Northwest Missouri State hosts track kick-off event

Mar. 19—MARYVILLE, Mo. — Southwest Iowa athletes continued to shine Saturday at Northwest Missouri State University at the high school track kick-off indoor meet.

East Union sophomore Morgan Cooley brought home another gold medal in the shot put while Mount Ayr senior Ryce Reynolds came away with a gold and school record in the 800m dash as well as led the boys 4x400m relay to a first-place finish.

The Raiders placed fifth out of 22 competing boys teams. The Panthers took 14th and East Union came in 16th. On the girls' side, Nodaway Valley took 14th, Mount Ayr came in 16th and the Panthers placed 20th.


Nodaway Valley had five top-10 finishes while the Panthers and Raiderettes each had one.

Leading the way for the Panthers was the girls distance medley relay comprised of Reese Strunk, Avery Staver, Hope Henderson and Payton Davis. The team finished in 14:48.87 to take 10th place.

Maylee Riley of Creston runs a relay leg Saturday. Riley was a part of the sprint medley team that took 11th place with a time of 4:51.84.

Not far behind was the girls sprint medley relay. The team comprised of Maylee Riley, Karter Clayton, Henderson and Staver took 11th place with a 4:51.84.

Aubree Shields of Mount Ayr finished second in high jump. Three athletes, Shields, Letecia Howard of Plattsburg and Jaylynn Floyd of Glenwood, all jumped 5-03. Howard won the jump off to place first.

The Nodaway Valley girls were led by Annika Nelson and Emma Lundy who placed in three and two events, respectively.

Nelson took seventh in the 60m dash (:08.31), seventh in the 200m dash (:27.74) and fifth in the 60m hurdles (:09.97). Lundy took fifth in the 200m dash (:27.53) and sixth in the 400m dash (1:02.98).


The Panthers and the Raiders each had six top-10 events while East Union had one.

Cooley, the Eagles' sophomore, has already broken the school record twice this season in three meets, a record nearly 50 years old. While his 53-00.75 Saturday fell short of a third school record, it was enough to take home gold, topping second place by nearly three feet. Friday at a boys track meet at Central College, his throw of 54-08 broke his previous best by three feet.

The Panthers found success in a variety of events, scoring in two open running events, two relays and two field events.

Senior Brandon Briley led the Panthers, scoring in three events. In the open 800m, he placed fifth, running a 2:03. The time is not as fast as his state-qualifying time of last season, but is faster than his opening time from the IATC Championships.

Briley was joined by Davin Wallace, Colby Brammer and Tyler Riley in the fifth-placing 4x400m relay and in the seventh-placing distance medley relay. The times were 3:36.46 and 11:56.91, respectively.

Junior Weston Trapp placed eighth in the 400m dash, running :56.48. In the shot put, Creston placed sixth and 10th — freshman Tom Mikkelsen throwing 48-03.56 and senior Quinten Fuller with a mark of 45-04.25.

Weston Trapp of Creston runs in the 400m dash where he placed eighth with a time of :56.48

The Mount Ayr boys were led by track star Ryce Reynolds. Though he didn't run his main event, the 400m dash, he set a new Raiders record in the 800m dash. The previous record was his own time of 1:55.11 set last summer. His time of 1:54.3 not only earned him first place, but beats the Blue Standard time of 1:56 to automatically qualify for the Drake Relays. The time is ranked 41st in the United States for the indoor season.

The 4x400m relay comprised of Dyson Thompson, Preston Fleharty, Jackson Ruggles and Reynolds, was in third place a good distance behind Maryville and Millard South when Ruggles handed the baton to Reynolds for the anchor leg.

Reynolds continued to gain on the lead runners throughout the race, but down the final straightaway, he kicked it up a notch, taking both runners in a first-place finish for the Raiders. The time of 3:30.66 improves on their time of 3:30.90 from the IATC Championships.

Ryce Reynolds, a Mount Ayr senior, races in the 800m dash Saturday where he set a new Raiders record with a time of 1:54.3, the 41st fastest time in the U.S. indoor high school season.

Ruggles placed in two additional events, taking fourth in the 200m dash (:23.98) and second in the 400m dash (:52.28). Also placing in the 400 was Garrett Walter, taking fourth with a :55.11.

The boys B team 4x400m relay comprised of Adan Trujillo, Tegan Hill, Tate Dugan and Garrett Walter placed ninth with a time of 3:43.9.

The Panthers return to action Thursday at the Carroll Early Bird Coed. East Union, Nodaway Valley, Lenox and Southwest Valley will compete at the Bulldog Relays next Tuesday while the Raiders will be at Earlham the same day.