High school track and field is a buildup of sorts.
Athletes are seeking to peak at the right time of season, and there’s no better place to start for Great Bend High School than the Western Athletic Conference meet — only eight days before Class 5A regional competition and just two weeks from the state championships in Wichita.
Dodge City’s Memorial Stadium is the site of today’s conference meet, which starts at 4 with the field events. The finals for track events is set for 6.
“The one track meet that we talk about wanting to have a good team showing is the conference track meet,” Great Bend head coach Bo Black said. “As we get into the regional and state track meet, the WAC is full of great track teams.
“On the boys side, it’s not any hidden secret that Hays will run away with that. The girls’ side is really wide-open. We’re expecting to have a good team showing and we want to put our best team effort at the conference track meet.”
Both Great Bend’s boys and girls finished second in the WAC standings at last year’s meet in Dodge.
The Big 3 for GBHS is senior hurdler Matt Moyd, senior thrower Jacy Quade and junior pole vaulter Chris Burley — all defending conference champions in their own right.
Quade is the defending champ in both the discus (126 feet, 11 inches) and shot put (36-7 ¾), while Moyd will defend his 110-meter hurdles title (15.75 seconds) and Burley, his pole-vault title (13-0).
“They’re all working extremely hard,” Black said of the trio, “and the fourth one that I would add to that list is Hannah Wondra. She brings a lot to our girls side with her experience.”
Wondra, a second-place finisher in last year’s 400 dash, will be vying for the top spot after establishing a personal-best time of 1:01.08 this season. Her second-place time a year ago at the WAC meet was 1:03.56.
“Our track team is kind of based on what those four are going to do,” Black said, “and our success will have a lot to do, in part, to that.”
Black also mentioned distance runner Chon Chavez, who has personal bests this season of 4:36.28 in the 1,600 and 10:12.0 in the 3,200. At last year’s WAC meet, Chavez was a fifth-place finisher in the 1,600 (4:50.16) and placed third in the 3,200 (10:32.75).
“Chon Chavez adds a lot to the boys side with his distance races,” Black said of the junior.
WESTERN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE
TRACK & FIELD CHAMPIONSHIPS
At Dodge City
Field events, 4 p.m.
Track finals, 6
• PANTHERS TO WATCH
Matt Moyd — 110-meter hurdles, 100 dash
Jacy Quade — Discus, Shot put
Chris Burley — Pole vault
Hannah Wondra — 400 dash
Chon Chavez — 1,600 & 3,200 run
Jayce Brack — Discus, Shot put
Hannah Middleton — Pole vault
Selam Ball — Pole vault