MHS boys score well at Beloit meet
In what’s become an annual tradition, Marion High School’s track teams made the long trek to Beloit on Friday for a meet with strong competition and a regional-like atmosphere.
“Especially for where the state has sent us the last four years, one reason we love going up there is because we get eight regional schools there, and there are four more in our part of the meet that are good 4A schools,” coach Grant Thierolf said. “I gives us a state kind of experience because it’s a long day. It’s a good experience for our kids.”
It was definitely good experience for thrower Tyler Palic, who took first in discus with a throw of 165 feet.
“He fouled his first two throws,” Thierolf said. “Beloit’s discus ring is kind of funky; it gives you some different angles on things. He made some adjustments and his third and fourth throws were outstanding. He had no wind advantage whatsoever.”
A personal best of 47’ in shot put was good enough for Palic to place second.
Sprinter Jack Schneider continued moving past a fall knee injury, placing second at 200 meters and third in the 100.
“He was running for the second time this year against Kaden Davis out of Ellsworth, who’s the fastest kid in the state, and Jack is right there with him,” Thierolf said.
However, Schneider’s most impressive performance was anchoring the winning 4x400 relay.
“He got the baton about 30 to 35 meters down,” Thierolf said. “He had to chase three teams down, and he won by almost a second. Those races are fun to watch.”
Bryce Shults placed second in pole vault, while Colin Williams took second in the 800 and fourth in the 1600. Tyler Arocha took sixth in long jump, and the 4x100 relay placed fifth.
For the girls, the meet could be characterized as a learning experience.
“We found it was a tough day; that’s a tough meet,” Thierolf said. “We had some girls compete awfully hard, but we came out with only six points. They found out competing at that level with those schools is tough.”
Marissa Jacobsen has been a team leader, but a minor leg injury while placing third in long jump was enough for Thierolf to withdraw her from competition as a precaution.
“This close to the end of the season you don’t want injuries, so we kept her out of the rest of the day, and she would’ve placed in the other three events she was in,” he said.
There’s still opportunity to improve as the team points toward league and regional meets, Thierolf said. Most of his athletes are in good physical condition, which means coaches can focus on technique.
“Now it’s a matter of refining starts, refining leg action, refining arm action, and in some cases getting them to relax,” Thierolf said. “The inclination is to try harder and tighten up, which is the worst thing you can do. Sometimes they have to relax, and we work on that in practice, too.”