Tracksters near qualifying marks

Nathan Oster

Several Greybull High School athletes made runs at state qualifying standards at a small meet Thursday in Burlington.
The Buffs placed fifth in both divisions, with the girls tallying 27 points and the boys 18.5.  Neither team was whole due to spring break; of the 25 athletes out for track, just 12 competed.
Chaise Benasky, a senior, and Marlee Henson, a sophomore, came closest to punching their tickets to the state meet.
Benasky placed second in the 100-meter hurdles, finishing in a time of 18.28 seconds, just a shade off the 2A qualifying standard of 18.05 seconds.
She came close in the high jump, too, clearing 4 feet, 8 inches, which was good for fifth place.  The qualifying standard — and her personal best from last season — is a leap of 4-9.
“She’s really close in both, so hopefully soon, she makes it in them,” said Coach Nolan Tracy.
With those two placings, Benasky accounted for 12 of her team’s 27 points.
Henson contributed six of her own, placing third in the 100-meter dash. She ran a 13.78 — just off the 2A qualifying standard of 13.6.
And Wyatt Whaley continues to impress.  A freshman, she placed second in the shotput with a heave of 28 feet, 9 inches, beating by more than a foot her previous PR of 27-7.  To qualify, she needs to top 32-9.
She also placed eighth in the discus with a throw of 66-3, an improvement of nearly 3 feet from her previous PR.
“She’s a natural thrower,” said Tracy, adding, “We haven’t even had that much time to work on it.  The little work did, hopefully it was the reason for her improvement.”
The boys team scored its 18.5 points in four events, and while none of the placers are close to qualifying, several are showing signs of improvement.
Jesse Brown set a new PR in the long jump, leaping 16-4 1/2, which was good for fourth place.  His PR going into the meet was a 15-6.
Carter Peasley improved by 2 inches in the high jump, clearing 5-4 to place fourth.
Kamryn Gorski placed fifth in the 3,200 meters, finishing in 12.40.66.
The 1,600-meter relay team of Brown, Cord Edeler, Shawn August and Caiden Sorenson placed third to account for the team’s remaining points.  They ran a 4:14.33.
“For two or three of those guys, it was their first time ever running a 400 in competition,” said Tracy. “That group has been trying different races — they did the 4x8 in Cody, the medley before that.  This time, they figured they try the 4x4.
“It hasn’t been the same four kids, but they’re all freshmen and sophomores.  I told them, ‘If you’re goal is to make it to state, you’ll probably have a better chance to make it in a relay.’”
This week
With school back in session, it’s full steam ahead for the Buffs, who were scheduled to host the annual Bill Gerrard Memorial Invitational on Saturday.  
But with bad weather in the forecast, all but one of the teams planning to attend pulled out, opting for a meet Thursday or Friday. Tracy responded by cancelling the meet.  At press time, the plan was to attend a meet today in Worland.