Special Olympians compete, bond at Pittsburg

USD 257's Unified Special Olympics team took in a day of track and field events at Pittsburg Tuesday. The athletes brought home several top finishes in the process.


April 26, 2024 - 2:52 PM

Kaden Priddy, seated, is assisted by his peer buddies Steph Fees, left, and Marlee Westhoff at a Special Olympics track meet in Pittsburg Tuesday. Courtesy photo

PITTSBURG — A day filled with competition, inclusion and lots of fun greeted members of the Iola Special Olympics and unified sports teams as they took part in the Southeast Kansas Regional Track Meet.

Several high-schoolers, middle-schoolers and elementary school students were a part of the activity.

Leading the charge was Iola High’s “Golden Boy” Xavier Burrow, who won all of his events, the softball throw, turbo javelin and 50-meter race.

Guilis Pina runs in the 100 meters at a Special Olympics track meet in Pittsburg.Courtesy photo

Others from IHS competing were:

—  Vernon Klinzman, second in the 25-meter race and third in the tennis ball throw

—  Keegon Garner, first in the 100-meter race and third in turbo javelin

—  Weston Helman, fourth in the 100-meter race, second in running long jump and fourth in turbo javelin

—  Guilis Pina, first in 100-meter race and turbo javelin

—  Kaden Priddy, first in 25-meter race and second in tennis ball throw

Pina and Priddy worked alongside peer buddies Tessa Brutchin, Steph Fees and Marlee Westhof and placed second in the 4×100 unified relay. 

Iola Middle School’s results:

—  Eryx Means, first in 50-meter run, third in tennis ball throw and second in standing long jump

—  Kobear Smith, first in softball throw and second in long jump

—  Nick Stogsdill, first in softball throw and third in running long jump 

—  Jacob Catron, second in softball throw 

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