Warm, relatively calm weather last Friday meant success for the Longhorn track team as two more athletes qualified in individual events and two added more events to their slate.
For the Lady ’Horns, the work senior Lexi Allen has put in has paid off. Friday in Thermopolis, she earned a spot in the 100-meter dash with a time of 13.69 seconds, qualifying with just 0.07 seconds to spare. Allen has been trimming her time all season in the 100 and this latest run has only continued the trend. She’s cut nearly a full second and a half off her time.
“It felt like practice really paid off,” Allen said. “I’ve been working at it all season, so it felt good to achieve that.”
Allen didn’t stop there. The first-time track athlete hit the high jump pit Friday as well, nabbing a qualifying jump of 4-08. She is the second Lady ’Horn to qualify in multiple individual events, joining freshman Ava Bushnell. After weeks of coming close, Bushnell finally cracked the field in the 100 dash, notching a time of 12.98 seconds, which as of Monday is the second-fastest time in 1A this year.
For the boys squad, Kalvin Erickson joined the ranks of individual competitors in Casper in the pole vault. The junior exploded past his season-best mark by 4 inches in Thermopolis, clearing 10-09 to meet the qualifying height exactly. Erickson is just the fourth person to qualify in the pole vault in 1A this season.
“It had become a mind game and trying to get it out of my head,” Erickson said, who the week prior had cleared the height but was betrayed by his pole, which knocked the bar off. “I felt relieved to clear it and be able to move on and keep pushing myself.”
Along with Erickson, senior Tozai May added another event to his state slate. In addition to the high jump, May qualified in the 110-meter hurdles. So far this season, he’s cut more than 2 seconds off his time.
The runners, jumpers and throwers will get one more chance this weekend at regionals to qualify for the state meet. Several athletes are on the cusp of qualifying. Senior Dale McBride is about a quarter-second from qualifying in the 200, while fellow senior Samantha May is on the edge of qualifying in the high jump. If sophomore Maylee Potas can continue to improve as she has in the pole vault – she’s increased the height of her vaults by a foot since the start of the season – she’ll also join the state-bound roster.
100 meter: 5. Ava Bushnell, 12.98; 13. Lexi Allen, 13.69; 25. Samantha May, 14.35; 38. Bella Van Auken, 15.16
1600 meter: 6. Maylee Potas, 6:42.44
4x100-meter relay: 2. Meeteetse, 53.14
Pole vault: 3. Potas, 7-03; 5. Bushnell, 6-09; 5. A. May, 6-09; 5. S. May, 6-09
Long jump: 12. A. May, 12-11.50; 22. Gracie Randol, 12-01
High jump: 7. L. Allen, 4-08; 8. S. May, 4-06
Discus: 10. Ashlee Allen, 84-07; 31. Jayci Ervin, 66-05; 40. Randol, 61-00; 50. Potas, 53-05
Shot put: 14. Randol, 27-11.5; 21. Ervin, 26-02; 24. A. Allen, 25-04
100 meter: 10. Dace Bennett, 11.60; 29. Sam Hollinger, 12.27; 38. Jack LaLonga, 12.67
200 meter: 16. Dale McBride, 24.56; 24. Hollinger, 25.28
400 meter: 19. Kalvin Erickson, 57.52
800 meter: 15. Erickson, 2:24.23; 23. Jason Moody, 2:47.10
1600 meter: 20. Moody, 6:04.41
110-meter hurdles: 10. May, 17.72
300-meter hurdles: 14. Hollinger 47.88
4x100-meter relay: 4. Meeteetse, 46.65
Pole vault: 4. Erickson, 10-09
Long jump: 14. May, 17-02.5
High jump: 13. May, 5-06
Triple jump: 8. Bennett, 37-08.5
Discus: 6. McBride, 113-00; 32. LaLonga, 71-09; 34. Moody, 70-01