Two Evanston High School athletes pre-qualified for the state meet during competition at the Evanston Invitational track and field meet on Wednesday, April 18, at Evanston High School.
Hunter Groll finished the 300-meter hurdles in 40.91 seconds to secure his spot at state. He took first in Wednesday’s event.
Joining Groll in punching a ticket to state is Kerry Wheaton, who competed in the 100-meter dash, earning second place with a time of 11.36 seconds. He also took second in the 200-meter dash. Wheaton took the top spot in the 4x100 meter relay with teammates Kody Smith, Seth Lester, and Cris Periman.
Groll and Wheaton join Breila Fuller and Seth Macdonald as pre-qualifiers. Fuller had already qualified in the 800-meter run before Wednesday’s competition, and Macdonald has secured his berth in the high jump.
Several other Red Devils capitalized on the home field advantage by taking top honors in their events.
Macdonald leaped his way to the top of the podium by winning the high jump competition. He was followed by fellow Red Devil Wade Bowen, who came in second.
Tyrell Halladay showed his dominance by beating all competitors in both the 800- and 1600-meter runs.
In the girls’ 1600-meter sprint medley, Reghan Worley, Gabby Hall, Lexi Demander and Bryssa Blevins worked together to finish in first. Worley and Demander also took the top spot when they joined Breila Fuller and Tayler Groll in the 4x400 meter relay.
Evanston head coach Roy Barker said that the event was a success for his team, citing not only the accomplishments of those who qualified for state, but also pointing out that many on the team had set new personal records during Wednesday’s competition. He also expressed appreciation for the volunteers from the Evanston community and the school district who helped run, score and judge the event.
The Red Devil track team will hit the road for their next competition Friday in Green River.
Other Evanston athletes to finish near the top of their events include Periman and Hunter Groll, who placed third and fifth in the men’s 100 meter dash, respectively; Worley, who was third in the girls’ 400 and 800 meter dashes; Smith, Gabe Morris and Periman, who finished second, third, and fourth, respectively, in the boys’ 400-meter dash; Garrett Berger, who earned fifth place in the 800-meter run; Fuller and Sydney Lyman, who took third and fifth, respectively, in the women’s 1600-meter run; Logan Driver, who took second in the boys’ 3200-meter run; and Lilly Williams, who finished second in the 3200-meter run.
Other notable performances came from Tayler Groll, who took third in the girls’ 100-meter hurdles; Hunter Groll, Jamin Barker and Cade Francom, who finished second, fourth, and fifth, respectively, in the 100-meter hurdles, respectively; Tayler Groll and Gabby Hall, who finished third and fifth in the women’s 300 meter hurdles; Morris, Smith, Hunter Groll and Halladay, who as a team finished second in the 4x400 meter relay; Brandon Sepos, Morris, Wheaton and Brady Wagstaff, who together took second in the boys’ 1600-meter sprint medley; Matthew Geary, who took third in both the shot put and discus; Seth Lester, who took third in the long jump; Zocia Nowakowski, who took second in the girls’ long jump; Kaelyn Hiatt, and Tayler Groll, who tied for second, plus Amber Lowe, who took fourth, in the pole vault; and Periman, who took third in the boys’ pole vault.