Prep Girls Track

All-star track meet sees growth in second year

Illini West's Connor Artman competes in the long jump during the Mark Twain Becky Thatcher Relays at Porter Stadium in Hannibal, Mo., on Friday, Apr. 27, 2018. | H-W Photo/Jake Shane
Jake Shane 1|
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Jun. 6, 2018 7:45 am Updated: Jun. 7, 2018 7:27 am

QUINCY -- Nick Koetters wrapped up last year's inaugural Illinois/Missouri all-star track meet feeling satisfied with the results.

That meant the Palmyra track and field coach didn't need to see much tinkering going into this year's meet, set for Friday at Quincy High School's Flinn Stadium.

"We felt pretty good about the way it went," Koetters said. "We didn't want to mess with things too much."

Koetters, along with Liberty coach Jared Schmidt, wanted to make sure the meet keeps growing.

They believe they're on that path.

About 60 recent graduates from 20 different schools will compete in Friday's meet. Those numbers are slightly lower than last year's, but Koetters believes it's just the result of a smaller senior class.

The Illinois boys will be coached by Illini West coach John Artman, while the girls will be coached by Central's Mike Bickerman.

The Missouri boys will be coached by Bowling Green's Matt Chance, and the girls will be coached by Mark Twain's Erin Mack.

"(Quincy High School coach Matt McClelland) and I had Illinois last year, and Nick had Missouri," Schmidt said. "We just wanted to get different people involved. We knew every other all-star sport had coaches, and we figured we should also do that."

Koetters said this year's meet has more sponsors, and T-shirts will be offered to the competitors.

As for the rosters, Schmidt believes the Illinois boys team will be heavy favorites.

The team is loaded with talent that just competed at the state meet last month. Illini West's Connor Artman and Jacob Bryan will both compete. Artman will be in the long jump and 110-meter hurdles, while Bryan will be in the 800 run.

Artman will be in the 4x100 and 4x400 relays. Liberty's Seth Rochelle will be in the 100, 200 and 4x100.

West Hancock's Andy Bird will compete in both throwing events. Dalton Ellingboe will be in the 1,600 run.

For Missouri, Mark Twain's Devin Neff will be in the distance events, and South Shelby's Dylan Threlkeld will run in the 800.

Palmyra's Nick Mudd will also compete in longer running events.

On the girls side, Illinois will have Central sprinter Zakila Wiskrichen along with her teammate Lauren Glick. Unity distance runners Megan Adams and Katie Conry will also participate.

For Missouri, Highland hurdler Makayla Dickerson, South Shelby distance runner Caitlyn Poore and Clark County sprinter Drenda Hess will be on the roster.

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