Girls Track

Erin McMullen AhartErin (McMullen) Ahart went several places where no Salem Community High School girl runner had ever gone before and in many case have gone since during her cross country and track career.

Ahart will always hold the distinction of being the only girl to win four North Egypt Conference individual cross country championships, as that league disbanded in 2003. When Ahart won the first four of those NEC titles in 1996 as a freshman, she did so by establishing a new Salem Bryan Park Course record with a time of 12:06. Ahart had to be at her best that day because teammate Trisha (Hustedde) Richards also broke the course record.

Megan Grizzle Kessler was an outstanding three sport athlete all four years of her tenure at SCHS. She was voted 1st team NEC Volleyball in 1997 and second team all NEC in 1998. In track she was a member of the 1997 indoor 3200M Relay record setting team. Megan was the 1998 Robert Raver Outstanding Field Athlete and in 1999 she made a shot put throw of 37’5″ which stands as the 5th best throw in Lady Wildcat Track history.

In basketball she was the 9th female in school history to score over 1,000 career points and started every game all four years of her basketball career. She was 1st team NEC in 1997 and 1998 and was awarded the NEC Co-MVP in 1999. She was voted the team MVP in 1998 and 1999. Megan was a part of the 28-3 Elite 8 team in 1999 and was given AP All State Honorable Mention in 1999.

Megan then played her college basketball at SIUE and there she made a NCAA Division II Tourney appearance in 2001. After graduating from SIUE she became a SCHS faculty member and coach. Megan coached girls track for five years and is currently coaching girl’s basketball and golf.

Megan has been previously inducted into the Hall of Fame as a member of the 1999 Girls Basketball Team and the 1999 Girls Volleyball Team.

Shandeen (Hunt) Gomez took a long path, literally, for her induction into the Salem High School Sports Hall of Fame.

Gomez spent the first two years of her prep career at Newcomb, New Mexico and twice helped lead that school’s basketball program to the state tournament. Newcomb had a combined 45-5 record during those two years.

Gomez made the move to Illinois for her junior year and followed Newcomb basketball coach Janet Holst to Salem. Gomez continued her success on the hardwood with the Lady Wildcats and was an All-North Egypt Conference First Team selection in both her junior and senior seasons.

Gomez’ athletic talents carried beyond basketball at Salem. It carried over to track and volleyball. During her junior track season Gomez was a member of the NEC 3200-meter relay champions. She was also a starting setter on the 1996 Lady Wildcats volleyball team that went 26-7, won the NEC and regional championships and advanced to the sectional championship games.

94-girls-relayAn incredible postseason ride helped the 1994 Salem girls 800 medley relay bring home the first state medal by a Salem relay team in school history, boys or girls.

The quartet of Angie Burroughs, Julie Bierman, Trisha Ward and Serra Morton, which was coached by Suzanne (Henry) Brown, broke the school record in three straight postseason races. They began their path at the Class AA sectional race where they defeated a very tough East St. Louis squad on its home turf as well as several other strong relay teams from the metro east and southern Illinois with a first place time of 1:51.1.

kristi_beeson_propstKristi (Beeson) Propst used her running and jumping skills to become a state medalist and record holder during her track career at Salem Community High School.

A 1989 graduate of SCHS, Propst wasted no time making a big splash on the track scene when she won a sectional championship and earned an eighth place finish at the Class AA state meet as a freshman in 1986. Propst’s leap of 5-5 that season stood as the school record for 14 years until Brittany Bowers broke it by one-half inch in 2000.

Propst still owns or shares three school track records including the 100 meter high hurdles at 15.2 set in 1989 and the 300 meter low hurdles of 45.8 set in 1987.

amberyoungSalem Community High School’s first female four-sport athlete used her running skills to take her to the collegiate level. Amber (Wimberly) Young, a 1990 SCHS graduate, reached that status when she doubled up in the fall with cross country and volleyball. She added to that participation list with basketball in the winter and track in the spring.

Young did more than just participate. She also excelled. Young was an All-South selection and state meet participant in cross country, earned All-North Egypt Conference honors in volleyball and won her team’s Rebound and Defense Awards in basketball.

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