Anderson, Freeman, relays lead Ely girls

by Tom Coombe

Strong relays have anchored Ely’s high school girls track team all season long and that strength showed at Wednesday’s subsection meet.<BR><BR>Ely won the 800, 1,600 and 3,200 meter relays and placed second in the 400 relay, earning section meet appearances in all four events and going on to a third-place team finish in the 10-team event at Hibbing.<BR><BR>The Wolves also came home with two individual subsection champions - senior Julie Anderson and ninth-grader Carolyn Freeman.<BR><BR>Anderson was first in the 3,200 run, while Freeman broke away from the pack in the 300 hurdles.<BR><BR>Anderson, Freeman, the relays and several other Wolves all qualified for the Section 7A competition, which is set for Friday at Duluth.<BR><BR>“We had a really good subsection meet,” said Ely Head Coach Todd Hohenstein. “The girls are running the best they have all year, which is exactly what we’re trying to get to so we can peak at the section meet.”<BR><BR>Senior Raychal Zupancich and juniors Jenna Klein and Kelly Chaudoin were all on two of Ely’s three first-place relays.<BR><BR>It was Chaudoin, Zupancich, Mary Anderson and Jen Zupancich who teamed up to win the 800 relay in 1:55.85.<BR><BR>In the 1,600 Ely won in 4:21.30 with Klein, Chaudoin, Freeman and Schulze forming the winning combination.<BR><BR>Ely ran away with the 3,200 relay, taking first by nearly 15 seconds. Julie Anderson, Raychal Zupancich, Sovil and Klein combined on that effort.<BR><BR>The Wolves nearly completed the sweep in the 400 relay, but came up short by about two seconds. Mary Anderson, Mary Bruels, Jen Zupancich and Raychal Zupancich are on the second-place relay.<BR><BR>“Doing well in the relays was a goal for us going in and it was a great accomplishment for us,” said Hohenstein.<BR><BR>The Wolves also had a string of very good individual efforts, including the first-place finishes by Freeman and Julie Anderson.<BR><BR>Freeman won the 300 hurdles with nearly four seconds to spare, racing to the win in 48.76 seconds.<BR><BR>Anderson ran the 3,200 in 12:20.34, maintaining her season-long dominance in that event.<BR><BR>The Wolves picked up a pair of second-place individual finishes, with Jen Zupancich taking second in the 200 dash in 28.69 seconds, and Schulze finishing as the runner-up in the 400 (1:04.03).<BR><BR>Sovil was third in the 800 (2:31.31) and Mary Anderson added a third-place and a section qualifying performance in the 200 (28.89).<BR><BR>She’s only in eighth grade, but Tomi McDonald will also advance after a fifth-place run of 1:07.15 in the 400 dash.<BR><BR>Mary Bruels placed fifth in the triple jump (30-3) and also qualified for sections, which will be held at Griggs Field on the campus of the University of Minnesota-Duluth.<BR><BR>The Ely participants will be looking to shave seconds off their times and move on to the next level, the State Class A meet the following week at Blaine.<BR><BR>“It all depends on the day,” said Hohenstein. “We’ve got a good bunch of girls who are focused, and some of them have the opportunity to go to state in three sports (cross country running, Nordic skiing, track) this year. That’s kind of a big motivator for them. We’re just going to go down and run the best we can and whatever happens, happens. There will be some bigger schools down there. We’ve already met most of our goals. Anything beyond will be icing on the cake.”