Today started off promising for New Franklin, Glasgow and Harrisburg, but the highs didn’t last for long.
Area athletes came away with two medals in the first two events of the day: Haley Heuer in the shot put and Landon Brand in the pole vault.
Heading into her final throw of the finals, Heuer was sitting in 7th place. Then, for the third straight weekend, she matched her school record with a throw of 39′-1″ (well, technically 39′-1.5″), putting her all the way up to third place.
However, Fatima’s Lauren Allen edged Heuer out by 5 inches with her final throw. All four competitors from the Class 2 Sectional 2 meet that qualified for state claimed the top four spots in the event. Yeah, I’d say northeast Missouri is known for its female throwers.
Landon Brand nearly left the pole vault area after missing out on his final attempt at 12′-0″, but he was told to stick around because he made the cut to be a state medalist. As a sophomore, he’s got plenty of opportunities left to chase after Nick Boggs’ school record. Also, six of the seven athletes to place higher than him were seniors. It looks like this event could be wide open for him next year.
The New Franklin girls’ 4×100-meter relay team posted the top preliminary time in Class 1, winning their heat in a time of 52.09 seconds, their best time this season. They also finished ahead of Liberal, who won the event last year.
Saturday is going to be interesting between these two relay teams, which will be running side by side in the finals. Keep in mind, New Franklin had a bad handoff between Taylor Warren and Jasmyne Boggs and still posted an impressive time. But for all we know, Liberal was saving up for the finals. It will come down to these two teams, but it may come down to the wire.
No other area athletes made it past any of the track preliminaries. In fact, no one finished higher than 10th place. The Glasgow girls, which were two points away from winning the district title, won’t score any points at state. Peyton Davis (pole vault) and the Glasgow girls 4×400 medaled last year at state, but they’ll have to wait until next year.
At first I was really surprised, but then I got to thinking about how young these kids are. The only seniors competing today were Taylor Warren, Alex Davis and Haley Heuer. And I know New Franklin and Glasgow have a bunch of eighth-graders who will make an impact next season.
For Saturday, the New Franklin girls 4×100 will medal. I expect Heuer will join them in the discus and Madi Lyons also has a pretty good chance to medal in the high jump. Check back Saturday evening for a Day Two recap.