Sprinters show prowess at Pella Christian

by Ashley Miller

The 2018 track season cannot be defined by good weather, but it can be defined by strong performances both both the boys’ and girls’ teams. Both teams traveled to Pella for the Pella Christian Co-Ed Invitational on April 10. The boys took home the gold with 129 points, beating out 3A Pella, who finished the night with 122.5 points. The girls with 138 points finishing second to Pella.

“We ended the night with another top-three performance as a team by placing second only to a tough 3A Pella team,” girls’ head coach Bridget Martin said. “It was fun to go out and compete tonight with some tough competition. We saw a lot of effort and heart in our girls this evening. We have been impressed with our fight through the finish line. We talk a lot about taking care of the little things like handoffs, proper warm-up and finishing the race. I think some of those little things are continuing to pay off.”

The sprinters showed prowess with nine of the collective ten wins from both teams being from sprinting event. On the boys’ side, junior Preston VanWyk won the 100 meter dash with a time of 11.56 seconds. No. 4 ranked in class 2A senior Noah Anderson won another 200 meter dash title crossing the finish line at 22.55 seconds. VanWyk and Anderson were both part of the winning relays. They joined juniors Payton Strovers and Brayton VanDyke for the 4×100 that finished in first with a time of 44.1 seconds. This is the second fastest time in 2A. Junior Wes Cummings would join Strovers, VanWyk and Anderson for the winning 4×200; they crossed at 1:32.11, ranking third in 2A. The final win for the boys was Strovers in the long jump. He landed at 20 feet, six inches.

On the girls’ side the wins all came from sprinting events. The 4×200 team of sophomore Sierra Foster, freshman Margo Chipps, sophomore Regan Freland and senior Ashley Miller came in first with a time of 1:51.30. Foster and Miller also had wins in open events. Foster won the 200 meter dash with a time of 27.7, and Miller won the 100 with a time of 13.69. Junior Megan Cowman won the 100 hurdles with a time of 17.19. Sophomore Lexi Kuecker was right behind her in third at 18.11. Junior Paytan Schut and sophomore Kate McCarthy went 1-2 in the 400 meter dash with times of 64.32 and 66.26, respectively.

Freshman Beau Webb ran a time of 5:03.23 in the 1600 meter run, placing second. Sophomore Nigel Sperfslage placed second in the 400 meter hurdles with a time of 1:01.78. Both 4×400 teams finished in second. The team of Cummings, sophomore Noah Hirayama, senior Blake Lee and freshman Connor Bennett crossed at 3:46.02, and Schut, Miller, K. McCarthy and Foster finished at 4:21.75. The boys sprint and distance medleys placed second. The sprint medley consisting of VanWyk, VanDyke, Anderson and Cummings finished at 1:40.35. The distance medley team of junior Jarron Trausch, Bennet, freshman Jacob VanWinkle and Webb crossed at 4:05.30. Freshman Celeste Wagaman finished second in the high jump at a height of four feet, eight inches. The 4×800 was the final second place finish for the Lady ‘Stangs. The team of sophomore Sayde White, K. McCarthy, senior Baylee Smith and Schut finished at 11:02.51.

The boys had one third place finish in the 4×800. The team of Webb, junior Bryce Rogers, Sperfslage and Lee finished at 9:10.23. The girls’ 4×100 finished third with a time of 52.74. The team consisted of Foster, Kuecker, Chipps and Miller. Chipps and Kuecker would join sophomore Maybelle Smith and Cowman for the third place shuttle hurdle relay. They crossed at 1:12.58. The final top-three finish for the Mustangs was the distance medley team of freshman Emma Houser, Wagaman, sophomores Hannah McCarthy and Klaire Jungling. Their time was 5:01.54.

“We will continue to focus on the process of improvement as the season progresses,” Martin said. “The team continues to show their depth by scoring points across the board from sprints to distance and in the field events. We are excited about the different options that we will have as we move through the season.”

Tonight, April 19 the girls will be at South Tama High School. The boys also have a meet tonight at South Hamilton High School. Field events begin at 4:30 p.m. for both teams.