The Southeast girls 400-meter relay team went into the Kansas relays believing they were the best group in the event and set out to prove it. And despite changes in its third leg and anchor, Southeast was the top qualifier in the event.
The Buffaloes posted a time of 49.53 seconds with Jamillah Bonner, Dana Gates and Aarian Tipton changing legs.
"It was different because we changed our order," Gates said. "So it was something new for us. I was really nervous. It was a good time for me, especially coming in and running a new leg."
Southeast blew the other teams out of the water in its heat. Bonner crossed the finish line and had a couple of seconds to catch her breath before the second-place team crossed the finish line.
"I was nervous because Aarian usually runs the last leg," Bonner said. "I'm used to having people next to me, and I didn't feel anything around me but the wind. It was weird, but I enjoyed it."
Bonner also placed third in the triple jump with a leap of 37-9 1/4. It was her first time placing at the Kansas relays in the event, but she said she feels she could have done a little better.
"I was upset, because my farthest (jump) was like a 40, so I really didn't get to my goal. My goal was a 39, and I got a 37," Bonner said. "So I was upset. But then again, I've been here for three years. My first year I placed 22nd, my second year I placed 10th. I improved and I know I'm going to do better at state."
Area distance runners dominate — El Dorado's Molly Milbourn placed first in the girls 3200 meter finals with a time of 10:52.92. Her previous best this spring was 11:29.06. And while Maize runner Danielle Walker didn't place with her time of 11.28.45, she did set a school record in an event that she had only run in once before.
"It felt pretty good. That was my goal," Walker said. Just to beat that school record coming into today. I will definitely work on getting faster later."
Neil Metler, a senior from Derby, finished second in the boys 3200 with a time of 9:23.70.
Etheridge wins heat, places sixth _ Northwest's Andrew Etheridge won his heat in the 300 hurdles in 40.01 seconds. His time was good for sixth overall.
"I really wasn't focused too much on my time," Etheridge said. "I was just focused on... winning my heat. I think I've been working really hard."