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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

GHS duo heading back to finals

Thursday, June 1, 2006

For the second consecutive year, the Greencastle High School boys' track and field team will have two representatives at the state finals.

And their names are beginning to be old hat.

Graduated senior Quinn Fenlon and junior Andy Weatherford both earned trips to the Indiana High School Athletic Association State Finals set for 3:30 p.m. Saturday. The event will take place campus of Indiana University in Bloomington.

Fenlon will compete in the high jump while Weatherford will compete in the 1,600-meter run, a race he won last year.

Heading into Saturday's race, Weatherford knows the target will be larger on his back this year.

"It will be huge," he said. "There's no coming from nowhere this year. But I'm still going to go out and run my race."

Weatherford heads into the state finals with a seeded time of 4:24.37. The top seed in the state belongs to Warren Central's De'Sean Turner at 4:15.97.

"My closest competition is probably on of the best in the state," Weatherford said. "I know De'Sean will be gunning for me."

The two have met up before. GHS Coach Mike Schimpf said Weatherford has defeated Turner before, by nearly two seconds.

"He's already beaten the kid who's first," Schimpf said. "Andy's times are a little deceptive this year. I think there is some advantage of having the luxury of saving it up a bit."

Both Weatherford and Schimpf know this year's race will be different.

"Last year, we were trying to get down to those times we wanted him to run," Schimpf said. "This year, it's more of a focus of run the time he has to to win. It's different. There's a different strategy."

Since his sophomore year, Weatherford has ran the 1,600 by using negative splits, running the final two laps of the four-lap race faster than the first two. He said he has benefitted from the strategy.

"For me, it's an easier way to race," Weatherford said. "It's easier to get that extra gear."

"A lot of people will say it's easier, but what it comes down to at this time of year is keeping it close enough to win the race," Schimpf said.

Schimpf said Weatherford will probably start on the outside in the race, something that might work to his advantage.

"It really doesn't matter where you start," he said. "But starting outside might benefit Andy."

Regardless, Weatherford said he's not heading into Saturday's race like he did last year.

"I'm definitely thinking about it more than I did last year," Weatherford said.

Fenlon will also make his second-straight state finals appearance in the high jump. He also qualified as a sophomore, but did not attend the meet.

"This year will definitely be different for Quinn," Schimpf said. "Last year, I think Quinn felt a lot of pressure. I think the pressure's off of him this year."

The pressure may have come from winning a regional title last year. However, Fenlon did not win the title this year. He's seeded with a height of 6-5 1/4 this year. The top seed of 6-9 is owned by Gibson Southern's Neil Angermeier, Leo's Travis Brumm, and Richmond's Ja'Rel Jordan.

"I'm as ready as I'm going to be," Fenlon said. "I feel a little different. Last year, I won the regional and jumped really well. I had a lot of confidence going into it.

"This year, I can go for it. I'm feeling a little better."

Fenlon said he didn't jump well at the Plainfield Sectional this year.

"I was kind of tentative," he said. "And at regional, I jumped what it took to get to the next level.

"This Saturday is when it counts."

Schimpf said it is realistic for Fenlon to win the state title.

"He's got a shot at winning it," Schimpf said. "I know he has the physical ability to do it.

"I think it may take 6-10 to win this year and I know he has the ability to go 6-10."

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