Area athletes participating in track and field finals today
LINCOLN — In two previous trips to the state track and field finals, Lily Bilbey has gotten to the all-state podium four times.
If things go well today, Bilbey will end her high school career with three more all-state finishes.
Bilbey, an Alcona High School senior, will be one of several local athletes competing today in track and field finals across the state.
Bilbey and several of her Alcona teammates will compete in the Division 4 finals at Baldwin Middle School, with Hudsonville as the host.
Bilbey medaled in both the 100 meter and 200 meter dash during her freshman and sophomore seasons. This time around she has her eyes on three all-state finishes as she’ll compete in the 100 meter dash, 200 meter dash and 400 meter dash.
As a freshman, Bilbey took sixth in the 100 dash and seventh in the 200 dash. As a sophomore she finished second in both events.
“I’m hoping to win, but just to have fun. It’s my last meet,” Bilbey said on Tuesday. “It’s really busy, it’s really scary, but (my mindset is) just to have fun.”
Bilbey has yet to lose in any sprinting event this season and recently won all three sprints and Female Athlete of the Meet honors at the Alpena News Honor Roll Invitational on Tuesday. While she’s enjoying the success, Bilbey said she’s also taken time to appreciate her senior year after the coronavirus pandemic canceled the 2020 spring sports season.
“It’s really exciting. I definitely haven’t taken anything for granted this year,” Bilbey said. “Last year was a bummer, I think we had about two practices and then (the season) was canceled.”
Bilbey will be joined by several Alcona teammates who are seeking all-state finishes of their own.
Nick Rasmussen will compete in the 100 dash and 200 dash and Gavin Walker and Jacob Sytek will compete in the 200 dash and 400 dash respectively.
Alcona’s boys team will also have two relay teams competing: the 800 relay team of Rasmussen, Sytek, Walker and Chris Barnes and the 1,600 relay team of Barnes, Walker, Sytek and Zach Stephenson.
In the girls finals, Kelsey Hansen will compete in the shot put and long jump for Alcona and Brielle Keyser will compete in the discus.
Posen’s Lizzy Romel also qualified for the finals in the 100 hurdles.
Fairview’s Trace Juergens, who was named Male Athlete of the Meet at the Alpena News Honor Roll Invitational, will compete in the 110 hurdles and 300 hurdles.
Rogers City will have Hayden Hentkowski and Anthony Paull competing in the boys long jump and shot put respectively.
Onaway will have several female athletes competing Saturday as well. Madilyn Crull will run in the 100 dash and 200 dash and Shelby Woiderski will run in the 100 dash. Crull, Lainey Shimel, Gavi Woiderski and Shelby Woiderski will compete together in both the 400 relay and 800 relay.
In the Division 1 finals in East Kentwood, Alpena’s Cooper Bright will compete in the 400 dash. Bright won the Big North Conference title in the event and was also the winner of the 400 dash at the Alpena News meet. Alpena’s Madi Szymanski will compete in the girls 1,600 run as well.
CORRECTION: This story has been updated to reflect that Alpena’s Madi Szymanski also will compete in the state finals. Her name was omitted from an earlier version of this story.