WICHITA— With the Kansas State Track and Field Championship coming to a close on Saturday, teams in the McPherson County in both class 4A and 2A made their mark at Cessna Stadium. Here's what you missed in the finals.
McPherson High School: Ruddle me this
It was Emma Ruddle's day for the McPherson High School track and field team. On Saturday morning, not only did she secured her first state championship, she broke a 35-year old record with the time of 14.36. It did not stop there as Ruddle earned her second gold in the 100 meters at 12:37. With four gold medals under their belt, thanks to Elle Barrett in the long jump and triple jump on Friday, and Ruddle's 100 meters and 100-meter hurdles on Saturday, the girls' track team finished with 44 points. For the Lady Pups, they get to leave Wichita with a plaque after finishing in third place. Andale High School won the meet with 90 points, and Paola High School finished second with 74.On the boys' side, the Bullpups scored 24 points. Tyson Stites was the highlight of the day as he came in second in the 110 hurdles with a time of 14.87. He just .07 seconds shy of Clay Eckert's, time from Buhler High School, who would win gold in that event. Devin Cape took third in the triple jump at 44-6 3/4, which came off his first attempt. The boys ended up tying for 10th with Paola and El Dorado High School. Buhler boys became champs with 53 points. Kansas City-Piper High School finished second (40), and Andale came in third (34.5).
McPherson head coach Jace Pavlovich was satisfied in his team's performance throughout the championship. Here's what he said in a statement:
"Every year the state track meet amazes me. In the largest track meet in the nation, our kids shined. Elle Barrett shattered the state meet record in triple jump, Emma Ruddle came extremely close in the 100H, and everyone hit a personal record. There were a few heartbreaking events that took place this weekend. Tyson Stites was leading in the 110H through five hurdles then clipped a couple of hurdles in a row and finished in second. Tyson is a kid that started hurdling his sophomore year and kept getting better and better. He's an athlete and competitor. The Eckert kid (Buhler) and he had been beating each other all year long. It was a great race, and Im proud of Tyson. Kenzie Goering could have finished in the top three in long jump and triple jump but due to a couple of interesting performances in regionals by two girls from Andover Central, she did not qualify to jump in state. Kenzie took care of what she could control in regionals and PR'd, but it was 1/4 shy of qualifying. Had those two from Andover Central not hit an incredible mark in regionals, Kenzie would have possibly moved us up 16 points. She's an incredible kid that we will miss a ton.Its always nice to finish in the top three as a team in the state meet, but its all about personal performances for us in the state meet. I usually evaluate our team as a whole based off of what we were able to do in our league meet. Our guys finished behind the state champion in Buhler, and girls finished in first. I would consider this season a huge success. We have such great kids and event coaches that it makes the grueling season very enjoyable."
Smoky Valley High School: Lambert, best thing smokin'
Timothy Lambert dominated in the running events after claiming three golds in the 100 (10.82), 200 (22.11) and 300 hurdles (37.95). It was after his record-breaking performance in the preliminaries in both the 200 and 300 on Friday. Lambert alone gave the Smoky Valley boys track team 30 points of the 33 points that would place them fourth. Andrew Peters gave Vikings final three points after finishing fifth in the pole vault at 13-0. The Boys' ended up in fourth.
The Lady Vikings finished fifth overall after scoring 34 points. They were lead by Ellise Peterson, who came in third in the1600 with the time of 5:25.98. Sprinter Amanda Behanna took fourth in both the 100 (12.66) and 200 (26.46). Kerrington Haxton, in the 300 hurdles and Belle Peters in the pole vault, also finished fourth in their event. The girls' team tied for fifth with Baldwin High School.
"We had an outstanding two days at WSU at the state track meet. The girls finished tied for 5th in the team standings and the boys tied for 6th, but just two points away from a trophy and third place. That's the kind of weekend it was! We just competed and competed well,"Jay Myers said in a statement.
"I am very proud of this group of young folks - and not just the ones who earned their way to state in a stacked-up regional - all year we have loved working with our kids and we made some remarkable progress in almost all events,"
Moundridge High School, Canton-Galva High School and Inman High School
In Class 2A, Jamya O'Quinn led the Wildcats to a fourth-place finish (37) after her strong performance. O'Quinn took home three gold medals as a sprinter. The first two came in both 100 (12.42) and 200 (25.99). The third gold came in the 4x100, along with Josalyn O'Quinn, Emma Green, and Ellika Ptacek with the time of 50.62. It was after their record-breaking performance in the preliminaries on Friday. Green finished third in the 100 hurdles at 16.08. The final point came from Ptacek after placing eighth in the 300 hurdles (49.73).
Meanwhile, for the Canton-Galva High School team, Katie Fielder had a strong performance after placing second in 100 (12.66). Just .24 seconds behind O'Quinn's time. She also took eighth in the 200 with the time of 27.53. Maddie Snow took seventh in the 400 (1:01.47), and Tia Moddelmog took eighth in the high jump at 5-0.
Dantlie Raney had the best performance for the Inman girls team after placing seventh in the1600 at 5:36.13. Mason Thiessen was the best for boys as he finished ninth in the shot put at 43-11.75.
Contact Peter Holland Jr. by email at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @Petes_Picks_ or our sports page @MacCountySports