The Marion 4x800 team placed third with a time of 8:13.37, good enough for a new school record by about 5 seconds.
“I’m surprised,” runner Brody Carroll said. “I didn’t know we’d run that well.”
Each of the four runners ran their best splits of the season. Sophomore Tyler Neufeld led off the race and ran a time of 2:07.20. Each following runner was progressively faster. Carroll was second and posted a time of 2:02.99. Patrick McCarty was third and ran a time of 2:01.63. Jordan Hett anchored the race with a time of 2:00.54.
After McCarty ran well, with one of his 400-meter laps under a minute, Hett was close enough that he challenged Cory Donley of Sacred Heart and Cordell Goering of Hutchinson Trinity for the lead. Eventually, Donley and Goering pulled away in the final lap, but Hett’s bold push led to the Marion team’s time.
Hett and McCarty were the most familiar with the half-mile distance, even though Hett is a natural distance runner and McCarty’s preferred race is the 400. Another bold maneuver in a relay belonged to James Jones in the 4x400 on Friday. Along with Neufeld, Carroll, and Seth Snelling, the team placed eighth in prelims to secure a place in the finals on Saturday.
Neufeld was off to a slow start in the race, but Snelling and Carroll made up some ground. Jones made up the difference, sprinting into third in the second flight.
Jones also ran under a minute in the fifth-place final. The Marion team, which included McCarty taking the place of Snelling, ran a time of 3:31.80.
Jones was busy all weekend. He placed third in the long jump, 21-6, and fifth in the triple jump, 43-5. Thierolf noted that he jumped above his seed in both events.