ORIGINALLY WRITTEN DON RATZLAFF
After a two-week layoff from big-meet competition, the Hillsboro boys blew away the field and the girls finished a strong second at the 11-school Hesston Invitational on Thursday.
The boys rolled up 1521/2 points to outdistance their closest competitor, Garden Plan, by 671/2 points. Marion scored 471/2 points to finish fifth and Canton-Galva scored six for 10th place.
The Trojan girls were runners-up to a deep Garden Plain squad by a 157-103 margin. Marion placed eighth with 15 points and Canton-Galva managed two points to finish 11th.
Along the way, the Trojans broke or tied two school records. Freshman Hannah Marsh set a new standard in the long jump by soaring 17 feet 111/2 inches. That effort eclipsed the mark of 17-5 set 21 years ago by Angie Helmer.
“It is the first of Angie’s records to be broken,” coach Dennis Boldt said. “Hannah had multiple jumps over 17 feet today.”
Meanwhile, the boys’ 4×100 relay team of Derek Mayfield, Tyler Peachey, Brodie Unrau and Caleb Marsh tied the school mark set by two other lineups when they broke the tape in 44.03 seconds-which was rounded up to 44.1 because of the timing procedure used.
The other two Trojan foursomes to ran that fast were Alan Yoder, Peachey, Unrau and Marsh one year ago, and Yoder, Phillip Terrell, Ross Duerksen and Ryan Jilka in 2001.
In addition to the 4×100, the Trojan boys won five other events. Marsh won the long jump at 21-61/4, Daniel Yoder win the 400 meters in 52.32, Aaron Yoder won the 1,600 meters in 4:54.31, Sammy Espada won the triple jump with a leap of 42-10 and the 4×400 team of Marsh, Aaron Yoder, Peachey and Daniel Yoder won in 3:32.42.
Winning silver medals for Hillsboro were Tim Funk in the high jump and 110-meter hurdles, Daniel Yoder in the 800, Peachey in the 200, Derek Mayfield in the 100 and triple jump and Marsh in the pole vault.
Marion was led with second-place finishes by Tyler Smith, with a throw of 154-31/2 in the discus, Gavin Moore, who finished the 3,200 in 11:06.26 and the 4×800 team, which crossed the finish line in 9:16.87.
“We had some very good performances at Hesston and we had some events in which we still need to learn to compete when we are in big meets,” Warrior coach Grant Thierolf said.
Canton-Galva scored its points on fifth-place finishes in the 110-meter and 300-meter hurdles by Steven Jowers and in the 4×800.
In addition to winning the long jump in the girls’ division, Marsh added the 200-meter title to her resume with a time of 26.87. Classmate JuliAnne Chisholm won the high jump by clearing 5-2 and the 1,600 meters in a time of 5:49.52.
Tina Frick won the 300-meter hurdles in 49.49 while the 4×400 team of Jessica Heidel, Kelsie Penner, Chisholm and Marsh won in 4:12.91.
Chisholm won one of Hillsboro’s two silver medals with a 15.44 time in the 100-meter high hurdles.
The 4×100 team of Megan Peachey, Frick, Penner and Heidel won the other silver with a time of 52.96-just 0.23 seconds behind the winning team from Garden Plain.
Marion’s top performances came from Jessica DeForest, who placed fourth in the 3,200 at 13:41.75, and the 4×800 team, which placed fourth in 11:26.86.
Canton-Galva’s 4×100 team scored the Eagles’ only points by finishing fifth in a five-team race with a time of 64.95.
Boldt said he was pleased with the performances of both his boys’ and girls’ teams.
“Despite the wind and heat, there were some excellent times by many athletes in this meet,” he said. “The kids have been waiting over two weeks to run in an invitational.
“It is important to get good marks for regional seeding in races such as the 100, 200, 400, 4×100 and 4×400 relay. We achieved some of these marks today.”
Coming-The Hillsboro boys will attempt to win their fourth straight Mid Central Activities Association title when they travel Friday to Halstead for the league meet. Events for girls and boys begin at 3 p.m.
Marion will travel to Council Grove on Friday for the last Cottonwood Valley League meet. The CVL will disband after this school year.