SoHi girls, Kenai boys win borough track meet

A dropped baton in the penultimate race of the day left a girls team champion in doubt and questions surfacing about what actually took place on a pivotal relay exchange at the Kenai Peninsula Borough track and field championships at Justin Maile Field in Soldotna.

With the Kenai Central and Soldotna girls locked in a fierce battle for team supremacy, it all came down to the final event of the meet, the 1,600-meter relay, and a last-minute decision to include the Stars in the final results spelled the difference between losing and winning the team title.

The controversy centered around what happened between the second and third legs of the Soldotna team relay. Emily Werner reached out to hand the baton off to Molly Erickson, but it slipped out of Werner’s hands and to the ground. Erickson picked up the baton and continued on. According to the rulebook, the act of dropping the baton itself is not grounds for disqualification, and if the incoming runner and outgoing runner make a legitimate attempt at passing the baton and it hits the track, either runner can pick it up and continue on without impeding other runners.

Since SoHi was running second in a two-team race, there were no other incoming runners to impede. The Stars were originally disqualified, which meant the loss of the eight points that comes with finishing runner-up.

However, the revision switched the Soldotna girls points total from 179 to 187, an eight-point swing that gave them the borough team championship. Kenai finished second with 180 points, Homer took third with 61, Seward and Cook Inlet Academy tied for fourth with 21 points each, Nikiski was sixth and Ninilchik was seventh.

“It was just a minor thing in a big day of a lot of kids doing well,” said Soldotna coach Phil Leck. “If we had gotten second, I would still be just as happy.”

Leck said he saw the exchange from a distance, and in his mind, the disqualification was not right.

“What our kids did was to the ‘T’ legal, and it only took 30 seconds to figure it out,” Leck said.

Leck said after talking to the board of control, they realized that the Stars were not in error and made the correction. Leck said a similar situation happened to Kenai earlier in the day, during the girls 800-meter relay, but the Kards were still able to claim points from Kenai’s ‘B’ team in that event, which finished fourth.

The unusual ending capped a successful day of competition in the first Soldotna home track meet in over 20 years.

The boys team championship was not as close, as Kenai romped to a 63-point victory over Soldotna, racking up 201 total points. Homer took third with 56 points, Nikiski finished fourth, CIA was fifth and Seward claimed sixth. The Kardinals claimed a whopping 13 event wins out of 17 total.

A solid chunk of points came from Kenai sophomore Josh Jackman, who accrued 38 points on his own. Jackman won both boys hurdling events and the long jump, and finished second in the triple jump to teammate Travis Cooper. Jackman’s time of 16.19 seconds in the 110-meter hurdles was a new personal best.

Jackman said after taking an easy week of practice, the down time caught up to him in the longer hurdle event.

“My steps were off halfway through the race,” Jackman said. “Got a little winded too.”

With the absence of Soldotna senior Tim Duke due to injury, Jackman said he missed having the state’s top 300 hurdler to chase.

“We’re friendly, but we’ve only competed in a few races this year,” Jackman said. “I shoot for his times in the hurdles, but it’s just a goal. It’s not really to beat it, just to improve myself.

“The 300 is just for second place.”

Duke was out after a knee injury took him out of last week’s Colony Invite, according to coach Leck, but the SoHi senior still had just enough strength to muster up one of the more exciting races of the day, the boys 1,600-meter relay. Duke chased down Kenai senior Jordan Theisen on the final leg of the race, running a superb 400-meter split that ultimately came up just .44 seconds short of victory.

“We advised him if the team is out of the race, just run a nice split, don’t worry about the win,” Leck said. “Then he gets the baton and thinks, ‘I’m going to win this thing.’”

Another big point scorer for the Stars came in the throwing events, as sophomore Annie Quinn swept the shot put and discus throws. Quinn heaved the shot 32 feet to win by two feet over Kenai sophomore Abby Beck, and launched the discus to a new personal best of 113 feet, 5 inches, over 5 feet further than Beck. Quinn’s new PR crushed her old mark by over 14 feet.

“I’ve been working for this for so long,” Quinn said. “I’m pretty excited because next weekend is regions, and I’m hoping to do as good as I did today.”

Quinn’s discus throw was the second best in the state this year, only behind the 122 foot, 6 inch, throw that Grace Christian senior Ashley Logan tossed two weeks ago.

“I could feel it,” Quinn said. “When you throw, it’s kind of just a feeling, you just know, and I had it today.”

On the boys side, junior Dalton Best swept the victories in the shot put and discus throws, beating Nikiski junior Luke Johnson and SoHi senior Adam O’Guinn in both events.

SoHi junior Daisy Nelson, also had a successful day, winning three of four events to score 38 points for the Stars, nabbing wins in the girls 200- and 400-meter sprints and the triple jump. Nelson’s only loss came in the girls 100-meter dash when Kenai senior Kyla Whannell edged her by .02 seconds, but her runner-up time of 13.03 was still a personal best. Nelson also ran a PR of 60.27 seconds in the 400.

In the distance events, the girls 3,200-meter race featured an interesting dynamic. Serving more as a tuneup for next weekend, Kenai senior distance ace Allie Ostrander purposefully held back to help pace her teammates and in doing so, brought a few more runners into the mix.

Holding steady in a six pack of runners that included Soldotna’s Olivia Hutchings and Sadie Fox, Kenai’s Riana Boonstra and Ithaca Bergholtz, and Seward’s Ruby Lindquist, Ostrander raced with the tightly bunched lead pack until she finally made her move to distance herself on the sixth lap of eight, pulling away to win with a time of 11:27.34. Hutchings placed second in 11:51.20, and Boonstra took third in 11:54.90.

In the boys distance events, the Theisen brothers once again played the starring roles, winning everything up from 400 meters and above. Jordan Theisen won the 800- and 1,600-meter events while Jonah claimed the 400 and 3,200 meter races. In the longer two races, both Theisens came across the line without so much as giving each other a fight for the win, content to finish 1-2 and wait until next week to strut their best stuff.

Next weekend’s Region III meet will be hosted by Kenai at Ed Hollier Field.

Kenai Peninsula Borough championships

At Justin Maile Field, Soldotna

BOYS

Team scores — 1. Kenai, 201 points; 2. Soldotna, 138; 3. Homer, 56; 4. Nikiski, 53; 5. CIA, 24; 6. Seward, 22.

Individual results

100 — 1. Jake Richter, Hom, 11.85; 2. Ian Ashley, Ken, 11.86; 3. Brenner Furlong, Sol, 12.03; 4. John Shank, Hom, 12.07; 5. Drew Gibbs, Sol, 12.15; 6. Teddy Croft, Hom, 12.18.

200 — 1. Travis Cooper, Ken, 24.11; 2. Nathan Spence, Sol, 24.25; 3. Connor Seay, Hom, 24.29; 4. John Shank, Hom, 24.37; 5. Noah Leaf, CIA, 24.70; 6. Teddy Croft, Hom, 24.73.

400 — 1. Jonah Theisen, Ken, 52.75; 2. Travis Cooper, Ken, 54.62; 3. Karl Danielson, Ken, 54.67; 4. Michael Marshall, Ken, 54.95; 5. Brenner Furlong, Sol, 56.15; 6. Coltin Yancey, Sol, 56.57.

800 — 1. Jordan Theisen, Ken, 2:02.87; 2. Hunter Kratz, Sew, 2:04.23; 3. Aaron Swedberg, Sol, 2:10.67; 4. Keith Ivy, Ken, 2:11.40; 5. Emmanuel Van Hout, Sol, 2:13.20; 6. Denver Waclawski, Hom, 2:16.15.

1600 — 1. Jordan Theisen, Ken, 4:40.21; 2. Jonah Theisen, Ken, 4:40.33; 3. Michael Marshall, Sew, 4:42.18; 4. Aaron Swedberg, Sol, 4:45.38; 5. Daniel Shuler, Sol, 4:47.34; 6. Jordan Beachy, Hom, 4:52.43.

3200 — 1. Jonah Theisen, Ken, 10:42.21; 2. Jordan Theisen, Ken, 10:42.70; 3. Daniel Shuler, Sol, 10:47.03; 4. Braden Olsen, Ken, 11:18.88; 5. Josh Shuler, Sol, 11:49.55; 6. Brandon Moore, Sew, 12:11.35.

110H — 1. Josh Jackman, Ken, 16.19; 2. Noah Leaf, CIA, 16.67; 3. Abraham Van Hout, Sol, 18.95; 4. Kazuya Okamoto, Nik, 18.98; 5. Matthew Torkelson, Ken, 19.70; 6. Hunter Allen, Sew, 20.08.

300H — 1. Josh Jackman, Ken, 43.18; 2. Connor Seay, Hom, 43.98; 3. Noah Leaf, CIA, 45.74; 4. Shane Larrow, Sol, 46.19; 5. Koby Vinson, Sol, 47.10; 6. Abraham Van Hout, Sol, 48.06.

400m relay — 1. Kenai (Orth, Rohn, Randall, Ashley), 46.85; 2. Nikiski, 48.29; 3. Soldotna, 48.42; 4. Soldotna B, 49.99.

800m relay — 1. Kenai (Orth, Danielson, Ashley, Randall), 1:36.97; 2. Soldotna, 1:38.79; 3. Nikiski, 1:42.35; 4. Soldotna, 1:42.74; 5. Homer, 1:45.69.

1600m relay — 1. Kenai (Danielson, Cooper, Theisen, Theisen), 3:34.34; 2. Soldotna, 3:34.78; 3. Soldotna B, 3:36.90; 4. Kenai, 3:38.50.

3200m relay — 1. Soldotna (Shuler, Musgrave, Van Hout, Vinson), 9:06.80; 2. Nikiski, 9:39.85; 3. Kenai, 9:40.58; 4. Soldotna, 9:51.32; 5. Kenai, 10:59.17.

Shot put — 1. Dalton Best, Sol, 42—10; 2. Luke Johnson, Nik, 40—01; 3. Adam O’Guinn, Sol, 38—07; 4. Andrew Welborn, Ken, 37—08; 5. Tom Randall, Ken, 37—02; 6. Dakota Hupp, Nik, 36—01.

Discus — 1. Dalton Best, Sol, 132—07; 2. Luke Johnson, Nik, 129—07; 3. Adam O’Guinn, Sol, 121—08; 4. Jon Grossl, CIA, 120—08; 5. Ian Johnson, Nik, 114—07; 6. Tobias Randall, Ken, 109—00.

High jump — 1. Keenan Orth, Ken, 5—08; 2. Austin Painter, Sol, 5—06; 3. Luke Johnson, Nik, 5—02; 4. Nathaniel Lazaros, Sol, 5—00.

Long jump — 1. Josh Jackman, Ken, 20—02 1-2; 2. Logan Shrader, Sol, 18—03 1-2; 3. Connor Seay, Hom, 18—03; 4. Noah Leaf, CIA, 18—01 1-4; 5. Paxson Berry, Sew, 17—06 3-4; 6. Keenan Orth, Ken, 17—00.

Triple jump — 1. Travis Cooper, Ken, 39—09; 2. Josh Jackman, Ken, 39—02 1-2; 3. John Shank, Hom, 38—09 1-2; 4. Teddy Croft, Hom, 38—00 1-4; 5. Aaron McCollum, Nik, 37—02; 6. Karl Danielson, Ken, 37—00 1-2.

GIRLS

Team scores — 1. Soldotna, 187 points; 2. Kenai, 180; 3. Homer, 61; 4. Seward, 21; 4. CIA, 21; 6. Nikiski, 17; 7. Ninilchik, 4.

Individual results

100 — 1. Kyla Whannell, Ken, 13.01; 2. Daisy Nelson, Sol, 13.03; 3. Tekaiya Rich, Ken, 13.30; 4. Angie Cardoza, Hom, 13.50; 5. Hallie Landess, Sol, 13.56; 6. Lindsey Wong, Sol, 13.77.

200 — 1. Daisy Nelson, Sol, 27.12; 2. Aurora Waclawski, Hom, 27.63; 3. Kyla Whannell, Ken, 27.94; 4. Ziza Shemet-Pitcher, Hom, 28.11; 5. Tekaiya Rich, Ken, 28.47; 6. Angie Cardoza, Hom, 28.72.

400 — 1. Daisy Nelson, Sol, 1:00.27; 2. Dani McCormick, Sol, 1:00.57; 3. Aurora Waclawski, Sol, 1:01.56; 4. Addison Gibson, 1:02.45; 5. Ziza Shemet-Pitcher, Hom, 1:03.87; 6. Crystal Crane, Hom, 1:04.40.

800 — 1. Allie Ostrander, Ken, 2:14.92; 2. Dani McCormick, Sol, 2:24.28; 3. Ruby Lindquist, Sew, 2:24.81; 4. Sadie Fox, Sol, 2:31.01; 5. Alex Bergholtz, Ken, 2:34.49; 6. Alice Pfeiffenberger, Sew, 2:46.95.

1600 — 1. Allie Ostrander, Ken, 4:59.10; 2. Olivia Hutchings, Sol, 5:30.73; 3. Riana Boonstra, Ken, 5:34.90; 4. Alex Bergholtz, Ken, 5:41.78; 5. Sadie Fox, Sol, 5:41.80; 6. Ithaca Bergholtz, Ken, 5:42.38.

3200 — 1. Allie Ostrander, Ken, 11:27.34; 2. Olivia Hutchings, Sol, 11:51.20; 3. Riana Boonstra, Ken, 11:54.90; 4. Ithaca Bergholtz, Ken, 11:56.69; 5. Ruby Lindquist, Sew, 11:57.06; 6. Audrey Rosencrans, Hom, 12:16.06.

100H — 1. Madison Orth, CIA, 16.97; 2. Lauren Evarts, Hom, 17.56; 3. Katie Kilfoyle, Ken, 18.03; 4. Katelyn Earl, Sol, 18.60; 5. Hayley Ramsell, Sol, 18.74; 6. Beverly Schindler, Ken, 18.79.

300H — 1. Lauren Evarts, Hom, 50.60; 2. Emily Werner, Sol, 52.58; 3. Katie Kilfoyle, Ken, 53.15; 4. Abigail Cox, Ken, 56.66; 5. Sierra Baldwin, Sol, 57.18; 6. Lauren Jones, Hom, 57.95.

400m relay — 1. Soldotna (Landess, Ramsell, Werner, Johnson), 55.38; 2. Kenai, 55.62; 3. Nikiski, 56.74; 4. Soldotna, 57.32; 5. Seward, 58.14.

800m relay — 1. Homer (Cardoza, Waclawski, Crane, Shemet-Pitcher), 1:53.18; 2. Soldotna, 2:02.92; 3. Soldotna B, 2:03.67; 4. Kenai, 2:12.95.

1600m relay — 1. Kenai (Kilfoyle, Gibson, Wilson, Ostrander), 4:24.63; 2. Soldotna, 4:43.24.

3200m relay — 1. Soldotna (Werner, Fox, Erickson, Hutchings), 10:06.65; 2. Kenai, 10:30.89.

Shot put — 1. Annie Quinn, Sol, 32—00; 2. Abby Beck, Ken, 30—00; 3. Emily Pieh, Sol, 27—10; 4. Jordan Finney, Nin, 27—08 1-2; 5. Laura Kromrey, Sew, 26—05; 6. Savannah McDonald, Sol, 25—05 1-2.

Discus — 1. Annie Quinn, Sol, 113—05; 2. Abby Beck, Ken, 108—03; 3. Laura Kromrey, Sew, 99—11; 4. Heather Engle, Sol, 76—01; 5. Chena Litzen, Nik, 73—11; 6. Kendall Taplin, CIA, 73—00.

High jump — 1. Kiana Harding, Ken, 5—00; 2. Lindsey Wong, Sol, 4—10; 3. Denali Wurst, Sol, 4—08; 4. Crystal Crane, Hom, 4—04; 5. Elizabeth Davis, Sol, 4—04; 6. Sarra Ben Rhouma, Sol, 4—00.

Long jump — 1. Kiana Harding, Ken, 15—02 1-2; 2. Arianne Parrish, Nik, 15—02 1-4; 3. Julieanne Wilson, Ken, 15—02 1-4; 4. Lindsey Wong, Sol, 15—00; 5. Madison Orth, CIA, 14—09 1-2; 6. Angie Cardoza, Hom, 14—08.

Triple jump — 1. Daisy Nelson, Sol, 31—04 1-2; 2. Madison Orth, CIA, 30—11 1-2; 3. Julieanne Wilson, Ken, 30—09; 4. Hayley Ramsell, Sol, 30—07 1-4; 5. Arianne Parrish, Nik, 29—03 3-4; 6. Mayzie Potton, Ken, 26—06 1-2.

Ben Boettger/Peninsula Clarion Soldotna track team members Elizabeth Davis and McKayla Hensley hand off to Katelyn Earl and Myah Smith, respectively, during a relay Saturday at the Kenai Peninsula Borough track meet at Soldotna High School.

Ben Boettger/Peninsula Clarion Soldotna track team members Elizabeth Davis and McKayla Hensley hand off to Katelyn Earl and Myah Smith, respectively, during a relay Saturday at the Kenai Peninsula Borough track meet at Soldotna High School.

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