SIOUX FALLS -- Prime-time performances on Friday paved the way to precious hardware on Saturday.
Ipswich and Herreid-Selby Area captured State B team championships during the second day of the state track and field meet at Howard Wood Field.
The Ipswich girls’ scored a record-setting 116 points to easily defend their crown. Sully Buttes tied for third. Meanwhile, the HSA boys finished with 71 points to edge Viborg-Hurley which scored 63.
“We didn’t come in first (very often Saturday), but we came in second,” said HSA coach Rick Quaschnick. “That was eight points every time and after (Friday’s) performance, it was enough.”
Ipswich, which racked up 60 points on Friday, nearly matched that total again. However, Tigers' coach Todd Thorson said the title came into shape long before the state meet took place.
“It’s the minutes, the hours, the days, the months, the years that you put into being a champion,” Thorson said. “You’re actually a champion before you get there if you put that kind of work in there.”
As was the case throughout the season, the Tigers received wins from a variety of individuals and got contributions from many.
“Our depth was the biggest part of our program this year,” Thorson noted. “It wasn’t a one-person show. We covered everything pretty good.”
The state championship was the first in any sport for the Herreid and Selby Area cooperative. The two former rivals have come together to form potent squads in most sports.
“The kids are great together; the fans are great together. It’s just been a win-win situation from the start,” Quaschnick said. “Today is the sweetest and the biggest win. We’re just happy.”
A pair of area standouts picked up a pair of individual titles on Saturday.
Macy Heinz of Ipswich won the 400-meter dash (:58.56) and the 1,600-meter run (5:14.58) to go along with 800-meter run and 3,200-meter relay titles on Friday. The eighth-grader now has seven state championships in two years of competition.
“I love competing every day,” said Heinz, who was named the Outstanding Female Track Athlete in Class B.
The long-legged runner used those strides to her benefit in winning the 800.
“It comes in handy. I’ve gotten a little taller over the past year,” Heinz said. “It’s definitely helped my stride.”
The 400-meter victory was extra meaningful, because that was the one event that Heinz did not win last year, instead taking second.
“They’re all special,” Heinz said of her state titles. “I’m just excited this year, because this is one I didn’t get last year.”
Sierra Stotz of Eureka-Bowdle was also excited, after winning both the 100-meter dash (:12.71) and 200-meter dash (:26.79) state championships.
The junior was not even sure she had won the 100 until minutes after the race.
“No one knew what was going to happen or who placed where,” Stotz said. “It was so close.”