Drake Relays: Linn-Mar Cashes In - Twice
By Jeff Linder and Scott Saville, Reporters
DES MOINES, Iowa — Josh Evans suffered through a bout of insomnia in a Des Moines hotel Thursday night.
“I couldn’t sleep,” he said. “I kept thinking back to that (3,200-meter) race.”
That one got away. This one didn’t.
Evans closed with a 1:55.9 anchor and outkicked the pack to give Linn-Mar the Drake Relays boys’ sprint medley relay title Friday at Drake Stadium.
The Lions were clocked in 3:31.31, a shade ahead of Iowa City High (3:31.70).
It ignited a banner day for the Linn-Mar boys, who added an 800-meter relay title in the afternoon.
“I’m going to show off this (championship) flag,” said sophomore Tristan Freese. “I’m going to put in on my car.”
Perrion Scott and Tim Wolfe were members of both winning relay teams. Scott led off the medley, then anchored the 800-meter relay.
In the medley, he watched as Evans came from behind in the final 100 meters.
“I was screaming so hard,” Scott said. “I was going, ‘Go! Go! Go! … That’s my boy, Josh.’ ”
The medley cast of characters wasn’t decided until Thursday night.
“We talked for 15 minutes and made the final decision,” said Chase Grabau, the third runner — following Scott and Wolfe, and preceding Evans. “We got in the right mindset.”
Evans was denied by Gilbert’s Thomas Pollard at the end of Thursday’s 3,200, and stewed about it in bed later that night.
“I couldn’t believe I got beat at the end like that,” he said. “I didn’t want to let these guys down in the relay. This feels incredible.”
In the 800-meter relay, Austin Flieder, Freese, Wolfe and Scott reigned in 1:28.81. Cedar Rapids Kennedy, the winner of the second heat, was second overall in 1:29.19.
Linn-Mar’s 4×200 quartet is young — three sophomores and a junior.
“We’ve been dreaming about this since we were freshmen,” Scott said.
Mount Vernon junior Robbie Peters pulled off an unlikely triumph in the boys’ discus. He entered as the 11th-best in the state, then eclipsed his season-best by 17 feet and won the event at 174 feet.
“It’s starting to sink in,” he said. “It took a while.
“I was praying that I would throw my best and set a PR. I really wanted 165 feet. My third throw, I went 167. Then I wanted our school record (172 feet).”
Peters’ fourth throw was his winner. The throw started out of bounds to the right, but the wind blew it back.
“I felt like I had a lot of power behnd it,” he said. “It was pretty crazy.”
On other area highlights Friday:
* Timauntay Jones of Cedar Rapids Jefferson was second to West Des Moines Dowling’s Jason Thomas in the 800 (1:56.01), and his 1:53.1 anchor in the medley brought the J-Hawks to third.
* Solon sophomore Connor Ham was the 110-meter high hurdles runner-up, running 15.11 and finishing behind Jon Rus of North Scott.
* Cedar Rapids Kennedy’s Derek Jacobus, who anchored the Cougars’ 800-meter relay to second, finished fourth in the long jump. Teammate Famiek Cook was fifth. Josh Markert of Manson-Northwest Webster won it.
* Nick Steingreaber of Cedar Rapids Xavier was fourth in the 100. Zack Skibinski of Sioux City Heelan was the champion.
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