is the biggest challenge for athletic director/head coach Alan Yanke.

Nearly half of the 45 members on the girls’ roster are still experimenting with different events, but Yanke is confident the pieces are in place for another run at the title.

“We’re really kind of tinkering with different things and people trying to find one event that best helps the team and themselves,” Yanke said.

Runners Erin Olsson, Nicole Moeller, Jesse Sanders and Elizabeth Olive return after claiming the top spot in the state last year in the 4x200 and 4x400 relays. Moeller placed third in the 100 and 200-meter dash Saturday while the quartet of Moeller, Sanders, Olive and Olsson placed fourth in the 4x200 relay.

Maggie Mollak, the two-time defending state champion in the shot put, placed second to CAL’s Lillie Popovich with a throw of 35-11.5.

“This was a big meet with a lot of great schools and it gives us a chance to see where we are at this point in the season with meet number two to see if we’re progressing on the path that we want to,” Yanke said.