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Track and Field

Jackson girls track team repeats as Class 5 District 1 Champions

Jackson junior Victoria Dent helped lead the Indians girls track and field team to win their second-straight Class 5 District 1 Championship on Saturday at Festus. Dent was on the first-place 4x100-meter relay team, took second place individually in both the 100 and 200-meter dash and was also on the third-place 4x200-meter relay squad. Submitted photo

On Saturday, the Jackson girls track and field team secured its second-straight Class 5 District 1 Championship by winning two events and placing in the top four to advance to sectionals a total of 17 times.

Having arguably the top performance throughout the district meet for the Indians was junior Victoria Dent, who placed in the top three in four events.

Dent took home gold as a member of the 4×100-meter relay team that finished with a time of 50.44 seconds. Victoria took first with the likes of sophomores Savannah Brown, Brooklyn Williams and freshman Kendall Leland.

Dent was on another sectional-qualifying relay team as she helped the 4×200 unit take third place by crossing the finish line at 1:48.74. Williams was also on this team with Dent, along with freshmen Adallyn Prater and Stella Ruesler.

Individually, Victoria finished as the runner-up in two events as she earned the silver medal in both the 100 and 200-meter dashes with times of 12.69 and 26.23, respectively.

Jackson’s other event district title came on the field in shot put as junior Emerson Gross won her first-ever district championship with a heave of 32 feet, one and a half inches.

Like Dent, Williams also placed in the top four of two individual events as she took second place for long jump with a leap of 16-2.5. She also qualified for sectionals in another track event by taking fourth in the 100 at 12.97.

Dent and Williams’ 4×200 teammate Prater also finished second overall in a field event as she did so in high jump at 4-11.75.
Another freshman earned silver on the field as well as Anna Knippen took second in the discus throw with a heave of 100-10.25.

Finishing two places behind Knippen in discus was sophomore Kateryna Elefson as she finished in fourth with a 98-2 throw.

Jackson’s second and final runner-up finish was made by senior Megan Berger as she placed second in triple jump at 34-10. Sophomore Lillie Morningstar took third overall in pole vault with a 8-11.75.

Moving back to the track for the Indians girls team, junior Annika Barks placed second and third in the 3200 and 1600-meter run, respectively, with runs of 11:46.81 and 5:21.17.

Jackson sophomore runner Emma Niedbalski also qualified for sectionals in two events individually as she took fourth in both the 800-meter run (2:25.81) and 1600 (5:30.86).

Lastly, Niedbalski was a member of the fourth-place 4×800-meter relay team that posted a time of 10:28.65. The team was also comprised of junior MeKayla Dunn, sophomore Kalissa Smith and freshman Jolin Zhang.

As for Jackson’s boys team, it finished in third place on Saturday despite winning three events and having 11 top-four finishes.

Claiming two gold medals in his own right was sophomore Barrett Reagan as he won the 400-meter dash at 49.61, while he was also on the first-place 4×400-meter relay team.

Senior Bryce Gentry, junior Blake Cain and freshman Blayne Reagan were on the 4×400 squad as well that finished with a time of 3:24.93 to bring home the gold.

Along with his two gold medals, Barrett Reagan earned silver in the 200 by crossing the finish line at 22.51.

The third and final district title the Indians boys team won for an event was the discus throw as sophomore Brysen Wessell won with a heave of 144-9.5.

Jackson only had two other sectional qualifiers on the field, which were junior Mason Turley for pole vault (third place; 13-0) and freshman Gavin Shinn in shot put (fourth; 44-7.5).

Going back to the track, Blayne Reagan finished as the runner-up in the 400 (49.92) behind Barrett, while he also took fourth in the 100 and 200 with times of 11.12 and 22.64, respectively.

Outside of the 4×400, Gentry will compete at sectionals in two other events after taking second in the 3200 at 9:43.39 and fourth in the 1600 with a time of 4:30.88.

Nick McNeal covers high school sports, college sports and community events for The Cash-Book Journal. He graduated from Southeast Missouri State University with a degree in multimedia journalism and has lived in Cape Girardeau County for the past five years. He can be reached at cbjsports@socket. net.

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