Stratospheric performances in the high jump and pole vault highlighted top finishes by the host squad last week at the Pawhuska Invitational track-and-field meet.
Track and field competitors from at least 18 area high schools participated in the annual event at Ormand Beach Memorial Stadium. Two days earlier, the weather had been considerably cooler when a junior high meet was held at "The Beach" but the conditions were nearly perfect on Thursday.
Pawhuska High School athletes earned first-place medals in four events. Leading the way for the Huskies were two very dissimilar high jumpers.
PHS senior Zak Stone sailed over the bar at an impressive 6 feet and 6 inches to win the men’s high jump. His leap rates as the best of this season in Oklahoma Class 3A — four inches higher than the No. 2 jump and two more than the effort that gained Stone a third-place medal at the state meet last spring.
Another returning third-place state medalist for the Huskies, senior Timmy Wann, sailed to the the meet title in the pole vault. His clearance at 10 feet edged out Stone for first place. The third Pawhuska vaulter, Brad Moreland, finished fourth.
Winner in the girls’ high jump was Haley Mouser, a Pawhuska freshman appearing in her first-ever high school meet.
The 400-meter relay unit of the Lady Huskies — comprised of junior Whitney Cotton, sophomores Andie Sweeden and Kortney Barnhart and freshman Keylee Kirk — also earned first-place medals.
Pawhuska freshman Kaylee Hambright finished second in the girls’ 3200-meter run and yet another ninth-grader, Sarah Phillippi, was second in the 300-meter hurdles. The Lady Huskie 800-meter relay team earned second-place medals, while the 1600-meter relay squad placed third and the 3200-meter unit came in fourth.
Also for the Lady Huskies, freshman Karissa Hughes took fourth in the 300-meter hurdles and senior Hunter Sutherland placed fifth in the 100-meter hurdles. Darian Lookout, a PHS junior, finished fifth in the pole vault. Cotton grabbed sixth place in the 400-meter run and Kirk was sixth at 100 meters.
Another PHS participant to garner a medal at the Invitational was freshman Scotty Gilkey Jr., who placed sixth in the high jump. Members of the Huskie 1600-meter relay team received sixth-place awards, as well.
Pawhuska also finished sixth in the boys’ team standings, which were topped by the Mannford Pirates’ squad. Dewey placed second, Newkirk third, Metro Christian fourth and Cushing fifth.
Adair tied for sixth with Bartlesville’s Wesleyan Christian School, which had a first-place win in the discus by former Pawhuskan John Hamman, the defending Class A state discus champion. The eighth-place boys’ team was Sperry, which was followed by Hominy.
The Lady Huskies rate as the third-place girls’ team, finishing behind Metro Christian and Cushing. Mannford wound up fourth in the girls’ standings, followed in order by Perry, Woodland, Dewey and Pawnee.
Other schools that were represented at the Pawhuska meet included Woodland, Wynona, Copan, Caney Valley, Kellyville, Mounds, Tulsa Rogers and Tulsa Webster.
The local event marked the first competition of the season for the PHS squads, who are coached by Mark Frye. On Saturday, Pawhuska took part in the Tiger Track Classic at Stroud, but results from that meet were not available at press time.
(Results from the junior high-edition of the Pawhuska Invitational are also planned to be listed at a future date.)