Senior Luhrs goes out with high jump medal
By Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican
As expected, Chase County found the Class C boys’ competition stiff at Friday and Saturday’s state track meet in Omaha.
Qualifying in four events, the team ended up with its only points in one event from senior Travis Luhrs, who equalled his personal best of 6’5” in the high jump to bring home the third place medal.
It was Luhrs’ second year at the state meet, after winning the sixth place high jump medal last year.
“I’m real happy with his performance,” Coach Carl Zuege said.
“He had two guys ahead of him jumping really well.”
Luhrs made his 6’5” jump on the first attempt, putting him in good position, Zuege said.
That came after he missed his first two tries at 6’2”, facing possible elimination and a much lower medal-placing. But then he came right back with a successful first attempt at 6’5”.
A jump of 6’8” won the Class C boy’s high jump this year.
Zuege said it was a stacked field of Class C talent at state this year, especially in the distance events. Two of Chase County’s entries at state were distance events.
As an example, this year’s 3200 meter relay team of Indy Smith, Stephen Welsh, Ryan Moline and Holden Dreiling ran their second best time of the season on Friday at 8:27.92, placing them 12th overall in a field of 16 teams.
Last year, Chase County’s fourth place 3200 meter relay team ran 8:22.76, which would have finished a lot further back in this year’s field, at eighth place.
“We knew it would be tough to score here,” Zuege said. “I’m not unhappy with how our guys did.”
He said they saw the same thing in state cross country in Class C this fall, a lot of talent in distance running.
“If you want to compete at state (in this relay) you need four guys all running 2:05 splits,” he said.
Smith also qualified in the 3200 meter run, finishing 20th overall in a field of 24. He ran right around his average time this season, Zuege said. He competed about two hours after running a leg of the 3200 meter relay.
Chase County’s other qualifier, Destyn Milner, competed in the 110 meter hurdles, placing sixth in his heat so did not qualify for the finals.
Zuege said he was off his best time a little in his first effort in that event at state. He was there last year in the pole vault event.
Weather this year at state was cool, similar to the conditions his team experienced much of the season. A little misty rain dampened the track Saturday morning.
Chase County’s six team points placed them in a five-way tie for 35th place. Forty-seven Class C teams scored at least one point this year.
The Class C team champion this year was Wahoo Bishop Neumann, which squeezed by runner-up David City Aquinas by six points for the title.
Here is a recap of Chase County’s performances at the state meet.
- High jump—Travis Luhrs, 3rd, 6’5”. First place: Jordan Fujan, Bishop Neumann, 6’8”.
- 3200 meter relay—Team of Indy Smith, Stephen Welsh, Ryan Moline, Holden Dreiling, 12th, 8:27.92. First place: Ainsworth 8:08.11.
- 3200 meter run—Indy Smith, 20th, 10:41.95. First place: Brady Delimont, Ainsworth, 9:54.20.
- 110 meter hurdles—Destyn Milner, 6th in his heat, 16.60, did not make finals. First place: Harrison Martin, Lincoln Lutheran, 14.69.
- Looking to 2016
Coach Zuege said he’s hopeful Chase County will keep up its strong track numbers in the boys’ program next season.
He’s losing nine seniors on the team, and with just three juniors on the 2015 roster, he will be depending on the underclassmen next year.
“There will be lots of freshmen and sophomores moving up and they’ll have some areas to fill,” he said.
He’s also expecting a good group of incoming freshmen in the 2016 season.
Zuege said if their numbers stay above 30, the Longhorns should win the SPVA Conference and be very competitive at districts in future years.
The seniors who completed their last season on the team included Luhrs, Dreiling, Welsh, Kelton Fisher, Jeff Dickey, Ryan Moline, Jake Lueth, Isaac Sorensen and Sheldon Bartholomew.