Despite the loss of multi-time state champion sprinter Justin Austin, Brown Deer showed no signs of letting up.
The boys won the small schools division in the Nelson-Daniels Invitational at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater on March 20.
Austin, who won the 100- and 200-meter open events and anchored the winning 400-relay last year, led the boys to the WIAA Division 2 state title last spring. He holds the career record for total state championships and is competing at Kentucky University this season.
Even without Austin, last year's Woodland Conference triple crown champs edged Waunakee, 58.5-58, for the title in the 25-school Nelson-Daniels meet.
Returning state placewinner David Kuczynski won both the long jump (21 feet-7 inches) and the 55 dash (6.71 seconds). Teammate Justin Gordon won the 400 (53.65) and was seventh in the triple jump (37-11). Zach Schimenz won the 55 hurdles (8.34).
Lawrence Rabon was fifth in the 55 dash (6.88) as was newcomer Khari Turner in the high jump (5-8) and triple jump (39-5 ¼) and Aaron Cahn in the 3,200 (11:22.02). The 1,600 relay was fourth (3:40.44)
The Greyhounds will be deep as well as talented this season, according to coach Dominic Newman.
Juniors Peter Drews, who went to state in the 1,600 and Ben Tyler, who qualified in the 3,200, and seniors Malachi Krishok, a sectional qualifier in the 200 and 400, and Jordan Washington, a mid-distance runner who was hurt last season, are this year's captains.
Seniors Sam DePuis (distance) and Mario Giaacobassi (throws/sprints), juniors Joey Knutson (sprints), Michael Kushner (hurdles/sprints), John Taylor (distance), Brendon Vorphal (distance/mid-distance) and Drakkar Ware (throws/sprints) and sophomores Oliver Heywood (mid-distance), Aidan Mazur (mid-distance/distance), Joe Pendleton (distance), Gavin Schroeder (distance) and Matt Washington (sprints) are the other returnees.
"This year is one of the largest teams (47 athletes) that we have had in my six years as a head coach," Newman said.
Senior Charles Miller (sprints/jumps), freshmen Keith Dodd (distance), juniors Comeron Hood (sprints/jumps), Quinn Jungenr (sprints/jumps) and Joe Kelly (hurdles/sprints) are others to watch, according to Newman, who said the program will reintroduce pole vaulting after a 15-year absence.
"Because of the numbers and the addition of the pole vault we hope to be more competitive in the Woodland Conference," Newman said. "We hope to balance out our program with our sprinters and jumpers this year."
One athlete the Greyhounds will not have is distance runner Kevin McCollow, who is still trying to recover from a medical issue that plagued him last track season.
Shorewood was 12th of 24 teams at the Nelson-Daniels Invitational at the University of Wisconsin–Whitewater on March 20.
Drews was second in 1,600 in 4:32.22, Washington was fourth in the 400 (55.01) and the 3,200 relay of Tyler, Mazur, Vorphal and Taylor (8:52.56) took third. Tyler was also second in an exhibition running of the 3,200 in 9:47.52.
- Steven L. Tietz
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