Blue Devils Compete in Yooper Invite

The Sault High Varsity Blue Devils track and field teams competed in the third annual Yooper Invite held at LSSU, their only indoor meet of the season. 15 teams competed in the men’s division while 14 were in the women’s, with the Blue Devils placing 6th and 4th respectively. The following Blue Devils placed in the top eight in their events, earning points for their teams. Sprinters Ryver Ryckeghem (6.87) and Bella Smith (8.13) finished fourth and eighth in the 55m dash. Smith (28.91) and Ahnaka Oshelski (29.41) placed third and fifth in the 200m dash. The Lady Blue Devils swept the 55m hurdles event with Oshelski (9.79) winning the event, and Annabelle Fazzari (9.99) crossing the finish line right after her. Stephanie Jones (2:56) placed eighth in the 800m run. Distance runner Shea Armstrong (10:45.16) won the 3200m event, while teammate Regan Sporte (14:02.67) finished in sixth place. In the 4×400 relay, Dayna Szabo, Ava Mayer, Grace Mayer and Natalie Heyrman (4:44.63) took fourth, while Abby Walther, Szabo, Sporte and Calla Armstrong  (11:20.55) placed third in the 4×800 relay. 

The girls team head coach Scott Menard shared how the first meet of the season went. “I thought the boys and girls teams both performed well.  We are very young on both the boys and girls teams, so the first meet is always a learning experience, but the new members of both teams ran hard and threw well.  We also got some great performances from some of our returning members. We run outside at Petoskey on Wednesday, which is usually a better indicator of where we are and what we need to work on.” 

In the field events, the Blue Devils had a number of placers, with Talon Thomas-Holm (5’9”) winning the high jump event. Katie Anderson (34’11”) placed second and Evan Arbic (42’5”) and Brady Ditmyer (38’6”) took second and seventh in shot put. Johnny Osborn (16’1”) won the adaptive shot put event. The MHSAA recently voted in the 100m, 200m, 400m and shot put adaptive events to the track and field competitions after a two year pilot program. 

Throwers’ coach Brad Boven gave a recap of their performance as well. “Yeah they definitely stepped up to the plate for the first meet of the year. It helps that the majority of the throwers are returners (Thelma being our freshman on the girls side). With about 40 throwers for both the girls and boys side I think we had top 15 results for everyone which is a good sign for things to come. Katie Anderson and Evan Arbic the two senior leaders we have coming back that are multi-year throwers and returning state meet placers got back on track with both taking second place and picking up where they left off last year. Ditmyer started off his sophomore campaign hot beating his personal record (PR) by a full foot and then some. Abbie K PR’d already from last season as well, so it was a good day. First outdoor meet is in Petoskey on Wednesday and we get to bring the full throw squad. We are all looking forward to seeing what we have not only in the throws but other events as well.”

The Blue Devils are on the road for the rest of the season. The teams will take on Alpena, Petoskey and Petoskey St Michael in a non-conference meet. 

Throwers: Katie Anderson, Abbie Kachur, Thelma Osumili, Evan Arbic, Coach Boven, Walter Anderson, Brady Ditmyer and Johnny Osborn.  (Photo credit: Jenny Anderson)

Dayna Szabo

Calla Armstrong

Abby Walther 

Regan Sporte

Photo credit: Ursula Walther 

Katie Peabody, Staff Writer
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