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Bensz, Gasaway, Steder qualify for state

May 25, 2018 GMT

CROWN POINT — For a couple big guys still figuring out how to do this, Ryan Stefanko and Justin Wozniak are pretty accomplished weight throwers.

Just a couple of Michigan City juniors heaving around an iron ball and wooden plate, but they do it farther than just about any other high school athletes in the state.

Stefanko finished second in the shot put at Thursday’s Crown Point Boys Track & Field Regional. Wozniak finished second in the discus.

“We’re still figuring it out,” laughed Wozniak, who hit 170 feet, 10 inches to qualify for next weekend’s state meet at the Indiana University track in Bloomington. “We have a competition thing going between us. That’s helped each one of us get better.”

With a good chunk of Michigan City’s points scored in the field events, the Wolves scored 50 to finish fifth in the final regional team standings. La Porte was eighth with 29, and New Prairie 16th with 11.

Merrillville totaled 82 points to claim its first boys regional title in 10 years. The top three finishers in each event advance to the IHSAA finals, as well as any athlete who met a tough state performance standard.

Stefanko, who switched from the glide to a spin style of shot putting this season, is hoping to break the 60-foot mark in Bloomington. He managed 56-11¾ Thursday night.

“I was trying a spin here and there at the end of a practice, and I would crank a big one, like a 57 (feet), out of nowhere,” Stefanko said. “So, my coach and I started working really hard on the spin, and I started getting big throws.”

While the weight throwers were out doing their thing at a far corner of Crown Point’s track, City senior Keyshawn McGill accomplished a season-long goal by winning the 200-meter dash. In the final, he outleaned Andrean’s Thomas Tyler for the championship, 22.05 to 22.06 seconds.

McGill also finished second in the high jump, clearing 6-4, and fourth in the long jump with a 22 foot, 5-1/2 inch effort. He’s going to state in three different events.

“I feel like I can push myself even more (at state),” said McGill. “We never had good weather at the start of the season and I’m just finding out what I can do.”

New Prairie’s Sam Schlimpert qualified along with McGill, as he finished third in the 200 at 22.53.

La Porte long jumper Tyler Bensz reached the state meet standard – 22-3 ½ – on his very first trial, meaning he was guaranteed a trip to Bloomington no matter where he finished at the regional.

He ended up second with a personal best 22-7.

“Not having the stress felt really good. I was just going for a PR after that,” said Bensz of his big opener.

The Slicers also have athletes going to state in the 800-meter run, where Adam Gasaway placed third in 1:56.71; and 300-meter hurdles, where Ryan Steder was third at 39.65.

Slicer high jumper Jacob Marsh cleared 6-4 for third place.

All things considered, a fairly successful night for area athletes.

“This is a step in the right direction,” said City coach Lucas Snyder. “The kids are really focused right now.”

IHSAA BOYS TRACK REGIONAL

At Crown Point

Team scores: Merrillville 82, Crown Point 73, Chesterton 61, Portage 57, Michigan City 50, Lowell 49, Andrean 31, La Porte 29, Valparaiso 25, Hobart 21, Highland 20, Boone Grove 18, Wheeler 17 1/2, Lake Central 14 ½, Munster 13, New Prairie 11, Covenant Christian (DeMotte) 8, North Judson 8, Gary West 6, Kouts 5, North Newton 5, Bowman Academy 4, Morgan Township 3, Kankakee Valley 3, South Central (Union Mills) 3, Hebron 3, Hammond Bishop Noll 2, Hanover Central 1, East Chicago Central 1.

4 x 800 relay: 1, Lowell (Caleb Chapman, Fernando Rosas, Gabriel Sanchez, Dustin Hudak) 7:54.79. 2, Crown Point (Aaron Kamstra, Matthew Hanlon, Cole Simmons, Joshua Whitaker) 7:58.24. 3, Valparaiso (Nathaniel Smith, Carl Frey, Collin Huber, Tyler Puskar) 8:03.41. 4, Merrillville 8:11.76. 5, Lake Central 8:23.20. 6, Gary West 8:32.94. 7, Chesterton 8:34.26. 8, Hebron 8:34.82. 9, La Porte (John Alexander, Mitchell Gits, Connor Havens, Sean Wilson) 8:36.92.

110 high hurdles: 1, Cameron Williams (Andrean) 14.63. 2, Robert Williams (Merrillville) 15.03. 3, Omena Onomakpome (Merrillville) 15.03. 4, Trey Sebben (Portage) 15.14. 5, Davin Latiker (Merrillville) 15.15. 6, Jerald Hodges, Jr. (Michigan City) 15.47. 7, Aaron Brown (Hammond Bishop Noll) 15.68. 8, Tyler Mason (Hanover Central) 16.00.

100: 1, Braden Corzan (Chesterton) 10.95. 2, Jaden Warner (Munster) 11.00. 3, Tyler Thomas (Andrean) 11.01. 4, Greg Milledge (Portage) 11.04. 5, Keon Sellers (Lake Central) 11.10. 6, Jayson Murphy (Michigan City) 11.14. 7, Chris Ortiz (Portage) 11.34. 8, David O’Toole (Crown Pt) 11.36.

1600: 1, Aaron Kamstra (Crown Pt) 4:20.73. 2, Carson Bakker (Covenant Christian) 4:22.14. 3, Joshua Whitaker (Crown Pt) 4:24.97. 4, Andrew Smenyak (Chesterton) 4:25.97. 5, Cameron Jones (Boone Grove) 4:28.67. 6, Lucas Guerra (Highland) 4:29.24. 7, Nicholas Tonne (Valparaiso) 4:31.40. 8, Will McComis (Munster) 4:32.87.

4 x 100 relay: 1, Portage (Devin Griffin, Angel Sanchez, Trey Sebben, Greg Milledge) 42.17. 2, Lowell (Ryan Farmer, Jaeger Gill, Rylee Torrence, Tucker Greenholt) 42.68. 3, Crown Point (David O’Toole, Nicholas Ryan, Chaqwan Williams, Matthew Walters) 43.00. 4, Merrillville 43.90. 5, Boone Grove 44.07. 6, Chesterton 44.65. 7, Andrean 44.77. 8, East Chicago Central 44.79.

400: 1, Braden Corzan (Chesterton) 47.55. 2, Matthew Hanlon (Crown Pt) 49.15. 3, Brett Otterbacher (Valparaiso) 49.44. 4, Rackesh Ragoo (Merrillville) 50.12. 5, DeMarge Jones (Bowman Academy) 50.34. 6, AJ Zachary (Munster) 50.40. 7, Devante Clemons (Hobart) 50.66. 8, Dominique Wood (Merrillville) 50.80.

300 intermediate hurdles: 1, Trey Sebben (Portage) 39.20. 2, Xavier Griffin (Merrillville) 39.60. 3, Ryan Steder (La Porte) 39.65. 4, Chaz Sales (Merrillville) 40.08. 5, Colton Reedy (North Judson) 41.09. 6, Omena Onomakpome (Hobart) 41.41. 7, Kalisto Rosales (Portage) 41.59. 8, Tucker Greenholt (Lowell) 41.83.

800: 1, Dustin Hudak (Lowell) 1:55.70. 2, Gabriel Ochoa (Merrillville) 1:56.28. 3, Adam Gasaway (La Porte) 1:56.71. 4, Loukas Karallas (Michigan City) 1:57.95. 5, Aiden Hostetler (Wheeler) 2:00.91. 6, Aaron Kamstra (Crown Pt) 2:01.21. 7, Taylor Wiegman (Hebron) 2:05.03. 8, Cameron Chapman (Morgan Twp) 2:05.42.

200: 1, Keyshawn McGill (Michigan City) 22.05. 2, Tyler Thomas (Andrean) 22.06. 3, Samuel Schlimpert (New Prairie) 22.53. 4, Braden Corzan (Chesterton) 22.62. 5, Brae’ton Vann (Boone Grove) 23.07. 6, David O’Toole (Crown Pt) 23.13. 7, Reggie Medina (Lake Central) 23.16. 8, AJ Zachary (Munster) 23.32.

3200: 1, Alec Fleming (Lowell) 9:10.55. 2, Jake Kintzele (Chesterton) 9:16.79. 3, Collin Huber (Valparaiso) 9:24.47. 4, Genesio Christofanelli (Crown Pt) 9:33.38. 5, Gabriel Sanchez (Lowell) 9:43.10. 6, Dean Schmidt (Kankakee Valley) 9:44.26. 7, Diego Gomez (Hobart) 9:47.30. 8, Trevor Braden (Morgan Twp.) 9:47.47.

4x 400 relay: 1, Crown Point (Nicholas Ryan, Matthew Hanlon, Henry Sharp, Chaqwan Williams) 3:20.81. 2, Merrillville (Xavier Griffin, Raches Ragoo, Chaz Sales, Dominique Wood) 3:21.10. 3, Lowell (Ryan Farmer, Jaeger Gill, Elijah Love, Fernando Rosas) 3:21.98. 4, Valparaiso 3:22.8-0. 5, Chesterton 3:26.81. 6, La Porte (Trevor Perry, John Ferrell, Ryan Steder, Jacob Marsh) 3:27.97.

High jump: 1, Thad Martz (Wheeler) 6-8. 2, Keyshawn McGill (Michigan City) 6-4. 3, Jacob Marsh (La Porte) 6-4. 4, Jake Stewart (Kouts) 6-4. 5, Ricky Slease (North Judson) 6-3. 6, Josh Sims (South Central) 6-3. 7, Tie between Zack Davis (Lake Central) and Bryce Catherman (Wheeler) 6-2.

Long jump: 1, Nicholas Ryan (Crown Pt) 22-11. 2, Tyler Bensz (La Porte) 22-7. 3, QuintenMcToy (Highland) 22-6 ½. 4, Keyshawn McGill (Michigan City) 22-5 ½. 5, Louis Razo (Chesterton) 22-3. 6, Keon Sellers (Lake Central) 22-11 ¼. 7, Bryce Catherman (Wheeler) 22-11. 8, Tajeem Muhammad (Gary West) 21-9.

Shot put: 1, Brett Norton (Merrillville) 61-5 ¾. 2, Ryan Stefanko (Michigan Cityt) 56-11 ¾. 3, Brandon English (Portage) 53-4. 4, Eric Scheeringa (North Newton) 51-2 ¼. 5, Humberto Morales (Portage) 50-8 ¾. 6, Evan Satoski (Andrean) 50-6 ¼. 7, Luke Wilkening (Boone Grove) 49-7 ¾. 8, Colton Rosenbaum (Morgan Twp) 48-7 ¾.

Discus: 1, Brett Norton (Merrillville) 174-3. 2, Justin Wozniak (Michigan City) 170-10. 3, Gannon Grider (Highland) 161-8. 4, Trent Slaven (Highland) 157-2. 5, Ethan Smith (Boone Grove) 145-11. 6, Humberto Morales (Portage) 145-1. 7, Bo Juris (Hobart) 144-3. 8, River Walsh (Andrean) 143-5.

Pole vault: 1, Ben Raffin (Chesterton) 15-0. 2, Jacob Bondon (Portage) 14-0. 3, Riley Johnston (Hobart) 13-4. 4, Jaylen Glass (Merrillville) 13-0. 5, Dalton Thomas (New Prairie) 12-6. 6, Justin Robinson (Crown Pt) 12-6. 7, Blaine Goetz (Portage) 12-6. 8, Adam Boniface (New Priarie) 12-0.

NOTE: Top 3 in each event advance to IHSAA state finals at the Indiana University track in Bloomington on Saturday, June 2.