Thomas, Baker garner first places finishes in Joe Shy Relays

Chris Bowie
Boonville Daily News

There was no taking a backseat when it came to the long jump Friday during the Joe Shy Relays in Chillicothe.

That’s because the Boonville boys and girls track teams dominated the event Friday by placing first in both the boys and girls division. While the Lady Pirates were led by senior Daylynn Baker with a leap of 15’-8”, the Boonville boys track team leaned on Byron Thomas for its only first place finish with a personal record of 20’-4 1/2”. 

In the final team standings for the girls, Chillicothe captured first with 88.83 points while Cameron finished second with 75 points. Maryville finished third with 73 points, followed by Princeton with 71, Brookfield at 69.50, Kirksville at 68.50, Trenton at 50, Boonville eighth at 48,  Richmond at 38, Marshall at 35.66, Plattsburg at 33, Carrollton at 31, Penney at 24, St. Joseph Lafayette at 13.50, and Benton at 6.

For the boys, Kirksville finished first with 136 points while Richmond placed second with 98. Chillicothe finished third with 83 points, followed by Princeton at 62, Cameron at 48, St. Joseph Lafayette at 48, Brookfield at 40, Boonville eighth at 39, Penney at 38, Carrollton at 37, Benton at 34, Maryville at 23, Marshall at 22, Plattsburg at 22 and Trenton at 11. 

Boonville girls track coach Melissa Baker said she always looks forward to the competition at Chillicothe. “We compete against a lot of schools we don’t see in the season,” Baker said. “I was happy with our performance. It was a beautiful day and the kids responded with some PRs and season best for the season. Alison Eichelberger had a great day. She threw the javelin for the first time and medaled in the top three in the triple jump with a PR of 31’-11”. Daylynn and Jodie also brought home the other two medals for the team in the long jump and high jump. I am always  proud of the girls when they finish in the top eight and score points for our team, and we had several top eight performances. We are looking forward to our home meet this Friday and competing on our own track against more great competition.”

Senior Jodie Bass had the only second place finish for the Lady Pirates in the high jump at 4’-9”. Alison Eichelberger placed third in the triple jump with a jump of 31’-11”.

The 4 x 800 meter relay team, of Rachel Massa, Olivia Eichelberger, Presley Nease and Emily Gibson, placed fourth in 11:49.

The 4 x 400 meter relay team, of Bass, Alison Eichelberger, Kylee Turner and Olivia Eichelberger, finished fifth in 4:38.

Bass also took sixth in the 100 meter dash in 13.46 seconds, while Gibson finished sixth in the 1600 meter run in 6:35.2.

Seventh place finishers were Bass in the long jump at 14’-3”, Massa in the 1600 with a personal record time of 6:35.7, Olivia Eichelberger in the 800 in 2:57 and Gibson in the 3200 in 15;08.

Massa also set a personal record in the 3200 in 15:22.

Ninth place finishers were Alison Eichelberger in the 400 with a personal record time of 1:07.7 and javelin with a personal record throw of 107’-9”, and Emma Pritchett in the 300 hurdles with a personal record time of 58.62 seconds. 

Kylee Turner finished 10th in the 400 with a personal record time of 1:07.9.

Boonville boys track coach Ryan Lyons said it’s been two years and he forgot how good the competition was at Chillicothe.

“We only had 15 athletes compete (most schools had twice as many or more) but we finished eighth out of 15 teams, and we had an incredibly good day of personal improvement and achievement,” Lyons said. “Our leading point earner was Byron Thomas, who won the long jump and finished fifth in both the triple and high jump, and 12th in the 100; all four of his events were PRs. Rhodes Leonard continues to shine in his freshman year by finishing second in the open 800 and ninth in the open 400 (with a new PR) and anchoring both the 4 x 200 and 4 x 400 relays, which both had PRs in. And rounding out the boys medal winners was Daireus Brady, who took fifth in the shot put, throwing over 40’-0” for the first time in his career, and he finished eighth in the javelin with a PR throw. 

“This is the most enjoyable part of coaching track for me personally, seeing my athletes “PR”. Nearly every individual and relay team had PR’s at this meet and you could feel the energy. Increasingly throughout the meet I could hear my athletes talking about the next meet, how far they were going to throw or jump, or how fast they were going to run, of what adjustments they needed to make on the relay teams and improving, handoffs. The energy was amazing. Coach Stevens and I couldn’t be more proud of the attitude, effort, and improvement of this group of young men. We look forward, with great excitement, to hosting our own meet next Friday, April 16. I would encourage the community of Boonville to come out and be part of the up and coming boys and girls Boonville track and field programs.”

Ross Brackman also medaled for the Pirates after finishing second in the 800 meter run in 2:15.04.

Finishing fifth were Thomas with PRs in the high jump at 5’-7” and triple jump at 38’-1/4”, and Daireus Brady in the shot put with a toss of 41’-11 1/2”, which was also a personal record.

Other PRs for Boonville were Thomas in the 100 in 11.89 seconds, Evan Gonzalez in the 100 in 12.14 seconds and 200 in 25.29 seconds, Rhodes Leonard in the 400 in 55.52 seconds, Hayden Williams in the 1600 in 5:51.4, Daireus Brady in the javelin at 113’-7 3/4”, Harper Stock in the discus at 86’-11”, the 4 x 400 meter relay team, of Gonzalez, Brackman, Fisher Jenkins and Rhodes Leonard, in 3:55.86, and the 4 x 800 meter relay team, of Trent Maxwell, Hayden Williams, Hayden Alley and Ryan Jones, in 10:00.99.