This spring at the IHSA Class A Boys State Track Meet, it was all Pana. Pana finished tied for 2nd in Class A as a team, with Sullivan having one athlete place and Shelbyville just one athlete make the prelims.
Pana has had some standout sprints over the years. This year was another of those years. They tied for 2nd in the state with Du Quoin. Both teams had 36 points.
Senior Cody Klein was Class A's fastest human. He was a double state champ this year in the 100 and 200 dashes. He had the fastest 100 in the prelims (10.75). He had the 2nd fastest 200 time of prelims (22.65).
He won the state title in the 100 running 10.85. He won the state title in the 200, running 21.57. Those wins got him 20 of Pana's 36 total points.
The Pana 4x100 relay was state runner-up, anchored by Klein. Bryce Edmiston (Jr.), Jared Beyers (Sr.), Cameron Owens (Jr.), and Klein (Sr.) ran 42.85, edged by Spring Valley Hall by just .11 seconds.
They followed that up by being state runner-up in the 4x200 relay. Mason Mizeur (Sr.), Owens (Jr.), Beyers (Sr.), and Klein (Sr.) ran 1:29.89. Those 2 relays added another 16 points, capping the Pana total.
The next best finish for the Shelby Area was Jadon Nuzzo of Sullivan. The state medalist from last year (5th, 14 ft) returned to up his finish to 4th place, clearing 14 feet, 6 inches. His 6 points were Sullivan's only team points.
Tim Moore of Altamont (4th, 14-3) finished just ahead of Nuzzo last year and did it again, this year (3rd, 14-9). His 7 points was Altamont only team points.
Freshman pole vaulter Max Beyers was the lone Shelbyville Ram to qualify for State this year. Beyers cleared 12 feet, 3 inches, his personal best, at the Sullivan Sectional to qualify for State. But his season ended during the preliminaries.
"Max did not advance to finals." said Ram coach Kevin Kramer. "But, he did have some very good vaults. Max made 12' which was his second best height ever and had a couple of very good attempts at 12'6". It took 13'6" to get into finals."
Beyers reached 12 feet at State, but that was his best.
"Max is a very hard worker and I would be willing to bet he will learn from this experience and be back next year with a great shot at the finals," Kramer said.
CHBC's senior leader Dylan Webster was the sectional champion in the long jump (21-4.5) and was 2nd in the triple jump (43-1.25). However, competition was stiff at State.
Webster went 21 feet at the long jump prelims and didn't make finals. He would have had to go 21-5, better than his sectional distance.
In the triple, he only went 41-11.75. He had to go 42-4.75 to qualify for finals. No one from the 1st flight of prelims even advanced. His sectional distance would have earned him an 8th place medal in the finals.
Webster went to State last year in the pole vault, where he placed 11th (13-0) and also qualified the year before.
Wes Kile of Pana qualified for State in pole vault (14-3), but did not advance to finals. He had made State in pole vault last year, as a sophomore, and finished 10th in finals (13-6). He qualified for State as a freshman, as well.
Teammate Jared Beyers was not only on the 4x1 and 4x2 state runner-ups, he qualified this year in the 400 (49.92) and the 200 (22.81). He ran 51.03 in quarter prelims and did not advance to finals. He ran 23.48 in the 200 and did not make finals. His individual races suffered for the sake of the relays.
Freshman Jadon Robertson earned a trip to State in the 110 hurdles. He was sectional champ, running a PR of 16.05. he ran a great 16.13 at State. In a field of 30 of the best, that didn't make the cut for finals. He would have had to run a sizzling 15.38 to qualify.
Senior Jason Mizeur of Pana was 2nd to Robertson in the 110 hurdles at sectional (16.75) and 2nd in the 300 hurdles at sectional (41.66). At State, he ran faster (16.27) in the 110s, but was short of finals. In the 300's, he ran 42.16, but did not make finals.