Gaels ready for state track

DES MOINES – Drake Stadium will be the final stop for three members of the St. Edmond boys and girls track teams this week.

Junior Landon Peed (800) and senior Vinnie Harvey (shot put) will each compete at the 2014 Iowa Co-Ed State Track and Field Championships for the Gael boys, while freshman Megan Flattery (400, 800 and high jump) is the lone qualifier for the SEHS girls.

Class 2A action starts Thursday afternoon at 2 p.m.

Peed advanced with a runner-up district effort in a clocking of 2:07.49. Last year, Peed was 24th (2:07.89) at state in the 800. His seed time is 23rd best in 2A.

Des Moines Christian’s Eric Fluegge (1:59.57) leads the field.

“Landon hasn’t had great weather to run in this year, so I’m especially happy he was able to get down (to Des Moines),” said St. Edmond head coach Bill Kibby, who directed the Gaels to 2A state titles in 2009 and 2011. “We’re just hoping he can finish around the two minute mark and have a good day to run.”

Harvey also earned silver at districts with a throw of 45 feet, which ranks 23rd among all 2A participants. Zach Sampson (54-9) of CMB-Baxter enters with the No. 1 mark.

“We had a pleasant surprise with Vinnie getting in (to state),” said Kibby. “The (district) field was so tough that we were really fortunate to get both guys in. Now, they just have to do the best they can possibly do and see what happens.”

Both Peed and Harvey were 1A all-state football selections this past fall in helping the Gaels to their first-ever state runner-up finish on the gridiron. Harvey is also a three-time state wrestling qualifier, who reached the 220-pound 1A title round earlier this year.

Perennial power SEHS has placed in the top four of the 2A state meet here in five of the last six seasons.

On the girls side, Flattery moved on with district runner-up showings in all three events. She comes in seventh in the 400 (1:00.82), 19th (2:30.67) in the 800 and 22nd (4-10) in the high jump.

Hudson’s Maddie Bell (56.47), Jasmine Staebler (2:23.06) from Clayton Ridge and Hinton’s Kasey Reuter (5-3) anchor those respective events.

“Megan has surprised me by how much she’s been willing and wanting to work hard,” Gael head coach Liz Flattery said. “You could tell by her determination that state has been her goal all season long. She’s pretty excited. I’m really hoping she can at least get in the top 10.”