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3A-7 track: Perfection four times over for Ridgewood's Bertling

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Wed. April 21, 2010 | Izzy Gould | Email

WESLEY CHAPEL — The stewards of North Suncoast track history stirred their brains, sifting through names and numbers trying to recall the last time it had occurred.

The achievement was not lost on anyone.

Ridgewood junior Karissa Bertling scored a perfect meet, winning four events and accounting for 40 of the Rams’ 108 points. In the end, Ridgewood’s girls finished second to host Wiregrass Ranch (147), which won for the second straight year.

Bertling won the high jump (5 feet, 4 inches), 100 meters  (12.39), 200 (25.57) and 400 (57.99).

“That was phenomenal,” Wiregrass Ranch coach Don Howard said. “For her to take first place in every event she ran in was really impressive.”

Among the multiple winners was Central’s Raqurra Ishmar, who won the discus (123-10) and shot put (40-1). Zephyrhills senior Lindsay Arnold won the 100- and 300-meter hurdles with times of 14.93 and 47.16, respectively. And Mitchell junior Kelli Williams won the 800 (2:18.52) and 1,600 (5:17.58).

For the boys, Nature Coast was concerned about missed points in having a profound impact on its team score, especially after top seed Bruce Frederico’s disqualification for a false start in the 800.

In the end, Nature Coast found plenty of points to lock up its second district title in three seasons. The Sharks scored 113 points with Wiregrass Ranch second with 96.

“At this time, we’re probably the most complete team we’ve ever had,” Nature Coast coach Ryan Wilson said. “…We’ve enjoyed the whole year and the journey so far.”

Brothers Ja’Juan and Antwan Story finished first and second in the 100 and the 200 and teamed up as members of the Sharks’ winning 4x100 team along with Tevin Drake and Isaac Bailey. Drake also won the shot put (46-9.5), an event he just recently took up.

Ridgewood junior Tony Perez won the long and triple jumps with marks of 21-10 and 42-3.50, respectively.

Izzy Gould can be reached at igould@tampabay.com or (813) 421-3886.

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