Ranking up

Boys and girls track teams take on the Central meet hosted at Burke


On her third and final attempt in the long jump, senior Sadie Millard jumps 17’3.75”, placing first and earning the girls track team an additional 10 points. Regardless of the 30 mph wind gusts, making it much more difficult to run or jump PR’s, Millard remained determined to succeed and did just that. “This meet I tried to keep a positive attitude before all of my events,” Millard said. “I always try to find a consistent pace that I will be able to maintain throughout the whole race or event. There is a lot I need to work on with my form or consistency, and there’s also room to grow each week.”

Samantha Vojslavek, Feature Story Editor who didn't win state

After early success on both the girls and boys track teams and numerous first place finishes, the athletes planned on improving as the season progressed. On Thursday, April 14, the Wildcats competed at Burke High School with intentions of making their mark once again and continuing to place high in all possible events.

The meet began with several field event placers where senior Sadie Millard placed first in the long jump with a jump of 17’3.75”, and senior Layla Hopkins came in fourth. In his only two events, senior Jessie Cauble placed first in the long jump and second in the high jump. In girls discus senior Mallory Merrick threw 106’05” feet and placed second. 

On the girls side, runners Millard and junior Isabelle Hartnett have both shown leadership and ample amounts of success for the team. 

“The biggest area of growth for Isabelle is her overall foot speed,” head coach Seth Turman said.  “I think she is much faster this year, which she will need to utilize when she gets in a foot race with the other top distance runners. For Sadie, this year has been her mental toughness and approach. She’s had some meets where things probably didn’t go as expected but is one of the best athletes in the state of Nebraska, and I think she will show it at the State Track Meet.”

Competing in both field and running events allows Millard to perform well and score points for her team in all kinds of variety. Running since her freshman year, Millard has only shown signs of improvement and continues to do this her senior year. 

“Something I took away from this meet is getting comfortable with the triple jump, and the finish is the most important, especially in the 400m,” Millard said. “I think I performed pretty well given the wind but I could’ve done better.” 

With the start of the running events, also came as a start of success. Both the girls and boys 4×8 teams earned first place, adding 10 points each to the total of Millard West’s points. The girls relay led off with sophomores Thea Kutash and Brianna Hernandez, followed by seniors Samantha Vojslavek and Sydney Beaudin. For the boys, senior Seth Fey led the start of the race, followed by juniors Logan Yarges, Levi Young and ending with sophomore Jack Witte. The girls raced their second-fastest time of the year of 10:19.61, while the boys earned first with a time of 8:28.81. 

With her success in the distance events, Hartnett managed to lead the distance girls the past two seasons. Winning both the mile and two mile, Hartnett collected twenty points for the girls, with a time of 5:28 in the mile and 11:27.57 in the 3200m. 

“I’m looking forward to improving my form and keeping consistent speed throughout my races,” Hartnett said. “My racing strategy is to never relax and keep pushing forward.” 

In the sprinting events, junior Keagan Mountain placed fifth in the 100m, and senior Nathan Pederson placed third in the 400m. For the girls Millard placed second in the 200m along with placing first in the 400m with a time of 1:00.64. With Hopkins on her tail placing second in their heat with a 1:01.14 time. In the boys 800 Witte placed first at 2:00.16 and junior Sean Murphy ran a 2:02.32 following in fifth place.

Concluding the meet with the 1600m relay gathered little points for both teams. The girls scored six points by placing third, running with a team of sophomore Jersey Koza, freshmen Cecile Ahrens, Kate Ebmeier and sophomore Hannah Heftie. The boys placed fourth leading off with Murphy, freshman Bradyn Johnson, sophomore Bobby Joseph then handing off to the anchor, senior Benjamin Beresh. As the final relays crossed the finish line, both teams were unable to leave with a first place trophy. The girls scored 108 points, falling short of Kearny by 21 points. The boys competed to earn 85 points, losing to Creighton Prep.