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Track team competes in first meet

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by Leigh Campbell, photos by Kelly Fletcher

The STA track team placed second in their first meet of the season March 28 at Belton High School.

 

The stars clenched first place in the 4×1600 relay with runs by juniors Ann Campbell, Hayden Lee, Brit Maguire and sophomore Emily Laird. In the field events, senior Bailey Whitehead placed first in the discus while juniors Carson Beinemen, Gretchen Schloegel and sophomore Erin Burroughs swept the high jump podium. Senior Giggy Reardon jumped her way to first in both the long jump and triple jump.

 

“The first meet is always fun,” Lee said. “It gives you a good idea of what the rest of the season is going to be like.”

 

 

STA athletic director and head track coach Mark Hough sees the first meet as an opportunity to get qualifying times for KU Relays, one of the most important meets of the season according to Lee.

 

“My expectation for the meet [was] just to get out there and have everybody stay healthy and get their first meet under their belt,” Hough said.

 

However, according to Hough, not every track athlete was able to compete in the first meet. Some athletes were ineligible to compete because they need did not meet the requirements of a Missouri State High School Activities Association rule. According to bylaw 3.9.1 in the 2013-2014 MSHSAA official handbook:

 

“Each team must have 14 days of conditioning practice and each individual must have participated in 14 school conditioning practices on 14 different days prior to the date of the first interscholastic contest in all sports.”

 

After a snow day on the first day of spring sports tryouts March 3 and spring break, the track team as well as other spring sports had to hold practices on the weekends in order to fulfill requirements of the MSHSAA law. Athletes who may have been sick or left early for spring break did not attend 14 practices, according to Hough.

 

“Conditioning is the idea [of the rule] and to make sure the everyone is in shape and ready to compete,” Hough said. “[The rule] changes the entries that we have for the meet for sure.”

 

Lee had to work with her coaches to practice at separate times to complete 14 practices because of an academic conflict during Monday practice time.

 

“I get why the rule is there,” Lee said. “But I think the rule is annoying especially since I have been practicing since like after cross country State in the fall.”

 

According to Hough, despite the setback of several athletes ineligible for the first meet, there are high expectations for the track season.

 

“We have a group of girls that have been here awhile and have been to State and the KU Relays,” Hough said. “They have been all-State performers in the past and I think that is everybody’s goal is to make Districts, Sectionals and State in probably one of the hardest Districts and Sectionals in the state.”

 

The track team also has a group of “very talented” younger runners who Hough hopes can be competitive by Districts time.

 

Check out the full results of the meet here.

 

How a track meet is scored:

“Team points are awarded to place winners according to the order in which competitors finish a given event,” according to the National Federation of State High School Associations track and field handbook. Points are in accordance to the following table:

 

Number of Teams Competing in the Meet Individual Scoring Relay Scoring

2 ………………………………………………….5-3-1 5

3 ………………………………………………….5-3-2-1 5-3

4 ………………………………………………….6-4-3-2-1 6-4-2

5 ………………………………………………….8-6-4-2-1 8-6-4-2

6 ………………………………………………….10-8-6-4-2-1 10-8-6-4-2

7 or more (6 scoring)……………………..10-8-6-4-2-1 10-8-6-4-2-1

7 or more (7 scoring)……………………..10-8-6-4-3-2-1 10-8-6-4-3-2-1

7 or more (8 scoring)……………………..10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1

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Track team competes in first meet