Kansas high school athletes put up nine state-leading marks on
the day, and 15 marks that rank in the top 5 of the state's rankings. Two stars
of the track put up times that rank in the top 10 in the United States right
That would be Noah Green and Kyler True.
Green, a junior from St. Thomas Aquinas, smashed the Kansas
Relays record and the field in the 110 meter hurdles, clocking 13.71 for the tenth
best time in the U.S. right now. He beat a 12-year-old record set in 2005 by
Highland Park's Jared Huske, who went on to run at the University of Oregon.
Green said his record effort came because he had
been working on getting out of the starting blocks better.
"That was a key component to running a fast time," he said. "I just had to maintain that start over the first hurdles and hold it to the end."
The start normally isn't so crucial in the distance races,
but Olpe's True shot out from the gun and took immediate control of the boys'
1600 meter run. With Kansas legend Jim Ryun looking on - Ryun, in fact was the
honorary starter for the 1600 meter races Saturday - True blazed to 2:03 for
the first 800 meters and for a while it looked as though Ryun's meet record of
4:04 could be challenged.
But the stiff northerly wind was a bit tough on the distance
runners Saturday, as even the ultra-smooth True slowed to a 2:10 over the last
half of the race. Still, the 4:13.85 finish is the ninth best mark in the
country, though True does have a faster 1600 of 4:12.52 that he ran just last
St. Thomas Aquinas' Alex Gill, who ran 4:20 to post a
come-from-behind win for the Saint's in the 4 X 1600 meter relay a day earlier,
finished fourth in Saturday's open 1600, posting the state's second-best time
Andover Central's Jewel Bolden won two events on Saturday,
clocking a state-best of 14.59 to win the 100 meter hurdles - she improved on
her own state-leading time - and then won the long jump later in the day with a
mark of 18-10.75.
Molly Born of Shawnee Mission Northwest experienced a bit of
déjà vu in the girls 1600 meter run. She led for most of three laps Saturday,
but then was caught by Assumption High School's Joy Ripslinger at the tape. It
was similar to her second place finish in the 3200 meters on Friday, when she
was nipped by Girard's Cailie Logue.
Even so, it was a great weekend for Born, whose time of
4:56.72 took over the state's top spot from Logue.
In the open 400 meters, Sidney Howland of El Dorado posted
the No. 3 time in Kansas this season, placing fourth in a time of 58.92.
In the 100 meters, Leavenworth's Clifford Robinson was third
Maize South's girls and boys lowered their own-state times
in the 4 X 800 meter relay. The ladies won their race in 9:36.92 and the guys
finished third at 8:06.07. St. James Academy's girls won the Sunflower 4 X 400
in a state-best of 4:05.04. In the boys' 4 X 400 final, St. Thomas Aquinas
lowered their own state-leading mark with a time of 3:24.23.
Leavenworth's boys' won the Sunflower 4 X 400 with the state's
fourth best mark this season, 43.21.
Olathe Northwest's Maddie Righter, already the state leader
in the high jump at 5-9, also now owns the state's second best mark. She placed
second with a jump of 5-8 Saturday.
Jordan Berry of Leavenworth flew to a win in the boys long
jump, posting the No. 2 jump in Kansas at 23-0.75. Topeka's Stephaun Cater was
fifth in the same event, posting the state's fifth best mark at 22-6.5.
The boys' pole vault featured one of the nation's best, KC
Lightfoot of Lee's Summit, but Clay Center's Peyton Lane wasn't too bad,
either. Lightfoot won with a vault of 17-0, but Lane was fourth in the event at
15-0 - tied for the best mark in Kansas this year.
Anthony Gallardo of Bishop Carroll moved to No. 2 in Class
5A, winning the javelin with a throw of 184-7.
In an event that is not regularly competed in Kansas, Jack
Young of Shawnee Mission East recorded the best time in the 2000 meter
steeplechase, finishing fourth in 6:35.73. Victoria Robinson of Lansing (No. 2)
and Abby Stewart of Emporia (No. 3) scored top 3 marks in Kansas with times of 7:50.49
and 7:50.86, respectively.
An athlete that I was particularly impressed with on
Saturday was Chapman's Ninti Little, who not many folks have probably heard
about. The junior ran with the Big Girls quite nicely this week, placing fourth
in the 100 meters in 12.20 - the top Kansas finisher in that event. She was
also fifth in the long jump with a mark of 17-11.5.