The biggest accomplishment of the Hillsboro track and field team at the James Thomas Invitational on Friday may have been simply having the James Thomas Invitational at Hills?boro.
After a two-year hiatus in North Newton because of facility-related issues at the local track, the school?s major home meet of the year played out smoothly in the impressive confines of Joel H. Wiens Stadium.
?There?s no place like home? wasn?t that the famous quote?? Trojan track coach Dennis Boldt said after the 12-school event. ?We are excited to bring such a quality meet back to Hillsboro in a much-too-long absence.?
It was no fairy-tale return for the home team, though, as the Trojan boys placed fourth and the girls seventh. Berean Academy swept both team titles by a double-digit margin.
The Trojan boys claimed two gold medals, one by senior Nathan Vogel in the 400 (51.15 seconds) and one by freshman Shaq Thiessen in the long jump (20 feet, 9 inches).
?It is an incredible feat for a freshman to win an event with such good competition,? Boldt said.
Dakota Kaufman claimed the Trojan girls? only gold, winning the triple jump in a meet record 37-6.
Sprint standout Lauren Pickens swept the 100 (12.98), 200 (26.90) and 400 (59.0) to account for all of the gold medals for Peabody-Burns. The Warrior girls placed eighth and the boys ninth.
Centre girls and boys each placed 11th. Canton-Galva girls and boys each placed 12th.
Coming?Hillsboro will compete at the Hesston Invitational on Thursday. Events begin at 4 p.m.