STATE CENTER — The Roland-Story boys made state in nine events and the Norse girls qualified in four at the Class 2A state qualifying track meet in State Center Friday.
The Norsemen boys scored 118 points to edge Dike-New Hartford (114) and Madrid (113) for the boys’ team championship.
“I’m very excited for our kids to be able to win a qualifying meet with such great teams in it,” Roland-Story head boys’ track coach Brian Petersen said. “We felt going in that this was going to be one of the toughest state qualifying meets in 2A. It came down to the last few races and the kids competed so hard in each event.”
The Roland-Story boys qualified for state in the shuttle hurdle, 4 X 100, 4 X 200, 4 X 400 and 4 X 800-meter relays and had five athletes punch their tickets to state in individual events.
“We are excited to get so many events down to state,” Petersen said. “We hope to continue to improve this next week in practice so we can try and do our best as a team.”
Nick Wakefield gave the Roland-Story boys an impressive win in the 3,200 by upsetting Madrid’s Sean McDermott, who won the 1A boys’ state cross country champion this past fall.
Wakefield broke 10 minutes for the second time this season, beating his previous best mark by exactly one second. He completed the race in nine minutes, 58.52 seconds to edge McDermott’s 10:01.16 for the gold.
The Norsemen are sending two runners to state in the open 400. Grant Olson won at State Center with a :51.56 showing and Jon Sansgaard qualified on time after placing third with a time of :53.33.
Madrid’s Jacob Loewe was runner-up in the 400, just edging Sansgaard with a :53.06.
Nathan Bell won the discus for the Norsemen with a season-best throw of 149 feet, eight inches. He dominated the event, beating South Hamilton’s Cade Flaugh by 18-6 for the gold.
Sam Diehl is headed to Des Moines in the high jump after clearing 6-2 to take first at the qualifying meet. Diehl edged Dike-New Hartford’s Dane Fuller by one inch for the victory.
Roland-Story’s 4 X 100 and 4 X 400 relay teams both qualified automatically for state with runner-up performances.
Zach Twedt, Kyle Selby, Eli Thorson and Drake Day ran the 4 X 100 in :44.79 to come in just behind Woodward Academy’s :44.49. Adam McIlrath and Carter Greenfield joined Twedt and Olson to complete the 4 X 400 in 3:30.86, trailing only Dike-New Hartford’s 3:28.22.
The Norsemen 4 X 800, 4 X 200 and shuttle hurdle teams all made it to state based on their times.
Roland-Story’s 4 X 800 team of Greenfield, Olson, Gradyn Dowling and Eric Dowe clocked in at 8:18.70 to place third behind two of the three best teams in 2A — South Hamilton and Madrid. South Hamilton won in 8:06.40 and Madrid clocked in at 8:11.63.
Day, Wyatt Bunn, McIlrath and Twedt ran a 1:32.98 in the 4 X 200 to place third for Roland-Story. Dike-New Hartford won in 1:31.32 and Woodward Academy was second in 1:32.58.
The Norsemen shuttle hurdle team of Ethan Taylor, McIlrath, T.J. Hocraffer and Diehl ran a 1:03.13 to come in third at State Center. Dike-New Hartford’s :59.69 edged Des Moines Christian’s :59.91 for first.
In the girls’ competition, Roland-Story received a career-best from Rachel Patton in the high jump and nearly saw its 4 X 800 team break the school record. The Norse girls’ 4 X 400 team also made state and Reece Johnson qualified in the 1,500.
“It should be a great three days down at Drake with our girls!” Roland-Story head girls’ track coach Natalie Whipple said.
Patton jumped an impressive 5-4 to win the event with ease. She beat West Marshall’s Kayla Cripps by four inches for the victory.
In the 4 X 800 Kylie Tjernagel, Maddie Morton, Juliann Clark and Johnson ran a 10:08.97 to top Woodward-Granger by over six seconds for the victory.
“Our 4 X 800 girls won the race, shaving 20 seconds off (their season-best time) and finished only two seconds off of the school record,” Whipple said. “They have worked so hard this season!”
Tjernagel, Morton and Clark joined up with Taryn Johnston to qualify on time in the 4 X 400 after placing third. They ran a 4:15.56 to come in behind Dike-New Hartford’s 4:10.65 and Madrid’s 4:12.60.
Johnson automatically qualified in the 1,500 with a runner-up time of 5:22.77. West Marshall’s Grace Girard just outlasted Johnson for first, running a 5:19.23.
Kaitlyn Kilstofte fell just shy of state in the 3,000 after running a third-place time of 11:53.24. Girard won in 11:24.14 and Colfax-Mingo’s Abbey McConeghey took second in 11:50.44.
McConeghey’s time was the final qualifying time out of all qualifiers in the event.
Roland-Story placed fifth in the girls’ team competition with 72 points. Madrid won the girls’ title with 108 points and Dike-New Hartford came in second with 99.
The 2019 state coed track meet takes place today through Saturday at Drake Stadium in Des Moines. The 3A competition begins at 9 a.m. Thursday and Friday, and all classes start at 9 a.m. on Saturday.
Final team scores
Girls: 1. Madrid 108 points, 2. Dike-New Hartford 99, 3. West Marshall 89, 4. South Hamilton 76.5, 5. Roland-Story 72, 6. East Marshall 67.5, 7. Pleasantville 63, 8. South Hardin 49, 9. Colfax-Mingo 46, 10. Woodward-Granger 42, 11. Des Moines Christian 21, 12. Woodward Academy 8.
Boys: 1. Roland-Story 118, 2. Dike-New Hartford 114, 3. Madrid 113, 4. South Hamilton 91, 5. Des Moines Christian 68, 6. Woodward Academy 59, 7. East Marshall 45, 8. South Hardin 35, 9. West Marshall 32, 10. Pleasantville 26, 11. Colfax-Mingo 22, 12. Woodward-Granger 18.