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Spartans take fourth place at Marion meet

Linderbaum 1st in shot and Ira 1st in hurdles, Flansburg 2nd in discus

Linderbaum 1st in shot and Ira 1st in hurdles, Flansburg 2nd in discus
By Jeff Hess
Solon Economist
MARION– “This time of year is important because this is what it is all about. You have the opportunity to see it all come together so you can do the things you want to do when you want to do them. We look forward to challenging each other to use our gifts and talents in a different ways to help in our team success,” Coach Mark Sovers commented.
He cited examples like competing in different events, running on a relay instead of all individual events, and competing in a field event ahtletes may not have consistently done all year long.
The Solon Spartan boys track and field team completed its final regular season meet on Monday, April 30, finishing fourth in Marion, as preparation for its WaMaC East rivals in the weather-postponed conference meet at Spartan Stadium, on Monday, May 7.
Center Point-Urbana won the meet in Marion with 90 team points, followed by Marion (88), Benton Community (81), and Solon. The rest of the field was comprised of Vinton-Shellsburg (73), Anamosa (69), Mount Vernon (66), West Delaware (62), Monticello (44), North Linn (42), Central DeWitt (28) and Maquoketa Valley (24).
The Spartans’ success was spearheaded by strong field performances. Tyler Linderbaum won the shot put with a 53-10 3/4 throw, fetching 10 team points, with Rocky Lensing capturing third with his 47-5 earning an additional six team points. In the long jump, freshman Eddie Richey leaped 19-11 into third place. Colton Hoffman soared to 5-8 in the high jump, netting three team points. Coal Flansburg battled to the silver position in the discus with a throw of 150-2 for eight more team points and was literally followed by Linderbaum with his third-place, 146-10 hurl.
“We have always taken pride in our field events, especially the throws, to set the tone for us at all meets, and championship season is no different. We are also very confident in the athletes that have always come though no matter the circumstances in their individual events,” Coach Sovers said.
In the relays, the Spartans grabbed a ninth-place finish in the junior varsity (JV) 800-meter sprint medley relay manned by Seamus Poynton, Lucas Walker, Payton Herdliska and Jack Bell, posting a time of 1:53.03. The varsity sprint medley team of Kendrick Harris, Weston Stiegelmeyer, Bo Janssen and Noelan Garbes turned in a time of 1:40.86 to grab two team points. In the JV 4x800-meter relay, the Solon team of Ben DeValk, Stiegelmeyer, Janssen and Garbes ran to a seventh-place finish in a time of 10:06.03. The varsity shuttle hurdle relay team of Luke Luu, Jackson Ryan, Thomas Brandt and A.J. Coons finished in ninth place with their time of 1:07.83. The JV 1,600-meter distance medley relay combination of Jackson Ryan, Miles Fuller, Brayton Bair and Brad Yeomans raced to a fifth-place showing in 4:13.67. The varsity 1,600-meter distance medley team, comprised of Mason Stahle, Dillon Hoit, Clay Gerdin and Tyler Bliskie ran a 4:13.02 finishing tenth. The ensemble of Eddie Richey, Colton Hoffman, Poynton and Thomas Brandt finished in fourth place in the JV 4x200-meter relay with their time of 1:41.66 while the varsity team of Jackson Pipolo, Bell, Adam Bock and A.J. Coons combined for a tenth-place finish in 1:37.90. In the 4x100-meter JV relay, the Spartans ran two teams. The A team of Brady Stotler, Miles Fuller, Lucas Walker and Flansburg ran a 50.16 for ninth-place overall and the (B) team, made up of Luke Luu, Carson Shive, Cade Chapman and Janssen, captured 11th place in 50.85. In the varsity 4x100-meter competition, the team of Harris, Bock, Spencer Wegmann and Luke Ira combined to turn in a 45.11 taking second in the event. In the 4x400-meter JV relay, Eddie Richey, Hoffman, Yeomans and Bair collectively turned in a 4:06.49 performance, taking eighth place. The varsity 4x400 squad of Brayden Rickertsen, Harris, Hoit and Ben Krutzfeldt ran a 3:45.60 to finish in tenth.
Coach Sovers believes the relay events are primed for success in championship season.
“We are really looking forward to placing a big emphasis on coming together in the relays to do something special during this time of year,” he said.
In the individual running events, Ethan Kober finished sixth with his time of 11:18.06 in the 3,200-meter run. In the 100-meter dash, Spencer Wegmann captured sixth place with a time of 12.05. Rickertsen ran a 55.01 in the varsity 400-meter dash taking sixth-place overall. Luke Ira again won the 110-meter hurdles, posting a 15.34. Kober finished in 16th-place in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:24.37. Ira also ran 24.21 in the 200-meter dash to finish third, with Mason Stahle turning in a 25.78 time for 15th. Brandt ran the 400-meter hurdles in a time of 1:01.78 finishing in 12th place. In the 1,600-meter run, Tyler Bilskie and Ben DeValk finished in 16th place and 18th place, posting times of 5:19.62 and 5:33.54, respectively.
With championship season looming for the Spartans, Sovers said it is time for the Spartans to shine. “We believe we are ready and in position to have the competition of the WaMac Conference bring out the best in us,” he said. “The athletes have done a great job this year of doing what they need to do to when they need to do it, because of this we are ready to be at our very best.”
Weather delayed the WaMaC Conference Supermeet scheduled for Thursday, May 3, in Solon. The meet will be just a WaMaC East Coed conference meet on Monday, May 7, with events commencing at 4:30 p.m.
“Moving into championship season we look to continue and build confidence in each other,” Sovers said. “During practice, you place a greater emphasis on the details of your event that set you up for success from the beginning of the year. Championship season becomes less pressure-filled because you have invested in the day-to-day process all year long.”
The Spartans competed in the WaMaC East Division meet, at Spartan Stadium, on Monday, May 7, and compete at 4 p.m., at Spartan Stadium, in the regional boys/girls track meet on Thursday, May 10, for an opportunity to go to the state track meet in Des Moines on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, May 17-19.
Coach Sovers does not feel the final days before the championship competitions are a mental game, he believes it comes down to confidence. “Confidence in knowing you have done the work and loving the process along the way is very important,” he said. “When you have confidence then you are in control of your success and the joy can come though in your performance. The hesitation can be gone in knowing you have done the work.”