A tightly packed week of competition ended for Butte High and Butte Central as a quadrangular meet with the Bulldogs, Maroons, Billings Skyview and Missoula Sentinel made it into the books a couple days earlier than scheduled, Thursday at Charlie Merrifield Track.
The meet had been set to go on Saturday, but was bumped ahead earlier this week. That, in addition to the quad meet hosted by Butte High on Tuesday, along with the John Tomich Invitational hosted by Butte Central last Saturday, put three meets in six days.
“We’ve looked at this as a great workout week,” explained Butte High head track coach Arie Grey. “We’ll come back tomorrow and then have the weekend off. We’re treating this as training. The main thing is to get through today healthy and take advantage of the opportunity to get better.”
Missoula Sentinel won both boys’ and girls’ team scores, while Skyview was second in both. Butte High was third and Central fourth in both boys and girls.
With the busy meet schedule this week, many athletes ran fewer events than usual. Senior sprinter Dalton Daum raced in just the 100 and 400 relay, coming away with wins in both. Daum wasn’t pushed in the 100, finishing in 11.12, but had to work in anchoring Butte’s winning sprint relay squad.
The Bulldogs are looking at a couple of new faces on the 4×100, as Bryce Gallagher and Quinn Dennehy joined Clay Dean and Daum in the fast lap. The handoffs weren’t quite polished, but raw speed overcame that and Butte High held on for the win in 44.46 seconds.
“It was a good race,” Grey said. “There are things we can fix, but it was a good start and we have some time before the next meet.”
Butte Central also sat some athletes, as Kyle Harrington watched as Blake Burton was Central’s top speedster of the day clocking in at 11.84 for fourth place in the 100.
Quinn Cunneen led the local squads in the 400 with a second-place finish, while Shannon Tempel of Butte High finished with the 800 win, followed by Central’s Brian McGeehan. Butte’s Nic Raiser was fifth in the mile and fourth in the 3,200, while Central’s Conor McGee was second in the 3,200.
Clay Dean had a nice day in winning both hurdles races, 40.44 in the 300s and 15.91 in the 110s.
“Clay had his best times of the year,” Grey noted, as it was Dean’s first short hurdles race under 16 seconds this season. Dean also missed an automatic state qualifier in the 300 by .04 second.
Butte Central’s Marcus Ferriter ensured that the Maroons were again dominant in the throwing rings, as he swept both events, all while increasing his season best in each. He notched 48-11.5 in the shot and 154 in the disc. Kyle Schulte and Kaemen Richards went 2-3 in the disc while Richards was second in the shot.
Danny Peoples claimed the javelin with a distance of 160-3 to complete the throwing sweep for Butte Central. Butte High’s Tyler Wonnacott was fifth in the javelin at 141-7, while teammate Nolan Boyle took fifth in the shot.
Central’s Michael Cooney claimed top honors in the high jump at 5-10, while Butte High’s Jared Haran was third at 5-6. Nate McGree placed third in the triple jump and fourth in the long jump for BC, while Kiley Caprara went 18-4.75 to place second in the long jump for the Bulldogs.
On the girls’ side, the only local event winner was Butte Central’s Rachael McGree, whose mark of 34-4 in the triple jump was the best on the day. Teammate Whitney McGree added Maroon team points with a runner-up finish in the 100 and a third-place showing in the 400.
Central round out points with Kaylee O’Herron’s tie for fourth in the high jump and a fifth-place finish by Abby McGee in the 800.
Butte High saw a nice performance from Sydney Pendergast, who placed in three events Thursday. The Bulldog sophomore was third in the 100 hurdles, fourth in the 300 hurdles and fourth in the pole vault at 7 feet.
“Sydney knocked off two seconds to set a personal best in the 300,” Grey noted. “She’s such a competitor and one of our hardest workers. She’s a good leader and just a good kid too.”
Butte High got runner-up finishes from Caitlin Carmody in the 800 and Abby Dodge in the high jump (5-1), while distance specialist Joy Rosenleaf was third in the 1,600 and fourth in the 800. Bailey McCarthy took fourth in the 100 and McKenzie Joseph was fifth in the mile, while Sarah Semsak continued a nice run in the javelin with a fourth-place finish.
Butte’s girls made noise in the jumping pits, as Kassidy Caprara went 15-3 for second in the long jump. The Bulldogs took all four spots between third and sixth in the triple jump thanks to Dodge, Caprara, Bryanna Armstrong and Brittney Plum.