Hiland faced some stiff competition in the Jeff Arthurs Invitational and a tri-meet with Northwestern and Lucas, and according to head coach Mark Fowler, it has been a decent beginning to the new track and field season.
“It’s not a bad start,” Fowler said. “I think overall we have been faster than we were last year, but we still are not in shape, and that is a good sign that we can improve a lot. Our sprinters are starting to show up and we had some solid efforts.”
The Hiland girls took home second place in a tri-meet with Northewstern and Lucas. The Huskies won with 80 points, while the Lady Hawks tallied 52 to Lucas’ 36.
The 4×400 team of Isabelle Fowler, Brooke Miller, Nikki Yoder and Melissa Hostetler cruised to victory in 5:02.39, more than 10 seconds ahead of Northwestern and Lucas.
Emily Troyer ran a 17:21 3200 to place second, while in the 200, Marissa Sommers dashed to victory in 30.51, with Hailey Miller taking third in 20.96.
Hostetler darted to victory in the 300-meter hurdles in a time of 54.57, well ahead of the field. Teammate Anne Straits took third in 1:01.02. Fowler ran a 1:12.47 in the 400, but was nipped by Blair Colter of Northwestern who won in 1:11.32. In the 1600, Huskies’ Weslea Arthur won in 6:26, with Hiland’s Liz Troyer placing second in 7:23.
The Hiland 4×200 team of Nikki Yoder, Sommers, Audrey Menuez and Melody Murtaugh earned a second place finish in 2:05.19, while Sommers and Hailey Miller earned second and third in the 100 in times of 14.62 and 14.66, respectively.
Lexi Yoder and Olivia Gingerich took third and fourth in the 100-meter hurdles in 20.41 and 20.56, the 4×800 team of Hostetler, Fowler, Brooke Miller and Liz Troyer grabbed second in a time of 12:41.85, Sommers went 12-9 in the long jump to take second while teammate Hailey Miller was third at 12-6 and Murtaugh was fourth at 12-3.
On the boys’ side of the ledger, the Huskies also captured first-place with 74, edging out Lucas with 63. Hiland was a distant third at 38, but the Hawks did have some highlights.
The 4×800-meter relay team struck gold, with the quartet of Isaiah Yoder, Earvin Keim, Jadon Yoder and Evan Casey placing first in 1:43.41. Matt Troyer also grabbed a win in the 400, where his time of 57.85 was the only time under one minute.
Hiland’s 4×800 team of Matt Troyer, Hunter Yoder, Tyler Kuhns and Alijah Chupp just missed a victory, losing to Northwestern. The Hawks finished in 9:41.59.
Isaiah Yoder raced to second place in both the 100 and 200-meter sprints, finishing the 100 in a time of 11.59, where he was nipped by a scant two-100ths of a second by Huskies’ Brandon Reed. His 200 time of 23.30 was even closer, where he lost one one-100th of a second to Reed.
Hunter Yoder and Lucas’ Gavin Shindeldecker wage quite the battle in the 1600. The two went toe-to-toe, and Yoder was edged out at the wire by a half-second in a time of 5:04.24.
Kuhns took home third in the 800 in 2:29.78, while Hunter Yoder again challenged Shindeldecker in the 3200, only to lose by three seconds in a time of 11:46.71.
Declan Howell and Lucas’ Nick Switzer both cleared 5-10 in the high jump, but Howell had to settle for second on misses. However, Coach Fowler said that was an incredible effort considering Howell had just been cleared to jump after an injury sidelined him.
“Declan hasn’t attempted a jump because of his injury, so for him to step in and do what he did was really encouraging,” Fowler said of Howell, who was a district qualifier in the high jump as a freshman last year.
Aaron Chupp and Alijah Chupp placed second and third respectively in the pole vault.
At the Jeff Arthurs Invitational in Claymont, the Hiland girls placed 10th out of 11 teams while the boys ended up tied for sixth out of 11 teams
The 4×800 team of Hostetler, Brooke Miller, Olivia Mast and Elizabeth Troyer placed fifth in 12:58, and Fowler matched that finish in the 400, where she placed fifth in a time of 1:09.08.
Hostetler posted the third-fastest time in the 300 hurdles in qualifying, and then finished right there in a time of 53.27. The 4×400 team of Fowler, Hostetler, Brooke Miller and Nikki Yoder placed fourth in 4:58.00.
For the boys, Isaiah Yoder took home second place in the 100 in 11.62, behind Caleb Dalton of Carrollton’s blistering time of 11.37. Yoder also placed second in the 200 in a time of 23.79, trailing Mitch Mitchell of East Canton, who won in 23.30.
“Isaiah is already running times that are comparable to his times at the end of last season, so he should be able to get even lower than what he was running last year,” coach Fowler said.
Hunter Yoder placed ninth in the 1600 in 5:02.83, while Matt Troyer continued to look great in the early going, taking second-place in the 400 in 53.19, just getting edged out by Fairless’ Dylan Neff’s winning time of 52.89.
“Matt looks like he is finally back to where he was two years ago before his injury,” Fowler said. “He has really looked good in the early going, so it should be fun to watch him compete this year at a high level.”
Hunter Yoder improved his finish in the 3200, where he placed fifth in 11:24.43. The 4×400 team of Troyer, Brayden Gray, Evan Casey and Nate Yoder placed eighth in 4:13.15. Howell cleared 5-06 in the high jump to place fifth.