WHEN it comes to the state’s fastest high school girls milers, Mackenzie Caldwell is right there at the top of the list.
The Columbus North senior has the top personal-best 1,600-meter time of anyone in the state at 4 minutes, 55.19 seconds. She finished third in the state in the event last season, and the winner graduated.
Caldwell beat state runner-up Alex Warzyniak of Bloomington South throughout much of the past two seasons, and North sophomore Sierra Lax beat Warzyniak in a season-opening tri-meet last week at North. Caldwell did not run in that race.
Friday night, most of the state’s top distance runners will compete in the Miracle Mile, the highlighted finale to the Franklin Central Distance Showcase. Caldwell and Warzyniak will be among the favorites, along with state cross-country champion Kelcy Welch of Carmel.
Lax will be in the middle of three girls heats. The fast heat is scheduled for 8:45 p.m.
North senior Kaden Eaton will be in the boys fast heat at 9 p.m. Eaton, who qualified for state last year, has a personal best of 4:22.60, which ranks 12th in Friday’s field. Warsaw’s Ellis Coon and Lawrence North’s Joe Murphy are the favorites.
“It’s a great opportunity,” said North assistant Rick Weinheimer, who coaches the distance runners. “A lot of times in most races, (Caldwell and Eaton) have to go right to the front and do a lot of the work, but it will be nice to be up there with a lot of good runners so they can kind of concentrate on getting pulled along by the pack.”
North’s Elijah Brooks will compete in the boys freshman mile.
On Saturday, the Bull Dog boys and girls teams will compete in the Midwest Prep meet at Lawrence Central. Many of the top teams from Indiana and surrounding states will be in attendance.
“It’s another big-time meet,” North boys and girls coach Lou Sipe said. “We’re looking to go against good competition. We’ll continue to get better and see where we’re at. I’m excited for the kids.”
Dogs, O’s play in Classic
Columbus North’s Elliott Welmer sank three 3-pointers and scored 13 points Sunday to help lead the South to a 98-91 win over the North in the annual North-South All-Star Classic at Vincennes University.
Columbus East’s Bryce Lienhoop scored six points for the South.
In the girls game, Columbus North’s Kelsey Cunningham scored eight points to help the North to a 114-81 victory over the South. Columbus North’s Tayler Goodall and East’s Allyson Bunch each scored 10 points for the South.
Hauser presents awards
Trey Shipley and Leslie Sims have been named most valuable players of Hauser’s boys and girls basketball teams.
Ryan Christy won the Thompson Award for boys basketball. Other boys winners were Zach Gearhart (best field-goal percentage and most improved), Rory Thayer (best defensive player and most assists), Zach Johnson (best free-throw percentage) and Ryan Christy (leading rebounder).
Erynn Shaw won the Bob Carroll Award for girls basketball. Other girls winners were Danielle Sneed (best field-goal percentage and most improved), Ellie Trotter (best free-throw percentage), Frances Shoaf (leading rebounder), Abbey Ashbrook (best defensive player) and Sims (most assists).
Haley Webster was named best all-around for varsity cheerleading. Webster and Brittany Young shared the Joyce Israel award for cheerleading, and Sydney Tallent won the mental attitude award.
Several events involving area teams that were rained out over the past week have been rescheduled.
The Shelbyville at East girls tennis match will be April 30. The North at Seymour boys and girls track meet will be May 6.
Jennings County will make up softball games May 7 at Floyd Central and May 19 against Madison. The Seymour at Scottsburg girls tennis match will be April 28.
Physician must sign physicals
Bill Jensen, director of secondary education for Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp., wants to remind parents and students that physicals for high school athletes for the 2014-15 school year must be signed by a physician.
“We don’t want people spending money needlessly because the IHSAA is very clear that it must be signed by a physician, not a nurse practitioner or someone else,” Jensen said.
Ted Schultz is a sports reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at email@example.com.