Saturday night’s Olathe Twilight meet was rainy, but that didn’t stop the participants from running fast times at an early season competition.
There were many personal records set at the meet – too many to count, honestly. Congratulations to all of those who ran PRs in less-than-ideal conditions.
Shawnee Mission South’s Hannah Gibson made a big splash early in her senior season. She beat a very good field and set a PR in doing so. Gibson won the 5K race in a time of 17:54.3, holding off the reigning two-time state champion during the final stretch on the stadium track.
Gibson finished 12th in the Olathe Twilight meet last year. She capped her junior season finishing 12th at the Class 6A meet. Gibson had yet to break the 18-minute barrier until Saturday, but now she appears primed to compete for the state title at the end of October.
The defending 6A state champ Anjali Hocker-Singh finished runner-up Saturday in a time of 18:00. It was her first race since early in the track season. The Olathe North junior suffered an injury and hadn’t returned to competition until Saturday. If she can stay healthy, Hocker-Singh will likely be the favorite for a third-straight individual title.
Shawnee Mission Northwest senior Paige Mullen set a new PR (18:06.6) with her third-place finish. Mullen has placed third at the past two 6A state meets, and 10th as a freshman.
Olathe West senior Charis Robinson led the Owls once again. Robinson finished fourth in a time of 18:20.8, leading the Owls to an easy team victory.
They scored a crazy low score of 41 points with their top five runners finishing in the top 11 individually. The next four Owls to finish were junior Kate Miller (7), freshman Sydney All (9), junior Bree Newport (10) and senior Paige Baker (11).
Shawnee Mission East junior Lida Padgett placed fifth in the race to lead her squad. She finished 60th at state last year but could have a big junior season.
Another top individual was Washburn Rural sophomore Payton Fink, who finished sixth Saturday, running a PR time of 18:29.4. Fink placed 19th at state as a freshman, but might be in for a great sophomore campaign.
St. Teresa’s Academy junior Gracie Jacobs helped her team. Jacobs placed eighth overall.
Blue Springs South finished runner-up in the girls team race. The Jaguars were led by senior Magdalene Boley’s 12th-place finish. The other four scoring Jaguars finished close together. They were senior Caitlin Grover (22), junior Emmerson Allen (23), senior Paige Thielen (25) and sophomore Ella Rew (26).
Liberty placed third as a team in the girls competition. Leading the way for Liberty was senior Britta Foust, who finished 14th in a time of 19:06.6. Following her were sophomore Ella Brown (18), sophomore Cambell Grosdidier (37), sophomore Milana Montuori (48) and freshman Avala Freire (63).
Much like their female counterparts, the boys race some very fast times at the Olathe Twilight meet. But unlike the girls, the top four finishers finished quite close together – just a mere five seconds from first to fourth.
Liberty North junior Sage Wilde ultimately won the race, in a time of 14:45.7. It was his second win of the year in as many races, and he’s set a PR at both meets.
The Eagles won the boys meet as a team. Seniors Jorge Perezruiz (18), Grayson Tapp (26) and Asher Corp (29) were the next three Eagles to finish. The final scoring runner was junior Collin Kleinhen, who placed 39th.
Shawnee Mission East senior Wyatt Haughton finished runner-up in the race in a time of 14:46.8. He also finished second at the 6A state meet last fall. His time Saturday marked the fastest 5K time in KSHSAA history.
Haughton also led SM East to a second-place finish as a team. Fellow SM East senior Caden Peters placed sixth individually for the Lancers. The time of 15:18 was a PR for Peters, who finished 18th at state last year. The next three Lancers were senior Blair Ptacek (23), junior Rowan Gibson (59) and junior Evan Whittington (63).
Wichita Trinity junior Clay Shively was the third-place finisher Saturday. He was the 3A state runner-up as a sophomore.
St. Thomas Aquinas senior Colby King placed fourth in Saturday’s race, in a time of 14:50.6. It was a new PR for King.
Blue Valley Northwest senior Sam Hurley was the fifth-place finisher, crossing the finish line in 15:16.61. Rounding out the top 10 were Shawnee Mission North junior Micah Blomker (7), Shawnee Mission Northwest senior Henry Born (8), Gardner-Edgerton junior Parker Walion (9) and Olathe East Carter Stewart (10).