Seifert’s injury hampers Eagles title chances

COLUMBUS ­— What started as a terrific day for Eastwood’s boys track and field team ended in
disappointment Friday.
The Eagles’ dream of a Division II state championship suffered a major blow.
Standout sprinter and junior Cody Seifert reinjured his hamstring during the finals of the 100.
He obviously failed to advance to the finals of that event and couldn’t run in the 400 relay where
Eastwood had a chance to finish as high as second.
Still, Eastwood had a lot to be proud of during the morning field events — senior Crosby Schemenauer won
the pole vault, classmate Josh Hoodlebrink was second in the long jump and junior Justin Welch was third
in the discus.
Schemenauer then advanced to the finals of the 110 hurdles in the afternoon, and the Eagles’ 400 and
1,600 relay teams also qualified for their finals.
But it was Seifert’s injury which makes winning a team championship even more difficult.
Cortland Lakeview is expected to finish with 45-47 points.
Eastwood – second in the state last season and in 2003 – leads with 24 points and Welch is a heavy
favorite to win today’s discus for 10 more points.
That means the Eagles will need at least 13 points from Schemenauer and the two relays to win the
school’s first boys state team title. First-place in an event is worth 10 points, with eight for second,
six for third, five for fourth, four for fourth and down to one for eighth.
Seifert, bothered by pulled hamstrings in both legs all season was expected to score in the 100 as well
after finishing fourth last year. He also qualified for state in the event as a sophomore.
“It’ll be really difficult to win it,” Eastwood coach Gary White said. “I just don’t know if we can get
that many, but we’re going to try. Every point will be critical.”
Junior Jake Rogers, the alternate on the 400 relay, helped save the relay as he filled in for Seifert and
ran the anchor leg.
Sophomore Taylor Depew, Hoodlebrink, senior Matt Schlumbohm and Rogers had a time of 43.37, the
seventh-fastest of the eight finalists. The 100 and the 400 relay are only 30 minutes apart and Rogers
had less time than that to stretch and mentally prepare.
The eight-fastest times in the relays, regardless of heat, advance to the finals.
Seifert pulled up just past the halfway point in the race. He still finished with a time of 14.38, more
than three seconds behind.
“You have to give our 400 relay credit,” White said. “(Rogers) stepped into an extreme pressure situation
and came through strong.”
Eastwood’s 1,600 relay team ran the fifth-fastest time of the finalists with a 3:23.74 clocking.
Running the relay were seniors Jason Faykosh, Lucas Hoodlebrink, Josh Beaudoin and Josh Hoodlebrink.,
The Eagles were outstanding again, just as they’ve been all season, especially the last three weeks when
they won Suburban Lakes League, district and regional championships.
“It was a real good day,” White said. “Everything was running smoothy and then Cody pulled a hamstring.”