St. James girls break all-class 4 X 800 relay record

St. James Academy's girls won a classic battle against cross-town rival Mill Valley to win the class 5A girls 4 X 800 meter relay, highlighting early action on Saturday at the Kansas State Track and Field championships.


Sophomore Katie Moore closed with a 2:16 split to break open a close race. The two teams had run even through each of the first three legs of the relay. Moore, who has run a personal best of 2:13 this season, built a three second lead over Mill Valley's Delaney Kemp after one lap and made it hold up for a state record time of 9:19.60.


Bishop Carroll set the current record in 1999 with a time of 9:31.29. Mill Valley also broke the previous state record, finishing in 9:24.38.


St. James' team was comprised of Hannah Robinson, Jill Jones, Mary Goetz and Moore. Mill Valley's team included Mary Nelson, Molly Ricker, Britton Nelson and Kemp.


Mill Valley did move into first place in the team standings with the runner-up finish, though most of the running events were still to come in the afternoon. St. James Academy, expected to contend for the state title, is in sixth place entering the afternoon events.


Pre-meet favorite and two-time defending state champion Newton got 10 points from junior Maggie Remsberg, who won the class 5A girls 100 meter hurdles. It is the first individual state title in Remsberg's career.


Kiena Newman of Junction City successfully defended her state title in the class 6A girls 100 hurdles, but it sure wasn't easy. Her winning margin was a razor-close four-one-thousandths of a second over Janae Wren of Hutchinson. Both were given times of 14.75, though the electronic timing cameras officially had Newman at 14.744 and Wren at 14.748.


Emma Ruddle of McPherson ran the fastest winning time in the girls 100 meter hurdle finals. The sophomore won the class 4A crown in 14.36, just six one-hundredths off the state record.


The other state champions in Friday morning's 100 meter hurdles finals for girls include Rachel Miller of Downs-Lakeside (1A), Kloie McIntyre of Herington (2A) and Layne Needham of Cheney (3A).


The boys' 110 hurdles were highlighted by Tayezhan Crough of Hutchinson, who won the class 6A title in a blazing 14.45 time. It was nearly a half-second better than runner-up Marquel Russell of Washburn Rural (14.91) and Junction City's Jamarcus Plato (14.92).


Tyler Watts of Caney Valley won the class 3A boys 110 meter hurdle title with the second fastest time of the day, 14.46.


The other state champions in the boys' 110 meter hurdles were Joseph Holthusen of Bishop Carroll (5A), Clay Eckert of Buhler (4A), Toby Penner of Berean Academy (2A) and Darrien Holloway of Osborne.


Friday morning's field events were highlighted by the third state championship for Shawnee Heights' Michael Hoffer, who added the class 6A boys long jump title with an effort of 23-4.75. It was another great effort for Hoffer who won the high jump and triple jump on Friday.


Dana Baker of Olathe North, who set the all-class state record in winning the javelin on Friday, added a state title in the class 6A girls discus. Baker's winning throw was 123-7.


LeeRoi Johnson of Tonganoxie put up a career-best throw of 192-11 to successfully defend his state title in the class 4A boys discus throw. He beat a pretty good thrower in Winfield's Matthew Everett, who was second in 189-2. Everett entered the state meet with the ninth best throw in the United States at 195-1, but Johnson was the better thrower on Saturday. Johnson's state-winning throw will put him at No. 17 in the country right now.


Some other notable performances from Saturday's early session include:

* Salina South's Isaac Mitchell won the class 5A boys javelin with a throw of 193-1.

* Sabrina Thomas of Kiowa County won the class 2A girls shot put and discus within a couple hours of each other. Her winning throw in the shot put was 38-0.5 and the winner in the discus went 127-5.

* Gilbert Peters of South Gray won the class 1A boys shot put, then later won the discus by nearly 20 feet. His winning throws were 58-2 and 175-6.

* Nathan Ewing of Spring Hill won the class 4A boys high jump in a great battle with Nickerson's Hunter Jones. Both cleared 6-8, but Ewing had one fewer miss before clearing 6-8 and was awarded the title on that basis.


Complete results of all Saturday morning events are available online at www.heartlandtiming.com. That site also is streaming results live throughout the 2018 Kansas State Track and Field championships.


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