CITY LEAGUE TEAMS
Carroll will rely on the strength of distance runners David Thor, Gage Garcia and James Hampton. Sprinter Matt Denning is a versatile point-scorer, and Nick Meyer is a contender to win 5A pole vault.
East will regroup. The expected leading point-scorers are Frank Hatchett (sprints), Aaron Heil (distance), Tanner Follis (distance) and Gehrig Keane (throws).
Heights remains a 6A contender, having enough experience from last year’s third-place finish at state to pair with its youthful talent. The Falcons have state title contenders in Skylarr Gatson (100, 200), Kenneth Iheme (triple jump) and Jet Moreland (javelin).
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Kapaun has three returning with state experience in distance runners Tony Baldessari, Matt Ayres and Nolan Hesse.
North will take advantage of its budding distance program, as Jawad Al-Ashab, Luis Sosa, Brandon Dorion, Tristyn Villa, DeRondre Smith, and J’quon Williams all return with state experience from last season’s 1600 and 3200 relay teams.
Northwest will be sprint-heavy this season, with Zach Franklin, Chris Hughes, Deron Thompson and Adam Dillard returning. The Grizzlies return key pieces to its 400 and 1600 relay teams, which both finished runner-up in 6A last season.
South is looking to continue its growth and will be led by juniors Davonte Harris (jumps, sprints) and Johnny Castellaw (distance).
Southeast returns state experience in sprinters Steven Calloway and Bradan Smith to go along with depth in Jace Glover (jumps), Darius Jiggetts (throws), Brandon Smith (throws), Jeff Masood (distance), Antonio McPherson (pole vault) and Vinh Bui (pole vault).
West has a state qualifier returning in triple jumper Tevin Robinson, and has high hopes for distance runner Dominic Fonseca. The freshman was a state medalist in cross country.
Andale is looking to win its seventh straight league title behind state qualifiers Trent Horsch (sprints, hurdles), Jonah Ungles (pole vault) and Chase Pote (javelin) along with transfer Garrison LeRock, who won the 2A high jump last year at Cimarron.
Arkansas City has one returning state qualifier in Eric Gibson (400), and has high hopes for Derrick Banks (relays), Kavin Harris (relays) and Austin Pond (distance).
Augusta features senior Zach Budda, a returning state qualifier and a Wichita State signee in the high jump.
Belle Plaine will be led by three seniors, Tyler Jantz, Todd McIntyre and Eric Martin.
Burrton will be led by returning state qualifiers Trae Lane (distance) and Brady Fernandez (throws).
Campus has six state qualifiers returning in Mark Davis (sprints), Semaj Brehon (sprints), Tyree Walker (sprints), Bryant Keirns (distance), Cody Walker (sprints) and Gavin Stout (javelin).
Cheney is young, but promising with junior Hunter Veith, the school record-holder in the triple jump, Chris Peters (pole vault) and Cash Kramer (jumps).
Circle doesn’t have any returning state qualifiers, but John Nicholas hopes to qualify in the hurdles.
Seniors will lead the way for Conway Springs, which finished fourth in 3A last year, in Joseph Gerber (defending state champion in triple jump), Brian Doffing (hurdles), Matt Seiwert (throws) and Cory Misak (sprints, hurdles).
More than 90 athletes are out for Derby, including juniors Brandon Lewis (1600, 3200) and Skylar Lounsbury (pole vault), who both enter as 6A contenders.
Douglass returns state champion Avery McNelly, who won the 3A 400 in 50.54 as a sophomore.
El Dorado returns three legs from its state championship 3200 relay team in Sam Haines, Matt Harvey and Michael Riedl.
Garden Plain is again strong in the pole vault with Nathan Dooley and Grant Hohiesel, and also has Peyton Randolph (jumps) and Dylan Clark (sprints).
Goessel will be led by Grant Flaming, Alex Schmidt and Bruce Benjamen.
Halstead will be led by seniors Ryan Bibb (jumps), Devon Bibb (sprints) and Chance Spicer (jumps).
Haven will try to send Caden Ford (throws) and Nathan Lacoy (distance) to state.
Hillsboro has three state qualifiers back in Shaq Thiessen (long jump) and Bret Mueller and Josh Richert from the 3200 relay.
Hutchinson Trinity, the defending 3A champion, has plenty of state experience in Cordell Goering (300 hurdles, relays), Joe Schrock (throws), Chad Pauley (relays), Edgar Gutierrez (distance, relays) and Paul Cuellar (400, relays).
Kingman will be led by Chris Harbert in the distance races and Kent Girard in the throws.
Madison returns a state qualifier in junior Willie Derryberry (800), who was second in 1A.
Maize will be strong with Ryan Hopkins (1600, 3200) and Jordan Grisamore (110 hurdles). Junior Matt Marr placed fourth in 6A discus last year.
Ridge Williams has state experience and is a versatile sprinter for Maize South, which also features throwers Cody Weston and Nevada Harlan.
Marion has three returning state qualifiers in Jordan Hett (distance), Colten Johnson (pole vault, hurdles) and Patrick McCarty (sprints).
McPherson has a solid returning nucleus in Cody Cape (high jump), Collin Harvey (sprints), Austin O’Bannon (sprints) and Caleb Porter (distance).
Moundridge has hopes of sending senior Jon Jackson (discus) and its 3200 relay team of Ryan Caster, Matt Emmerson, Tyler Kaufman and Hunter Enyart to state.
Mulvane has state hopefuls in seniors Payton Doramus (110 hurdles), Oliver Hughes (pole vault) and Trenton Songster (javelin).
Newton has sprinters Tyler Robinson and Peter Nelson, who were part of the state championship 400 and 1600 relay teams last season, and throwers Hugh McConnell, Cory Martens and Joseph McConnell.
Nickerson returns experienced long jumper Tanner Vick.
After finishing second in 1A, Pretty Prairie remains strong with a nucleus of juniors Trey Tallant, Alex Mains, Justin Haflich and Troy Nagle.
Peabody-Burns will depend on its scoring from juniors Lucas Larsen (throws) and Seth Topham (hurdles).
Rose Hill returns three-fourths of its state title 1600 relay team in Colton Mays, Austin Shaffer and Jon Martin. The Rockets have the depth to repeat their top-5 finish in 4A.
Smoky Valley returns senior Nick Deterding, who is a 4A contender in high jump and the 400, as well as state qualifiers Mason Weiss and Lars Peterson.
Sunrise has small numbers, but juniors Ryan Dungan and Seth Young are competitive in the distance races.
Udall returns the entire state-qualifying 400 relay team from last year in Colton Witte, Chris Hall, Heath Satterlee and Deshon Stiner.
Winfield will focus its rebuilding efforts around junior Colby Krominga and sophomores Josh Hanna, Jordan Johnson and Eli Muldrow.