Blair Brooks shines in a meet with extra meaning

Track & field: Marion junior sweeps the jumping events at Kingston

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CEDAR RAPIDS — This meet matters to Blair Brooks. This stadium is significant.

“It’s a special meet to me,” he said. “This is the last place my grandpa saw me compete, last year.”

Grandpa was Bob Brooks, legendary Cedar Rapids radio sports commentator who died last June at age 89. He is immortalized in the Kingston Stadium press box that bears his name.

Grandson is a talented junior athlete at Marion High School. And Saturday, a double-champion at the Draxton-Stiers-Wilkinson Invitational track and field meet.

Brooks sailed a season-best 22 feet, 8 1/2 inches to capture the long-jump title, and added a winning 6-4 1/4 leap in the high jump.

“I felt pretty good,” he said. “Powerful.”

A very good day almost became even more. Brooks was over the bar at 6-7 on his last attempt, clipping it with his heel.

“I’ll get it,” he said. “Maybe I’m saving it for (the) Drake (Relays).”

Cedar Rapids Kennedy ran away with the boys’ team race, winning nine events (including five relays) and collecting 223 points. Brooks led Marion to second with 100 points, followed by Cedar Rapids Jefferson (74) and Cascade (72).

Kennedy’s Jackson Coker swept the throwing events with efforts of 168-10 in the discus and 60-4 1/2 in the shot put. The Cougars’ depth was reflected in 26 top-three finishes, including 1-2 sweeps in the shot put, discus, 3,200 and 400.

Center Point-Urbana’s JoJo Frost was a quadruple-winner, crossing first in the boys’ 100 (10.78 seconds), 110 hurdles (14.12) and 400 hurdles (54.00), then bringing the Stormin’ Pointers from behind in the 1,600-meter relay with a 49.2-second anchor.

Frost is ranked in the top five (all classes) in the 100 and both hurdles events.

Iowa City West was the top team in a balanced girls’ field. The Women of Troy registered 115 points to outscore Dubuque Hempstead (94) and Cedar Rapids Kennedy (92).

West isn’t a terribly deep team, but has plenty of star power. It got another gem when Kitra Bell — a fourth-place state long-jumper in 2016 — moved in from Waterloo West before the school year.

“I love it here,” she said. “It’s really different, and I mean that in the most positive way. It has allowed me to grow as an athlete. I feel a lot stronger.”

Bell long-jumped 17-3, then ran on the winning shuttle hurdle relay team.

She fortifies a jumping/hurdling crew led by senior Valerie Welch, bound for the University of Colorado.

“It’s amazing being with Val,” Bell said. “She pushes me with everything she does.

“A lot of girls are intimidated by fast girls. But I know working with her is going to make me faster.”

West won seven events.

Jefferson’s MiAsia Bergmann was the girls’ 100 champion in 12.19, and ran on the J-Hawks’ winning 1,600 relay (4:06.65).

BOYS’ TRACK & FIELD: DRAXTON-STIERS-WILKINSON INVITATIONAL

At Kingston Stadium

Teams — 1. C.R. Kennedy 223, 2. Marion 100, 3. C.R. Jefferson 74, 4. Cascade 72, 5. Center Point-Urbana 59, 6. Burlington 25, 7. Iowa City High 18.

Shot put — 1. Jackson Coker (CRK), 60-4 1/2; 2. Sam Pape (CRK), 45-5 1/4; 3. Caleb Wagner (Mar), 42-2; Discus — 1. Jackson Coker (CRK), 168-10; 2. Cam Jones (CRK), 141-0; 3. Brendan Noonan (Casc), 133-1; High jump — 1. Blair Brooks (Mar), 6-4 1/4; 2. Malik Haynes (CRK), 6-2 1/4; 3. Cole Gehl (Casc), 5-8 1/4; Long jump — 1. Blair Brooks (Mar), 22-8 1/2; 2. Malik Haynes (CRK), 22-4; Terrell Jordan Jr. (CRK), 21-9.

Sprint medley relay — 1. C.R. Kennedy (McCarty, Baker, Jones, Price), 1:35.40; 2. Cascade, 1:39.80; 3. C.R. Jefferson, 1:40.31; 3,200 — 1. Jackson Foley (CRK), 10:47.93; 2. Ricardo Calderon (CRK), 10:49.30; 3. Sricharan Sheshashai (CRJ), 11:00.31; 3,200 relay — 1. Marion (Fopma, Hemann, Whalen, Brase), 8:41.02; 2. C.R. Kennedy, 8:41.44; 3. Center Point-Urbana, 8:47.21; Shuttle hurdle relay — 1. C.R. Kennedy (White, Jordan, Stecker, Dix), 1:00.45; 2. Cascade. 1:02.31; 3. Center Point-Urbana, 1:03.66; 100 — 1. JoJo Frost (CPU), 10.78; 2. Chase Baker (CRK), 10.79; 3. Zak Packingham (CRK), 10.80; Distance medley relay — 1. C.R. Kennedy (McCarty, Allers, Kronfeld, Gibbons), 3:51.49; 2. C.R. Jefferson, 3:53.93; 3. Burlington, 3:54.40; 400 — 1. Michael Gallagher (CRK), 53.89; 2. Branden Knight (CRK), 53.96; 3. Marty Knepper (Casc), 54.45; 800 relay — 1. C.R. Kennedy (Jones, Baker, Price, Packingham), 1:31.39; 2. C.R. Jefferson, 1:31.45; 3. Marion, 1:33.37; 110 hurdles — 1. JoJo Frost (CPU), 14.12; 2. Terrell Jordan Jr. (CRK), 14.44; 3. Blair Brooks (Mar), 14.71; 800 — 1. Michael Taylor (ICH), 2:07.12; 2. Conor Otting (Casc), 2:07.32; 3. Aidan Meyer (CRJ), 2:08.89; 200 — 1. Mitchell Hall (CRJ), 23.11; 2. Tim Kelly (CRK), 23.34; 3. Nick Duehr (CRK), 23.59; 400 hurdles — 1. JoJo Frost (CPU), 54.00; 2. Keeler Dix (CRK), 57.57; 3. Matthew Knox (CRK), 58.03; 1,600 — 1. Jeremy Fopma (Mar), 4:31.95; 2. Cole Schroeder (Burl), 4:32.12; 3. Sean Casey (CRK), 4:48.77; 400 relay — 1. C.R. Kennedy (Jones, Baker, McCarty, Packingham), 43.63; 2. C.R. Jefferson, 43.91; 3. Marion, 44.61; 1,600 relay — 1. Center Point-Urbana (Lindsey, Smith, Karteus, Frost), 3:27.89; 2. C.R. Kennedy, 3:32.45; 3. Cascade, 3:35.83.

GIRLS’ TRACK & FIELD: DRAXTON-STIERS-WILKINSON INVITATIONAL

At Kingston Stadium

Teams — 1. Iowa City West 115, 2. Dubuque Hempstead 94, 3. C.R. Kennedy 92, 4. C.R. Prairie 83, 5. Cedar Falls 79, 6. Iowa City High 74, 7. C.R. Jefferson 52.

Shot put — 1. Chandler Haight (ICW), 41-1 3/4; 2. Megan Gronau (DH), 39-7 1/4; 3. Haile Cook (CRJ), 39-5 1/4; Discus — 1. Leah Dusterhoft (ICW), 124-2 1/2; 2. Alicia Sill (CRP), 116-4; 3. Luci Murphy (ICH), 114-10; High jump — 1. Katie Beer (CRK), 5-2; 2. Erin McGrath (DH), 5-0; 3. Amber Smothers (DH), 4-10; Long jump — 1. Kitra Bell (ICW), 17-3; 2. Katie Beer (CRK), 16-4; 3. Janyla Hoskins (DH), 16-2.

Sprint medley relay — 1. C.R. Prairie (Ross, Smith, Andorf, Skriver), 1:53.19; 2. Iowa City High, 1:54.09; 3. Iowa City West, 1:55.17; 3,000 — 1. Hannah Frazee (CRP), 11:02.87; 2. Hannah Brown (DH), 11:06.98; 3. Emily Bywater (ICH), 11:12.51; 3,200 relay — 1. Iowa City West (Moore, Ince, Skopec, Nock), 9:54.69; 2. Dubuque Hempstead, 10:13.07; 3. Iowa City High, 10:29.08; Shuttle hurdle relay — 1. Iowa City West (Steva, Bell, Bauer, Noibi), 1:06.88; 2. C.R. Kennedy, 1:07.66; 3. C.R. Prairie, 1:11.57; 100 — 1. MiAsia Bergmann (CRJ), 12.19; 2. Cheyenne Mitchell (CRK), 12.28; 3. Janlya Hoskins (DH), 12.33; Distance medley relay — 1. C.R. Jefferson (Nagel, Clark, Hawkins, Belew), 4:29.40; 2. C.R. Prairie, 4:32.19; 3. Cedar Falls, 4:35.71; 400 — 1. Kaelyn Ryan (CRK), 1:05.48; 2. Emma Copeland (CRP), 1:06.00; 3. Grace Ries (DH), 1:06.98; 800 relay — 1. Cedar Falls (Longnecker, Kvale, Sterrett, Kimbrough), 1:48.14; 2. Iowa City High, 1:48.63; 3. C.R. Kennedy, 1:51.00; 100 hurdles — 1. Valerie Welch (ICW), 14.10; 2. MiAsia Bergmann (CRJ), 14.63; 3. Natalie McAllister (CRK), 15.48; 800 — 1. Mackenzie Michael (CF), 2:22.26; 2. Paige Kvale (CF), 2:28.79; 3. Mary Arch (ICH), 2:29.15; 200 — 1. Cheyenne Mitchell (CRK), 27.08; 2. Emma Clark (ICH), 27.49; 3. Jada Golden-Smith (CF), 28.74; 400 hurdles — 1. Sydney Davis (CF), 1:07.46; 2. Merryl Green (ICH), 1:08.30; 3. Meg Schmitz (CF), 1:08.35; 1,500 — 1. Bailey Nock (ICW), 4:48.59; 2. Gabby Skopec (ICW), 4:59.98; 3. Kaylee Leicht (DH), 5:03.94; 400 relay — 1. Iowa City High (Clark, Sartini-Rideout, Cooper, Green), 50.76; 2. Iowa City West, 50.79; 3. C.R. Kennedy, 51.26; 1,600 relay — 1. C.R. Jefferson (Anderson, Nagel, Bergmann, Belew), 4:06.65; 2. C.R. Prairie, 4:16.11; 3. Cedar Falls, 4:17.60.

l Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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