Nathan Jones finishes 5th in the triple jump

Boonville junior Sarah Ellebracht was on pins and needles as to whether she would qualify for state or not Saturday during the Class 3 Sectional 2 Track Meet at Mexico High School.
After finishing third the week before in the pole vault during the district track meet, Ellebracht knew she was right on the bubble with only the top four finishers moving on to state this coming Friday and Saturday at Lincoln University in Jefferson City.
As it turned out, Ellebracht beat the odds by placing fourth out of eight vaulters with a vault of 8’-9”.  Ellebracht will compete at state on Saturday, May 25 starting at 11 a.m.
Unfortunately for Boonville, Ellebracht was the only state qualifier for the boys and girls track team.
Boonville Lady Pirates track coach Melissa Baker said Ellebracht did a great job at the sectional track meet. “Sarah also jumped a personal best,” Baker said. “I am proud of her and the hard work she has put in. After another week of practice I look for Sarah to jump over 9’-0” at the state track meet. This is great for our school and our community to have a Boonville athlete competing at the state track championships.”
As for the Boonville boys track team, they had several athletes within striking distance of qualifying for state. Junior Nathan Jones was the top place finisher for the Pirates by placing fifth in the triple jump with a leap of 41’-1/4”.
Boonville head coach Steve Smith said Jones was just six inches out of third place in the triple. “It is the second year in a row that Nathan has finished fifth in this event at districts last year and sectionals this year,” Smith said, “so with another year I can really see him qualifying for the state meet next season.”
All four members of the 4 x 100-meter relay team will also return for next season.  As the sixth seed going into sectionals, the 4 x 100-meter relay team of Brandon Ford, Austin Hinkle, Jordan Weaver and Kenan Johnson finished right where they were seeded in a time of 45 seconds.
“This was their fastest time of the season,” Smith said. “It just wasn't going to be, however, as all five teams ahead of them ran in the 43s. The boys worked really hard all week on their handoffs and it paid off for them. We just could not compete with the St. Louis teams.”
Junior Austin Hinkle also improved on his seed in the 100-meter dash. As the eighth seed going in, Hinkle finished sixth overall in a time of 11.28 seconds.
Smith said Hinkle stumbled a bit coming out of the blocks, just as he did the week before at districts, and that ended up costing him a possible chance to finish in the top four. “He still ran a very competitive race and I sure would have liked to see how the race turned out if he hadn’t stumbled.”
Hinkle also competed in the 200-meter dash for the Pirates and finished eighth in a time of 24.24 seconds.
Smith said it looked to him like Hinkle pulled up with 20 meters to go when he realized he wouldn’t quality thus the slower time.
“I would just like to say that this young team really came on the second half of the season and if it stays intact next year will be very exciting,” Smith said. “It was a real learning experience for them seeing the kids from St. Louis and what is is going to take for them to qualify next season.”
In the final-team standings for the girls, McCluer-South Berkeley captured the title with 62.50 points. Mexico finished second with 60 points while Kirksville placed fourth with 42 points, Moberly ninth with 35 points, Marshall 10th with 25 points, Fulton 16th with 18 points and Boonville 23rd with 5 points.
In the final-team standings for the boys, St. Charles captured first with 56 points. Kirksville finished fifth with 43.5 points while Moberly placed sixth with 41, Mexico 12th with 26, Boonville 21st with 11 and Marshall 28th with 4 points.