Sian Helfrich and Brett Winsor each got bronze medals in the 300mH at State
It was a satisfying way to end the season for the pair of Greenbacks that made it to the State Track Meet last weekend at WSU's Cessna Stadium. Both Sian Helfrich and Brett Winsor mounted the medal stand to accept bronze medals in the 300mH, and Helfrich added a 5th place medal in the 200m for good measure.
The preliminary rounds on Friday were delayed an hour and a half in the morning due to a lightning protocol, but that did not hamper the performances by Kansas best prep track and field athletes once competition resumed. New records were set in a variety of events throughout the day as thinclads in the Sunflower State continued to set new marks.
With only one boy and one girl athlete competing, Pratt High was not really in the running for the 4A team title in either division. Andale won the girls meet with 90 points followed by Paola (74) and McPherson (44). On the boys side, Buhler was State Champion with 53. KC Piper (40) was runner-up followed by Andale (34.5).
Sian Helfrich won 10 points in her two events. That gave Pratt High girls 21st place in 4A- which is in the top third of the 64 4A schools in the State. Brett Winsor's 6 points put PHS boys in 30th place- which is in the top half. Pretty impressive solo performances.
Sian Helfrich, a freshman, went into the 300mH preliminaries as the 9th seed. With an impressive 46.47 in the prelims, she was able to work her way into finals (top 8). She shaved even more time off in her finals on Saturday, posting 45.90 to take the bronze medal for 3rd place.
Helfrich was seeded 10th in the 200m, but was undeterred by the odds against her advancing. A 26.33 got her into the finals, and 26.75 earned her the 5th place medal.
To win medals in two events in which, on paper, she was going to have trouble even making the finals was quite a feat for the youngster. "Sian ran big," said PHS head track coach Derek Liggett.
PHS' other State qualifier, junior Brett Winsor, also exceeded expectations in the 300mH. Seeded 5th in the event, Winsor would have been favored to make the finals on Saturday, barring a calamity. A calamity would not be unheard of in the hurdles, as they use college-style hurdles at WSU which are less forgiving than the prep hurdles kids run on all year.
But Winsor took care of business in the prelims, his 40.62 allowing him to advance. In the finals, Winsor busted a 39.83 which was good for a 3rd place bronze medal- and only 3/100ths of a second out of 2nd place. "Brett did a really nice job, too," Coach Liggett said.
It wasn't as good a year in track and field as PHS has been accustomed to recently, but with Sian Helfrich and Brett Winsor winning State medals in the events they were entered in, it was a successful way to wind up the season.