HALSTEAD — The Sedgwick High School girls’ track team didn’t bring many participants to the 47th Conrad Nightingale Invitational Thursday at Hess Field in Halstead, but made the most of everyone who did compete.
The Cardinals have just six on the team, five of whom competed Thursday, and that was enough to win the team title.
A second-place finish in the 4x400-meter relay lifted the Cardinals from third place to first with 84 points. Conway Springs was a point behind at 83. Berean Academy and Pratt tied for third at 82 each. Hesston was fifth at 62, followed by Halstead in 10th at 29.
Pratt won the boys’ title at 114, followed by Halstead at 83.3, Hesston at 73.3, Kingman at 68 and Marion at 67. Berean Academy was eighth with 30 points. Sedgwick scored 12 points.
“That’s awesome,” Sedgwick coach John Vinroe said. “We only have six girls and they are working really hard. To win a meet like this with a group like this is an accomplishment. They work really hard. A lot credit goes to my assistant coaches. This is our first (win of the season). If we keep working hard, by regionals, we’ll have a good chance of getting these girls qualified for state.”
Sedgwick was led by Shae Ware, who won the 100-meter dash in 12.50, the 400-meter dash in 1:01.02 and the triple jump in 35-3 1/4. Ware also anchored the 4x400-meter relay with Sydney Hilliard, Grace Thompson and Emma Rogers, which took second in 4:17.71.
“It was a really good day,” Ware said. “I’m healthy this year. I felt really good. My 100 time was the fastest this year. My triple jump was almost a foot farther than I have been doing. My 400 was pretty good. Our 4x4 cut off almost four seconds. I’m just thankful to be able to run.”
Ware was a state medalist in the 100, 400, 4x100 and 4x400 as a sophomore, but missed state last year because of injury. She is signed to run track next year at Washburn University.
“In the 100, I’d like to get under 12, but that’s going to be tough,” Ware said. “This is my first year for the triple jump. I’d just like to get to state in that. We have a really good shot to get to state in the 4x4.”
Hilliard won the 100-meter high hurdles in 16.84 and the 300-meter low hurdles in 48.45.
“My 300, I PRd by a little over a second,” Hilliard said. “My 100, I didn’t PR, but that was my first (fully automatic time), and it was a pretty good time for me. The conditions were perfect. This is our third meet and all three meets have been perfect.”
Hilliard said her goal this season.
“I’m sure we can do it in the 4x4 and I have a good chance in the hurdles if I work hard enough in practice,” Hilliard said.
Thompson won the shot put in 35-6, finished behind Ware in the 100-meter dash in 13.02 and took second in the discus in 108-6.
“We had a good day,” Berean Academy coach Lewis Wiebe said. “It was beautiful weather. We keep improving. We had good throws. We did well in the hurdles and our runners did well. This was only our third meet. We’re making progress and still trying to figure things out.”
Berean’s Erin Topham won the 3,200-meter run in 11:52.38, followed by Allison Topham in third in 13:00.13. Erin Topham followed by winning the 1,600-meter run in 5:41.15.
Both Tophams were members of the winning 4x800-meter relay team with Brooke Wiebe and Kami Claassen, winning in 10:22.39.
“I was really trying to stay relaxed and get a good lead,” Erin Topham said. “(In the 1,600), the Kingman girl was able to stay with me. I was trying to pull away in the last lap. I ran both the mile and two-mile, so I was pretty happy with my time.”
Last year as a freshman, Erin Topham finished third at state in the 3,200-meter run and 10th in the 1,600. She was third in the 4x800-meter relay.
“I just want to do better than I did last year at state,” she said.
“Our boys competed well and have competed well all year,” Halstead coach Jason Grider said. “We had some nice performances tonight. We faced some good competition. It was a nice night to run, probably the best we’ve had all year. There wasn’t a lot of wind. Our girls competed hard as usual. I have no complaints. We’re a little short. Tony Morris is splitting his time with baseball and with the sprints and he was with baseball tonight. Our jumpers did well. Our distance kids were outstanding. I was very pleased with how our night went.”
Halstead’s team of Patrick Porch, Cory Hiebert, Josh Talbott and Braden Graber won the 4x800-meter relay in 8:26.16. Adam Sigwing won the 400-meter dash in 51.74. Porch suffered narrow losses in both the 800- and 1,600-meter runs. The Dragons finished second in both the 4x100- and 4x400-meter relays, both narrow losses. Gerber was second in the javelin.
For the Halstead girls, Maggie McKee won the 200-meter dash in 27.86.
“It was not too bad for the boys today,” Halstead coach Jason Peters said. “Our relays ran real well. Our relays had their best times of the season this year and scored a lot of points. We have a lot of freshman girls this year and they are coming along. We have done well this season. We lost a lot of good seniors last year and that gives a lot of these guys a chance to compete and contribute.”
Zach Esau of Hesston won the 800-meter run in 2:03.23. The team of Austin Griffin, Esau, Mitchell Martin and Parker Roth won the 4x100-meter relay in 45.13. Roth finished second in both the 100- and 200-meter dashes. He lost the 100-meter dash by .1 second and the 200-meter dash by less than .01 seconds. Roth also took second in the long jump.
“The times were average, they weren’t anything special,” Roth said. “It was a pretty nice day.”