Hillsboro athletes were able to score highly in multiple events Thursday at the Hesston Invitational, earning the boys’ team a fourth place finish out of 11 teams. The girls’ team finished sixth.
Head coach Dennis Boldt said the honor of the day went to Emily Sechrist, who scored a meet high 28 points en route to being named outstanding female athlete of the meet.
She won both the 3,200 and 1,600-meter races, while finishing second in the 800-meter run. She also ran the third leg of the 4x400-meter relay.
“We know that she’s probably not going to be challenged in most of her races, so we run more races to get her stronger,” Boldt said. “That way, when she’s challenged it’s not a shock.”
Boldt said many of the best distance runners in the state go unchallenged throughout a season, which is why competing at the KT Woodman Relays early in the season should have helped Sechrist prepare for state competition.
Distance runners Brittany Schale and Karyn Leihy placed fifth and sixth in the 3,200-meter run, and Marah Franz placed fourth in the pole vault, clearing 9 feet.
Boldt said he was excited by the performances of Matthew Denholm in the hurdle races, Cody Craney in the shot put, and Grant Knoll in distance races.
Denholm ran his personal best times in the 110 and 300 hurdles. He finished fourth in the 110 in 17.45 seconds.
“Matthew ran his personal best times in both races today, and when an athlete continues to do that, they will continue to be motivated as the season progresses,” Boldt said.
Craney finished fourth in shot put with a personal record of 44 feet, four inches.
Knoll finished second in the 3,200 and 1,600-meter races, missing out on first in the 1,600 by a little more than a tenth of a second. He set personal records in both races with times of 10:46.88 and 4:43.27.
Along with Knoll’s efforts in distance races, Boldt said jumps continued to be a spot that scored the most for the team.
Jesse Brown won high jump at 6-2 and finished fourth in long jump at 18-11.25. Avery Franz ended fifth in long jump at 18-9.72 and third in triple jump at 40-3. Franz also was third in the 400 in a time of 54.75 seconds.