Lady Pilgrims split last NLC 3-way

PLYMOUTH — Plymouth earned a split at its final Northern Lakes Conference three-way at home Tuesday, and it was one for the Lady Pilgrims to grow on.
The team picked up only three first-place finishes in a 74-54 loss to Northridge but saw improvement in several events and gained some conference momentum with a 75.66-55.33 win over Goshen on Senior Night.
The Lady Pilgrims conclude the conference dual meet season at 4-3, a projected fourth-place finish behind Warsaw, Elkhart Memorial and Northridge heading into next Tuesday’s NLC championship meet.
“We’ve been 5-2 a lot and 4-3, this is about where we are, but we’ve always slid at the conference meet,” said Plymouth head girls track coach Paul Patrick. “If we can stay up and stay fourth or better at the conference meet — and maybe we can because of our good events, the 400, both relays, the 800, the 400, the high jumpers. Typically we just grind it out and try to score points, but we’ll have some events next week that we’ll get in the top two or the top three in so we’ll score some points.”
Freshman Allie Wright capped off an unbeaten conference streak in the 400 with a win in one minute flat, and she ran legs on her team’s two winning relays — the 3200 with Meagan Fisher, Libby Read and Maggie Morrow, and the 1600 with Fisher, Hunter Stevens and Emmelyn Brandt.
Along with her turns on the Pilgrims’ two winning relays, Fisher recorded a pair of personal records on her way to two razor-thin second-place finishes in the 800 and the high jump. She clocked a 2:21.9 to cross the finish line a hair behind Northridge runner Corinne Cominator’s 2:21.1 in the 800 as she and teammate Libby Read went two-three in the race, and she cleared 5-2 to lose on a tiebreaker rule to the Raiders’ Lilly Russo in the high jump.
“Meagan ran a super time in the 800, she went 2:21, which was a PR. Allie won the 400, our 4x800 team ran 9:51, which is the fastest 4x800 I’ve ever had by seven seconds and this is my seventh year with the girls. I think that group of girls is excited about their chances next week on Tuesday at winning the conference,” Patrick said. “Meagan high-jumped 5-2 today and got beat on a tiebreaker, but 5-2 is a PR for her. We had some good things happen, but it’s going to focus these kids on seeing if we can get some champions next Tuesday. That’s a big deal to win conference and to win your event outright is a great thing. In such a competitive league as we have, that’s a special thing.”
Also placing for Plymouth Tuesday, the Pilgrims’ 400 relay of Stevens, Tracy Longanecker, Megan Maxwell and Sammi Davis took second behind Goshen’s A team, and Longanecker finished third both in the long jump and the pole vault, where teammate Cassie Quisell and she went two-three respectively. Emmelyn Brandt was third in the 400, Shelby Harrell was third in the 3200, and Katelyn O’Neal placed third in the 100-meter hurdles.
Plymouth hits the road for the Goshen Relays on Saturday before next Tuesday’s NLC meet.
“We’ve got the Goshen Relays on Saturday. I as a coach will try and put in a lineup that will hopefully conserve those kids so that they’re not doing more than maybe two things so that we go into Tuesday still fresh,” said Patrick. “That’s got to be our focus for Allie and the 4x800 and Meagan and some of those kids. Hopefully we’ll do well next Tuesday. We’ve gone over to the conference meet traditionally and just gotten beat up… On the track, we haven’t had a champion in four years. Allie should be seeded first, our 4x800 will be seeded second, but they beat everybody.”
Tuesday’s meet was the Lady Pilgrims’ only home meet of the season, and the team used the occasion to honor three seniors in Morrow and throwers Lindsay Romwalter and Lindsay Downs.
“Lindsay and Lindsay are probably as valuable as any kids I have because of what they do in the throws. There have been a lot of times where our throwers are kind of on their own because (assistant coaches) Ashley (Boardman), Jami (Holm) and I don’t do anything with the throwers,” said Patrick. “So Lindsay and Lindsay have shown great leadership with Megan Sutton and Brittany Gantz and some of those other kids, Bobbie Stiles, that you can’t put a value on because I’m not there and they handle those things. Maggie is coming back after missing last year with an ACL injury. She is probably the sweetest kid that I’ve ever been around. She does everything with such a positive attitude; she’s just a joy to be around.
“All three of them we’re going to miss. It’s a small group, they’re not giving us a ton of points, but their leadership is invaluable, so I’m really thankful for all that they’ve done for us.”
• NORTHRIDGE 74, GOSHEN 54; PLYMOUTH 75.66, GOSHEN 55.33; NORTHRIDGE 86, PLYMOUTH 46
At Plymouth
3200 relay: 1. Plymouth (Meagan Fisher, Libby Read, Maggie Morrow, Allie Wright) 9:52, 2. Northridge 10:04; 100 hurdles: 1. Liana Yoder (G) 16.6, 2. Bekah Ross (N) 17.93; 100: 1. Lauren Stutzman (G) 12.7, 2. Lauren Lambert (N) 12.8; 1600: 1. Corinne Cominator (N) 5:27, 2. Jenniger Schrock (N) 5:28; 400 relay: 1. Goshen (Brianna Clawson, Tori DeVries, Edith Gonzalez, Marisela Salazar) 52.6, 2. Plymouth 54.6; 400: 1. Allie Wright ℗ 1:00, 2. Mackenzie Gray (N) 1:02.7; 300 hurdles: 1. Liana Yoder (G) 48.8, 2. Mandy Campbell (N) 51; 800: 1. Corinne Cominator (N) 2:21.1, 2. Meagan Fisher ℗ 2:21.9; 200: 1. Liana Yoder (G) 26.4, 2. Lauren Stutzman (G) 26.8; 3200: 1. Jennifer Schrock (N) 12:00, 2. Madie Royce (N) 12:04; 1600 relay: 1. Plymouth (Meagan Fisher, Hunter Stevens, Allie Wright, Emmelyn Brandt) 4:17.45, 2. Northridge 4:20.85; High jump: 1. Lilly Russo (N) 5-2, 2. Meagan Fisher ℗ 5-2; Pole vault: 1. Briana Ruiz (N) 8-0, 2. Cassie Quissell ℗ 7-6; Long jump: 1. Lauren Stutzman (G) 15-10, 2. Lauren Lambert (N) 14-8; Discus: 1. Karla Corral (G) 117-06, 2. Kim Swank (N) 101-08; Shot put: 1. Karla Corral (G) 36-07, 2. Madison Stewart (N) 33-08.5.