CHARLESTON – Salt Fork boys track coach Philip Surpernant has seen his team bring home state trophies in the last two IHSA Class 1A State Track and Field Meets at O’Brien Field in Charleston.
On Saturday, the Storm did it again, claiming the Class 1A state title along with Cowden-Herrick / Beecher City, as the two programs finished with 44 points.
But how Salt Fork got to it’s second state title in four years, the Storm also won the title in 2019, was a rollercoaster ride of emotions.
“There were so many times that it was in the bag and there were so many times it seemed like the worst case scenario was happening, ” said Surprenant.
The highest of highs for the Storm came in the discus finals when junior Garrett Taylor uncorked a personal record throw of 55.12 meters or 180 feet, 10 inches to claim second straight title in the event.
But, just minutes later, junior Nathan Kirby was disqualified in the 110 meter hurdles when he clipped the third hurdle and as he was falling he took out the fourth hurdle. While he still finished the race, IHSA officials disqualified him for knocking over the fourth hurdle.
“I had just hugged Garrett at the discus, ran over here and go in the stands and then it was immediately the lowest point in the day,” Surprenant said. “Credit to these guys for regrouping.”
Salt Fork came back to take second in the 800 relay and Kirby earned a third in the 200-meter finals that pulled the Storm even with the Bobcats for the state title.
Other top finishes for the Storm included a second for the 400 relay team, a third from Taylor in the shot put and Dylan Diaz was sixth in the triple jump.
Bismarck-Henning / Rossville-Alvin senior Eli Mojonnier capped his career with his second straight state title in the 800. Mojonnier’s winning time of 1 minute, 54.33 seconds was a personal best.
In the high jump, Georgetown-Ridge Farm / Chrisman senior Karson Lewsader took home a third-place medal as he cleared 2.02 meters or 6 feet, 7 1/2 inches.
For a complete recap of Saturday’s IHSA Class 1A State Track and Field Meet from Charleston, check out Tuesday’s edition of the Commercial-News.