State preview -- Hoxie girls with good shot
By CONOR NICHOLL
The biggest news of last Friday's Class 1A regional track meet at Fort Hays State University was Hoxie junior Carly Heim, the defending state champion in the long and triple jump, surprisingly scratching on all three of her long jump attempts. But outside of Heim's struggles, coach Marlin Beougher was pleased with his team's showing.
"We did great," Beougher said. "I was telling somebody that, the things that we expected to go in, a lot of them, not all of them, we did it, and then there were things that we didn't expect."
The Indian girls, last year's regional champion and fourth-place finishers at state, were expected to be a state title contender this spring. Even without Heim in the long jump, Hoxie is still in the mix for 35 to 45 points at this weekend's state meet at Wichita State University's Cessna Stadium. Generally 1A girls teams needs 35 points to place, around 45 to win. The Indians qualified in 12 events combined and all either have a top-eight seed or stand a strong chance at placing.
Senior Kristina Farber went 5-0 in the high jump, but has cleared 5-4, tied for the best 1A jump.
Heim, whom Beougher believed could win the long, triple and 200-meter dash, qualified third in the triple jump with a mark of 35-3.75. She sits 10th in 200 after she ran 27.60, but has run 26.03, the second-fastest time in Class 1A entering the regional. Each individual/relay championship is worth 10 points.
"We just have to go and compete," Beougher said. "I usually don't talk about that much. I just say go, and do what you can do, and then we don't even worry about the rest of it. It falls where it's going to. Hopefully, it works out that way for these girls."
Heim has dealt with some sickness and went to the doctor last Thursday for a shot.
"She looked like she struggled," Beougher said. "I think she is kind of worn out."
Heim, a three-time state champion in basketball and the Hays Daily News Player of the Year, also qualified in the 400-meter relay, which is ranked sixth. After the long jump, Beougher gave her about 20 minutes before he went and talked to her. Beougher told her to "move on" and focus on the other events.
"I think she just stressed herself out too much on it," Beougher said. "I tried to tell her, but she likes to be successful at everything, and when she is not, when things don't go right, she is still learning how to handle it sometimes. I said, 'Well, you can't worry about it.'"
Senior Madi Niblock and sophomore Terran Hoyt each qualified in javelin after Niblock threw 16 feet better than her personal best, Hoyt 20 feet. Niblock is ranked fourth at 118-1, Hoyt 11th at 113-9. Hoxie senior Christopher Weber is also through in the boys' javelin with a No. 12 ranking at 153-11. The boys' 3,200 relay cut 12 seconds off its time and sits third at 8:31.17.
"We didn't PR in everything, but we PRd in a lot," Beougher said.
Junior Connor Katt qualified in three events, the 100, 200 and 400 relay. Senior Chase Kennedy will run in the 400 and on both relays. Kennedy sits eighth in the 400 at 52.23, but second through ninth are within a second. Katt is tenth in the 100 (10.88) and sixth in the 200 (23.43). Katt ran on the 400 relay as a freshman and sophomore and was 12th in the 200 last year. Katt has run 22.75 in the 200, around two-tenths from the school record.
"That kid has gone out and worked hard at everything," Beougher said of the improvements. "In the past, I don't know if he worked as hard. He just kind of relied on his athletic ability, but he had a good football season, he had a good basketball season, and I think he just carried that on through there."