HANOVERTON-Track is often thought of as an individual sport, but Thursday, the South Range girls team showcased the power of their team mindset.
Using a balanced effort in which nearly everyone on the roster contributed, the Raiders swept aside the competition at the Inter-Tri County League upper tier track meet at United High School.
The Raiders totaled 164 points, while United came in second with 99 and Mineral Ridge finished third with 70. It is the second straight ITCL title for the South Range girls.
"Every one of these girls worked so hard all year," South Range coach Diane Krumpak said. "They realize that this is a team thing and that's what makes me the proudest."
The highlight for the Raiders was senior Raianne Mason's meet record time of 46.53 seconds on her way to capturing the 300-meter hurdles. It also broke the school record she set in the Raiders' last meet.
"I was so excited when they announced the time." Mason said. "I had no idea I was so close. My time has been dropping steadily all year. Every meet I've been shaving off a little more time."
Mason is on a mission this year after finishing fifth in the regional finals last season.
"It came down to the last hurdle at regionals last year," Mason said. "It motivated me to work very hard this year, and my teammates have been pushing me all season."
While South Range won the team event, many around the track were talking about the performance of United's Allison Parks, Parks won the 400 dash (60.47), 800 run (2:24.76), 1600 run (5:32.09) and 3200 run (11:55.59) to take home the girls MVP.
"I wanted to see if I could win the four open events," Parks said. "I didn't pass out, I didn't die, so we're good. I've never done the mile, 400, 800 and two-mile before so it was fun."
Parks clinched her final win of the night with a closing burst, blowing by South Range's Mollie Pierson in the final stretch of the 3200.
"You never feel like you're going to have anything left at the end, but there is always something there," Parks said. "Mollie set a great pace in that race and gave me a push."
Crestview sophomore Maura Belding successfully defended her ITCL title in the 100 dash (13.65) and also won the 200 dash (27.81).
"It's a great feeling to repeat in the 100," Belding said. "I've had some calf problems this year so my time is where it was last year. I've been getting better in the 200 all year. I didn't really run it last year and have been getting used to it."
Springfield sophomore Quinn Crowe swept the discus (113-5) and shot put (36-5)
"I finished second in the shot put last year behind Catherine Schuler from South Range," Crowe said. "Everytime we've had a meet it always seems to come down to her and I in the shot and I wasn't expecting to beat her tonight."
Parks won the 800 run all four years of her high school career. She finishes with 13 ITCL titles altogether.
"Allison has just been amazing," United coach Nancy Miller said. "We tried to get as many points for her tonight as possible. "She deserves it, she deserves to be the high point winner."
Lisbon's Amanda Mueller - who was the 1993 state champion in the 1600 run - won the four open distance races in the old Tri-County League meet.