Chillicothe (Mo.) HS track-and-field Lady Hornets Post Not-Quite-Biblical Win in 2021 Shy Relays
CHS girls capture team title with bevy of fourth-, fifth-place finishes, nary an event victory April 9; Kirksville decisive boys’ champ; Fraser, Holtman Carter Gold Shoe winners
(Corrects final team points totals, standings, based on revisions provided by meet officials)
By PAUL STURM, C-T Sports Editor
CHILLICOTHE, Mo. — It wasn’t quite a case of the last being first, but for the host girls, a truckful of fourth- and fifth-place finishes negated the impact of no event wins and fueled their team-title performance Friday (April 9, 2021) as the Chillicothe Joe Shy Relays high school track-and-field meet returned after a pandemic pause in 2020.
With seven fourth places (one shared) providing a hefty 30 team points and five fifths (another one shared) tacking on another 19-1/2 points, CHS’ Lady Hornets offset their total lack of firsts in the 15-schools meet and amassed 88.83 points, 13.83 more than surprise runnerup Cameron in the highly-balanced girls’ division.
Nearly half (seven) of the girls’ teams accumulated at least 50 points with six between 68-1/2 and Chillicothe’s winning total. That dispersal of points allowed the hosl’s depth to prevail for its first girls’ win since 2017 in CHS’ biggest regular-season home meet.
The boys’ division saw Chillicothe use Hayden Simmer’s 3,200-meters win and his and Damarcus Kelow’s composite trio of runnerup showings to respectably repeat its third-place showing of two years ago, netting 83 points. That was fully 21 points ahead of tiny fourth-place finisher Princeton and only 15 back of second-place Richmond. Well in front of everyone was Kirksville with 133.
Individually, both genders had a clear-cut top scorer and Bob Carter Memorial Gold Shoe Award winner who only knew victory on the mild, partly-to-mostly cloudy day at Jerry Litton Memorial Stadium II – juniors Brooklynn Holtman of Maryville and Owen Fraser of Kirksville.
In the girls’ division, the lanky Holtman was unbeatable in the sprints, as well as the high jump. Winning the 100-, 200-, and 400-meters races by clear-cut margins and quitting at while ahead after clearing 4’11” in the high jump early in the proceedings, Holtman’s 40 team points outdistanced runnerup Alexandra Sharp, the Brookfield distance running ace.
While Holtman won the three shortest races, the BHS Lady Bulldogs junior whiz took the three longest (800, 1,600, 3,200) and, pushing for the high-points award named for the late, former long-time sports editor of the Constitution-Tribune who died in a traffic crash in his early 50s 19-plus years ago, also was entered in the 400 meters runs. While Holtman prevailed, Sharp settled for sixth, leaving her with netting 33 team points in the meet.
In the boys’ division, the 6’7”, 280-pounds Fraser outdistanced Chillicothe standout thrower Kelow in the shot put and discus throw and also claimed the javelin throw. The KHS Tiger won both the discus and javelin by margins of 5-10 feet and the shot put by 10-plus feet.
Even though he competed in only three points, Fraser’s perfect performance, in terms of winning them, carried him past sprinter Carlos Cortez of St. Joseph: Lafayette, who won the 100 and 200, but also ran in a pair of relays. Cortez finished with 23-1/2 points, compared to Fraser’s 30.
Chillicothe's overall top scorer (regardless of gender) was senior Simmer with 18 points from his comfortable 6-seconds win in the 3,200 in 11:08.45 and his second place in the 1,600, just over three seconds off the winner’s pace.
For the Lady Hornets, freshman Jolie Bonderer showed the way with 16-1/2 points. She took second in the 1,600 and fourth in the 800 and ran in the runnerup 3,200-meters relay and third-place 1,600 relay.
Next-highest for each CHS squad were Kelow for the Hornets with 16 points and sophomore Belle Englert for the Lady Hornets with 13.
The next outing – their first on the road after four at home – for Chillicothe’s cinders squads is due to be Tuesday’s “Hoot” Morgan Relays at Richmond.