Freshman Love tops big day for JHS boys
Ken Gardner was hoping for a good day from his Jamestown High School boys track and field team.
The coach got that and much more.
Freshman Nolan Love pulled the big surprise, winning a championship in the javelin and the Blue Jays left the West Region meet in Bismarck with nine more state qualifiers on Saturday.
"We couldn't ask for a much better day," Gardner said. "Going in, we had three qualified. We knew we had quite a few borderline. We had some guys that really came to compete."
Michael Hust again ran qualifying times in the 100 and 200, taking fourth in both races. Brady Carlson finished fifth in the 100, running another state-qualifying mark. Taylor Orr's fifth-place mark in the 110 hurdles was good enough to get to state, though he also had qualified.
But Love's throw of 160 feet, 3 inches was the highlight of the day, giving him a personal best. Though he won the title, Love faces a stiff test at state as his throw only moved him up to 13th on the qualifiers list. The East Region has six of the top seven javelin throwers.
Still, Gardner said he was proud of Love, especially with him being a freshman.
"Any time you have a freshman on the boys side being a champion, it's gonna be a pretty big deal," Gardner said.
Gardner also said there's a bit of uncertainty with Love because there is no javelin in middle school.
"This is really his first year of throwing," Gardner said. "He seems to be progressing every time he picks up that javelin. The upside for Nolan is really big right now. You never know. Get up there and get on that podium, that's gotta be his goal for next week."
The Class A state meet starts Friday at the Bismarck Community Bowl.
Jamestown's 46 points were good for fifth as a team.
The other pillar the Blue Jays knocked down where their relays. Jamestown qualified all four relays, with the 400 and 3,200 relays both taking fourth. The Blue Jays were behind in the final 100 meters of the 1,600 relay, but saw freshman Ben Hanson fly by his opponents en route to taking sixth. The top six finishers in any event qualify for state.
"Track is, overall, pretty individual, but the guys really came together well as a team," Gardner said. "Relays really show the team aspect of it."
The 1,600-meter relay made up of Kylee Voigt, Siri Jystad, Madison Barnes and McKayla Orr broke the school record with a time of 4:04.78, besting a 21-year-old mark.
"They beat it by almost 2 seconds," JHS girls coach Arnie Falk said.
Jenna Stilwell punched her ticket to the state meet in the long jump and the javelin.
The Jamestown High School sophomore went 16 feet, 7.75 inches in the long jump to place fourth, while her javelin throw of 110-10 placed her third. She had already qualified in the javelin.
The Blue Jays didn't have any other new state qualifiers, but still fared well. Alison Allmer finished second in the 1,600 with a time of 5:10.54, and McKayla Orr took second in the 300 hurdles (45.77) and fifth in the 100 hurdles (16.40). Jamestown's 400, 800 and 1,600 relays all placed in the top four, but entered having already qualified for state.
Nonetheless, Falk said improving a relay time will lead to a better starting lane.
"To get a better lane assignment for state, that was the goal," Falk said. "Improving your times at this time of year can be very important for heat assignments."
The Blue Jays finished fifth as a team with 58 points.
West Region meet
Team scores: 1. Bismarck High 259; 2. Bismarck Century 172; 3. Dickinson 107; 4. Minot 103; 5. Jamestown 46; 6. Mandan 26; 7. Bismarck St. Mary's 20; 8. Williston 6; 9. Turtle Mountain 1.
(Winner and Jamestown top six)
100: 1. Karter Gorney, Min, 11.03. 4. Michael Hust, J, 11.56; 5. Brady Carlson, J, 11.69.
200: 1. Drew Wiseman, BC, 21.84. 4. Hust, J, 23.28.
400: 1. Isaac Walth, Bis, 50.27.
800: 1. Jack Leingang, Bis, 1:56.68.
1600: 1. Leingang, Bis, 4:05.63 (meet record).
3200: 1. Brandon Berg, Bis, 9:44.25.
110 hurdles: 1. Dylan Leutz, BC, 15.04. 5. Taylor Orr, J, 15.81.
300 hurdles: 1. Wiseman, BC, 37.96 (MR).
400 relay: 1. BC (Dylan Leutz, Andrew Steinwand, Ben Hess, Wiseman), 43.12 (meet record). 4. J, 45.25.
800 relay: 1. Min (Barker, Gorney, Jechort, Yanosko), 1:29.81; 5. J, 1:34.00.
1,600 relay: 1. BC (Landon Jochim, Richter, Dominic Neameyer, Wiseman), 3:20.21 (MR); 6. J, 3:38.24.
3,200 relay: 1. BC (Richter, Wahlin, Dylan Sether, Jeff Gendreau), 8:12.10; 4. J, 8:31.18.
High jump: 1. Ben Jolliffe, Bis, 6-2.
Long jump: 1. Bronte Liggins, Bis, 21-04.5.
Triple jump: 1. Alex Yanosko, M, 43.08.50.
Pole vault: 1. Love, Min, 13-03.
Javelin: 1. Nolan Love, J, 160-03.
Discus: 1. Stanley Jones, Bis, 152-09.
Shot put: 1. Jon Tharaldsen, Bis, 55-04.
1. Bismarck Century 263; 2. Bismarck 167; 3. Minot 101; 4. Mandan 80; 5. Jamestown 58; 6. Dickinson 55; 7. Williston 12; 8. Bismarck St. Mary's 2.
Winner and Jamestown top six
100: 1. Haley Smith, BC, 12.49.
200: 1. Andrea Kelsch, BC, 26.17.
400: 1. Kelsch, BC, 57.91.
800: 1. Sierra Link, BC, 2:18.13.
1600: 1. Brownotter, B, 5:04.34; 2. Alison Allmer, J, 5:10.54.
3200: 1. Jordan Jacob, BC, 11:20.86.
100 hurdles: 1. Chelsea Peterson, Man, 15.49; 5. McKayla Orr, J, 16.40.
300 hurdles: 1. Peterson, Man, 45.17 (SQ); 2. Orr, J, 45.77.
400 relay: 1. BC (Myranda Merkel, McGinnis, Haley Smith, Yineman), 50.47; 4. J, 51.51.
800 relay: 1. BC (Sierra Link, Yineman, Katie Scherr, McGinnis), 1:46.76; 3. J, 1:49.26.
1,600 relay: 1. Min (Milbrath, Bryant, Alexander, Huether), 4:04.67; 2. J, 4:04.78.
3,200 relay: 1. Min (Jayden Moum, Meg Super, Elizabeth Rohrer, Huether), 10:02.38.
High jump: 1. Hannah Larson, BC, 5-03.
Long jump: 1. Reiner, B, 16-11.50; 4. Jenna Stilwell, J, 16-07.75.
Triple jump: 1. Todd, B, 37-01.50 (MR).
Pole vault: 1. Lauren Gietzen, BC, 11-02 (MR).
Javelin: 1. Rachel Schroeder, D, 115-00; 3. Stilwell, J, 110-10.
Discus: 1. Kelsie Hall, BC, 120-08.
Shot put: 1. Hall, BC, 40-00.
Sun sportswriter Chris Aarhus can be reached at (701) 952-8462 or by email at email@example.com