Heaven Anderson (above) and her sister, Kialis, will make their first state track appearance together this weekend (File Photo).

Andersons notch personal bests in sectional

By Jason Arndt
Staff Writer

When sisters Heaven and Kialis Anderson entered WIAA Division 1 sectional competition at Lake Geneva Badger last week, the Westosha Central duo had an outside chance of qualifying for state, according to coach Deirdre Reeves.

However, that outside chance did not stop the sisters from moving forward as both stamped their tickets to the state track meet at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse’s Veterans Memorial Stadium this Friday and Saturday.

Heaven, a junior distance runner, notched a personal best 5 minutes, 21.41 seconds to place third in the 1,600 run while younger sibling and freshman Kialis finished third with a career mark 12.93 in the 100 dash.

Reeves said the Andersons were ecstatic upon learning they would make their first state track appearance together.

“They were super-excited; they support each other a lot at the meets,” Reeves said. “That first state appearance for the both of them makes them very excited.”

Reeves admitted they were on the outside looking in, but they put forth their best efforts at the right time of the season.

“We thought it was kind of an outside shot, but we were hoping it was a possibility,” she said. “Ki ran a personal best that was just amazing at sectionals, and that is what got her in. And Heaven did really well at regionals, so we thought she might be able to make it out of sectionals and she ran an eight second personal record and totally blew us away.”

On May 20 at Elkhorn, Heaven notched a regional title, finishing the 1,600 run in 2:29.19.

Excelling in distance races is nothing new for Heaven, who qualified for state cross country in back-to-back years, starting with her sophomore season.

Reeves hopes to see the sisters notch another career best at state.

Meanwhile, several seniors marked the end of their track careers at sectionals, including distance runners Claire Koeppel and Sheen sisters Jenna and Jessa.

Koeppel, who qualified for sectionals on two relay teams, finished sixth in the 1,600 run and seventh for the 3,200 run.

Koeppel and Jessa Sheen joined seniors Neha Patel and Jade Fluger on the seventh- place 3,200 relay team.

While Jenna Sheen placed seventh in girls discus, she also helped the girls 800 relay team of freshmen Lauren Foerester and Anderson and sophomore Courtnee Bader finish eighth.

Jenna Sheen, Fluger, Kialis Anderson and Bader finished seventh in the 400 relay. Jenna Sheen, Heaven Anderson, Jessa Sheen and Fluger placed seventh in the 1,600 relay.

Reeves said she will miss the departing seniors.

“It is sad because I have known them for so long and just seeing them all grow up, they are just tremendous kids,” she said. “They worked so hard and they are going to be a hard crop of seniors to lose this year.”

However, Reeves noted several underclassmen will return, such as junior Novalee Clark in the discus throw and freshman Foerester.

Reeves said Clark, who finished fifth at sectionals, will come back determined her senior season.

“I think she is very, very determined and works extremely hard,” Reeves said.

Reeves said the boys team is relatively young but indicated they have shown potential.

The returners include distance runner Will Allen, thrower Niko Therman and pole vaulter Joel Engberg.

 
 

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