Grand Ledge’s girls track team represented their school well as they finished out their 2012 spring season at the MHSAA track finals Saturday, June 2, at East Kentwood.
“We had a fantastic state meet,” head coach Fred Hutchinson said. “I was proud of the girls. The weather was a factor, very windy and at times rainy but the girls just worked hard and got the job done.”
As has been the case this spring, freshman Hailey French continued her sparkling performances and finished on a high note with a seventh place finish in the long jump. French landed at 17’8.75″ to break her all time record in the process.
“She handled the pressure of the state finals very well. To finish the year with her longest jump ever was spectacular. This year’s field of long jumpers was more competitive than most years and Hailey demonstrated that she belongs with the best of the best,” Hutchinson said.
Senior standout Ola Hendler closed out a brilliant track career with a third place finish in the 400-meter dash with a time of 57.14 seconds.
“Ola ran an awesome race. The wind really picked up making a good time much more difficult. To finish third in the state and also break her own school record in the process was just amazing and demonstrated just how good she is. She worked so hard and has developed into an elite level runner. She’s also a great kid and going to be tough to replace both as an athlete and as a leader,” Hutchinson added.
Sophomore Madison Arnouts also established herself as a top athlete as she finished third in the 300 low hurdles with a time of 46.01 seconds, less than one second away from first place. Senior Emily Schaefer also ended her career on a high note with a thirteenth place finish in 47.65 seconds.
“Madi was just phenomenal,” Hutchinson said. “She went into the meet seeded fourteenth and just performed beautifully. She attacked the race and destroyed the competition in her heat. For her to finish third in the state meet in a pressure packed situation speaks volumes about how much she has improved this spring. “Emily was our other senior at the state finals and competed in her last race. She has been a great contributor and this year also became an an excellent leader. She will be missed a great deal not only because of her track ability but also because she’s just such a great person.”
Sophomore Karlie Lambie cleared 4’11” in the high jump and junior Emma Lee cleared 9’3″ in the pole vault, both fine finishes for their events. A new Div. I MHSAA high jump record was set at 5’9″ and the pole vault ended with the winner clearing an amazing 12’6″.
“Both Karlie and Emma finished in the middle of the pack in their espective events. While they weren’t all state they both represented their team and their town very well,” Hutchinson added.
The Comets finished 12th in the state with a team totals of 14 points. Grosse Point South won the title with 77.50 points. Ann Arbor Pioneer was second with 44 points and Rockford third with 35. Jackson of the CAAC Blue division finished eighth with 20 points.