Chippewa girls place second at D3 regional

Fuller wins regional titles in 800, 1,600

EAST JORDAN — Annie Fuller was eager for competition.

And after being pushed to a first-place finish in the 1,600-meter run, the Manistee junior acknowledged it.

“Shoot,” or something similar to that, was Fuller’s immediate response to hearing her time while trying to catch her breath after crossing the finish line Saturday afternoon.

That time — 4:56.05 — was a personal record in the mile, which says a lot for the defending Division 3 state champion.

Manistee junior Annie Fuller runs to a first-place finish in the 800-meter run during Saturday’s Division 3 regional at East Jordan. (Matt Wenzel/News Advocate)

Manistee junior Annie Fuller runs to a first-place finish in the 800-meter run during Saturday’s Division 3 regional at East Jordan. (Matt Wenzel/News Advocate)

“I love having someone to run with, rather than just running alone, like in the 800,” Fuller said of being paced by Charleviox’s Amber Way in the mile. “It’s not very fun.”

Even though it wasn’t “fun,” Fuller also blistered the field by 10 seconds in the 800 to win her second regional title of the day.

“Machine,” was how Manistee girls coach Sam Joseph described Fuller, who paced the Chippewas in the Division 3 regional at East Jordan.

Fuller, who already has three individual state titles in her pocket, preformed as expected. The overall results followed suit as well.

Manistee won team regional titles each of the last two years, but was shifted north to a new venue at East Jordan’s Boswell Stadium, which included perennial power Benzie Central. The Chippewas did the math beforehand and didn’t expect a three-peat.

Benzie finished first with 123 points while Manistee was second with 99 in the 15-team field.

“Everything kind of turned out, total point wise, as expected,” Joseph said.

Manistee qualified six individuals across seven events for the May 31 state finals at Comstock Park, with Fuller and junior Jessica Gustad each in four events. A top-two finish or additional qualifying mark was required to advance to the state finals.

Fuller won the 1,600 by 13 seconds in last year’s regional at Mason County Central and was glad the new field included Way, the Division 3 state record holder in the 3,200.

Fuller stuck behind Way until kicking past her early in the final lap en route to the win.

“I wanted to make sure I’d have at least a little bit of a lead so I didn’t have to sprint 100 meters as hard as I can,” Fuller said of the two-second win. “It was a pretty good race.”

The 800 wasn’t as much of a challenge as Fuller, the two-time defending state champion and record holder in the event, won by 10 seconds in 2:12.42.

“I can’t wait to see what state brings,” Joseph said. “Just like always, she’ll train harder and work harder. She’s obviously our team leader. Everyone looks up to her for not only her performance but her work ethic.

“Last night, she was the first in (her hotel) room, the first lights out, the first up in the morning, good breakfast, went for a run. And all real humble, which is nice to see.”

Fuller was also a part of two state-qualifying relays. She opened the day by anchoring the 3,200 relay, along with sister Jody Fuller, Sarah Chandler and Ashley Lindeman, to a second-place finish in 10:02.32.

Chandler, Audrey Padilla, Gustad and Annie Fuller also took second in the 1,600 relay in 4:14.15.

Gustad, who placed third in the 100 and fifth in the 200 in last year’s state finals, took second in the 100, 200 and 300 hurdles Saturday.

“I’m a little disappointed because I didn’t run my best race, especially in the 300,” she said. “It’s definitely motivation getting second in the region. It makes me want to do better at state.”

Joseph is counting on it.

“Admittedly, she did not have the best day,” he said. “But, we know what we need to work on. A lot of it was just a little bit of a mental strategy we need to play with, but you saw that motivation in that 4X4 when she came out with basically 100-meter pace. You could tell she was a bit angry and that’s what we kind of need. Don’t think I’m not going to use that in the next couple weeks of training.”

Lindeman qualified for the state finals in a pair of individual events, taking second in the 3,200 (11:47.25) and fourth in the 1,600 (5:21.98). The Manistee sophomore held off Benzie Central’s Stephanie Schaub down the final stretch of the 3,200 by running her to the outside just before the finish line. Benzie’s coaches claimed Lindeman cut Schaub off, while Manistee’s coaches disagreed.

“That’s what athletics are all about — finding it from somewhere when you’re dead tired,” Joseph said, “finding that last bit of energy from somewhere deep down.”

The day opened with Manistee scoring some bonus points in the field events as Chandler tied for third in the high jump and Kelsey Harrigan took fifth and Hanna Wagner sixth in the long jump.

“They’ve just been working really hard,” Joseph said. “For them to step up like that, that was really a great start for the day.”

Manistee girls results

High jump — T3, Chandler, 4-foot-8.

Long jump — 5, Harrigan, 15-03; 6, Wagner, 15-02 1/2.

3,200 relay — 2, Jody Fuller, Chandler, Lindeman, Annie Fuller, 10:02.32.

100 — 2, Gustad, 12.69.

800 relay — 8, Jody Fuller, Harrigan, Padilla, Chandler, 2:03.12.

1,600 — 1, Annie Fuller, 4:56.05; 4, Lindeman, 5:21.98.

400 relay — 3, Harrigan, Padilla, Emily Rankin, Wagner, 55.49.

400 — 6, Padilla, 1:06.02; 7, Presley Petzak, 1:07.15.

300 hurdles — 2, Gustad, 48.06.

800 — 1, Annie Fuller, 2:12.42.

200 — 2, Gustad, 26.60.

3,200 relay — 2, Lindeman, 11:47.25; 9, Petzak, 14:06.63.

1,600 relay — 2, Chandler, Padilla, Gustad, Annie Fuller, 4:14.15.

Leave a Reply