Dodgers hit the blue oval

DES MOINES – Both the present and future of the Fort Dodge boys and girls track programs ran on the blue oval during the second session of Class 4A state competition Friday inside Drake Stadium.

Senior Keegan Jones placed 12th for the Dodger boys in the 400 hurdles, clocking a mark of 55.79. Des Moines Roosevelt’s Sydne Davis (53.42) took home gold. Jones was eighth in the 400 hurdles here last spring.

“We didn’t run as well as we had hoped to, but Keegan still got to come down to state and run in four events,” FDSH head coach John McBride said. “I think Keegan’s a little disappointed that he didn’t place in the lows, but that’s an event you really have to train hard in and we just didn’t have the weather to do that this year.”

Fort Dodge’s 4×200 relay quartet of freshman Keegan Myers, senior Austin Anderson, Jones and sophomore Cray Washington settled for 16th in 1:31.36. That same Dodger foursome was 19th (44.52) in the 4×100 prelims.

Linn-Mar earned the 4×200 title (1:27.52), while also prevailing in the 4×100 prelims (42.14).

“Having a freshman and sophomore run on two of our state relays is a huge experience for those guys,” said McBride. “It’s exciting to know that we have both Cray and Keegan coming back next year.”

For the FDSH girls, the 4×200 crew of senior Fatima Newsome and juniors Ashley Altman, Lexi Astor and Tiana Mericle finished 13th (1:27.42). Cedar Rapids Jefferson was the champion in a new all-time record of 1:40.94.

“We ended up 13th, which is right about where we came in, so now we have something to build on for next year,” Dodger head coach Todd Constable said. “Losing Fatima will obviously hurt, but we still have three other girls back. We definitely improved from last year and are looking to improve again next year.”

State action resumes this morning at 9 a.m. with the girls sprint medley relay finals. Washington will represent Fort Dodge in the 4A boys 200 finals at approximately 1:35 p.m.