WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) And just like that, the season is over. Saturday’s 4x400m relays ended another year of prep sports in Kansas. With the best of the best going head to head in the finals, another hot day pushed several athletes to state records.
The 100m dash fields were loaded with top talent. The 5A girls’ race featured two athletes tied at No. 2 all-time in Kansas. Newton junior Kalli Anderson ran her 11.58 this spring but Saturday it was Leavenworth’s Aarika Lister rising back to the top with a meet record in 11.64. Anderson also came in under the old meet record in 11.85 for the silver.
On the boys’ side, four Wichita runners have led Kansas for much of the spring. All four were part of a loaded 6A 100m dash final. Wichita South junior Deron Dudley pulled off the mild upset, winning in 10.59 to miss the meet record by 0.23 seconds. Southeast senior Ollie McGee, who posted a 10.38 earlier this season to climb to No. 6 in the all-time ranks, finished second in 10.64. West junior Xavier Sellers finished in 10.80 for the bronze, and South senior Philip Landrum placed fourth in 10.85.
South used those two top sprinters to run the fourth-fastest 4x100m run in state history earlier this spring. Friday the team of Dudley, Landrum, Nicomus Craig, and Martin Nguyen ran a 41.72 in the prelims. For Saturday’s final, the group got the 6A state meet record with a fully-automated 41.62, beating Topeka’s hand-timed 41.60 set in 1980.
The girls’ 4x100m relays also featured some top performances. Newton ran the state’s all-time best race a year ago. Saturday, the team of Anderson, Myriah Nicholson, Taylor Antonowich, and Savannah Simmons came up a second shy of last year’s time, but the girls did win in 47.81, the seventh-fastest time ever in Kansas.
The 6A girls were not far behind. Lawrence’s team of Ashley Wildeman, Amaya Harris, Isabella Kirkwood, and Asjah Harris won in 47.90, to move to No. 12 all-time in Kansas. The girls missed the 6A meet record by 0.53 seconds.
The state crowd was also treated to a pair of top performances in the 400m dash. Wichita Southeast senior Christal Mosley owned the 6A 200m dash state record and moved to No. 1 in the 400m dash prelims Friday. Saturday she came up short of her best time but dominated the field by more than two seconds for the gold in 56.07.
In Class 3A, Remington senior Hope Thiel has been among the state leaders all season. She won by nearly two seconds in 56.94 to miss the 3A state meet record by just over half a second.
The eastern schools have dominated the distance races this spring. St. James Academy’s 4x800 team of Hannah Robinson, Jill Jones, Mary Goetz, and Katie Moore won the 5A title by nearly five seconds in 9:19.60 to smash the old 5A state meet record set by Bishop Carroll in 1999.
Pittsburg senior McKenzie Wilks has been one of the state’s top 1600m runners this year. She won Saturday’s 5A race by 14 seconds in 4:56.29 to break a 34-year old record of 4:58.00. That is the No. 15 finish all-time in Kansas.
In the 6A race, Shawnee Mission Northwest senior Molly Born was unable to beat her meet record of 4:51.09 set in 2016. She still won by a comfortable eight seconds in 4:54.57. Born ranks No. 5 all-time in Kansas in the 1600m run and has the state’s all-time best time in the 3200m run.
On the boys’ side, El Dorado’s team of Christian Price, Ezekiel Kemboi, Dylan Wittum, and Cale Carson threatened the 4A meet record with a five-second win in 7:59.55. The Wildcats missed the nine-year old record by less than a second.
In the hurdles, Kinsley’s Rylee Gleason was back at it Saturday. Friday she ran a 44.75 in the 2A 300m hurdle prelims to set a new state meet record. Saturday she won her third state title in as many years (two in 2A, one in 1A) with a new meet record of 44.62. The fastest time in the state coming out of regionals was 44.64.
Gleason finished second in the 100m hurdles and won another silver in the 200m dash in 26.43. Moundridge junior Jamya O’Quinn won the 2A 200 in 25.99 and took the 100m dash bronze in 12.42 to miss the 2A meet record by 0.32 seconds.
Cheney junior Layne Needham put an exclamation point on her season. One of the state’s top hurdlers, she won the 3A 100s in 15.34, just 0.03 seconds ahead of Sterling’s Taya Wilson, the defending 3A champ. Needham won the 300s by half a second in 45.68. She also ran third in the 200m dash and eighth in the 100m dash.
In the field, two Class 4A boys entered state as top-20 all-time discus throwers in Kansas. Tonganoxie senior LeeRoi Johnson added an inch to his best career throw to win at 192-11. Winfield junior Matthew Everett, ranked No. 13 all-time at 195-1, finished second with a throw of 189-2.
The 4A girls’ pole vault featured two of the state’s top-five athletes of all-time. Paola senior Samantha Van Hoecke, ranked No. 2 all-time at 13-3, won the title at 12-0. Marysville senior Grace Stohs also cleared 12-0 for the silver. Smoky Valley freshman Belle Peters, ranked No. 5 all-time at 12-10, placed fourth at 11-6.