JAY DAVIS: Area athletes starting to fill rosters for state meet
Although no state teams will be complete until the region meets are run, the state qualifiers for the Tigers and the area teams are starting to build a roster.
The Tigers are a long way from filling the bus, but the mini van is full with two meets to go. The Tigers have the Central South Dakota Conference Meet in Chamberlain on Saturday and then the Region 6A Meet in Chamberlain next Thursday.
Austin Borah, after placing in four events at state last year, is set to give it another run. Borah is qualified in the 200 and 400, along with the 800-meter and 1600-meter relay teams. Borah is ranked fifth in the 400 and 14th in the 200.
Jason Hill is ranked fifth in the long jump, which is not bad considering he just took up the event a couple weeks ago.
The 800-meter team is ranked fifth and the 1600-meter team is ranked fifth. Borah, Conner Stoick, Mason Keller and Mitch Heumiller are the 800 team. Borah, Keller, Heumiller and Hill run the 1600.
That makes it five boys qualified in five events so far.
Filling the mini van is defending state discus champion Steph Gemar. The winds have not been blowing in favor of the lefty so far this spring, but she still leads all Class A throwers with a season best 134-3. Clark-Willow Lake throwers Kalli Bell and Mackenzie Huber are at 126-0 and 124-8, respectively.
The Herreid-Selby Area Wolverines are on a mission to defend their state title and they are molding into a team that just might have a good chance to repeat.
Three defending state champs are again ranked first in state. Austin Iverson is ranked first in the 110-meter hurdles (and fourth in the 300-meter hurdles), Cooper Schaefbauer is ranked first in pole vault. Dakota Thorstenson is ranked first in triple jump and tied for first in high jump.
Add to that, the 8000-meter relay team is ranked sixth , 400-meter team is ranked seventh and John Begeman is tied for 12th in high jump.
Add all that up and there are a lot of potential points at the state meet.
The H-SA girls are qualified in the high jump, where defending champ Haylee Biel is ranked second at 5-3. Payton Johnannson of Andes Central is soaring right now after clearing 5-7. The girls’ medley team qualified in Gettysburg on Saturday and is ranked seventh in state.
Defending 100 and 200 champ Sierra Stotz of Eureka-Bowdle is in the middle of the pack in both events right now, but might have a new state title to shoot for. While Stotz is ranked just eighth in the 100 and ninth in the 200, she is ranked first in Class B in the long jump after hitting the 16-7 mark last week.
Josh Raile of Eureka-Bowdle is ranked third in pole vault and fifth in triple jump. Teammate Tyler Wipf is tied for 17th in high jump. Another in the long line of high jumpers in 17th at 5-10 is Kyle Mollman of McIntosh.
Alysha O’Connell of Dupree continues to stay near the top of the shot put standings. Her season best throw of 38-0.25 is ranked third. Jamie Begalka of Estelline leads the standings at 40-1.5.
It is crunch time in Class B, too. There is not much time left for getting an automatic qualification. East River teams have the Eureka Legion Meet left and West River teams have the LMC Meet before regions.
After that, it’s get first or second in the region or stay home. The state track meet is one of, if not the best, state tournaments the state has so you don’t want to stay home.