Panthers perform well at Manitowoc meets

MANITOWOC – The Plymouth Panthers had several strong performances in the Manitowoc Invitational boys and girls indoor track meets Thursday and Friday, respectfully.

Junior Mack Mella led the PHS boys with a victory in the 400-meter dash in 55.98 seconds. The Panthers finished seventh in the 15-team meet with 54 points. Luxemburg-Casco took first with 104.5. Sheboygan falls placed fourth at 71.

Sophomore Gabi Mella paced the PHS girls with a runner-up finish in the long jump at 15-5. The Panthers took eighth with 37 points. Kaukauna won the 15- team meet with 110. Falls earned fifth with 49.

The Panthers had two second places in the boys competition – Jaxsen Schermacher in the pole vault with 11-6 and Derek Novotny in the long jump at 20-6.

Plymouth’s other top-five finishers in the boys meet included: Novotny with a fifth place in the 55-meter dash in 6.58 and the 1,600 relay which earned third in 3:52.53. The relay included Mason Guell, Mella, Alex Kelly and Adam Smith.

“Our boys had a nice meet. We had some kids step up and improve their performances since the Sheboygan North meet,” said Panther head coach Jay Grosshuesch.

“Mack, Derek and Mason scored in multiple events for us. Jaxsen also continues to jump well, especially since he hasn’t been able to practice vaulting yet.

“Our mid-distance group had a nice meet as our 400 runners, and 1,600 and 3,200 relays scored well. It was nice to see some of our boys take a step forward but we have to continue to work hard to get better,” said Grosshuesch.

Gabi Mella also placed third in the 200 dash in 28.80. The PHS girls’ other top-five finishers were Maria Ryan who captured fourth in the 3,200 run with a time of 14:13.37; and the 640 (four-lap) relay which took fifth in 1:37.36. The relay members were Mella, Gwen Nytes, Maggie Staehling and Helen Baus.

“Our girls are looking better after this meet. We had a nice meet from our sprint group,” said the coach.

“Gabi had a good race in the 200 and a strong effort by our 640 relay. Maria Ryan and Lauren Rabe also ran good races, as did our 3,200 relay team. In the fields, it was good to see Gwen get back to form in the pole vault and Cece had a second good meet in the high jump.”

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