Track competes at League, boys come in second, girls take first

Micheal Simmons, Blue M Editor-In-Chief

The Manhattan High track team battled at the Centennial League track meet last Thursday, which the girls took first and the boys come in second after a scoring error.

Right before the final event of the meet that ultimately decided who took first between Manhattan and Washburn Rural boys team, head coach Kory Cool was informed that Manhattan had the lead. MHS came in second during the final event, while Washburn came in third, leading Cool to believe that they had won the meet. However Manhattan never had the lead, and instead of MHS winning the meet, Washburn was announced League champions.

While the boys came up short, the girls did anything but, as they beat out Emporia by 23 points. The girls have had a string of second places finishes throughout the season, and the outcome at League allowed them to break said string.

“The ability to have multiple top finishes definitely helped [us take first instead of second] for sure,” sophomore Taylor Claussen said. “Putting in the work during practice and everyone trying to perfect whatever their craft may be, whether it’s running, throwing or jumping, also helped.”

Claussen placed first in girls javelin for the second year in a row with a personal record of 124-08. Senior Clara Mayfield not only placed first in the 1600-meter but also set a new school and League record with a time 4:52.38. Mayfield also placed first in the 800-meter run and second in the 3200-meter run with times of 2:21.08 and 11:19.75. Mayfield accounted for 28 points, nearly a fifth of the team’s overall points.

“Going into the meet I felt pretty good about how I would perform so it felt great to have the feeling turn into results,” Mayfield said. “I didn’t care too much about the league record but I definitely felt proud of breaking sub-5:00 and beating my own record.”

Now that the Centennial League meet is over, the team now sets its sights on the regional competition, which will take place on Friday. Some members of the track team are already setting expectations for themselves.

“I have high expectation for myself,” Mayfield said. “I’m running the 800, 1600 and 3200 at regionals and will run those three at state assuming I qualify. Really in the championship season, the places are most important. It’d be nice to run fast but I’m not going to sacrifice placing high at state for trying to run fast times.”