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Cabrini sophomore Justin Querry’s big season featured a third-place finish at regionals in the 400m (52.99), which nearly made him the third Monarch to qualify for the Division 3 state finals in 2014. Photo by Ricky Lindsay

Track And Field

Monarchs race to new heights in 2014 PHOTOS

After a strong 2014 season, the future looks bright for Cabrini, as several talented athletes on both the boys and girls sides are set to return next spring. Photo by Frank Wladyslawski

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After the Cabrini boys’ track and field team won a CHSL Tri-Sectional C-D Division title this spring, Coach Chris Gawel wanted to know when the Monarchs had done it last.

To find out, the first-year head coach looked to the school’s championship banners, but didn’t spot what he was looking for.

Gawel then asked Cabrini Athletic Department Secretary Kathy Leja if she would check past records. He quickly found out that his 2014 squad was the first group of Monarchs to ever earn the title.

“…She said, ‘no, there’s not one for track. It’s not a mistake that there’s no banner up there.’ So we won the first Tri-Sectional in school history,” he said.

To take first place, the Monarchs went 4-0, as they beat Waterford Our Lady of the Lakes 86-41, dominated Cristo Rey 117-9, took down Loyola 68-59 and knocked off Marine City Cardinal Mooney 109-19.

The championship was just one of the big accomplishments in 2014, however.

At the Division 3 regional meet, against some of the state’s best competition, the Monarchs scored 58.5 points and finished sixth for the day. According to MHSAA.com, the next best regional point total earned by the Cabrini boys was 29 back in 2008.

Senior Paul Gass won the 400m (51.93) at regionals, which qualified him for the state finals, and he also finished third in the 200m (23.95). At the state finals, he was eighth in the 400m (51.20), which earned him all-state honors.

Sophomore Joey Trohimczyk took first in the 110m hurdles (16.33) to qualify for states and he was also fourth in the 300m hurdles (44.20).

Sophomore Justin Querry took third in the 400m (52.99) and just missed qualifying for the state finals and senior Jacob Seasock was fifth in the 3,200m (10:40.43). Also, the 4x400 relay (3:41.43) team finished fifth with a group made up of Gass, Querry and seniors Jonah Globke and Chris Sukel .

A turnout of 31 boys this spring gave Gawel the luxury of using strong runners such as Globke and Sukel in utility roles.

“We had a deeper field. I could count on other people,” he said. “We’re finally getting the numbers where the standout athletes aren’t doing all the work.”

Three weeks before regionals, Globke, Sukel, Gass and Querry had also teamed up for the 4x400 relay (3:45.10) and finished sixth at The News-Herald Track & Field Championships.

For the day, the Monarchs finished ninth at The News-Herald Meet with 20.5 points, improving upon a nine-point, 13th-place finish in 2013.

Gass took third in the 400m (52.35) and in the high jump Gass (6-1) and Trohimczyk (5-11) finished 4-5, respectively, finishing right behind three of the state’s best jumpers.

Other top-10 finishes at the meet included Brandon MacGregor’s eighth-place finish in the discus (115-05), Jacob Seasock’s eighth-place finish in the 3,200m (10:42.60) and Querry’s 10th-place finish in the 400m (54.04).

About two weeks after The News-Herald Meet, the Monarchs scored 112 points at the CHSL Meet and finished second, behind only repeating champ Ann Arbor Richard (124). For the day, the Cabrini squad had eight runner-up finishes and a total of 17 spots that placed sixth or higher.

Gass was a runner up in the 200m (23.94), 400m (53.33) and high jump (5-10) and Trohimczyk was second in both the 110m hurdles (16.52) and 300m hurdles (43.77), third in the high jump (5-8) and fourth in the long jump (18-0).

MacGregor was the discus (122-6) runner up, junior Joey Asterino was second in the 1,600m (4:54.72), senior Jacob Seasock was the 3,200m (10:55.20) runner up and took fifth in the 1,600m (4:59.67), senior Zachary Seasock was fourth in the 3,200m (11:11.56), Querry was third in the 400m (53.62), junior Danny Cardosi was sixth in both the 100m (12.19) and 200m (24.80), freshman Stephen Banghart was sixth in the 300m hurdles (46.69) and sophomore Andy Orr was sixth in the discus (105-10).

With the strong performances at the CHSL Meet, the Monarchs more than doubled their point total from last year and improved from nearly 130 points behind the first-place Fighting Irish in 2013 to just 12 points in 2014.

Gawel said this year’s big improvements, and overall success, could be attributed to the team’s high level of discipline and its dedication to winning right from the outset.

“The season started, I told them what the workouts were and they did it,” he said. “There was on arguing. There was no complaining.”

For Cabrini, many of those workouts and practices are conducted differently than at most other schools.

Without the convenience of their own facilities, the Monarchs have to make use of the property around the school to get practices in.

“This is a very successful team without a track to run on,” Gawel said. “Workouts consist of running around the church parking lot.”

Helping to keep the team focused through practices this year, along with any other challenges, was a strong a group of captains, Gawel said.

From the boys’ side, senior Bryan Giczewski served as a captain, while seniors Jordan Powell and Emily Gilbert took on the duties from the girls’ side.

“They were instrumental in leading the team,” Gawel said of the captain trio. “They really stepped up with the leadership and the underclassmen saw their dedication and their hard work and followed suit.”

While the squad was not as successful on the girls’ side, there were still some strong finishes during the season.

Powell was fifth at regionals in the 1,600m (5:40.90) and seventh in the 800m (2:34.69), while at The News-Herald Meet she was fourth in the 800m (2:34.8) and seventh in the 1,600m (5:47.10) and at the CHSL Meet was second in the 800m (2:34.43) and fifth in the 1,600m (5:51.29).

Also at the CHSL Meet, freshman Paige Perkins was fifth in the shot put (25-6.5), senior Shalya Rupacz was fifth in the discus (68-2) and freshman Lindsey Bollinger was sixth in the long jump (13-4). Bollinger was also eighth in the long jump (13-6.75) at regionals.

After the season, a total of 15 seniors from the track team graduated.

While some of those who have departed were key members of the team, many others responsible for this year’s success will be back as sophomores, juniors and seniors in 2015.

With a group that is talented, experienced and has already tasted some success, the future looks bright for the Monarchs.

Last Updated: 7/23/2014 11:14:51 PM EST