Tallmadge girls track and field gains maturity through 2021 season

Roger Gordon
Tallmadge Blue Devils

The Tallmadge girls track and field team may have finished in last place with 1.5 points out of 38 teams May 27 and May 29 at the Division II regional meet at Lexington, but the maturity the Blue Devils gained was invaluable.

“Because of the fact that we were such a young team, I thought this was a great experience for the team as a whole to have 12 girls make it to the regional level, and to have that experience,” Tallmadge head coach Mike Srodawa said. “Looking at the region, what competition there was compared to other regions, I felt like we did pretty well. Some of our times were faster, other ones were not. I think weather – it was really cold and misty – played a little bit into that as well.”

Gates Mills Academy won the competition with 71 points. Findlay Liberty-Benton finished second with 47 points and Huron was third with 39 points.

Leading the way for Tallmadge was junior Ana Crangle, who finished eighth in the 1,600-meter run with a time of 5 minutes, 35.5 seconds.

“It was a race that Ana ran all year,” said Srodawa. “Timewise, she was about where we thought she would be. It was good experience for her to get to that level and to run there. She’s had some experience with cross country running in large packs and stuff like that.”

Freshman Kate Archer tied for eighth in the pole vault with a vault of 9 feet. Senior Anna Siesel finished 11th with a vault of 8-6.

“For Kate, this was great experience because she is only a freshman,” Srodawa said. “She’s already cleared 10 feet, which we haven’t had any other freshman ever do.

“Anna’s sophomore year, she broke her arm pole vaulting, so just the fact that she was able to get back and to vault and then to make it to regionals was an accomplishment in itself.”

In the long jump, junior Sam Miles finished 12th with a leap of 14-11.75. Junior Mia Hurst placed 15th with a leap of 14-5.75.

“I know that both Sam and Mia were not satisfied with their finishes,” said the coach. “I know that both of them said pretty much the exact same thing – that they have next year and things will be different. Given the regional level, everybody jumps well. That was the first time Sam made it to regionals, and it was the first time Mia made it to regionals in the long jump.”

Crangle teamed with senior Kelsey Bellman, sophomore Julia Onchak and freshman Cara Basso to finish 15th in the 3,200 relay with a clocking of 10:38.47.

“For the underclassmen, it was a great experience,” Srodawa said. “For Kelsey, it was the end of a great career that she’s had with us. She’s a four-year letter winner. And as far as a leader goes, we’ll definitely miss her.”

Hurst did not make it out of the preliminary round in the 300 hurdles with a 12th-place time of 50 seconds. Sophomore Kat Carter finished 16th with a time of 54.94.

As for the other Tallmadge team members who failed to make it out of preliminaries, senior Mackenzie Moran, junior Megan Reifsnyder and freshman Isabella Messina combined with Miles to finish 12th in the 800 relay with a time of 1:51.64.

Reifsnyder, Messina, Moran and Hurst joined forces to finish 13th in the 400 relay with a time of 51.76.

Reifsnyder placed 15th in the 200 with a clocking of 28.1.

Srodawa is excited about his team’s prospects next year.

“We’ll build on what we’ve started,” he said. “We do lose a couple of key pieces in throws, sprints and distance, but the core of the team is coming back. I’m really looking forward to having a successful season next year.”