Iola athletes shine in opening meet

Iola's JV girls track team opened 2024 with a team title at Labette County. With others on the young squad already making their mark, head coach David Daugharthy is bullish on the team's future.

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April 1, 2024 - 2:36 PM

Iola High's Maddox Riley runs in a 110-meter hurdles race Thursday at Labette County. Photo by Richard Luken / Iola Register

ALTAMONT — Iola High’s strong junior varsity performances Thursday at the Labette County Invitational should be a harbinger of big things to come, head coach David Daugharthy said.

“I’m extremely proud of this group of athletes,” he said. “They are always looking to better themselves, which leads to a great team and a competitive environment.”

The Mustang girls JV squad cruised to a team title, buoyed by gold-medal performances from Lynsie Fehr, Ari Ramriez and LeiLani Keanaaina.

“This was the first time the JV girls have won a meet in quite a long time,” Daugharthy said. “It is pretty exciting to see our young athletes doing so well and succeeding so early.”

(A full list of Iola’s results can be found here.)

Daugharthy spoke about several individuals.

“Lynsie had quite the meet, winning the 3200-meter run in 14 minutes, 53 seconds and the 1600-meter in 6 minutes 57 seconds.”

Iola High’s Lynsie Fehr leads a pack of runners in the 1600-meter run Thursday at Labette County.Photo by Richard Luken / Iola Register

She was followed close behind by teammate Cara Porter in both events. Porter’s runner-up finish in the 1600 meters was two-tenths of a second quicker than the third-place finisher, Daugharthy noted.

Ramirez, meanwhile, won the gold medal in the JV 100- and 300-meter hurdle races.

“She already improved her 300-meter time this season by over 2 seconds from last year,”

Keanaiina’s 100-meter dash victory was about a tenth of a second quicker than Mustang teammate Abigail Jerome, who took second. Jerome added a third-place finish in the 200 meters.

Estella DeClara took third in the JV 400-meter run.

Other girl JV performers earning Daugharthy’s praise were Mahala Burris in the high jump, Lily Lohman in the shot put and Mariah Jelinek in the 800 meters.

The JV 4×400-meter relay team of Jelinek, DeClara, Keanaaina and Rameriz took fourth. “This was the first meet all of these girls had run a 400,” Daugharthy said. “They did very well, fighting to the finish.”

KEEGAN HILL’S debut for Iola on the boys side bodes well.

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