WICHITA — A year ago, Brett Meyer, then a senior at Scott City, stood atop the podium in the boys’ Class 3A 800 meters and leaned to his left with a simple message for Noah Gfeller, then a junior at Russell.
Meyer, who currently runs for the Fort Hays State University track team, told the Bronco middle distance runner next year it would be him standing on top.
“At the time, I took that with a grain of salt,” Gfeller said.
The message came to fruition at Saturday’s state meet at Cessna Stadium, as Gfeller turned in a personal best of 1 minutes, 56.67 seconds. It was nearly a second better than his previous best.
The Bronco senior got out to a fast start, running a 55.1 first lap before holding on for victory in the second half. He credited a year-round training schedule that consisted of summer cross country runs and indoor training in the winter for his first gold medal at the state level.
“I’ve been working all four years of high school,” Gfeller said. “Then, I’ve been training for this race since November. It’s amazing to come off as a state champion and PR at the last meet.”
The history between Meyer and Gfeller appears to just be getting started. Meyer recently finished up his freshman year at Fort Hays State University, while Gfeller will be heading to Pittsburg State University in the fall.
“I’ll get to race him for four more years,” the Russell graduate said.
Before he gets back to training for his collegiate career, a well-earned break is in order, albeit a brief one.
“I’m taking two weeks off,” Gfeller said. “I’ll probably go hike and fish in Colorado then get back to it.”