The Van-Far boys track and field program added another sectional championship this past weekend in Oakville after dominating Valle Catholic by 62 points to win the title. The Indians finished with 176 team points.
Van-Far had a 12 boys qualify for this week’s Class 1 State Championships, setting the Indians up for a solid opportunity at repeating as state champions as the qualifiers now focus their attention on Jefferson City.
Like in districts, senior Josh Hodde had another outstanding day.
He dominated the hurdles by winning the sectional crown in both the 110-meter hurdles (15.43) and the 300-meter hurdles (40.50). He also won the long jump sectional crown after clearing 21’4.50”.
Trevor Crider qualified in the 300-meter hurdles as he placed fourth (42.58). He just missed qualifying in the 110 as he placed fifth.
Van-Far’s relay squads were once again focused and dominated sectionals.
The 4×100 team of Jacob Garner, Verlyn Johnson, Parker Wallace, and Trevor Crider won sectionals with a time of 45.34 seconds.
The same group of runners also won the 4×200 by four seconds over second-place Harrisburg (1:37.27).
In the 4×400, Brennan Wheeler, Brogan Wheeler, Dillion Minor, and Wallace won by more than three seconds over Knox County (3:38.50).
The 4×800-meter relay team of Morgan Slatten, Brennan Wheeler, Tyler Robinson, and Sam Hazel took second place with a time of 8:44.58.
Jacob Garner won the sectional title in the 100 meters after holding off Richland’s runner by just .06 seconds (11.52). Teammate Verlyn Johnson qualified for state in the event by placing fourth (11.75).
Both Johnson (23.22) and Minor (23.29) went 1-2 in the 200 meters as Johnson won the crown by just .07 seconds over his teammate.
Another 1-2 happened in the 400 meters as Wallace won the event (52.75) and Minor placed second (54.08).
Jacob Garner won the pole vault sectional crown after clearing 10’6”. Teammate LaTrell Wright scored some team points by placing sixth (7’6”).
Both Hazel and Lathyn McMorris earned top-four finishes in the 800 meters as Hazel placed second (2:08.57) and McMorris was third (2:08.65).
McMorris was also fourth in the 1,600 (5:07.71) and fourth in the 3,200 (10:45.58) to advance to state in both events.
McMorris had a DNS in the javelin event.
Kyle Ebers missed a top-four finish after placing fifth with a toss of 119’09.50” in the discus.
Alex Flowers took seventh in the shot put (40’04.50”).
Walter Salmon took eighth in the triple jump (33’10.75”).
Robinson placed fifth in the 3,200 meters (10:45.58).
Van-Far girls track at
The girls had several athletes qualify for the state meet after the Lady Indians scored 35 team points to tie for seventh place with Crystal City among 27 total teams earning points at sectionals.
Two athletes qualified for state representing Van-Far in three events.
Jordan Garner qualified for state after placing third in the discus with a toss of 109’02” and placing third in the javelin 108’02”.
She just missed advancing in the shot put after her toss of 33’07.50” was 1’.50” shy of fourth.
Jayle Jennings advanced to state in the 800 meters as she placed third with a time of 2:37.71.
In the high jump, Vanessa Martinez placed eighth after clearing 4’04”.
The 4×800-meter relay team of Taryn Adam, Aubrey Bunge, Alexandra Connaway, and Vanessa Martinez just missed qualifying as they finished fifth (11:06.60).
Van-Far’s 4×200 squad of Katie Elzea, Madalyn Swafford, Carleigh Phillips, and Martinez took sixth (2:02.80).
Meanwhile, the 4×100 team of Shyonna Martin, Colby Walton, Jordan Garner, and Madalyn Swafford took seventh (58.46).
Madelyn McAfee placed sixth in the 3,200 meters (14:14.67). The boys and girls programs will compete at the Class 1 State Championships Friday-Saturday, May 18-19 in Jefferson City.