Competing against more than 10 schools, the Marion Warriors defended their home turf — even if that turf was actually in Herington.
Displaced because of track construction, the Warriors headed up US-77 to Herington, where the boys’ and girls’ teams won narrow victories over the competition.
“Any time you can come out of a meet of this quality with two team championships is a pretty big deal,” head coach Grant Thierolf said. “We will have to keep in mind that it is early April and what we are shooting for is in late May, but we are pretty pleased with the way the day went.”
The boys netted the title with a one-point margin over second-place El Dorado.
Seniors Kyle Palic, Seth Snelling, and Brad Stone led the way, with 26, 18, and 13 points, respectively.
Palic finished first in discus and javelin, and added a third-place finish in shot put.
“Our seniors and older athletes really led the way,” Thierolf said. “Kyle Palic showed that he is one of the best combined throwers in the state, and he is off to a great start.”
Snelling won the 400 meters and Stone won the 300-meter hurdles. A relay of Stone, Snelling, Braden Fahey, and Tyler Neufeld also took first in the 4x400. Snelling also took second in pole vault.
Freshman sprinter Jack Schneider proved his varsity readiness, finishing third in the 100 and fifth in the 200.
Other top-three finishers were Quinton Hett in triple jump and the 4x800 relay of Austin Neufeld, Devin Regnier, Tyler Arocha, and Colin Williams.
Girls’ balance leads to win
The girls’ margin of victory was eight points, topping second-place McPherson 97-89. Marion was able to score points in most every area to secure the win.
Sophomore Marissa Jacobson led the way with a win in pole vault and second-place finishes in long jump and 400.
Thrower Kristen Herzet won the discus and finished third in javelin and sixth in shot put.
Distance runner McKenzee Remmers won the 3,200 and placed third in the 800.
Remmers and Jacobson teamed with Sam Richmond and Marshelle Mermis to take first in the 4x400.
Mermis took third in the 400 to round out the Warriors’ top-three finishers.
“We had a nice balance on the girls side of the meet, scoring points in just about every area of the competition and that will serve us well over time as work toward the end of the year,” Thierolf said.