Horizon Christian School made a run at the District 3 track and field championship Saturday in Moro, where the boys team finished a close second to host Sherman County and the girls finished fifth. In all, the Hawks are sending athletes in 11 events to the upcoming state track and field finals in Eugene.
“I could not have been more proud and impressed by all of them,” said coach Emma Neiworth-Petshow. “At the district championship meet we had 24 season-best marks, with 22 of them being all-time bests.”
The boys competition turned out to be a two-team fight between Horizon, which finished with 122 points, and Sherman, which nabbed the overall team title with 128. Griswold was third with 72.
The Hawks were led by junior Mason Bloomster, who won the 100, finished second in the 200 and anchored Horizon’s 4x100 and 4x400 relays to second-place finishes. The Hawks also scored heavily in the distance races. Sophomore Salvador Ramirez was second in both the 800 and 1,500; freshman Jony Nelson was second in the 3,000 and third in the 1,500; and freshman Chris Hoeffner was fifth in the 1,500 and seventh in the 800.
Freshman Ian Davidson also placed in the high jump (tied for second) and triple jump (sixth). Davidson lost in a jump-off in a chance to qualify for the state meet (the top two placers in each event qualified). His 38-foot, 2-inch triple jump was the first time he had competed in that event this season. Another first-time competitor was senior Micah Engel, who finished fifth in the javelin (136-4) and long jump (18-3). Engel played baseball most of the spring, until the school had to cancel that season because of a lack of players.
Horizon’s other individual event qualifier in the boys competition was freshman Luke Holste, who was second in the high hurdles. Holste had a busy day, placing fourth in the low hurdles and running legs on Horizon’s state-bound relay teams. Other Hawk medalists on both relays were senior Austin Requa, who was fourth in the 100 and sixth in the 200, and senior Patrick Foss, who also was third in the pole vault. Freshman Andrew Rinella placed fifth in the pole vault and sixth in the 200, while senior David VanDyke finished eighth in the shot put.
Junior Hannah Kempf was the Hawks’ lone girls qualifier for the state meet, and she made it in three event. She was the district champion in the triple jump and runner-up in both the 100 and high hurdles. Kempf’s 30 points were the second-best individual total at the meet and helped the Hawks score 65.5 points in the team race. Condon-Wheeler successfully defended its team crown with 140.5 points.
Horizon had one other senior placer, Kaylee Demchuk, who was fifth in the pole vault, seventh in the long jump and eighth in the 400. She also ran a leg on Horizon’s third-place 4x400 relay team. Also running legs on the relay were Hayley Becnel (fifth 200, eighth pole vault), Kloee Brown (fifth 800 and 1,500) and Savanna Hawk (eighth 800). Amy Requa placed fourth in the 1,500 and eighth in the 3,000, while fellow freshman Jasmine Stevens was sixth in the 3,000.
This weekend’s Class 1A state meet begins Thursday morning at historic Hayward Field in Eugene. Running event finals, other than the 3,000, will be Friday afternoon and evening. Field event finals will be contested both days. For more information and the meet schedule go to osaa.org.