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Goldsmith Relays; Riedel wins 400 on home track

By NICK McQUEEN

nmcqueen@dailynews.net

WaKEENEY -- Last season, WaKeeney-Trego Community's Clayton Riedel became the first male athlete to qualify for state for the Golden Eagles in five seasons under Trego coach Jeff Rhoden.

Riedel ended up fourth in Class 2A in the 400-meter dash.

Now a junior, Riedel said he has put more effort into the competition, and it's starting to pay off. In a loaded field Friday at the annual Goldsmith Relays, Riedel won the 400 -- one of the most anticipated events of the evening. The 100, 200 and 400 featured some of the area's top sprinters in Riedel, La Crosse senior Levi Morss, Thomas More Prep-Marian senior Rodney Deus, Norton senior Jacob Brooks and Plainville senior Dalton Werner.

"I didn't really expect some of the big 3A schools to be here," Riedel said. "But, really quite a bit of good competition."

Riedel, who has set a goal of returning to state and getting closer to a school record in the process, won the 400 in 51.46 seconds Friday, edging Morss' second-place 51.84.

"It's motivation, (Goldsmith) being so deep," Riedel said. "You have to look forward to something."

Riedel and Morss were trailing Holcomb senior Michael Banderas in the final turn, but Riedel passed and pulled away, and Morss followed.

"I thought the Holcomb kid was going to get me right there, but I caught him," Riedel said. "I like to have a little kick at the end instead of using it all on the back stretch."

Before the race, Morss, who is better in the short sprints, joked with members of the final heat.

"I told the guys I was going to set the pace for a 49," Morss said. " 'I'm not gonna run it, I'm just going to set the pace and about 110 left, you just take it.' "

Riedel kicked past Banderas after the turn and finished with his season-best time.

He still looks to set a school record by surpassing the 49-second mark.

"Coach is pushing me," Riedel said. "He's wanting me to break some school records. It's helping quite a bit."

Riedel, though, said he aggravated his hip flexor following the 400, and Brooks, who finished fifth in the 400, also scratched himself out of the 200 later in the day.

Those two made the 200 a bit of an easier win for Morss later. He ran 22.38 for the win. Deus was second at 23.05.

"Some of the previous meets, I haven't really had any competition," Morss said. "It's nice to know the guy next to me can beat me, not just push me to run faster."

Morss won the 100 earlier in the day in 11.30, with Brooks second at 11.44, Riedel third at 11.54 and Werner fourth in 11.75. Plainville senior Trevor Axelson also broke 12 seconds in 11.92.

"We haven't had a lot of good weather to get outside and practice with," Morss said. "(The 400) was more of a 'down within.' It wasn't really like I was in shape, because I was dead after that."

Morss also finished second in the long jump, as La Crosse edged Holcomb 99-80 for the team title of the 14-team field.

Senior Kip Keeley and junior Lucas Moeder finished 1-2 in the javelin with throws of 179 feet 8 inches and 166-8, respectively. Keeley also won the shot put at 44-5.75, and Cole Kershner was second for the Leopards at 44-0.5.

TMP was third with 73 points, paced by Deus and the 400-meter relay team (Deus, senior Carlos Duenes, sophomore Cameron Fouts, and sophomore Nick Schmidt) and a first- and third-place showing, respectively, for TMP sophomore Sam Dreiling and senior Zach Dreiling. Sam Dreiling cleared a season-high 13 feet for the win, while Zach Dreiling was third at 12-0. Norton junior Austin Hager was second at 12-6.

Colby first, TMP second

The Colby girls put up 106 points to win Friday, followed by TMP-Marian with 77 and Norton in third with 68.

The Monarch girls, without senior Allison Pfeifer, got wins from the usual suspects in senior Heather Ruder and the 3,200-meter relay team. The Monarchs' relay (junior Kayla Walker, senior Annie Mindrup, freshman Melissa Pfeifer and Ruder) won in 10:38.83, nearly 20 seconds better than Norton. Ruder also won the 1,600 in 5:21.61, a race TMP coach Matt Dumler said beforehand she would have to run hard to edge Leoti-Wichita County's Paige Wells. Wells was second in 5:32.84.

Ruder also won the 800 in 2:25.95.

Senior Megan Gottschalk also earned gold for the Monarchs. She won the pole vault on misses. She cleared 9-6, along with Norton junior Bailey Ambrosier. Junior Mikaela Flax also won the 300-meter hurdles in 48.34

Allison Pfeifer was wearing a boot on her left leg, suffering from minor pain. Dumler said she also likely would miss next Friday's Russell Relays, but was unsure beyond that.

The Plainville girls had a good day in the throws. In the shot put, the Cardinals finished first and second with senior Shelby Pywell (38-5.5) and sophomore Kim Junkermeier (35-5.5). And, senior Cheyenee Armbruster was first in the discus at 116-2.

Colby's three golds came in the 400-meter relay, the high jump with sophomore Hannah Strange at 5-2 and the 3,200 with freshman Andrea Browne in 12:20.82.