Sussex - Hamilton's Toney Lock just missed qualifying in the open 100 meters for the state meet, running 12.46 seconds and taking fourth place by an eyelash. She took out her frustration on the 4x200-meter relay.
The two-time defending state champion in the event, Hamilton won the sectional with a time of 1:42.81 in the relay, with Lock, Ashley Holicek, Ellen Buckley and Jessica Rupnow looking like the state-title favorites they are.
"She blew up the 4x2," coach Ben Nysse said of Lock. "I think she was running a little angry. (The 100) is such a technical race; she's got to do everything right, and she had a little form break at 60 meters, and at this level, that's enough."
Competing in the state's best sectional, Lock was just 0.03 away from making it in the 100 (with top-three finishers advancing), but she'll be a key part of Hamilton's state experience, beginning in La Crosse on June 1. The 4x100 also advanced as expected, but it wasn't with a sectional title. The team of Casey Allen, Rupnow, Lock and Holicek took second place in 49.40, more than a tenth of a second behind Milwaukee King.
"They're firmly fixed upon the relays now," Nysse said. "They don't take the second place in the 4x1 lightly. They're motivated now."
The 4x400, another returning state champion, also took second place with Buckley, Rupnow, Ashlyn Paulson and Katie Pollari taking part. The team eclipsed its previous best mark of the year by finishing in 3:58.76, still two seconds back of Milwaukee Riverside.
"The big thing we kept saying was, 'Day 2,' " Nysse said. "We're always better on Day 2. The state meet is a two-day event, and we were one of the few teams that went better in all three relays last year on Day 2. A lot of people had their best races on Friday (in preliminaries), and we always have our best races on Saturday."
Shannon Burke will also head to the state meet, clearing 11 feet in the pole vault and taking second place behind Arrowhead's Cami Gilson, who posted the state's best jump with a 13-1.
The Hamilton boys team did not advance anyone from the sectional to the state meet.
Drew Patterson took fourth place in the 200 with his time of 23.10, and Tony Koepnick took fourth in the discus at 131-2.
The 4x200-meter relay was hit with a DQ.
Enjoying a senior moment
Coach Tom Konkol isn't sure whether the outcome was by design. He said he'd check with his players. But regardless of intent, one of the Sussex Hamilton soccer team's seniors was fully on display when the team closed the year on Senior Night against Greendale on Friday.
Kara Bednarek scored three times, all in the second half, and Hamilton rallied from a 1-0 deficit to thwart the Panthers at HHS, 3-1.
"It was neat to have our seniors both play so well," Konkol said, with Brooke Menzia adding one of the assists. "Brooke Menzia links the attack from the back to the front-runners, just a very critical position. Kara scored four goals this past week. When you diversify your attack, it makes it much more difficult to defend. Most teams have their No. 1 scorer; we have four legitimate scorers, and we're looking for a fifth. That's what's going to take us deep into regional play."
Molly Matthiesen and Hannah Menzia had assists against Greendale, as well.
GMC heavyweight rallies
The Chargers led the top team in the GMC at halftime on May 22, but Brookfield Central scored twice on corner kicks in the second half to win, 2-1.
"They came out beating the snot out of us, and it took us a while to settle down," Konkol said.
Konkol said Bednarek's goal in the ninth minute gave his team a boost to work out of the early doldrums.
"Possession is our best defense, and that's something we've been promoting in our program for the last three years in a really big way," Konkol said. "There are times we can do it as well as anyone. We had another shot in the first half on the six-yard box and kicked it over the goal."
The outcome called to mind last year's game, when Hamilton held a lead on Central before falling short.
Hamilton (13-6-0) is the 11th seed in the WIAA playoffs, and opponent Grafton has the sixth seed.
Goecks reaches sectional
Sussex Hamilton's boys golf team did not have much luck last week at the WIAA Division 1 regional at Wanaki Golf Course in Lannon, but No. 1 player Nathan Goecks had a big day.
Taking part in the eight-team regional, the Chargers finished in seventh place, well out of the top four spots, which earned berths into this week's sectional at Morningstar Golfers Club in Waukesha.
The top four teams and top four individuals on nonqualifying teams advance out of the regionals and into the sectionals. Goecks grabbed the first at-large berth by shooting a solid round of 75 (36-39).
Other Hamilton scores were Nathan Hermsen with 83 (48-35), Austin Kendziorski 91 (44-47), Mitch Olson 92 (45-47) and Kevin Jansen 94 (51-43).
Softball can't break through
West Allis Hale churned out three runs in the fifth and took a 6-3 win over Sussex Hamilton in softball on May 24.
Hamilton loaded the bases in the sixth with no outs, but a hard liner from Cassidy Schilz resulted in a hard-luck double play to short-circuit a potential rally. Sami Williams had two outfield assists from center field, including a nifty catch on a long fly that she converted into a double play at first base. Williams also had two hits, including a triple, and an RBI at the dish.
For the fourth straight day, the Chargers received solid pitching contributions from Sydney Sprinkel and Emily Jansen, who combined to allow eight hits and just three earned runs.
Hamilton also dropped a pair of games to Brookfield East, an 8-7 decision on May 23 and a 7-1 setback May 22.
Bailee Bobert had two hits in the 7-1 loss. The Chargers moved to 12-9 overall and 7-7 in league play heading into the WIAA Division 1 playoff opener Tuesday.
Baseball starts 3-0
Hamilton's baseball team started the season perfect, winning three games in as many chances. The Chargers defeated Cudahy on Wednesday, 11-1, in a nonconference game. On Friday, Hamilton shut out Brookfield Central, 2-0, and on Saturday the Chargers defeated Franklin, 6-1, to open the league season 2-0.
Tyler Kozlowski was the complete-game winner against Franklin.
"After the first inning, Tyler really pitched well," Hamilton coach Mike Schramek said. "Looking back, he faced three or four batters each inning the rest of the way. He was very efficient all game."
Tim Biron had two hits and an RBI against Franklin. Biron, Marc Lunowa and Mitch Mason had the hits against the Lancers. Biron and Mason each had doubles for the winners. Lunowa got the shutout on the hill for Hamilton.
The Chargers scored nine times in the first inning against Cudahy and never looked back. Biron had three hits for Hamilton. Lucas Keller had two hits for the upstart Chargers.
"We have to cut down on our errors this season; that's an area we struggled with last year, but at the same time if we make and error, we've got to pick each other up and not let that free base runner come around to score," Schramek said. "Overall I think we've got a chance to be pretty good. We've got pitchers that throw strikes and some guys that can swing the bats. It should be an exciting season for Hamilton baseball."
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