The Brookfield East boys track and field team not only ran away with the 17-team Wheaton Franciscan Spartan Invitational on April 17, but had the chance to see some of the teams that it will battle in the postseason.
East scored 118 points to easily beat out Kettle Moraine (87) for the championship.
"Another very good day for us. I'm just amazed at how our guys have been able to rise up these past few meets," East coach Mike Steiner said. "Things are coming together nicely.
"The meet was a very good indicator for us as a large portion of the teams are ones we will see at the regional/sectional. It's a very good barometer for us as we move forward; another positive step in the journey."
Brad Johnson won the 1,600-meter run in 4 minutes, 20.61 seconds and Steiner raved about his performance, a top-five time in the state.
"The biggest performance on the day was Brad Johnson," he said. "Brad probably ran the best race of his career. He beat a very good runner from Waukesha South (Brad Woodford), who we have the utmost respect for.
"Brad (Johnson) is so tough and he is about as versatile as you can get. His performance was by far the highlight of the meet."
Kyle Rohde once again had a big day, winning the long jump with a leap of 20-feet, 9½ inches, and the triple jump (42-11). He was also second in the 110 hurdles (15.61) and led off the second 800 relay team (1:32.75) along with Kyle Wirtz, Zach Schober and Alec James.
"Kyle once again was a catalyst for us," Steiner said. "Without a doubt he is one of the finer track athletes in the area. He does an awful lot for us and if he can stay healthy, there are some big things waiting for him down the road."
The mile relay (3:29.03) of Will Sutton, Kevin Kashian, Trenton Daniels and Johnson finished first and the 2-mile relay of (8:31.02) of Andrew Pelto, Steven Browne, Ryan DunDun and Karl Brandstaetter took second.
"Our relays continue to develop and they put out some nice times for early in the season," Steiner said. "Our distance crew had a great day."
Both Daniels in the 1,600 (personal best time of 4:30.18) and Browne in the 3,200 (9:59.77) finished fourth.
"Coach Randy Bucheger is really doing an outstanding job working with the distance guys," Steiner said. "He has taken that event to a whole new level for us. The contributions from that group have been very important to the success of our team."
The Spartans' Glen Harold was second in the pole vault (13-06) and Garth Post was fourth in the pole vault (11-06). Mitch Douglas was also fourth in both the 110 hurdles (16.37) and the high jump (5-10) and seventh in the triple jump (37-11).
Two other fourth-place performances came from Alex Brown in the 300 hurdles (43.49) and the 400 relay of Wirtz, Schober, Landon McDonald and James (44.98).
Sam Elliott in the 200 (24.00) and Will Sutton in the 400 (52.87) both finished sixth.
"We are very pleased with the effort of the entire team," Steiner said. "This was a team win. Many contributed and our depth really played to our advantage."
But the defending state champion Spartans still have a ways to go.
"By no means are we a finished product," he said. "There are still a number of difficult battles that lie ahead, but we are excited about the progress that we are making and eager to see how far this group can go."
April 17, Brookfield East
1) Brookfield East (118)
2) Kettle Moraine (87)
3) Whitefish Bay (69)
4) Waukesha South (54)
5) Wauwatosa West (52)
6) Brookfield Central (50)
7) Shorewood (47)
8) Milw. Vincent (31.50)
9) Pewaukee (29)
10) Menomonee Falls (27.50)
11) West Allis Hale (25)
12) Wauwatosa East (24.50)
13) Waukesha West (24)
14) Pius XI (20)
14) Hamilton (20)
16) West Allis Central (12.50)
17) Messmer (11)
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