Brennen Bargesser, right, of Grass Lake High School battles teammate Josh Sherwood, left, during the 100-meter dash at the Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 3 track and field regional on Friday at Hillsdale High School. Photo by Jeff Steers, JTV Sports
By Jeff Steers
(May 22, 2021 1:13 PM) Grass Lake High School track and field participant Brennen Bargesser and his sister, Lexus, spent last spring practicing sprints on the track.
Despite a worldwide pandemic and the postponement of spring sports, Bargesser was hoping the training would pay off someday.
That day was Friday.
The GLHS senior won the 100-meter, 200-meter, 400-meter, and ran the anchor leg of the 400-meter relay for the Warriors. Grass Lake won the regional team title with 132 points. Hanover-Horton finished third (56.2), Michigan Center placed seventh (40), Napoleon was eighth (39.2), Lumen Christi finished 12th (17), and Columbia Central was 13th (9).
The Warriors were juiced up all day supporting all runners – whether they placed or not.
“I think it is really cool that everyone supports all the runners,” Bargesser said. “It is a great team atmosphere and lets you know we have a great team behind you.”
The GLHS senior said winning a regional title was one of the Warriors’ goals for a long time.
“We have been thinking about winning a regional title … forever,” Bargesser said. “It means so much to win this.”
Bargesser won the 100-meter dash in 11.21 seconds with teammates Josh Sherwood (11.63) and Andrew Stockton (11.84) right behind him.
The Warriors scorched the competition in the 400-meter relay in 44.14 seconds with Trenton Holden, Stockton, Sherwood, and Bargesser.
That is where it got a little tough for the GLHS senior.
“Coming off the four by 100 and running the 400-meter race was tough,” Bargesser said. “You have to sprint all the way in the 400.”
Bargesser made it look easy winning the 400-meter dash by two seconds with a time of 49.34 seconds.
He concluded the night with an easy win in the 200-meter dash in 21.98 seconds. Teammates Sherwood (23.68) and Stockton (24.08) finished second and third, respectively.
Numerous runners earned medals and qualified for the state meet from Jackson County. Dean Reynolds of Hanover-Horton won an epic battle over Alec Shaw in the 800-meter run (1:55) coming from behind for the win; he also edged Shaw in winning the 1,600-meter run (4:24); Rogan Melling of Hanover-Horton won the 3,200-meter run (9:55) and teammate Logan Shepherd was third (10:00) with a state qualifying time; Grass Lake hurdler Jack Easterday won the 110-meter hurdles (16.04) edging Napoleon runner Holden Van Poppel (16.06); Van Poppel got revenge in the 300-meter hurdles winning the race (42.06) over Easterday (42.07); Grass Lake won the 800-meter relay (1:33) with Easterday, Gus Vitale, Stockton, and Sherwood; Hanover-Horton was second in the 3,200-meter relay (8:29) with Melling, Shepherd, Drew Jordon, and Reynolds; Holden of Grass Lake won the discus (129-5.5); Ethan Procos of Michigan Center took first in the high jump (6-2); and Connor Viegelahn of Grass Lake was second in the pole vault (12-9).
The Division 3 state finals are scheduled for Saturday, June 5 at Jenison High School.
Division 2 at Mason: Western High School finished sixth with 66 points. The host school won the event with 99 points. Kayden Shrock of Western finished second in the 400-meter dash (52.8) with a personal-best time; teammate Jacob Singleton placed second in the 3,200-meter run (9:57); the Panthers were second in the 3,200-meter relay (8:26) with Singleton, Logan Coleman, Michael Rand, and Ethan Zuke; Michael McAninch finished second for Western in the discus (147-2); and Jacob Tidwell placed second for the Panthers in the pole vault (13-4). Northwest failed to score at the regional meet. The state Division 2 finals will be at Zeeland High School on Saturday, June 5.
Division 1 at Saline: Jackson High School finished eighth with 29 points. Saline won the regional title with 130.5 points. Olando Trader was third in the event (10.85) with a personal best and a state qualifying time and was third in the 200-meter dash (22.17) with another state qualifying time; and the Vikings were second in the 800-meter relay (1:31) with Nathaniel Hobbs, Shaun Smith, Micah Conner, and Trader. The Division 1 state finals will be Saturday, June 5, at East Kentwood High School.
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