Plainville's Weiser looks for state qualification
By CONOR NICHOLL
Plainville High School senior Nolan Weiser had options to either play basketball at Kansas Wesleyan or compete in track at Fort Hays State University. Weiser, a three-time state qualifier in the triple jump, had taken fourth in the event at the Class 2A state meet and helped the Cardinals win a team title last spring.
He recently decided to compete at FHSU with his current Plainville teammates, senior long jumper Dalton Werner and senior hurdler Nick Hixon. Plus, Weiser wanted to stay close to his girlfriend of two years, also from Plainville.
"Two of my best friends," Weiser said. "They are both going there and they are both doing track. I thought I would maybe give it a try. I have always liked track. Basketball has been my favorite sport, but every year, we have had a chance to go to state in basketball, and usually we get beat out in sub-state and then track comes around. And it's always been the sport I have made it to state every year. It's just been good to me and hopefully it will keep being good to me."
This Friday, Weiser looks to cap his high school career with another state qualification. Weiser and his Cardinal teammates, in a different switch, head east to Washington County. The field events start at 3 p.m. The top four in each event qualify for the state meet.
"Troy, Kan., some of those other schools, I have never heard of," Weiser said.
Weiser is a likely qualifier in the triple jump with a season-best leap of 41-4.75. He could qualify as part of the long jump and 1,600-meter relay. Weiser said the relay is capable of running 3 minutes, 38 seconds, which would put them close.
Weiser long jumped as a freshman and sophomore, but didn't last year because Plainville already had three jumpers in Werner, Andrew Casey and Kyle Becker. All three qualified for state, Casey placed and Werner won.
Weiser planned to do the triple jump, 400 and 1,600-meter relay. However, he had struggled in the 400.
A few weeks ago, Cardinal coach Norma Finnesy saw the regional had little depth in the long jump and Weiser started jumping.
Last week, Weiser went 20-0.25 on his last jump to take third in the MCL meet.
"League went really well," Weiser said. "Now I think I am right in the thick of things to make it."
On his first jump in finals, Weiser went 19-7.75 and was tied with Ellis sophomore Jared Pfeifer. Weiser went around 19 feet with his next jump. Then Weiser talked with his dad, who told his son he was tied. However, Pfeifer would have ended up ahead of Weiser on a tiebreaker. Weiser is targeting a jump just over 20 feet. He is seeded fifth, but the No. 3 through 6 seeds are all within an inch. Plus, the No. 2 seed has been an inconsistent jumper this spring.
"When I got on the runway, I just thought, 'I am just going to give it all that I got and go for it,' " Weiser said. "It ended up I was right on the board perfect."