Adrianna Katcher nearly derails Joy Ripslinger's lofty goal

State track, 3A girls: CPU freshman comes up just short in 3,000

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DES MOINES — Joy Ripslinger is bidding to do something that has never been accomplished before.

Adrianna Katcher almost became an early spoiler.

A freshman at Center Point-Urbana, Katcher led the Class 3A girls’ 3,000-meter race for the first 2,900. But Ripslinger, the Davenport Assumption ace, had too much closing speed and won it in 9 minutes, 55.37 seconds at the state track and field meet Thursday afternoon at Drake Stadium.

“I know how much of a sprinter she is,” said Katcher, who was clocked in 9:56.19. “When she came up on me, I was already pretty dead.”

Ripslinger is attempting an unprecedented feat in Iowa girls’ history — titles in the 400, 800, 1,500 and 3,000.

After her triumph in the 3,000, she came from behind in the 400, so she’s halfway there.

Assumption is pursuing its fifth consecutive 3A girls’ title, and the Knights are off to a strong start. They’ve got 29 points through five events.

Sioux City Heelan is second with 15 points. Pella, projected as Assumption’s chief threat this weekend, has three.

Katcher won the 3A individual title at the state cross country meet last November. She put herself in position for another major triumph Thursday, racing to the lead immediately, and it was a sizeable lead for the majority of the race.

But Ripslinger, a University of Arkansas signee, scurried back into contention with about 800 meters to go.

“I’m not disappointed,” Katcher said. “My time was pretty good.”

Cedar Rapids Xavier’s Katie Tallett was fourth in 10:25.61.

Stacey Slaven of South Tama was fourth in the high jump, clearing 5 feet, 2 inches.

STATE TRACK & FIELD: 3A GIRLS

Teams (through 5 events) — 1. Davenport Assumption 29, 2. Sioux City Heelan 15, 3. (tie) Humboldt and North Polk 12, 5. (tie) Gilbert and Harlan 10, 7. (tie) Center Point-Urbana, Greene County and Dubuque Wahlert 8, 10. Oskaloosa 7.5.

Results (top 3 plus other area placewinners)

Discus — 1. Gillian Streit (Harlan), 137-3; 2. Kelsey Peters (Humboldt), 128-10; 3. Alexis Westercamp (Oskaloosa), 125-11; 5. Haley Blazek (Marion), 118-3; 6. Ainsley Schrock (Clear Creek Amana), 117-8.

High jump — 1. Maria Gorham (North Polk), 5-8; 2. Megan Durbin (Greene County), 5-7; 3. Madison Harms (Sergeant Bluff-Luton), 5-6; 4. Stacey Slaven (South Tama), 5-2; 5. Jamie Glanz (West Delaware), 5-2.

3,000 — 1. Joy Ripslinger (Davenport Assumption), 9:55.37; 2. Adrianna Katcher (Center Point-Urbana), 9:56.19; 3. Ellie Friesen (Crestwood), 10:14.76; 4. Katie Tallett (Cedar Rapids Xavier), 10:25.61; 7. Josephine Berlage (Decorah), 10:38.68; 8. Hallie Kephart (Marion), 10:42.53.

3,200 relay — 1. Gilbert (Branson, Pollard, Heuer, Rahn), 9:35.65; 2. Dubuque Wahlert, 9:37.33; 3. Sioux City Heelan, 9:38.54; 5. Decorah, 9:45.66; 8. Mount Vernon, 9:49.78.

400 — 1. Joy Ripslinger (Davenport Assumption), 56.29; 2. Madison Jochum (Sioux City Heelan), 56.53; 3. Carly King (Davenport Assumption), 56.55; 6. Erin Kerkhoff (Solon), 58.76; 7. Shelby Hulsebus (Benton Community), 58.83.

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

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