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Bardstown kicked off its track and field season this past weekend at the Mason-Dixon Games in Louisville, and Tiger coach Jeremy Dale said there’s a lot to look forward to as the weather turns warmer.
“The girls had an outstanding day,” he said. “We were one point behind second place.”
Bardstown’s girls placed third overall in Class 1A with 61 points, just behind runner-up Newport Central Catholic. St. Henry ran away with the meet, tallying 84 points.
High points of the meet included first-place results from Samantha Bowling in the pole vault and Allison Leachman in the high jump. Both seniors and state medalists last year, Leachman cleared 4-10 to win her event, while Bowling posted an 8-00 mark.
Junior Victoria Yocum also enjoyed a strong meet, placing second in the 55-meter dash with a 7.67 time, and finishing third in the 400 with a 1:03.54 mark. Yocum also figured heavily in helping the Tiger relay squads to a runner-up finish in the 4x200 and a third-place time in the 4x400.
The Tiger boys placed fifth overall in the team competition, which Dale said exceeded expectations considering some of the team’s top athletes were unavailable while the basketball Tigers were still playing in the 5th Region tournament.
“We had some nice performances,” Dale said. “In history past, the boys do well at Mason-Dixon when the basketball team isn’t as good, because we have those basketball players with us. When we go there, we’re not filling all our events with the best people we have in those events. I was very pleased with a fifth-place finish. … We had a good, solid day.”
Bardstown tallied 44 points to tie with Bishop Brossart, and the Tigers were just four points behind third-place Louisville Holy Cross and three behind Danville, which was fourth. St. Henry dominated in winning the team competition, racking up 90 points to easily outdistance runner-up Beechwood’s 60 points.
Top Tiger performers include senior Clay Donaldson, who was runner-up in the pole vault, clearing 10-00, as well as sophomore Brandon Price, who was third in the 800 with a 2:09.43 time. Price also helped the Tiger 4x800 relay squad to a runner-up time of 9:04.48.
Dale said the team will have a lot of depth this season, and that competition should only make the team better going forward into the outdoor season. The Tigers’ first meet is March 20 at the Shelby County All-Comers meet. Bardstown’s first home meet is March 29, one of three home meets this season. The Tigers also serve as host to the Class 1A Region 3 meet in May.
“We’ve got a lot of people coming back with the girls; the guys are kind of young,” Dale said. “Right now, we’re carrying about 94 kids on the track team, and there’s probably not a Class A school in the state that can boast that. It’s because people want to be a part of a winning program and a program with some history, and they like having that kind of success.”
Dale said this year marks the first for the Bardstown Middle School program, which will be headed up by Aaron Boggs, who also coaches boys’ soccer.
“We’re going to have probably 50-70 in the middle school program,” he said. “It’s kind of a neat experience to walk out here on the track and see a 130 kids out there.”