OHS track advances 15 to sectional meet

By: 
Will Johnson
Sports Editor

VERSAILLES — Finishing second to Union two weeks ago at the Four Rivers Conference (FRC) track meet, Matt Candrl’s Owensville Dutchgirl track team looked for redemption Saturday during the Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHSAA) Class 3, District 5 track meet at Versailles High School.

Placing third in the team standings with 109 points behind Osage (149) and Eldon (134), Dutchgirl track will be advancing seven individuals and a relay team to this Saturday’s MSHSAA Class 3, Sectional 3 Track Meet at Waynesville High School.

Right before the rain finally stopped, OHS had their first sectional qualifiers.

Racing their way to a district title, the Dutchgirl 4x800-meter relay team of Kendra Hults, Mekayla Gibson, Sophia Ashner and Abby Koepke posted a winning time of 10:32.79 beating their previous season-best time by nearly four seconds.

“I couldn’t let my teammates down,” Koepke said. “When the Osage girl passed me with 200 meters to go, I knew I had to get past her again and I did with about 75 meters left.”

Owensville’s Dutchgirl 4x800m relay team was not the only district champion in orange and black Saturday.

Sophomore Katie Candrl captured a pair of district championships winning the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 17.09. She also topped the field in the pole vault clearing nine feet, six inches.

Adding to her pair of district titles, Katie also advanced to sectionals with a second-place time of 48.83.

All three individual distance events on the girl’s side will see Dutchgirl runners in them.

Adding to her leg of the 4x800m relay, Ashner posted a second-place time of 5:43.65 in the girl’s 1600-meter run. In the 800-meter run, there will be a pair of Dutchgirls in the sectional race with Hults (3rd, 2:35.37) and Koepke (4th, 2:39.91) grabbing the final two qualifying spots.

Gibson chopped 20 seconds off her previous best time in the 3200-meter run with a fourth-place time of 12:30.59 earning her a trip to Waynesville in two events.

Candrl won’t be the only Dutchgirl competing in field events Saturday at Waynesville.

Senior Bailey Rasmussen and junior Mackenzie Rademacher will join the Dutchgirl sophomore Saturday in the field event area.

Competing first in the discus, Rasmussen and Rademacher had the second and third-best throws coming into the district meet.

In spite of both athletes throwing below their season-bests, they will get another chance to compete alongside each other.

Rasmussen placed second with a throw of 111-02 while Rademacher moved into third place recording a distance of 107-04 on her last throw.

Moving to the shot put, both Dutchgirls throwers looked to also post top-four marks in that event.

Entering the finals in the top four, Rademacher stayed there posting a third-place throw of 35-11. Rasmussen dropped to sixth place with a throw of 35-01 finishing 4.5 inches shy of the top four.

In spite of their four-year run of district titles coming to an end, coach Candrl’s Dutchmen track and field team will be sending a relay team and five individuals to sectional competition in Waynesville.

Like their Dutchgirl counterparts, the Dutchmen will have runners in all three distance races.

Entering districts with the second-fastest time, freshman Bam Wizeman earned himself another week of practice with a third-place time of 2:08.73 in the boy’s 800m run. Teammate Austin Terry just missed the top four with a fifth-place time of 2:10.93.

Continuing his successful debut season on varsity, sophomore Cameron O’Neal posted a pair of top-four times in the 1600m and 3200m runs.

Competing first in the mile, O’Neal dropped three seconds off his seed time finishing fourth in 5:02.44. Later in the two-mile race, he posted a third-place time of 11:04.51 clinching his spot at sectionals in both events.

Looking to continue his first season on the track, freshman Alan Kopp competed in both the 110m and 300m hurdles.

Racing against a state favorite in St. James senior Grant Conway, Kopp posted third-place times of 16.72 in the 110m hurdles and 42.27 in the 300m hurdles extending his season in both events.

Joining their Dutchgirl counterparts at sectionals will be the Dutchmen 4x800m relay team of Treyden Williams, Jacob Breedlove, Terry and Wizeman after their third-place time of 8:53.86.

Seeing Katie Candrl win a district title earlier in the girl’s pole vault, senior Jacob Luther looked to duplicate the feat in the boy’s pole vault.

Clearing 13-06, Luther claimed the district title while teammate Boyde Nicks finished third clearing 11-06 to earn a spot at sectionals alongside his senior teammate.

Before Luther won a district title in the pole vault, he threw his way to sectionals with a third-place mark of 129-06 in the javelin.

Saturday in Waynesville, field events will begin at 8:30 a.m., while running events will not start until 11 a.m.

Owensville’s first action will be Katie Candrl in the girl’s pole vault at 8:30 a.m., capped by Luther competing in the boy’s javelin at approximately 4 p.m.

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