Each week, Second Half gives "High 5s" to athletes and a team based on their accomplishments the previous week or throughout the season.
This week's individual recipients will finish their MHSAA careers Saturday hoping to add to championship resumes -- while our team honoree is hoping to take the first step this weekend toward a first Finals title in program history.
Track and Field
Cross won both the 200 (25.56) and 400 meters (55.98) at the Oakland County Invitational, setting a meet record in the latter. Her 400 win avenged a Regional loss to Birmingham Seaholm's Aubrey Wilberding the week before. Cross also finished second in the 200 at the Regional and is qualified to run both at Saturday's MHSAA Division 1 Final at East Kentwood. She's hoping to improve on the all-Finals record she set last season in the 400 of 54.29 seconds -- and believes she can break 54 this weekend. She's signed to run next season at Eastern Michigan University -- and has beaten two forms of cancer the last two years, plus spent a short time homeless.
My favorite runner: "All-time, it's Sanya Richards (Olympic medalist and World Champion sprinter). I just love how she runs, the fact that she's always looking forward to getting better. She'll run a 50 that day (in the 400), and say 'I can do better than that.' I love that about her. She's never satisfied."
Hoop dreams: "Basketball was my first love, but track is the sport that gets me my money," Cross said with a laugh. "I love track with a passion though. When I'm on the track, nobody can hurt me -- they can't catch me. ... My favorite basketball player right now is Swin Cash. I love her. I like her tenacity. She always went out there and gave 110 percent."
I learned the most about running from: "My former coach Calvin Johnson (now at Southfield Lathrup). He's been there for me. ... Because of him, I fell back into track, got that same passion (as for hoops)."
Up next: Cross will major in social work and hopes to someday work with children. "It's important to me because I know how it is to not have anybody to fight for you. I know what feels like for kids to need somebody. I want to be an advocate for them."
(Click to read more.)
Lansing Catholic senior
Track and Field
Zingsheim will attempt to finish his record-setting career with a few more MHSAA championships at Saturday's Division 3 Final after winning the MHSAA Division 3 cross country title in the fall. He also earned an MHSAA track championship as part of the Cougars' 800-meter relay in 2011, and will run that relay, plus the 1,600 and 3,200 relays and the open 800 at Comstock. He won the 800 at his Regional by nearly five seconds with a time of 1:55.63. Zingsheim will continue to run this fall at Georgetown University.
Track man, track fan: "There's a certain thing about running. You've gotta love it. We're all Flotrack junkies. I was watching the Illinois state meet yesterday, the Texas state meet last week."
I learned the most about running from: "Probably my brother (Brandon, a 2001 Lansing Catholic grad). That's how I was introduced to the sport. He'd say, 'Zack, I'm going to run,' and it seemed like he was gone for two hours. I was just astounded, so shocked. He'd race me in sprints. I was pretty quick, and he was more of a distance guy. I never beat him, but he knew I loved the challenge. I've also been blessed with great coaches like Tim (Simpson, Lansing Catholic's head coach), our assistant coach Tim O'Hara, and guys like (teammates) Jimmy (Hicks) and Austin (Winter). The passion they have for the sport, they inspire you to want to be good."
I run like: "I can relate distance-wise to Robby Andrews. He ran for the University of Virginia. ... He's a late-kick guy. I used to be, but not as much this year. But growing up, as a runner, I knew I had foot speed waiting. I'd just wait and see what happened."
Up next: Zingsheim will run both cross country and track at Georgetown, and will major in accounting or finance. "I took an 'Intro to Business' class at LCC, and I really enjoyed it. I love the math side of business."
(Click to read more.)
Richland Gull Lake baseball
The Blue Devils are 34-2 and won the Greater Kalamazoo Tournament on Saturday with a 9-7 victory over Portage Central, formerly ranked in Division 1. Gull Lake is No. 1 in Division 2, and the Greater Kalamazoo title was its first since 2005. The Blue Devils are 72-4 over the last two seasons, which last spring included a run to the MHSAA Semifinals. They've continued to surge the last three weeks despite the loss of senior pitcher Nate Stegman -- and all-state selection in 2011 -- to an injury. (Click to read more.)
This spring's previous honorees
- Sarah Appold, Saginaw Valley Lutheran softball
- Katie Brozovich, Clarkston tennis
- Sarita Dotson, Battle Creek Lakeview track and field
- Lauren Hooker, East Grand Rapids lacrosse
- Drake Johnson, Ann Arbor Pioneer track and field
- Jake McFadden, Clare track and field
- Mike Nagy, Manistique golf
- Cullen Prena, Walled Lake Central track and field
- Erika Southworth, Decatur softball
- Nick Stiles, Bath baseball
- Malloy Weber, Northville soccer
- Garret Zuk, White Lake Lakeland track and field
- Detroit Western International baseball
- Grand Rapids West Catholic golf
- Grosse Pointe South girls track and field
- Muskegon Mona Shores golf
- Remus Chippewa Hills girls track and field
- Stevensville Lakeshore softball