ATKINSON — Participants and spectators were left seeing blue at the District D-4 track meet at West Holt High School in Atkinson on Wednesday.
Bloomfield’s girls and boys teams came out district champions, with the girls outlasting Boyd County 90-88 and the boys finishing seven points ahead of Creighton and O’Neill St. Mary’s, who tied for second with 82.
The Bees won a combined eight events and had athletes finish second in five events, allowing each of them to qualify for state track meets in Omaha starting Wednesday, May 20.
Of Bloomfield’s athletes, none stood out more than Alexandra Eisenhauer and Evan Haverkamp. The two won four and two events, respectively, with Eisenhauer accounting for four of her team’s six event wins in the girls division.
“They’ve been dealing with foot injuries over the last week and a half,” coach Duane Wilken said. “They came out here and competed very well and really gave it everything that they could for the squad.”
Such injuries didn’t seem to affect Eisenhauer that much in her events, but she still had to fight for her wins, especially in the 200, where a rough start put her in an early hole.
“I didn’t have a great prelims race, and so I was on the inside lane,” she said. “I could see people next to me so I had to be able to push myself.”
Meanwhile, Haverkamp was able to overcome his injury to win the 100- and 200-meter dashes. The senior had been taking some time off to make sure he could heal properly, which did help in his runs. However, there’s still some rust for him to shake off.
“I felt like I was definitely a little slow from the break and everything,” he said, “but a lot of good competition here pushed me to my limits.”
Wilken was impressed by the efforts of both Eisenhauer and Haverkamp. However, there were plenty of others who impressed in their respective events during the day.
Freshman Madison Abbenhaus won the 300-meter hurdles after being in third for most of the race. Cody Bruegman ran what Wilken believes was the best 400-meter dash he’s ever run. He ultimately finished second and qualified for state.
The team was also able to put up good numbers in the 4x800-meter relay despite never participating in the event until Wednesday.
“We hadn’t run a 4x8 girls or boys all season long, and I thought that we could pick up a few points here and there in the 4x8 — and we did,” he said. “It’s a willingness to get out there and do whatever you can for your team.”
The District D-4 meet saw many of the top area athletes set new personal records. Chase Snyder of Boyd County did so in the discus, going from a mark of 151 feet, 8 inches to 161-3. Snyder felt like a lot was going right that day, but a new pair of shoes in particular made a big difference.
“The ring here has a lot of points on it so there’s a lot less friction. So I’d just spin out every time,” he said. “But with these newer shoes, I was able to actually have more traction just enough so that I didn’t stick, but I was also able to spin around pretty fast.”
Meanwhile, Austin Dvorak of Stuart not only won the high jump, but also moved his personal best from 6-2 to 6-5. He credits corrections to his form that he and his coach have been working on since his early days on the team.
“A couple of years ago, my form was very bad, but we’ve built it to get better, and now I’ve got a pretty good form,” Dvorak said. “It really helps me to get over those higher jumps.”
Qualifying for state by winning the boys 800-meter run was Grant Winkelbauer of O’Neill St. Mary’s, who went into districts with the sixth best mark in the area. Going into the week, the team knew the importance of the meet, which is why the coaching staff put in an extra effort that Winkelbauer thinks paid off big time.
“This past week in practice, our coaches have really been putting us through some tough workouts,” he said. “I think that’s definitely paid off for me and everyone on the team today.”
Team scores: Bloomfield 90, Boyd County 88, Plainview 75, Niobrara/Verdigre 71, O’Neill St. Mary’s 57, Stuart 45, Cody-Kilgore 38, Chambers/Wheeler Central 35, Elgin Public/Pope John 14, Creighton 10, Santee 1.
Top two finishers
100: 1. Alexandra Eisenhauer, BLO, 13.14; 2. Elle Ravenscroft, C-K, 13.41. 200: 1. Eisenhauer, BLO, 26.76; 2. Lauren Pinkelman, BLO, 27.00. 400: 1. Lauryn Hoffman, BOY, 1:03.53; 2. Lacey Paxton, STU, 1:04.14. 800: 1. Paige Drueke, BOY, 2:34.39; 2. Michelle Koenig, CWC, 2:35.11; 1600: 1. Drueke, BOY, 5:59.44; 2. Faith Williamson, ONSM, 6:02.51. 3200: 1. Koenig, CWC, 12:52.92; 2. Brittani Gutz, PLA, 6:12.22. 100 hurdles: 1. Eisenhauer, BLO, 16.41; 2. Madison Abbenhaus, BLO, 16.74. 300: 1. Abbenhaus, BLO, 49.32; 2. Teya Boyer, PLA, 49.44; 4x100: 1. Bloomfield (Abbenhaus, Kate Bruns, Pinkelman, Eisenhauer) 52.42; 2. Stuart, 53.95. 4x400: 1. Boyd County (Natalie Hausmann, Jenny Goesch, Hoffman, Drueke) 4:23.27; 2. Chambers/Wheeler Central, 4:29.52. 4x800: 1. O’Neill St. Mary’s (Alissa Brabec, Lorissa Reiman, Kaylin Gaughenbaugh, Williamson) 10:30.42; 2. Niobrara/Verdigre, 11:13.80.
High jump: 1. Andrea Sucha, N/V, 4-9; 2. Callie Pulis, PLA, 4-7. Pole vault: 1. Ella McFarland, BLO, 8-6; 2. Emma Otte, ONSM, 8-0. Long jump: 1. Hoffman, BOY, 16-6½; 2. Boyer, PLA, 15-5¾. Triple jump: 1. Abbie Kromarek, PLA, 34-0; 2. Sucha, N/V, 32-7½. Shot put: 1. Lexi Schroder, STU, 34-8; 2. Ravenscroft, C-K, 34-2. Discus: 1. Chaney Konopasek, N/V, 120-9; 2. Hoffman, BOY, 105-9.
Bloomfield 89, Creighton 82, O’Neill St. Mary’s 82, Chambers/Wheeler Central 66, Niobrara/Verdigre 55, Plainview 52, Elgin Public/Pope John 43, Boyd County 22, Stuart 19, Cody-Kilgore 14.
Top two finishers
100: 1. Evan Haverkamp, BLO, 11.55; 2. Jackson Waldo, CWC, 11.67. 200: 1. Haverkamp, BLO, 23.45; 2. Cole Duba, CWC, 23.58. 400: 1. Waldo, CWC, 52.74; 2. Cody Bruegman, BLO. 800: 1. Grant Winkelbauer, ONSM, 2:05.80; 2. Ethan Moses, CWC, 2:08.46. 1,600: 1. Jordan Mosel, PLA, 4:54.17; 2. Kyler Mosel, PLA, 4:59.48. 3,200: 1. J. Mosel, PLA, 10:44.82; 2. K. Mosel, PLA, 11:05.28. 100 hurdles: 1. Kyler Adams, CRE, 17.15; 2. Gunner Vargas, N/V, 18.19. 300: 1. Connor Semin, ONSM, 43.16; 2. G. Vargas, N/V, 45.43. 4x100: 1. Creighton (Cade Hammer, Brody Eggers, Anthony Morrill, Caleb Smith) 46.43; 2. Chambers/Wheeler Central 46.97. 4x400: 1. O’Neill St. Mary’s (Semin, Will Schmitz, Gabe Pribil, Winkelbauer) 3:38.85; 2. Bloomfield, 3:42.30. 4x800: 1. O’Neill St. Mary’s (Pribil, Isaac Everitt, Schmidtz, Winkelbauer) 8:55.25; 2. Plainview, 9:08.65.
High jump: 1. Austin Dvorak, STU, 6-5; 2. Colton Vargas, N/V. Pole vault: 1. Matthew Johnson, CRE, 12-0; 2. Tate Thompson, ONSM, 11-0. Long jump: 1. Hammer, CRE, 20-2½; 2. Myles Kittelson, EPPJ, 19-11½. Triple jump: 1. Hammer, CRE, 41-2½; 2. Trey Sucha, N/V, 39-8¼. Shot put: 1. Chase Snyder, BOY, 52-5½; 2. Dalton Gieselman, BLO, 47-10. Discus: 1. Snyder, BOY, 161-3; 2. Gieselman, BLO, 150-2.