OTTAWA — After the wind and cold forced the cancellation of the girls portion of Ottawa High School’s annual ABC Track and Field Invitational, the boys overall contingent of 13 teams managed to get their half this year’s version of the event completed under sunny skies and brisk temperatures Saturday afternoon here at King Field.
The Pirates finished 10th as a group with 48 points behind champion Lincoln-Way East, which amassed 219 tallies just ahead of Metamora in second at 208 and Moline third with 192.
Ottawa managed 15 medals throughout the six-top finishers in each class with three awarded in the “A” division, and six each in both the “B” and “C” groupings.
While the placings for the locals weren’t overwhelming, veteran Ottawa coach Trent Swords was pleased to see his squad get out and compete after having so little to evaluate them since the start of the year due to all the bad weather that has occurred and has kept his troops at bay.
“Early on in the track and field season we try to focus in on getting the kids out, give them some time, and see what they need to work on,” Swords said. “Today was one of those days with weather that was pretty good for mid-April especially realizing how bad things were for the girls weather-wise yesterday. I was really excited for our opportunity today and how the team competed despite our finish.”
The Pirate’s performances were headlined in the “A” ranks as senior Kyle Haerle placed fourth in both the pole vault at 10 feet, six inches and the triple jump (38-2).
Following that, the Pirates 800 meter “A” relay team of junior Colyn Gustafson, sophomore Logan Tarbox, freshman Kenny Harsted, and Chase Bowers earned a medal in sixth place with a timing of 1 minute, 42.74 seconds.
In the “B” division, senior Marcus Serna earned a third-place medal in the pole vault with a leap of 9-0 feet followed by a fourth place throw from junior Jacob Ovanic (118-01) in the discus.
Sophomore Anthony Bianchi (29-9) placed fifth in the triple jump while freshman Joe Ovanic (high jump, 5-2), Adam Zuniga (long jump, 17-3 3/4), and Deklan Regan (110 hurdles, 20.66) did the same to close out the Ottawa “B” scoring.
The Pirates “C” level saw Joe Ovanic (discus, 106-8), Zuniga (100 dash, 12.44), and sophomore Luke Kaminski (pole vault, 8-6) each take home third place medals.
Tarbox finished fifth in the long jump (16-9) while freshman Matt Ruiz matched the fifth place showing in the 110 hurdles (20.72).
Ragan added to the “C” mix with a sixth place medal in the triple jump (29-8 1/4) as Ottawa competed well on the afternoon.
“This was a win for us despite the outcome today because we were able to evaluate things and see the guys competitively for a change instead of just in practice,” Swords said. “We’ll take this and move ahead hopefully seeing some improvement as the year rolls on.
“It’s a short season with all the weather-related issues. However, I’m confident we will get better as the post season approaches.”