“I just wanted to be consistent, and get my marks,” said Williams. “I knew if I would jump what I usually am capable of, it would be good enough to get to me to state. I just wanted to advance in all three of my events, and maybe I’ll be able to break a personal best next weekend.”
Williams soared to a 44'03" in the triple jump, defeating Carl Junction’s Conner Rohmiller by a foot and a half.
“At the start of the year, I jumped what would be already good enough to qualify to state,” said Williams. “I just wanted to improve upon that and make sure I grab that state bid.”
Despite finishing second in the high jump to Landon Bartel of Southern Boone, Williams is focused more on his performance at the state meet in Jeff City.
“I’m not too worried about winning at sectionals,” said Williams. “State has precedence when bringing your best performance to the track. My goal coming through districts and sectionals was to just finish in the top four to advance on.”
Williams returns for his third showing at the state meet, and looks to improve upon his 2012 bronze placing in high jump.
Starkey aims for school medal record
With a school medal record on the line, Bolivar’s track star Haryl Starkey hopes to prove himself worthy after qualifying to the state meet in all four of his events.
“I always try to just run as fast as I can, and hopefully outdo what I ran the week before,” said Starkey. “I feel pretty good with my wins today, and I look forward to next weekend at state.”
Starkey has placed at state every year since his freshman season, collecting five state medals, only one shy of the school record.
“I want to try to get the most state medals for Bolivar over a single high school career,” said Starkey. “The most is six, and I currently have five. This season has been great. I want to finish up strong, and end with a big bang.”
Starkey ran for first in the 400 meter dash (48.53) and the 4 x 100 meter relay (43.57), breaking personal records in both events by over a second. He also qualified in the 4 x 200 meter relay and the 200 meter dash.
“Despite finishing second in the 4 x 200 relay, we still were able to break our personal best by over two and a half seconds. Our relay gets along, has a great attitude, and keeps a good dynamic when we compete on the track,” said Starkey. “Knowing I’m not going to be playing college sports, it puts a lot of pressure on me since this is the last sporting event I’ll be participating in. I just want to improve upon my previous showings at state.”
Roebuck and Smith battle it out
The rivalry between Springfield Catholic’s strong sprinter Erin Roebuck, and Hollister’s recovering runner Hannah Smith is a friendly one, but yet still a competition between the league foes.
“She’s a great competitor and has definitely pushed me to do my best when we compete against one another,” said Roebuck. “I have nothing but good words for that girl. She’s a great sportsman and I look forward to racing her each and every time on the track.”
After running for first in 400 meter dash and fourth in the 4 x 400 meter relay, Roebuck clinched runner-up in the 200 meter dash, as Smith came in sixth behind her.
“I had a lot of pressure that I put on myself, so I just feel so relieved after today,” said Roebuck. “I wanted to be sure that I came ready to go for competition. You definitely have to be mentally able to keep on going when participating in so many events.”
In retaliation, Smith outran Roebuck for second place in the 100 meter dash, defeating her by only .01 of a second.
“Hannah has always been great in the 100, and it has only been my fifth meet running the event this year. And I haven’t ran it since my freshman season,” said Roebuck.” Today’s wins definitely pushes me to keep working hard and continue what I’m doing.”
After straining her quad midseason, Smith has battled through her injury to continually compete for a bid to the state track meet.
“I’m not sure how I injured myself, my quad just started to hurt, but I didn’t give up on it,” said Smith. “A mixture of heat, ice, and stimulator workouts helped my recovery.”
Despite not qualifying in the long jump and 200 meter dash, Smith expects to accomplish big things next at state in the 100 meter dash.
“Doing well at sectionals definitely provides some momentum heading into state,” said Smith. “I need to work hard at coming out of the blocks faster to jump ahead of the other runners. If I’m able to do that, I can expect myself to do well."
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