Repeat Run: Marauders claim second straight HHC track title

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FORTVILLE — The Mt. Vernon Marauders weren’t just thinking repeat on Thursday night. They were planning for a potential trifecta next week.

Already winning its second straight Hancock County team title last week in dominating fashion on their home track, the Mt. Vernon boys track and field team made it 2-for-2 during the 2022 Hoosier Heritage Conference Boys Track and Field Championships.

The Marauders won eight events to repeat as conference champions, and in the process showcased their speed and depth to tally 183 team points ahead of HHC runner-up Delta (123) and third-place Greenfield-Central (89).

Yorktown was fourth at 82, New Palestine was fifth with 77 points and Pendleton Heights rounded out the top-six with 28 points.

The HHC title marked not only Mt. Vernon’s second straight but fifth overall since 2011.

However, the real challenge will be next week for the defending sectional champion Marauders, as they attempt to go 3-for-3 at home for a second consecutive season with Lawrence North serving as a looming postseason threat.

“We had to run this meet how we’re going to run against Lawrence North (here next week), and then see what worked and what didn’t work. The conference meet is the fastest paced meet all year,” Mt. Vernon head coach Bruce Kendall said. “And sectional is actually a little slower because there’s another heat in the 400 and the IMs. There can be two heats in the 4×100, so it slows down. The question is, how does (George) Burhenn respond to running the IM and come back and run the 4×400? What’s the time? How does (Tristan) Trevino run the 800 and come back and run the 4×400? It helps us see what we need to do.”

Burhenn and Trevino, in addition to Andres Langston, showed they were postseason ready during the HHC meet, collecting a total of eight first-place medals combined.

Burhenn finished first in the 110-meter hurdles with a time of 15.30 seconds, just ahead of Langston, who was second at 15.58. Burhenn added an HHC title in the 300 intermediate hurdles with a time of 39.70.

Mt. Vernon’s Brennan La Belle was third in the 300 hurdles at 41.60.

“I was coming into this knowing that next week is going to be an even bigger meet with Lawrence North. I have Andres and Brennan because they always push me in the hurdles, so having them run with me really prepares me for next week, too,” Burhenn said.

His third HHC first-place medal came in the 4×400-meter relay with Trevino, Langston and Wilbert Jones in 3:26.38.

“It’s a massive team effort. This team is so connected, and it’s really beautiful to see, especially with our relay teams. Everyone is laughing together, and once we get on the line, we know we’re there for each other,” Trevino said.

Trevino was part of Mt. Vernon’s winning 4×800 relay group, teaming with Joseph Blagrave, William Morris and Daylon King to win in 8:14.18.

His marquee victory, however, unfolded in the 800-meter run, a race he lost to Greenfield-Central’s Griffen Wheeler by tenths of a second at county, 1:57.17 to 1:57.24.

“I wanted it so bad. I’m not known for sprinting at the end, but I like to think I am because that’s what I do. I sprint at the end, and in the last meet, when we were running, he beat me in my sprint. I was like, ‘I can’t let that happen again.’ So, I was ready for that 800, and I really wanted it,” Trevino said.

Trevino turned in a 1:57.67 to win the 800 this time around, while Wheeler took second at 1:59.38.

Langston won the 400 for his third medal, posting a winning time of 49.93. He was second in the high jump with a height of 6-04.00 behind Delta’s Abram Stitt (6-05.00). Greenfield-Central’s Elliott Ryb was third at 6-03.00.

Samuel Wilson won the 3,200-meter run for Mt. Vernon in 9:55.26, while teammate Reyce Morgan was second in 9:58.87.

Keagan La Belle provided the Marauders’ final HHC win at pole vault, besting Yorktown’s Kolton Nanko, 14-feet to 13-feet, 9-inches.

Delta won five events, led by Quinn Buckus, who was first in the 100 (11.08), 200 (22.49) and part of the Eagles’ championship 4×100 relay group in 43.34.

Mt. Vernon was second in the 4×100 in 43.39 with Keagan La Belle, Avery Williams Jr., Derrick Marble and Caden Wildey.

“We want it all. This team is definitely going for it,” Trevino remarked on the Marauders’ focus with sectional approaching. “This meet was fun, but I definitely think against Lawrence North and the other teams, it’s going to be fun, too.”

Marble and Wildey finished three-four in the 100 with times of 11.28 and 11.52, respectively.

Jones was third in the 200 at 23.23 behind New Palestine’s Grayson Thomas (23.05), who took second.

Morris was fourth in the 400 for Mt. Vernon in 52.56, Blagrave took third in the 800 at 2:05.31, Morgan finished third in the 1,600 at 4:31.82 and Austin Rush was fifth in the same event at 4:37.24.

Greenfield-Central’s Liam Brinkruff and Christopher Ross were third and fourth in the 3,200, respectively.

New Palestine’s James O’Dell was fifth in the 300 hurdles. The G-C Cougars took third in the 4×100 and 4×400 relays and placed second to Mt. Vernon in the 4×800 in 8:24.78 with Brinkruff, Jacob Ernest Presser, Lucas Tutrow and Wheeler.

New Palestine’s Sage Halter (13-00.00) and Jack Rossell (13-00.00) placed third and fourth in the pole vault.

G-C’s Kirk Knecht placed second in the long jump at 21-01.00 behind Delta’s Stitt at 22-09.50. Wildey was third (20-07.75). New Palestine’s Isaiah Thacker was fifth at 19-11.00 and suffered a knee injury on his final attempt, which prevented him from competing the remainder of the meet.

New Palestine’s Gregory Ratz III was third in the shot put at 46-05.00. Keagan La Belle was fifth (45-01.00).

Dragons’ Joshua Lambdin was second for New Palestine in the discus at 149.03.00 behind Yorktown’s Mason Moulton at 156-07.00. G-C’s Reese Hill was third (124-07.00).

Mt. Vernon’s Owen Johnson was fifth in the discus at 121-08.00.

Yorktown won three events, including in the 1,600 with Luke Harber’s winning time of 4:29.79.

“We were practicing for the sectional because we have to carry that into the regional in order to get to state. We’re not talking about getting to state. We want to come out and wonder what color is your state medal? We’re not favored to be in the first two or three in the regional. We’re number four or five, so it’s really tight,” Kendall said. “Tonight, it was about experimenting for Lawrence North.”

Mt. Vernon beat Lawrence North in a dual this past April, 78-54, by winning 11 events. At sectional last year, the Marauders secured their first team title since 2013-14 by besting Lawrence North, 178.50-142.50.

2022 Hoosier Heritage Conference Boys Track and Field Results

Team scores (champions): Mt. Vernon 183 (8), Delta 123 (5), Greenfield-Central 89, Yorktown 82 (3), New Palestine 77, Pendleton Heights 28, Shelbyville 19, New Castle 18.

Event: Winner, School;Time/Distance

4×800-meter relay: Joseph Blagrave, William Morris, Daylon King, Tristan Trevino, (Mt. Vernon);8:14.18

Discus: Mason Mouton, Yorktown;156-07

High Jump: Abram Stitt, Delta;6-05.00

110-meter hurdles: George Burhenn, Mt. Vernon;15.30

100-meter dash: Quinn Backus, Delta;11.08

1,600-meter run: Luke Harber, Yorktown;4:29.79

4×100-meter relay: Brayden Stanley, Jonathan Chimbanda, Abram Stitt, Quinn Backus, (Delta);43.34

800-meter run: Tristan Trevino, Mt. Vernon; 1:57.67

200-meter dash: Quinn Backus, Delta;22.49

Long Jump: Abram Stitt, Delta;22-09.50

3,200-meter run: Samuel Wilson, Mt. Vernon;9:55.26

400-meter dash: Andres Langston, Mt. Vernon;49.93

300-meter hurdles: George Burhenn, Mt. Vernon;39.70

4×400-meter relay: George Burhenn, Wilbert Jones, Tristan Trevino, Andres Langston, (Mt. Vernon);3:26.38

Shot Put: Mason Moulton, Yorktown;48-10.00

Pole Vault: Keagan La Belle, Mt. Vernon;14-00.00

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