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For Iowa City High, state track distance medley win was worth flipping for
Little Hawks claim the Class 4A distance medley relay, move into first place in the team standings
DES MOINES — Cartwheel, backflip. And Jovan Harris stuck the landing.
“I was just feeling really athletic,” Harris said of his postrace celebration. “I was thinking, ‘If we win this, I’m definitely hitting the backflip.’”
Iowa City High got a huge lift in the Class 4A boys’ race Friday morning when it came out of the second heat to win the distance medley relay at the state track and field meet at Drake Stadium.
Sam Rew, Ronnie Major, Harris and Ammon Smith won their heat in 3:28.69. Then they watched. And waited.
“It was stressful,” Smith said. “But after they made the last handoffs (in the fast heat), I thought we were OK because none of those anchors would be fast enough to beat our time.”
Iowa City West won the final heat in 3:30.55. The Little Hawks celebrated, including Harris’ slick gymnastics routine.
Smith was stressed during the final heat, and had the Drake Stadium medical staff on alert when he collapsed, head-first, at the finish line.
“I couldn’t see the last 100 meters,” he said after his 1:54.0 anchor. “Everything just went black. But I’m happy we got the win.”
Todd Rent, Izaiah Loveless, Aidan Jacobsen and Alex McKane ran for West.
With 43.5 points, City High takes the 4A boys’ lead into a climactic Saturday. Linn-Mar is second with 32 points, followed by West Des Moines Dowling (29).
Cedar Rapids Washington was the 800-meter relay runner-up. West Des Moines Dowling (1:27.50) won the second heat, then the Warriors’ crew of Watts McBride, Aidan Armon, Michael Blank and Miles Thompson ran 1:27.53.
“Aidan and I didn’t have the best handoff, and it cost us,” Blank said. “I might have taken off a little early.”
McBride said, “We’ll take it for what it is. We still have a lot we want to accomplish.”
Washington’s effort was a school record.
“These guys did amazing,” Thompson said. “We wanted to win, but we’re like family. I love these guys.”
Linn-Mar padded its points total with third-place finishes Friday from Isaac Guerrero (long jump) and Sam Watts (shot put) and fourth place from its distance medley.
“I hit a PR today, which was awesome,” said Watts, a sophomore who threw 55 feet, 0 1/4 inches. “That last one, I just wanted to launch one. I had a rough week of practice; everything just didn’t feel right. But today was awesome.”
Jacobsen was third for West, Matt Schaeckenbach fourth for City High in the 400 hurdles.
Friday results: Class 4A boys
Top 10 teams (through 10 events) — 1. Iowa City High 43.5, 2. Linn-Mar 32, 3. West Des Moines Dowling 29, 4. Cedar Falls 22, 5. (tie) Indianola and North Scott 20, 7. (tie) Ankeny and Iowa City West 18, 9. Southeast Polk 17.5, 10. (tie) Dubuque Senior, Sioux City North and Pleasant Valley 16.
Long jump — 1. Abu Sama (Southeast Polk), 24-2 3/4; 2. Trey Campbell (Cedar Falls), 22-11 3/4; 3. Isaac Guerrero (Linn-Mar), 21-6 3/4; 8. Colton Kronfeld (Cedar Rapids Kennedy), 20-11.
Shot put — 1. Nolan Recker (Muscatine), 59-9 3/4; 2. Ryan Saddler (Pleasant Valley), 55-3; 3. Sam Watts (Linn-Mar), 55-0 1/4; 6. TaeShon McDaniels (Iowa City High), 52-0.
800 relay — 1. West Des Moines Dowling (Emanuel, McClain, Bliss, Brown), 1:27.50; 2. Cedar Rapids Washington, 1:27.53; 3. West Des Moines Valley, 1:28.75.
400 hurdles — 1. Matthew Kruse (Dubuque Senior), 52.80; 2. Logan Piper (Indianola), 53.81; 3. Aidan Jacobsen (Iowa City West), 53.82; 4. Matt Schaeckenbach (Iowa City High), 54.33; 5. Nicholas Gorsich (Linn-Mar), 54.83.
Distance medley relay — 1. Iowa City High (Rew, Major, Harris, Smith), 3:28.69; 2. Iowa City West, 3:30.55; 3. Waukee Northwest, 3:31.84; 4. Linn-Mar, 3:32.13.