Teams snap cold with bests
Boys track third, girls fourth at Eudora
If there were awards for removing sweats, competing in an event and re-dressing in warm-up clothes, Tonganoxie would have had several athletes in competition for the gold medal Thursday at the Eudora Cardinal Relays.
The weather was so cold and blustery that Bill DeWitt, Tonganoxie pole vault coach, stopped by his house in Eudora before the meet started to get his winter coat and stocking cap.
The wind made running the back straightaway tough, but several Tonganoxie athletes recorded personal bests in events.
Jennifer Reischman jumped 30 feet, nine inches in the triple jump, placing fourth with her best leap ever.
Tyler Wise won with a jump of six feet in the high jump and nearly made six feet, two inches.
Alan Davis finished the 3,200-meter run in 10:42.77, good for second place.
Bill Shaw, girls track coach, said the weather did not affect Tonganoxie any different from the other teams there.
"It was cold for everybody," he said.
Both Shaw and Phil Williams, boys track coach, continue to be optimistic about their teams' chances at the biggest meets that come in the final weeks of the track season.
"We didn't enter people in as many events as we do sometimes," Williams said.
He said he felt that the athletes were able to better focus on their event but that some of the boys might be able to place in another event.
Shaw said his lineup is pretty much set. Some of the girls, however, should continue to improve their times, heights or distances.
"We have two or three people now getting into shape," Shaw said.
The girls finished fourth out of 12 teams. They were in second until the final two events, Shaw said. That, he added, is an indication of how tough the league track meet will be.
"The league track meet is probably going to be the toughest in years," Shaw said.
Arrika Reeder placed first in the 100-meter dash. Shaw said Reeder's finish is encouraging because the meet Thursday was the biggest meet the team has attended this season.
Bryce Downey continued to compete well, winning the high jump and placing second in the triple jump.
She and the other pole vaulters did not place. They had to jump with one of the boys 'poles because someone forgot to pack the girls' pole.
Wendy Altman, javelin, and Erin O'Brien, discus, added points in the throwing events.
Laura Korb placed fifth in the long jump, fourth in the 800-meter run and second in the 1,600-meter run.
The boys finished third out of 10 teams behind Perry-Lecompton and Sabetha.
"I thought we had a much better week than we did the week before," Williams said. "We were just two points out of second."
The cold didn't seem to bother Wise or Scott Breuer who finished one-two in the high jump. Wise's personal best came as he jumped into a stiff northerly breeze.
The 3,200-meter relay team also ran well. Jordan Smith, running the opening leg handed the baton to Jacob Hoffhines with about a 10-meter lead. Hoffhines extended the lead to nearly 30-meters before handing off to Mark Gepner.
Andy Snapp took the baton from Gepner with a 10-meter lead. He was pushed by the anchor leg runner for Sabetha but out-kicked his opponent in the final 200 meters and carried the baton across the line in first place. Tonganoxie finished five seconds ahead of Sabetha.
Kyle Norris placed third in both the 800-meter and 1,600-meter runs.
Ryan Hatfield, in his first major varsity meet, placed fifth in the triple jump with a leap of 38 feet, four and one half inches.
The boys and girls compete beginning at 3:30 p.m. on Friday at the Gardner-Edgerton Invitational.