COATESVILLE >> There was no shortage of suspense on Wednesday at the Ches-Mont Girls Track and Field Championship. That’s because there was a wild, three-way team battle to the finish.
When the dust settled, Unionville won the title, edging out Downingtown East by 2.5 points and host Coatesville by 7.5 points. The Indians notched four individual crowns, but the big difference was probably that Unionville had a bit more depth.
“We had a lot of things go right, but we were pretty confident heading in,” said Unionville coach Mark Lacianca. “We are strong in the distance events, we have some terrific hurdlers and two good throwers, so that’s a lot of events where we can clean up.
“Plus we got some small points in other events, and that helped us. It was a great way to end our regular season.”
Lacianca got winning efforts from two of his stars: Kacie Breeding an Anna Juul. Breeding took first in the 1,600 and Juul won the 800, and also ran a leg of the winning 4x800 relay. And Samantha Pancoast prevailed in the javelin.
“I’m very proud of my girls,” said Coatesville coach Keith Andrew. “We were fortunate to get through our season unbeaten in the division despite a bunch of injuries.
“Unionville has good numbers in certain events where they picked up a lot of points, and then they grabbed some lower points in other events. That’s kind of how you do it if you want to win it.”
There were several two-time individual champions, including Bishop Shanahan’s Chloee Kleespies, Coatesville’s Porsha Miles and Downingtown East’s Evelyn Berecz. Plus, Berecz was the anchor leg of the winning 4x100 relay for the Cougars.
“Everything felt good and I did my (personal record) twice in the long jump,” Berecz said. “It means a lot to let everyone in your event know that you are going to be a tough competitor.”
Miles won the 100 and 200 even though she had missed the previous month with an injured right foot.
“I’d say I’m about 70 percent,” Miles said. “My mom told me not to run (Wednesday), but I felt like I could compete. I knew my times weren’t going to be the best so I am excited to get two wins.”
As expected, Kleespies won easily in the discus, and she surpassed her PR in the process. But she also took a first in shot put with a personal best throw of 38-2. The tall, slender junior recently committed to play volleyball and run track at the University of Toledo.
“One time a coach told me I was too skinny to throw shot put,” she laughed. “But it helps being taller and being quicker helps because I am smaller than most other throwers.”
Great Valley notched a pair of wins in the 4x400 relay and in the 300m hurdles, and Emma Iacobbuci was critical in both. The rest of the individual winners included Downingtown West’s Stacey Wolverson and Emma Planck in the high jump and 3,200, respectively, Coatesville’s Karley Hess in the 400, and Oxford’s Katie Dodson in the 100 hurdles.
According to Lacianca, Unionville has always valued a Ches-Mont team championship, but he did acknowledge that he has to walk a fine line between trying to win and avoiding overworking any of his key performers.
“We have a lot of seniors, and we have a lot of strength in a lot of different areas, and the girls competed well today,” Lacianca said.
“We didn’t run Anna Juul in four events and we didn’t run Kacie Breeding in three events because we don’t want to hurt our athletes for the future just to try and win this meet. But it’s important to us. You don’t want to do too much, but we always want to compete.”
On Wednesday, the Indians did just enough.
Ches-Mont Track and Field Championship
Girls Team Scores1. Unionville 112; 2. Downingtown East 109.5; 3. Coatesville 104.5; 4. Bishop Shanahan 85; 5. Downingtown West 61.5; 6. West Chester East 48; 6. West Chester Henderson 48; 8. Great Valley 35; 9. West Chester Rustin 32.5; 10. Kennett 25; 11. Oxford 13; Avon Grove 12.
Individual ResultsHigh jump – 1. Wolverton (DW) 5-4; Discus – 1. Kleespies (BS) 132-1; 4x800 – 1. Unionville (Brislan, Juul, Edwards, McGovern) 9:36.01; Long jump – 1. Berecz (DE) 18-4; 1,600 – 1. Breeding (U) 4:55.36; 100 – 1. Miles (C) 100 hurdles – 1. Dodson (OX) 14.98; 4x100 – 1. Downingtown East (Nutthall, Hall, Jennings, Berecz) 49.46; 400 – 1. Hess (C) 58.06; Shot put – 1. Kleespies (BS) 38-23/4; 300 hurdles – 1. Iacobbuci (GV) 46.11; Triple jump – 1. Berecz (DE) 38-8; 800 – 1. Juul (U) 2:14.93; 200 – Miles (C) 26.13; 3,200 – 1. Planck (DW) 11:24.65; Javelin – 1. Pancoast (U) 126-4; 4x400 – Great Valley (An. Willig, Spiess, Iacobbuci, Am. Willig) 3:56.39.