The Marion track and field teams gave a solid performance at the Heart of America league meet hosted at Bethel College Friday.
“We had our best weather of the year and some of our best performances,” coach Grant Thierolf said. “Congratulations to all of the members of the boys’ track and field team for winning the HOA league championship.
“We had a very solid day in almost all of our events, and when things did not go well in one area, someone from another event picked the whole team up and helped them along.”
The Warrior boys scored 131 points to lead Berean Academy (114) and Hutchinson Trinity (74).
“Our boys were led by James Jones and Kyle Palic, both of whom had outstanding days,” Thierolf said. “James is beginning to understand how good he can be. He broke a 36-year-old record in the long jump and dominated the triple jump field.
“Kyle posted a great first throw in the javelin and then proceeded to go to the discus ring and do the same thing there.”
Jones earned gold medals in the long jump (21 feet, 101⁄4 inches, a new league record) and the triple jump (42-41⁄2).
Palic, meanwhile, claimed gold in the javelin (155-7) and the discus (138-11).
“Our throwers all had their moments, and they scored a bunch of points for us today,” Thierolf said.
Aiding the team with second-place finishes were: Morgan Wheeler in shot put (45-51⁄4), Nick Meyer in discus (136-111⁄2), Zach Hammond in pole vault (12-0), Jones in the 200 (23.58), Patrick McCarty in the 400 (52.75) and Jordan Hett in the 3,200 (10:22.11).
“Our seniors did a great job of leading us to the championship,” Thierolf said. “Jordan Hett scored well for us in the distance races, Patrick McCarty ran a great 400, Zach Hammond vaulted well after the scare of breaking a pole, and Brody Carroll and Lance Knolla ran solid races in the hurdles.”
Three Warrior events placed third: Seth Snelling in the pole vault (11-6), Hett in the 1,600 (4:44.66) and the 4×800 team of Hett, Tyler Neufeld, McCarty and Carroll (8:32.93).
The girls, meanwhile, placed fifth with 66 points. Berean won the meet with 112, followed by Sedgwick at 102.
“We scored about as many points as we could expect,” Thierolf said.
Alicia Maloney claimed the only gold by clearing 10 feet in the pole vault.
Two Warriors placed second: Kirsten Hansen in the 100 hurdles (17.15) and Katey Ehrlich in the 300 hurdles (50.34).
“Katey Ehrlich and Kirsten Hansen led us in scoring, each placing second in a hurdle event and fourth in a field event,” Thierolf said. “They, like all of our athletes, have worked very hard to get better, and it is nice to see that hard work paying dividends.”
McKenzee Remmers claimed third in the 1,600 (5:57.98).
Coming—Marion will host a Class 3A regional track meet Friday with field events beginning at 3 p.m.
The field also includes Belle Plaine, Caney Valley, Douglass, Eureka, Garden Plain, Southeast of Saline, Halstead, Haven, Hutchinson Trinity, Bluestem, Sacred Heart, Sedgwick, Remington and Wichita Independent.