By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
MCDONALD'S SWNEWS4U CO-GAME OF THE WEEK (Track and Field): WIAA State Championships
Repeat State Champs: Fennimore boys win second-straight 4x800 state title
Fennimore 4x800
Fennimore’s (front, from left) Carter Bunn, Nick Needham, (back, from left) Isaac Henkel and Riley Foreyt won the Division 3 boys 4x800 state title with a new school record time of 7:58.44. (photo by John Linden)

WIAA TRACK AND FIELD STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS: Fennimore Boys and Girls finish Top 5 in D3

By Jason Nihles, The Platteville Journal

Repeat State Champs: Fennimore boys win second-straight 4x800 state title

LA CROSSE — The Fennimore track and field team capped its sensational 2024 season with a number of record-setting performances at last weekend’s WIAA Track and Field State Championships.

Seniors Carter Bunn, Nick Needham and Riley Foreyt, and junior Isaac Henkel kicked off the competition in grand style Friday afternoon by winning the Division 3 boys 4x800 relay state championship for the second straight year.

Bunn led off and put the Golden Eagles in second place when he handed off the Foreyt. Foreyt passed a pair of runners in the final 30 meters of his second lap to put Fennimore just ahead of Pardeeville and Dodgeland. Needam took his turn and ran a solid 800 meters before handing off to Henkel just steps behind Pardeeville’s anchor man.

Henkel ran a calculated final leg, keeping close to Pardeeville senior Colin Smith, before blowing past Smith with 50 meters remaining and holding on for the state title in a new school record time of 7:58.44.

The new record smashed last year’s winning time of 8:06.93 an just missed setting a Division 3 state record time of 7:57.64, set by Sheboygan Area Lutheran in 2007. 

“It’s extremely tough to repeat as state champs, but these young men trained for this and in the process nearly broke the state record in D3,” said Fennimore head coach Gregg Davis. “It was simply each runner doing his best and each very confident in their ability to repeat. The three seniors, Carter Bunn, Riley Foreyt, and Nick Needham along with our 800m record holder, Isaac Henkel have been training for this the past three years and they weren’t going to let up without standing on top of the podium. It was a thrilling way to kick off the weekend.

The same quartet also qualified seventh for Saturday’s finals of the 4x400 by running a 3:29.24 in Friday night’s prelims. The Fennimore boys improved upon their seed and reached the podium with a fifth-place finish in Saturday’s finals at 3:27.39.

Sophomore Madden Crubel had a sensational state debut Friday by placing third in the D3 boys discus with a PR toss of 163’9”.

“After Madden was able to get a decent throw in trials, he settled in and had three 160-plus attempts in the finals,” said Davis. “Each throw was a PR for him, exactly what you want to do on the big stage. The two throwers in front of him will be back next year so he is already looking forward to improving and getting to the top in D3. He is smooth, strong, and quick and has the right attitude to improve.”

Henkel also earned a third-place bronze medal in Saturday’s 800-meter run with a new school record time of 1:56.04.

“Isaac has put a lot of pressure on himself this year but after turning in a 1:55 split in the 4x800 Friday, you could see the confidence come back,” said Davis. “He loves the final kick and is tough to pass down the stretch. He destroyed his own school record in the process. We are more than looking forward to his senior year in cross country and track.”

The Fennimore scored in all four of their state events and finished fifth in D3 with 26 points. Iola–Scandinavia won the D3 boys title with 45 points.

The Fennimore girls, who qualified for state in 10 events, finished third in Division 3 with 31.5 points, behind Deerfield (42) and Cameron (39).

“We knew we had a special team of young men that were going to score points at the state meet,” said Davis. “To have both teams in the top 5 in all of D3 is something we will remember for a long time.

Senior Rachel Schauer opened her first state meet competition with a second-place finish in Friday’s D3 girls shot put with a personal-best throw of 40’2.25”. She came back Saturday to score five team points with a fourth-place finish in the D3 girls discus with a throw of 127’9” in the rain. 

“Rachel threw great,” said Davis. “Her 40’ throw was the first she’s ever had in competition and was only four inches behind our school record. She’s a competitor, only wants to win, and wasn’t pleased with coming 3/4 of an inch short for the championship, but she went out throwing her best  

“The rain affected her in the discus competition  but she still managed numerous 120-feet-plus throws and finished with a strong 4th place finish. She is heading to wrestle at Wartburg, but it won’t surprise me if she will be throwing next year as well.”

Senior Izzy Bender placed cleared 5’2” to place sixth in the D3 girls high jump Friday, and 12th in the triple jump (34’4.75”) on Saturday. Fellow senior Braycee Nelson scored two teams points with a seventh-place finish in the D3 girls long jump (16’10.75”) Friday.

Saturday’s D3 girls pole vault was moved indoors due to the rain. Senior Rose French and Brooklyn Lull each cleared 10 feet, but French tied for seventh, while Lull finished 10th with more misses. Freshman Brooklyn Ritchie ran a 26.35 200 meters in Friday’s prelims and did not advance to finals.

The Fennimore girls 4x100 and 4x200 relays qualified for Saturday’s finals with top-eight finishes in Friday’s prelims.

The 4x200 team of seniors Jillian Adam, Nelson and Rosalie Griesel, and Ritchie went first Saturday, placing third with a new school-record time of 1:45.75, just behind state champion Grantsburg (1:45.70) and St. Mary’s Springs (1:45.73) in a thrilling finish.

Adam, Nelson, Ritchie and sophomore Peyton Lendosky teamed up to place third in the 4x100 later Saturday with another school record time of 50.25 seconds.

WIAA Division 3 State Meet
(from May 31–June 1 @ UW–La Crosse)
Top 10 team scores — 1.Iola–Scandinavia 45, 2.Stratford 34, 3.Edgar 32, 4.Wauzeka–Steuben 29, 5.Fennimore 26, 6.Rosholt 23, 7.Webster 23, 8.Crandon 16, 9.Riverdale 16, 10.Lancaster 15.5.
Fennimore state qualifiers 
800 — 3.Isaac Henkel 1:56.04. 4x400 — 5.Fennimore (Carter Bunn, Riley Foreyt, Nick Needham, Henkel) 3:27.39. 4x800 — 1.Fennimore (Bunn, Foreyt, Needham, Henkel) 7:58.44. Discus — 3.Madden Crubel 163’9”.
Top 10 team scores — 1.Deerfield 42, 2.Cameron 39, 3.Fennimore 31.5, 4.Fall Creek 29.5, 5.Chequamegon 2, 6.Oshkosh Lourdes 24, 7.Stevens Point Pacelli 23, 8.Immanuel Lutheran 22, 9.Cadott 21, 10(tie).Wisconsin Rapids Assumption 20, 10(tie).Lancaster 20, 10(tie).Dodgeland 20, 10(tie).Rosholt 20.
Fennimore state qualifiers 
200 — 11.Brooklyn Ritchie 26.35. 4x100 — 3.Fennimore (Jillian Adam, Braycee Nelson, Lendosky, Ritchie) 50.25. 4x200 — 3.Fennimore (Adam, Nelson, Rosalie Griesel, Ritchie) 1:45.75.High jump — 6.Bender 5’2”. Pole vault — 7(tie).Rose French 10’0”, 10.Brooklyn Lull J10’0”.  Long jump — 7.Nelson 16’10.75”. Triple jump — 12.Bender 34’4.75”. Shot put — 2.Rachel Schauer 40’2.25”. Discus — 4.Schauer 127’9”.