PHS sent part of its team to McPherson and part of its team to Medicine Lodge last Thursday.
Pratt High School head track coach split his squad last Thursday, sending part to McPherson and part to Medicine Lodge. One downside was that PHS was thus unable to compete realistically in the team standings at either place, but there were some positive individual performances at both venues.
The meet at McPherson featured nine schools, of which Pratt was by far the smallest. Coach Liggett only sent his top athletes to that one- 5 boys and 1 girl.
Freshman Sian Helfrich, the lone Lady Greenback in attendance, had a standout day, winning both her races against some pretty elite competition: 200m 1st 26.83 and 300mH 1st 47.83.
"Sian was our only girl and she had a really good day in both of her races," Coach Liggett said. "She put together her best 300IH race of the year hands down, and ran one of the better times in 4A this season. She is new to hurdling this year and has really picked up on it quickly. She has great work ethic and is tough which means she should have a bright future in that event. She also ran a really good 200 on short rest. In 4A, a FAT-timed (fully-automatic-timed) 200 under 27 is pretty solid, especially on 15 minutes rest after her 300 hurdles."
For the boys, Brett Winsor took 2nd in the 300mH 42.57 and 5th in the long jump 20'8. Caden Blankenship took 4th in javelin 163'6.
"Brett had another solid showing in his events there," Liggett observed. "His events unfortunately got jammed together so he never really got to settle in and relax which probably kept him from really popping a good time. He has looked really good in practice and I think he will have some good races the next few weeks."
"Caden has been steady the past few weeks as well in Javelin," Liggett continued. "We are going to really let him focus on this the next few weeks and with his strength and explosiveness. I wouldn't be surprised to see him have a big throw this week or next."
The boys were able to place in a couple of relays as well, 4x100 5th 46.19 and 4x400 4th 3:44 (Sanchez, Cox, Blankenship, Winsor).
The balance of the team went to Medicine Lodge. "With our inexperience this year at the varsity level, I really wanted to let them perform where there wasn't as much pressure, and I was really happy with what we saw," Coach Liggett said.
"There were some really good performances down there and we saw a good number of season bests in all the events. The good news for these kids is almost all of them will be back next year and I am really looking forward to watching their growth in a year. While they might not be ready to compete at the regional and state level this year, they have shown great work ethic this season and a willingness to learn and I am excited about what they will do next year."
At ML, Vanessa Leckner had a nice day for Pratt's girls- winning the 200m and placing in the 100m and 400m as well. Lady Greenback placers included:
100 HH Lauren Kolm 6th 19:53
100m Vanessa Leckner 3rd 13.68
1600m Katherine Shanline 4th 6:59
400m Vanessa Leckner 2nd 64.89, Cindy Ibarra 4th 74.99
300mH Lauren Kolm 5th 52.27 800m Katherine Shanline 6th 3:18
200m Vanessa Leckner 1st 28.62, Cindy Ibarra 5th 31.49, Rachel Reichenberger 7th 32.52
High jump Kaitlyn Rasmussen 2nd 5'0
Pole vault Isabel Cannata 2nd 8'0, Rachel Reichenberger and Sydney Henke T3rd 7'0
Long jump Kaitlyn Rasmussen 2nd 14'1.25,
Rachel Reichenberger 4th 11'4
Triple jump Lauren Kolm 5th 28'1.75
Shot put Rheagan Hoover 2nd 31'8.25
Discus Rheagan Hoover 7th 73'6
Raul Orozco's gold medal performance in the 1600m paced the Greenback boys effort at ML. Boys placers:
100m Kadence Riner 5th 11.93
1600m Cody James 6th 5:30
400m Andres Venegas 4th 57.99
300mH Kadence Riner 4th 44.87, Joseph James 7th 47.46
800m Sergio Adame 2nd 2:20 200m Andres Venegas 7th 25.67
3200m Raul Orozco 1st 11:06, Riley Decker 6th 11:49
High jump Grant May 3rd 5'6, Dalton Davidson T5 5'4
Pole vault Dalton Davidson 3rd 10'0
Long jump Kadence Riner 5th 18'3.5, Derek Roadhouse 8th 17'2
Triple jump Dalton Davidson 4th 36'10.75, Derek Roadhouse 8th 34'3.25
Shot put Michael Cooper 3rd 40'4.25, Dawson Snider 5th 37'11.75
Discus Dawson Snider 2nd 125'8, Michael Cooper 6th 98'8.5
Coach Liggett plans a similar strategy for this week's meets. "This week, we will do the same thing and send a majority of our kids to Lyons on Tuesday for a smaller varsity meet and then send a few kids up to Goddard on Friday," he said.
"On Saturday,we are holding our youth track meet and have about 125 kids signed up which should be fun!" Liggett added.