A host of Barton County Storm Special Olympics athletes competed in a wide variety of track and field events at the Special Olympics State Track Meet last weekend at Wichita State University’s Cessna Stadium and Koch Arena.
Participating were 1,388 athletes and 491 coaches from all across Kansas. This marked the 43th-annual summer games, which started Friday night with the opening ceremonies and parade of athletes. Competition took place all day Saturday and into the afternoon on Sunday.
The meet also involved 2,000 volunteers.
As a team, the Storm earned 24 gold, 24 silver and 18 bronze medals. In addition, there were 24 fourth-place ribbons, 13 fifth-place, five sixth-place, four seventh-place and one eighth-place.
The athletes took part in: Standing long jump; running long jump; shot put; softball throw; tennis ball throw; 10-, 25- and 50-meter walk races; 25- and 50-meter races; 100-meter walk race; 100-meter race; 200-meter walk race; 200-meter race; 400-meter race; 400-meter walk race; 800-meter race; 1,500-meter race; and 4x100-meter relay.
Competing were: Harold Alexander, Chance Maes, Chris Lamb, Crystal Naugle, Darren Brown, David Brack, David Edwardson, Harold Alexander, James Boehnke, Jesse Maes, Josh Trimmer, Krystal Thorne, Marci Unruh, Robin Bethel, Rita Mestas, Roger Guthals, Samantha Purcell, Sherrill Arnold, Jessilyn Simonson, Steve Smolik, Tammula Boele and Eric Johnson.
Coaches and parents attending included Harold Thorne, Chonny Simonson, Carole Edwardson, Glenda Brack, Barbara Millard, Dale Hogg, Rick and Erika Julian, Steve Johnson, Frieda Boehnke, Ginger Maes, Stephanie Galusha, April Naugle and Joyce Strecker.
In April, 22 Storm Olympians took part in the Kansas Western Regional Track Meet at Garden City High School.
There were seven teams and 171 athletes from the western part of the state taking part in the all-day event. Communities represented were Colby, Wakeeney, Great Bend, Dodge City, Liberal, Ulysses and Garden City.
In all, the Storm participants earned more than 45 medals.
The awards included:
• Standing long jump — one bronze
• Running long jump — two gold, one bronze, two ribbons
• Shot put — one gold, one silver, one bronze, one ribbon
• Softball throw — three gold, two silver, three bronze
• Tennis ball throw — two gold, two silver, one ribbon
• 10-, 25- and 50-meter walk races — two gold, one silver, one bronze
• 25- and 50-meter races — one gold, one silver
• 100-meter walk race — two gold, one bronze
• 100-meter race — three gold, two silver, one bronze
• 200-meter walk race — one gold, three silver
• 200-meter race — one silver
• 400-meter walk race — (three athletes competed, but the results were not available)
• 800-meter race — one gold, one silver
• 1,500-meter race — one gold
• 4x100-meter relay — two gold, one bronze
Taking part were: Chance Maes, Chris Lamb, Crystal Naugle, Darren Brown, David Brack, David Edwardson, Dawn Specht, Harold Alexander, James Boehnke, Jesse Maes, Josh Trimmer, Krystal Thorne, Marci Unruh, Raymond Bethel, Robin Bethel, Rita Mestas, Roger Guthals, Samantha Purcell, Sherrill Arnold, Steve Smolik, Tammula Boele and Victoria Ostrander.