It was a great week for coach Jack LoPresti's Wauwatosa West girls track and field team. First they won the Brookfield East regional on May 23, and then they won the West Allis Hale sectional on May 26 and sent two relays and seven individual events to this weekend's WIAA state championships at UW-La Crosse.
West scored 103 points to Waukesha West's 90 points, followed by the Brookfield schools, East (88) and Central (79).
'The game plan at sectionals is to qualify as many athletes as you can for state,' LoPresti said. 'And we did a brilliant job of that. We had many excellent performances that allowed us to collect the team's first sectional title in girls track in many, many decades.'
Junior Cheri'A Adams qualified by winning the 100-meter dash in 12.39 seconds and finished second in the triple jump (36 feet, 11/2 inches). She also qualified on two relays.
'Cheri'A is a top-notch competitor and consistently one of the best track and field athletes anywhere,' LoPresti said, 'She is poised for a great state meet.'
Senior Azya McLin qualified in the 100 (third, 12.47) and was a member of both qualifying relay teams.
'A seasoned vet, Azya McLin, powered us once again as the lead leg on both the 4x100 and 4x200 relays,' LoPresti said. 'In addition, she ran an excellent 100-meter race and is set up nicely for a very solid state meet.'
Sophomore Breanna Weigman won the 200-meter dash (25.50) and was second in the high jump (5 feet, 5 inches). She was also a qualifying relay team.
'Breanna did an excellent job on a tough day to jump,' LoPresti said. 'Wegs continues to be a hard-nosed competitor, running a leg on the winning 4x100 relay and winning the 200 meter dash.'
Brianna Horton won the 300 hurdles (45.97) and was on a qualifying relay team.
'Brianna runs a first-rate 300 hurdle race and is the sectional champion for the 300 hurdles,' LoPresti said. 'She also runs a leg on the winning 4x200 meter relay. She is just hitting her stride this season; more good things to come.'
Sophomore Kayla Crump qualified by taking third in the 300 hurdles (46.42).
'Kayla is the toughest athlete around,' LoPresti said. 'She runs a solid 300 low hurdle race and qualifies for state in the 300 lows. 'She is just an awesome person to be around, confident, tough, determined. I could go on.'
The 4x200-meter relay qualified by winning in 1 minute, 42.54 seconds behind McLin, senior Mercy Ndon, senior Brianna Horton and Adams.
4x100-meter relay qualified by taking first in 48.12 seconds behind McLin, Ndon, Breanna Weigman and Adams.
LoPresti tipped his cap to Ndon in the relays.
'Mercy runs two great legs in the 4x200 and 4x100 relays,' LoPresti said. 'An excellent job as always from Mercy.'
LoPresti also had praise for some of his other athletes who helped win the sectional.
'Senior Anna Roghan grabs fifth in the 1,600 and runs a nice leg on the 4x400 relay,' he said. 'Anna gets to go to state, too, as a relay alternate. I'm proud of her four years for us. The girls in the 400 dash, Jade Tanjung and Julia Larson, grabbed valuable sectional points in the 400 and as members of the 4x400 relay. Ashley Salomone grabbed points in the 300 low hurdles and as a member of the 4x400 relay. A great job by all three girls.'
He also praised his field events athletes.
'A future star thrower, Abby Kuna also got great throwing experience at sectionals, and pole vaulter Kim Mai also scored in the vault,' he said.
'Our team put up a first rate performance,' LoPresti said. 'I'm proud of the job of our coaching staff: Andy Schmeling and Grace Shelstad (jumps); Andrew Barthel (vault); Jason Hood and Kaya Senaya (sprints); Bri Jury (hurdles); and Scott Jordan (throws).'
The Trojans scored 174 points in the regional to defeat Divine Savior Holy Angels (155) and win the Brookfield East Regional on May 23.
Qualifying events: high jump: Weigman, Lauren Nemitz; pole vault: Mai; triple jump: Adams; 100 hurdles: Krump; 100: Ndon. McLin, Adams; 400: Larson, Tanjung; 300 hurdles: Crump, Horton; 200: Weigman; 3,200: Chloe Beaudoin; and 1,600: Roghan
The relays follow: 4x800 (Toriah Haanstad, Sophia Ruggeri, Delany Reed, Eliza Soczka); 4x200 (McLin, Ndon, Horton, Adams); 4x100 (McLin, Ndon, Weigman, Adams); and 4x400 (Tanjung, Roghan, Larson, Salomone).