Crest girls dominate 1A regional meet

A squad of freshmen propelled the Crest High girls track and field team to a second place overall finish at the Class 1A regional track meet at Riverside Park in Iola Friday. Marmaton Valley and Southern Coffey County also competed in the meet.



May 22, 2023 - 2:50 PM

Crest’s Josie Walter, a freshman, took first place in the girls 1600-meter run. Photo by Richard Luken

The weather was cold, wet and otherwise miserable, but the action at Iola’s Riverside Park was hot as ever Friday.

Crest, Marmaton Valley and Southern Coffey County athletes raked in medals aplenty at Friday’s Class 1A Regional Track Meet.

Marmaton Valley junior juggernaut Janae Granere was her typically dominant self, winning gold in the long jump, triple jump and 400-meter dash. Not to be outdone, her Wildcat teammate, sophomore Piper Barney, finished in second behind Granere in the long and triple jumps, while claiming her own gold in the 300-meter hurdles.

And as they’ve done all season, Crest’s young Lady Lancers ran circles around most of the competition, racking up nine state bids while taking the runner-up regional trophy as a team. Perhaps most impressively, Crest’s girls — with only one senior on the roster — had seven entrants in various races and relays. 

All seven booked their tickets to state by finishing in the top four of their respective events. 

Josie Walter wasn’t bothered a lick by winning an eventful 1600-meter run, which had to be restarted four times because of timing issues. Walter also took second in the 3200-meter race, just ahead of teammate Peyton Schmidt in third. Schmidt, meanwhile, also took third in the 800-meter run. Brinley McGhee, the only senior Lady Lancer, took second in the 100-meter hurdles, ahead of teammate and fourth-place finisher Mia Coleman. The Lady Lancers also qualified all three relay teams.

With only a handful of competitors, opportunities for Southern Coffey County to qualify were fleeting. Emily Ludolph qualified by taking fourth in the shot put. Teammate Jalea True came up just shy, however, finishing in fifth in the discus and sixth in the shot put.

Marmaton Valley’s Jaedon Granere, middle. REGISTER/RICHARD LUKEN

ON THE BOYS side, Crest’s Ethan Godderz took second in both the long jump and triple jump, Marmaton Valley’s Evan Kent is Wichita-bound for placing second in the discus and third in the shot put, and Jaedon Granere will compete at state in the 100-meter dash.

Southern Coffey County’s Thomas Nickel also qualified in both the discus and shot put.

Friday’s regional competition was hosted by Waverly High School.

FRIDAY was a bittersweet day for the Marmaton Valley squad. Senior Kaitlyn Drake, one of the favorites to win the high jump and make a repeat trip to state in the event, saw her season end earlier in the week with a knee injury.

The Tabor signee is scheduled to undergo surgery this week.

The state track meet will be at Wichita State University’s Cessna Stadium Thursday and Friday.