CG-B school record falls

Lavey beats coach’s time in 1,600-meters and could go even faster

Cedar Grove-Belgium’s Stephen Lavey broke the 1,600-meter school record of his coach Eric Teunissen. Photos courtesy of Wisconsin Track Online and by Sam Arendt
Ozaukee Press staff

Athletes may have mixed feelings about seeing their name taken off the record books, but for Cedar Grove-Belgium Coach Eric Teunissen, it was sheer excitement in watching Stephen Lavey make history.

Lavey, a senior, broke his coach’s record in the 1,600-meter race at the Wisconsin Track and Field Association State Indoor Meet at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater on Saturday.

Lavey finished in 4 minutes, 22.49 seconds, beating Teunissen’s record of 4:25.07.

“Beating my own coach’s school record is a great accomplishment to me because I know he achieved a lot during his own high school career,” Lavey said.

“I hope I can follow his footsteps for the rest of the season and keep improving on my times.”

Teunissen, a 1998 grad, said at the beginning of the season he knew Lavey would set the record, and the coach targeted the state indoor as the place to do it.

“I told him a couple of weeks prior that this was one of the goals for the meet,” he said.

While the Rockets compete in Division 2, this meet isn’t separated by school size. Lavey ended up third in the race behind two Division 1 runners.

Rowen Ellenberg of Kimberly won in 4:17.46 and Ansel Fellman of Kenosha Bradford was second in 4:19.38.

The race started out faster than Lavey’s usual pace. Leaders at the first 800 meters were clocked around 2:06, and Lavey was at 2:11.

“I wasn’t used to going through the first 800m as fast as we did, but I knew I needed to hold that pace to hit my goal time,” Lavey said.

“He had no choice but to go with them. He started toward the back and kept moving up,” Teunissen said.

As Lavey closed in on the leaders in the second half of the race, he said, he knew a personal record was within reach.

So did his coach.

“I knew with 400 (meters) to go. He was at 3:17. At that point, he was looking pretty strong in the race,” Teunissen said.

Lavey caught nearly all of those early race leaders, edging Cade Farron of Beaver Dam for third by .03 seconds. Two other runners were less than a half second behind.

“He was consistent where the other guys were starting to fall off. He ran very smart,” Teunissen said.

Lavey was thrilled to hit his goal time.

“I gave it everything I had left the last 400 meters and saw the official time shortly after,” he said. “I had to push myself to move up, but it worked out great and I more than met my goal for time and place in the race.”

He had forgotten about the school record, until the former record-holder told him about it.

“At first, I didn’t even think of the school record. I was just surprised I had held on to that pace the whole race,” Lavey said.

“Coach Eric came up and congratulated me, and that’s when I realized I had gotten the school record.”

Teunissen was ecstatic.

“It was probably more exciting for me than for him at the moment. He was just so tired,” he said.

School record or not, that time shouldn’t be written in permanent marker. Teunissen quickly analyzed Lavey’s race.

“He ran two 2:11s, so from a coaching aspect he ran smart, which tells me he has more in the tank,” he said.

“He can go faster.”

Lavey plans on putting in the work to do just that.

“After getting a big PR like I did on Saturday, I know it’ll be difficult to improve my times. I’m hoping with some speed work later on in the season I will be able to start and close faster, both in the 1600 and the 3200, to continue to improve upon my PRs,” he said.

The outdoor season was scheduled to start Tuesday at home against Manitowoc Lutheran, Oostburg and Random Lake. On April 17, the Rockets host Kohler, Manitowoc Lutheran and Reedsville.



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