Waukee boys post best finish in school history

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Clint Cole • DCN Austin Krohnke anchored Waukee to a third-place finish in the 4x800.
Sam Martin • DCN Waukee junior Noah Larrison reacts after anchoring the Warriors to  the 4x400-meter relay championship on May 18. The Warriors  finished third overall in the three-day meet.
Sam Martin • DCN Ross Reynolds placed sixth in the Class 4A discus.
Sam Martin • DCN A.J. Allen takes the baton from Trevor Allen during the Class 4A 4x200.

DES MOINES — Waukee broke into the trophy ranks last week at the Class 4A state track meet.

The Warrior boys’ track team came away with a third-place team finish, the highest in school history.

The Warriors won two events and finished with 53 points, edging Cedar Rapids Kennedy by just two points. Linn-Mar (72) and Iowa City West (57) were first and second.

“The best we’d ever done at state was fourth,” said junior Noah Larrison. “Getting third, this was big for our team.”

Larrison played a big role in the team’s big finish, helping Waukee record points in each of his four events. He ran the opening leg of the shuttle hurdle team, teaming up with Riley Gray, Josh Brdicko and Jared Brdicko to set a state-meet and school record time of 56.47 seconds, weeks after winning the title at the Drake Relays.

“These guys just killed it today,” anchor Jared Brdicko said of his teammates. “They brought it. We’be been talking about breaking our school record, and we knew it was possible to break the state-meet record. These guys did an amazing job and I just had to pull through for them.”

Larrison anchored the 4x400 team to victory in the final race of the meet, teaming up with Corbin Low, A.J. Allen and Ross Vogel to finish in 3:19.04.

“Coming down the home stretch, I got 50 meters in and kind of looked to my side,” Larrison said. “I thought I saw someone so I just kicked as hard as I could, dug as deep as I could to try to finish the race.”

Larrison also took third in the 400 hurdles in 54.10 and seventh in the 110 hurdles in 15.28.

“He’s really improved over the course of the last year,” coach Brent Heitland said of Larrison. “The success he’s had is a result of all his hard work. He’s done an outstanding job to put himself in this position.”

The 4x400 team needed a second-place finish or better to hold off Kennedy in the points race.

“It was a little pressure knowing that, but those guys had already run five or six races this weekend between prelims and finals,” Heitland said. “It was a little bit of a battle of attrition, and our kids just stepped up and ran great.”

The 4x800 team of Irvin Stumberg, Jordan Roszhart, Connor Simmons and Austin Krohnke was third in 7:50.02. Nihad Ejubovic, Trevor Allen, A.J. Allen and Lowe set school records with a fourth-place finish in the 4x200 (1:28.64) and a sixth-place finish in the 4x100 (42.93).

The distance medley team of Ejubovic, Trevor Allen, Vogel and Roszhart was ninth.

A.J. Allen was fifth in the 200 (22.58), Ross Reynolds was sixth in the discus (159 feet, 3 inches), Tyler Hunke was eighth in the long jump (20 feet, 8 inches) and Krohnke and Stumberg were eighth and 11th in the 800. Lowe was 11th in the 400 and Scott Stanley also placed 12th in the 110 hurdles.

Hunke was 12th and Andrew Cutler 19th in the high jump, while Ryan Tunink and Brennan Borgestad were 10th and 20th in the 3,200. Krohnke was also 22nd in the 1,600.

“It really means a lot because we’ve been so dang close so many times,” Heitland said of the third-place team finish. “We’ve bome down here with an opportunity (in the past) and for whatever reason, it hadn’t worked out. So this is a big step for us to come down here and run to our ability.”

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