Minus some of its star power, BLHS track squad wins meet
Running without its top sprinters, the Basehor-Linwood boys track team still beat the rest of the competition and won the Maryville Invitational on Thursday.
The Bobcats were without some of their runners who competed at the Kansas Relays a week earlier. Athletes have a limited number of regular-season meets in which the Kansas High School Activities Association allows them to participate, so the Kansas Relays participants had to sit out a meet.
BLHS coach Steve Hopkins said he likes to use the Maryville meet as an opportunity to give some of the Bobcats’ younger athletes a chance to compete and thrive in a varsity setting. That way, he said, the team can carry momentum into the Piper Relays and the postseason meets that follow.
“The Piper meet Friday is so difficult,” Hopkins said. “For a lot of younger kids it was a chance to go and medal, and it was nice to see teams we do not see every week. These are all teams we won’t see again until the state meet. It was good to go and compete against those teams.”
The Bobcats made the most of their opportunities.
Even without standouts like Daniel Prioleau, the BLHS sprinters still thrived. Trey Kincheloe took second in the 100-meter dash, and the 400-meter relay team of Kincheloe, Skylar Ross, Cory McCleary and Alex Jackson took third.
Nick Yanos placed third in the 400.
The bulk of the Bobcats’ points came from field events.
Ben Johnson won the discus and took second in the shot put. Jacob Powell won the shot put by a four-inch margin. Jesse Hiss took second in the discus and placed fourth in the shot put.
Jonathan Oliva had a big night in the distance events. He won the 1,600 in 4:55 and later placed first in the 3,200. Rob Peterson took second in the 3,200, and Mark Vitt and Tanner Tavis placed fourth and fifth, respectively.
Bryce Garver added a third-place finish in the 800.
In girls’ competition, Dakkota Edmonds — who ran at the Kansas Relays — participated in the event because she had missed the team’s meet two weeks ago at Bonner Springs.
She won the 100 and 200. She also placed second in the triple jump.
“She had a great day,” Hopkins said. “We didn’t run the (400-meter relay), which allowed her to focus a little more on the triple jump.”
The BLHS girls had plenty of success in the distance races. Ally Laney took first in the 1,600 and 3,200, and Haley Stallbaumer and Rebecca Carroll finished third and fourth, respectively, in the 3,200.
The Maryville meet marks a transition in the season. Basehor-Linwood is now focused on the final three meets of the season before state.
“We are ready to specialize,” Hopkins said. “A lot of our athletes at Piper will run two events and not three events. We treat this as a pre-league type of meet.”
The exception will be top performers such as Prioleau, who will run in four events. Miles Brown and Yanos each will run three events.
“We get as many points as we can in earlier meets because if you get a fifth or sixth place then that can help you get a team trophy,” Hopkins said. “Later in the year, though, we want a kid to run in their best event and run relays.”