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Cashton track carries on tradition

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Cashton, Wis. (WXOW) - -

When you join the Cashton track team, you inherit a responsibility - to keep streaks alive, and to find a spot on the podium at state.

"Everyone who comes up, they realize that we have a good program here and everyone wants to be a part of it," junior Jamie Schmitz said. "That helps bring girls in and keep the team strong."

The girls track team has won seven consecutive Scenic Bluffs Conference titles. Cashton as a school has sent at least one athlete to the WIAA State Track and Field Championships each of the past 15 years, a streak that will continue Friday.

"They want to be staying on that list of kids making it to state," coach Jeremy Mosley said. "They've had older brothers or sisters that have made it. They have neighbors that made it so they know what it takes to get there because they've heard it from other people.

Three girls have the primary responsibility of carrying on the tradition. Schmitz will compete in four events, sophomore Emily Schaldach will compete in two events, and senior Betsy Schreier will compete in three, including the triple jump where she is the two-time defending division 3 champion.

"Betsy expects to win the triple jump. As a coaching staff, we're expecting that she would do it," Mosley said. "If she just jumps her best, we feel she's the best triple jumper in division 3."

Schreier admitted she has struggled with confidence and focusing on the positive aspects of competing in the past, but has made a more conscious effort this season as she hopes to three-peat.

"I feel like I focus on more of the small stuff," she said. "The last couple years I've been focusing on the overall technique and now I'm really honing down on the little things I have to fix."

She is the top seed in the event by nearly two feet, including Schmitz, who is seeded third. This year is a bit of a redemption for Schmitz, who was in position to qualify for four events last season but was limited to just one after an illness during the sectional meet. She has rebounded nicely, thanks to her own focus and determination, and pressure applied by her successful teammates.

"Being able to race against the best in the state every day at practice, at every meet, of course that helps greatly," she said. "Everyone is pushing each other and we're all really determined and hard working to get what we deserve."

Which for the girls team at Cashton, is to be part of the podium, and the tradition, that has defined the Eagles program for more than a decade.

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