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Tri-City Times selects their All-Area boys' track lineup


Dryden's Chad Butler leads list of athletes placing three times at state meet


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Chad Butler, of Dryden, sets a school record in the long jump at the Dryden Invitational. Later in the season, Butler earned All-State honors in the event. photo by Kevin Kissane.

July 08, 2009
TRI-CITY AREA — From the opening meet to the last, these athletes made a name for themselves with their performances.

Here is a look at who made the 2009 edition of The Tri-City Times All-Area boys' track team and the credentials they generated along the way.

Name: Aaron Benton

School: Almont

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Event: High jump

Best effort: Benton supplied a clearance of 6 feet 3 inches en route to a first at the Algonac High School-based Blue Water Area Conference League Meet on Thursday, May 21.

Top finishes: He generated firsts at the Blue Water Area Conference League Meet hosted by Algonac High School and the Marysville High School-based O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions; joined forces with Don Tobias for a high jump relay second at the Lake Fenton Relays; teamed up with Tobias, Michelle Cusick and Kristen Grapentin for a high jump relay third at the Almont Coed Relay; took third by himself at a Division 3 regional hosted by New Haven High School; plus combined with Tobias for a high jump relay sixth at The Tri-City Times Capac Relays.

Name: Matt Lynch

School: Dryden

Event: High jump

Best effort: Lynch posted school record-setting clearance of 6 feet 3 inches, adding one inch to the previous mark set by Kevin Mantey during the 2005 campaign, while registering a first Tuesday, May 12 at the North Central Thumb League Meet hosted by Akron-Fairgrove High School.

Top finishes: He supplied firsts at the Forrest Dowling Invitational hosted by Peck High School and the Akron-Fairgrove High School-based North Central Thumb League Meet; claimed a second at the North Huron Invitational; and notched a fifth at the Lapeer County Meet hosted by North Branch High School.

Other credentials: Lynch also made the qualifying list for the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville.

Name: Chad Butler

School: Dryden

Event: Pole Vault

Best effort: Butler posted a school record-setting clearance of 13 feet 9 inches, shattering the old record of 13 feet 1 inch he set earlier this season, en route to a first at the North Central Thumb League Meet hosted by Akron-Fairgrove High School on Tuesday, May 12.

Top finishes: He registered firsts at the Dryden Invitational, North Huron Invitational, Akron-Fairgrove Invitational, at a Brown City High School-based Division 4 regional, the North Central Thumb League Meet hosted by Akron-Fairgrove High School; supplied second at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet and the Division 4 state finals hosted by Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School (earning All-State plaudits as a result); and provided a two-way tie for fifth place at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville.

Name: Chad Butler

School: Dryden

Event: Long jump

Best effort: Butler set a school record of 21 feet 1/2 inch (improving on the old mark of 20 feet 10 inches set by Bill Mrosewske during the 1979 campaign) Tuesday, May 5 at the Dryden Invitational.

Top finishes: He won the event at the Dryden Invitational, Forrest Dowling Peck Invitational, North Huron Invitational, Akron-Fairgrove Invitational, a Brown City High School-based Division 4 regional and at the North Central Thumb League Meet hosted by Akron-Fairgrove High School; obtained a second at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville; supplied a fifth at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet; plus added a sixth (good enough to earn All-State recognition) at the Division 4 state finals hosted by Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School.

Name: Al Clark

School: Dryden

Event: Shot put

Best effort: Clark uncorked a school record-setting shot put toss of 52 feet 6 inches, surpassing the previous best of 49 feet 5 1/2 inches set by Brad Dillon during the 2000 season en route to a first at the Dryden Invitational on Tuesday, May 5.

Top finishes: He furnished firsts at the Dryden Invitational, Forrest Dowling Peck Invitational, a Division 4 regional hosted by Brown City High School, the North Central Thumb League Meet hosted by Akron-Fairgrove High School, the North Huron Invitational and the Akron-Fairgrove Invitational; claimed a second at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet; pulled up third at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville; plus added a seventh (good enough to secure All-State accolades) at the Division 4 state finals hosted by Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School.

Name: Ben Strouse

School: Almont

Event: Shot put

Best effort: Strouse notched a winning toss of 50 feet 8 1/2 inches Tuesday, May 19 at the Algonac High School-based Blue Water Area Conference League Meet.

Top finishes: He took first by himself at the Lapeer County Meet hosted by North Branch High School and the Algonac High School-based Blue Water Area Conference League Meet; joined forces with Dillon Melly and Joseph Tersigni-Witham for a first at the Tri-City Times Capac Relays; combined with Melly, Samantha Gomez and Kelsey Murphy for a shot put relay first at Almont Coed Relays; teamed up with Melly for a shot put relay second at the Lake Fenton Relays; plus furnished seconds at a Division 3 regional hosted by New Haven High School and at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville.

Other credentials: Strouse also competed in the event at the Division 3 state finals hosted by Comstock Park High School.

Name: Ben Strouse

School: Almont

Event: Discus

Best effort: Strouse generated a throw encompassing 151 feet 3 inches of territory on his way to a first Tuesday, May 19 at the Blue Water Area Conference League Meet hosted by Algonac High School.

Top finishes: He claimed a first at the Algonac High School-based Blue Water Area Conference League Meet; teamed up with Dillon Melly, Sam Gomez and Kelsey Murphy for a discus relay first at the Almont Coed Relays; collected seconds by himself at the Lapeer County Meet hosted by North Branch High School and at a New Haven High School-based Division 3 regional; combined with Melly for a discus relay second at the Lake Fenton Relays; plus joined forces with Melly and Joseph Tersigni-Witham for a discus relay second at The Tri-City Times Capac Relays.

Other credentials: Strouse also competed in the event at the Division 3 state finals. Comstock Park High School is where the action unfolded.

Name: Kirk Haberski

School: Imlay City

Event: 100-meter dash

Best effort: Haberski crossed the finish-line 11.36 seconds after his race began, good enough for second place, at the Algonac High School-based Blue Water Area Conference League Meet on Tuesday, May 19.

Top finishes: He managed a second at the Blue Water Area Conference League Meet hosted by Algonac High School.

Other credentials: Haberski also qualified for the event at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville.

Name: Douglas Ladner

School: Dryden

Event: 100-meter hurdles

Best effort: Ladner stopped the watch at 16.21 seconds en route to a first Friday, April 24 at the Lapeer County Meet hosted by North Branch High School.

Top finishes: He collected firsts at the Dryden Invitational, Forrest Dowling Peck Invitational, North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet and North Huron Invitational; supplied thirds at the Akron-Fairgrove Invitational and a Division 4 regional hosted by Brown City High School; provided a fifth at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville; plus added a seventh at the Oxford Invitational.

Name: Kirk Haberski

School: Imlay City

Event: 200-meter dash

Best effort: Haberski logged a time of 23.43 seconds en route to a fourth at the Algonac High School-based Blue Water Area Conference League Meet on Tuesday, May 19.

Top finishes: He obtained fourths at the Thumb Meet of Champions hosted by Caro High School and the Algonac High School-based Blue Water Area Conference League Meet; plus tacked on fifths at the Hatchet Invitational hosted by Bad Axe High School; a Marysville High School-based Division 2 regional and the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville.

Name: Douglas Ladner

School: Dryden

Event: 300-meter hurdles

Best effort: Ladner stopped the watch at 40.37 seconds en route to a first Tuesday, May 5 at the Dryden Invitational.

Top finishes: He checked in with firsts at the Dryden Invitational, Forrest Dowling Peck Invitational, North Huron Invitational and a Division 4 regional hosted by Brown City High School; pulled up second at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet; took thirds at the Akron-Fairgrove Invitational, Oxford Invitational and Marysville High School-based O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions; plus furnished a fifth (good enough to earn All-State accolades) at the Division 4 state finals hosted by Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School.

Name: Matt Lynch

School: Dryden

Event: 400-meter dash

Best effort: Lynch supplied a school record-setting clocking of 51.46 seconds, improving on his old record of 51.99 seconds he set earlier this season, en route to a first at the North Central Thumb League Meet hosted by Akron-Fairgrove High School on Tuesday, May 12.

Top finishes: He provided firsts at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet and North Central Thumb League Meet hosted by Akron-Fairgrove High School; took seconds at the Forrest Dowling Peck Invitational, the North Huron Invitational and O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions hosted by Marysville High School; plus added a fourth at Brown City High School-based Division 4 regional.

Other credentials: Lynch also earned the right to compete in the event at the Division 4 state finals hosted by Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School.

Name: E.J. Radelt

School: Imlay City

Event: 800-meter run

Best effort: Radelt stopped the watch at 2:04.65 Friday, May 15 at a Division 2 regional hosted by Marysville High School.

Top finishes: He took fourth at a Marysville High School-based Division 2 regional; plus supplied fifths at the Hatchet Invitational in Bad Axe and at the Blue

Water Area Conference League Meet hosted by Algonac High School.

Name: Don Tobias

School: Almont

Event: 1600-meter run

Best effort: Tobias notched a clocking of 4:42.02 en route to a second at the Marysville High School-based O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions on Thursday, May 21.

Top finishes: He set the pace at the Blue Water Area Conference League Meet hosted by Algonac High School; pulled up second at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet and the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions hosted by Marysville High School; plus added a fifth at a New Haven High School-based Division 3 regional.

Name: Dylan Creger

School: Almont

Event: 3200-meter run

Best effort: Creger broke the 10-minute barrier, registering a clocking of 9:59.0, en route to a first at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions hosted by Marysville High School on Friday, May 15.

Top finishes: He turned in pacesetting performances at the Lapeer County Meet hosted by North Branch High School; the Algonac High School-based Blue Water Area Conference League Meet; a New Haven High School-based Division 3 regional; and at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions hosted by Marysville High School.

Other credentials: Creger also earned the right to compete in the event at the Division 3 state finals. Comstock Park High School is where the action unfolded.

Team: Chee Vang, Travis Tullio, Nick Osborn and Eric Withun.

School: Capac

Event: 400-meter relay

Best effort: The quartet took 46.25 seconds to complete their circuit of the track en route to a third Thursday, May 21 at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville.

Top finishes: A team consisting of Chee Vang, Travis Tullio, Nick Osborn and Eric Withun pulled up second at The Tri-City Times Capac Relays; a lineup featuring, Vang, Withun, Kaitlyn Reeve and Jade Detroyer ranked second at the Almont Coed Relays; plus Vang, Tullio, Osborn and Withun claimed thirds at the Bad Axe High School-based Hatchet Invitational and O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville.

Team: Matt Lynch, Eric Tietz, Douglas Ladner and Chad Butler.

School: Dryden

Event: 800-meter relay

Best effort: Matt Lynch, Eric Tietz, Douglas Ladner and Chad Butler set a school record with a clocking of 1:34.07 en route to a fourth (good enough to secure All-State accolades) at the Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School-based Division 4 state finals hosted by Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School on Saturday, May 30.

Top finishes: A team consisting of Matt Lynch, Eric Tietz, Douglas Ladner and Chad Butler took firsts at the Dryden Invitational, North Huron Invitational, Akron-Fairgrove Invitational, a Brown City High School-based Division 4 regional and the North Central Thumb League Meet hosted by Akron-Fairgrove High School; a quartet of Joe Drexler, Tietz, Butler and Ladner managed a first at the Forrest Dowling Peck Invitational; plus Lynch, Tietz, Ladner and Butler pulled up second at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet; supplied a third at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville; and claimed a fourth (good enough to garner All-State recognition) at the Division 4 state meet hosted by Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School.

Team: Chane Forsyth, Nick Nivison, Jonny Mosier and Kevin Shene.

School: Imlay City

Event: 1600-meter relay

Best effort: The quartet furnished a clocking of 3:32.72 en route to a third Friday, May 15 at a Division 2 regional hosted by Marysville High School.

Top finishes: A team consisting of Chane Forsyth, Nick Nivison, Jonny Mosier and Kevin Shene took first at the Tri-City Times Capac Relays; ranked second at the Blue Water Area Conference League Meet hosted by Algonac High School; took thirds at a Marysville High School-based Division 2 regional; and the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions hosted by Marysville High School; a lineup consisting of Kyle Guerrero, Mosier, Shene and Nivison claimed a third at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet; a team consisting of A.J. Caldwell, Guerrero, Nivison and Mosier registered a sixth at the Hatchet Invitational in Bad Axe; plus a lineup of Forsyth, Nivison, Mosier and Shene added a sixth at The Thumb Meet of Champions hosted by Caro High School.

Team: Brandon Gierman, Geno Volante, Matt Lynch and Douglas Ladner.

School: Dryden

Event: 1600-meter relay

Best effort: The quartet registered a school record-setting time of 3:36.84 en route to a fourth Thursday, May 21 at the Marysville High School-based O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions.

Top finishes: A team consisting of Brandon Gierman, Geno Volante, Matt Lynch and Douglas Ladner took firsts at the Dryden Invitational, North Huron Invitational, Akron-Fairgrove Invitational and at a Brown City High School-based Division 4 regional; a lineup of Collin Stone, Volante, Lynch and Ladner claimed a first at the Forrest Dowling Peck Invitational; a team consisting of Gierman, Volante, Lynch and Ladner registered a fourth at the O'Connor Realty Meet of Champions in Marysville; a lineup of Chad Butler, Gierman, Lynch and Volante pulled up fifth at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet; plus a team of Stone, Lynch, Volante and Ladner managed a seventh at the Oxford Invitational.

Other credentials: Gierman, Volante, Lynch and Ladner also earned the right to compete in the event at the Division 4 state finals. Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School hosted the meet.

Team: Don Tobias, Dylan Creger, Eric Ambrosiewicz, Josh Klebba and Cody Corbin.

School: Almont

Event: 3200-meter relay

Best effort: No matter who Almont Coach Chuck Bristol opted to send out to compete this season, success was quick to follow.

A lineup consisting of Don Tobias, Cody Corbin, Eric Ambrosiewicz and Josh Klebba logged a season-best clocking of 8:39 at the Division 3 state finals hosted by Comstock Park High School on Saturday, May 30.

Top finishes: A team consisting of Dylan Creger, Don Tobias, Eric Ambrosiewicz and Josh Klebba took first at the Tri-City Times Capac Relays; a lineup comprised of Creger, Lauren Deneweth, Klebba and Marie Burkland supplied a first at the Almont Coed Relays; a team consisting of Klebba, Ambrosiewicz, Tobias and Creger claimed second at a Division 3 regional hosted by New Haven High School; the same quartet generated thirds at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet and the Blue Water Area Conference League Meet hosted by Algonac High School.

Other credentials: Almont also competed in the event at the Division 3 state finals. Comstock Park High School is where the action unfolded.

Team: Kyle Guerrero, Jonny Mosier, E.J. Radelt and Nick Nivison.

School: Imlay City

Event: 3200-meter relay

Best effort: A team consisting of Kyle Guerrero, Jonny Mosier, E.J. Radelt and Nick Nivison registered a pacesetting time of 8:39.63 in a Blue Water Area Conference double dual with Almont and host Richmond on Tuesday, May 10.

Top finishes: A lineup of J.T. Clifton, Kyle Guerrero, E.J. Radelt and Jonny Mosier took second at the Tri-City Times Capac Relays; a team of Nick Nivison, Radelt, Mosier and Guerrero pulled up second at the Algonac High School-based Blue Water Area Conference League Meet; a lineup of Clifton, Guerrero, Mosier and Radelt ranked fourth at the Lapeer County Meet hosted by North Branch High School; a team of Nivison, Guerrero, Mosier and Radelt furnished a fifth at the Hatchet Invitational in Bad Axe; plus a lineup of Nivison, Guerrero, Radelt and Mosier added a seventh at a Division 2 regional hosted by Marysville High School.

Second team - Joe Battisti, Dryden, high jump and long jump; Kevin Shene, Imlay City, pole vault and 400-meter dash; Dillon Melly, Almont, shot put and discus; Eric Withun, Capac, 100-meter dash; E.J. Webster, Imlay City, 110-meter hurdles; Kirk Haberski and Joe Christunas, Imlay City, 300-meter hurdles; Brandon Gierman, Dryden, 800-meter run; Dylan Creger, Almont, 1600-meter run; Don Tobias, Almont, 3200-meter run; and Capac's 1600-meter relay of Tyler Sawicki, Jon Richards, Brian Kulman and Chris Paluch.

Honorable mention - Kirk Haberski, Imlay City, high jump and long jump; Capac's Tyler Sawicki and Brian Kulman plus Imlay City's Rich Davis, pole vault; D.J. Salet, Imlay City, long jump and 100-meter dash; Al Clark, Dryden, discus; Sean Cooper, Almont, 110 and 300-meter hurdles.

Coach of the Year - Shelley Litkovitz, who directed Dryden to top finishes at the North Central Thumb League Meet, North Huron Invitational, Forrest Dowling Peck Invitational, Akron-Fairgrove Invitational and Dryden Invitational; a second at a Division 4 regional hosted by Brown City High School; a fourth at the North Branch High School-based Lapeer County Meet; and a two-way tie for seventh at the Division 4 state finals hosted by Grand Rapids Forest Hills Eastern High School, earns Tri-City Times All-Area Coach of the Year accolades.

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