The first event of the day at the KHSAA Class 2A track-and-field netted a state champion for NKY athletes and while that was the lone champion of the day, plenty placed on the podium Friday at the University of Kentucky Outdoor Track and Field Complex.
The Highlands boys 4×800 relay team entered the meet seeded eighth, but surprised even themselves as they raced their way to the top spot in 8:03.12. The relay team of Caden Schroeder, Ezra McKenzie, Malcolm Robertson and Alex Lacourt set a school record in doing so.
“I had a lot left there at the end and caught them off guard,” Schroeder said. “We’re pretty stunned. Definitely worth it.”
Haley Zell had the best day individually. The Highlands senior finished second in both the long jump (16-10.75) and triple jump (36-2.5). She also made the podium in the 200-meters with an eighth place finish (25.82), Zell’s 200 time was a school record and also set a PR in the triple jump.
“The triple jump I moved back a bit and that made me PR by a whole lot. My second jump I was almost landing in the sand so I moved back and helped me jump two-feet further. I surprised myself today,” Zell said.
Holmes’ Curtez Hill posted solid finishes in both the 100 and 200 meters. Hill was third in the 100 (10.98) and second in the 200 (22.18).
“Top three. Feels great. Wanted to break 10.86 (in the 100), but still happy with top three,” Hill said.
He was surprised by his teammate in the 100, Robert Cameron joining him on the podium and finishing in sixth by winning the second heat in a time of 11.34.
“We feel like we can put a legacy here. We’re like brothers, we live together and push each other all the time,” Cameron said.
Scott’s Lacy Klare also posted multiple podium finishes as she placed fourth in the 100-meter hurdles (16.19) and sixth in the 300-meter hurdles (48.37). Coming into the season, Klare didn’t even have hurdles on her radar.
“I tried it at a tri-meet, liked it and did it for the rest of the season,” Klare said. “At the beginning of the season I was running the 100 and 200 and wasn’t getting the results I wanted so wanted to try something else.”
Highlands Aiden Nevels closed out his high school career with a fourth place finish in the 110-meter hurdles (15.54). Nevels also led off the 4×400 relay, helping the Bluebirds to a fourth place finish with Ben Hack, Alex Lacourt and Caden Schroeder (3:30.77). Nevels also helped the 4×200 team to a seventh place finish.
“Ran a good race in the hurdles, came in thinking I needed to win and should have kept a cooler mind. I just wanted it too bad. But it’s a good way to end my career and feel like I gave it my all and that’s really all I can do,” Nevels said.
Schroeder also posted a fifth-place finish in the 800 (2:00.27) for his third appearance on the podium.
The Bluebirds had a pair of pole vaulters reach the podium, Rilen Pinkston placing third (12-6) while Myles Harris finished in a tie for seventh (12-0).
Highlands’ Rylee Swope finished third in the discus (102-5), topping her regional distance by nearly three feet.
“This whole week I just wanted to work on my mindset and focus on what I could do and not anyone else. I came in seeded sixth and just wanted to do my best,” Swope said.
Highlands boys had the top team finish in seventh with 36.5 points. Holmes tied for 11th with 20 points.
Highlands girls finished 11th with 25 points, Scott’s girls were 15th with 15 points.
Other podium finishers:
4×200 relay (Ben Hack, Aiden Nevels, Matteo Matteoli, Ryan Reynolds)- Highlands, 7th place (1:32.60)
4×100 relay – Holmes (Robert Cameron, Quinton Ross-Tyus, Mayne White, Curtez Hill), 6th place (43.74)
Shot put – Dalton Williams, Highlands, 6th place (50-4.5)
Pole Vault – Rilen Pinkston, Highlands, 3rd place (12-6)
Pole Vault- Myles Harris, Highlands, t-7th place (12-0)
4×800 relay – Scott (Josie Puthoff, Ansley Lindloff, Ellie Stratman, Maddie Strong) , 8th place (10:25.93)
4×100 relay – Scott (Jayla Sanders, Olivia Burgan, Josie Puthoff, Lacey Klane), 8th place (51.38)
4×400 relay – Highlands (Adrienne Harris, Alyssa Harris, Maddie Elkins, Renee Hyder), 7th place (4:17.18)
3,200 meters – Maddie Strong, Scott, 4th place (11:28.38)
High Jump – JaNia Johnson, Holmes, 6th place (5-0)