Heavy rain and lightning forced the postponement of the Class 5 Sectional 4 track and field meet at William Chrisman Saturday, and looked like it might do the same thing Monday afternoon.
But a brief break in the heavy storm pattern allowed athletes to compete in weather that ranged from a light shower to a hard rain.
“We got it in, and that’s what is important with state this weekend,” said a wet and exhausted Tyler Rathke, the Chrisman boys and girls track coach who was the host of the soggy sectional meet. “We started the field events at 3 today and were able to get them in before the big rain hit – which was huge, because we didn’t want the kids pole vaulting and jumping in the rain.
“Unfortunately, the discus competition was in a pretty consistent rain, and you hate to see that happen, but we had to get it done because the rest of the week looks worse than today – rain, rain and more rain.”
Lee’s Summit West ran away with the girls title, topping Park Hill 131.5 to 77. Chrisman finished 10th (43), Fort Osage 11th (36) and Truman 13th (15). The top four finishers from each event advance to state.
Saturday, before the storm hit that forced postponement of the meet, Chrisman’s Camryn Holloman edged Lee’s Summit West’s Jessica Haney 37 feet, 1 inch to 37 feet on her final triple jump event to bring home a gold medal.
Her teammate, Reana Lagrone tied her personal best of 10 feet, 6 inches to win the pole vault.
And Bears sophomore Jacque David broke her school record and personal best 136-3 in the discus with a mammoth toss of 148-7.
Holloman, Lagrone and David huddled in the Chrisman locker room as the storms caused three lightning delays and a three-hour delay that led to postponement on Saturday.
“I was just feeling it today,” said David, who was second in the shot put with a throw of 44-3.5. “When I threw that 148-7 – the minute it left my hand I thought, ‘That’s going out there – way out there.’”
Holloman, who has been battling an ankle injury, said it posed no problem Saturday.
“We had it taped up,” Holloman said. “Our trainer Lindsay (Holder) did a great job helping me this week and despite the rain, it was good jumping conditions early in the morning.”
Lagrone agreed, adding, “We started very early and that helped all the pole vaulters. This is the first time I have won at sectionals and it’s very exciting.”
• Fort Osage’s Emari Grimes finished her quest to appear in three events at state with a fourth-place finish in the 200 (25.5) in a heavy downpour Monday.
“She’s a senior and it was important for her to get to state in all three events – the 100 (second, 12.29), 200 and 400 (third, 58.59),” Fort Osage girls coach J.D. Snead said. “Now, it’s on to the big stage and she has the talent to compete for a gold medal in all three events. It depends on whether she wants to flip that switch, put the pedal to the medal, and get the job done in her last state competition.”
Grimes will be joined by teammates Mallory Huber, second, discus, 120-6; and Samantha Mygatt, pole vault, fourth, 9-6.
“Both Mallory and Samantha had PRs and we’re excited to see what they do at state,” Snead said. “Mallory was seeded eighth in the pole vault and finished fourth (in a jump-off), so state is really going to be special for her and all our girls.”
• Truman’s Kennedy Rucker finished second in the 300 hurdles (46.57) to punch her ticket to state.
“Oh, wow!” Truman coach Marcus Summers said. “She had a strong finish and is going to state! The sky’s the limit for Kennedy (who is just a sophomore).”