Tanager track athletes compete at state meet

Beth Szymonski picked a good time to have her best-ever discus throw.

The Vermillion sophomore threw the platter 119'0" Saturday to place third among Class "A" girls in the discus event at the state meet in Sioux Falls.  In the process she accumulated six team points for the Tanagers, the only points VHS athletes were able to achieve at this year's state classic.

Szymonski also had qualified for the shot put where she threw the iron ball 31'7 3/4".

Sarah Day clocked a 1:02 time in the 400-meter dash. The girls medley team of Christine Epping, Kayla Munger, Paige Olson and Blair Gilkyson ran in 4:31, and the girls 1600-meter relay quartet of Munger, Epping, Olson and Day ran in 4:12.

Cody Olson ran his best time of 23:02 in the 200-meter dash.  The Tanager boys 3200-meter relay foursome of Austin Krier, Carson Sullivan, Micah Raraick and Tanner Anderson was timed in 8:41, and the 1600-meter team of Chris Sargent-Wilson, Aaron Ruhaak, Ryan Kost and Olson ran in 3:36.

There was one Tanager athlete who had his moment in the sun atop the highest step of the awards platform.  Freshman Dylan Fischbach competed in the 100-meter wheelchair run and sped down the track in 21.4 seconds.  It was the first time the wheelchair event had been run at the state meet, and it is hoped that, by the time Fischbach becomes an upperclassman, fellow disabled athletes will join him on the track at state.

"While we did not place as well as we wanted, each one of our kids competed hard and improved exponentially this season," said Coach Lenni Billberg.  "Our hats are off to our great senior leaders.  They kept the team focused throughout the year, helping all of our younger kids become successful athletes."

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