Mansfield has had a way of climbing into the top ten team rankings among class 3A track and field schools over the years. This season that ascend was just shy. Mansfield’s senior girls were edged off the plateau by a single point.
The 2017 Lady Tiger track team scored only 25 points as they closed out their team outdoor season at the class 3A state finals in Prescott on May 2. With contributions from an engaged class of seniors, the group finished eleventh in the total team rankings.
Defending champion Genoa Central did what Mansfield did a few seasons ago. The Dragons dug deep for their fourth consecutive championship trophy. They scored 117 points for the win. Harding Academy finished a distant second with 64 points. Rivercrest (44), Green Forest (42), and a tie between Clinton (40) and Paris (40) rounded out the top five.
MHS seniors Eden Jones and Whittney Clark were the Tigers main weapons. The pair accounted for nearly half of the team’s final tally.
Clark started things off with an 8’ 0” pole vault for third place. Teammates Fayth Schwartz (7’ 0”) and Emily Parish (7’ 0”) added to the vault club production by landing in fourth and tied for fifth respectively.
Jones kept the momentum going by willing her 4x800m relay team into sixth place. The four time state participant ran the fastest leg of the four at a 2:39 clip pulling the team to a 11:32.41 finish.
Jones was supported by Alyssa Berry, Lennon Woods, and Megan Rose. Berry and Rose were on the state finals team from a year ago. Woods, just a freshman, joined the group after her junior high season ended.
Jones nearly duplicate her 2 lap effort when she entered the open 800m race later in the night. The All-District player ran a 2:39.08 to take eighth place in that event.
To close out her scoring, Jones cleared 4’ 10” in the women’s high jump. The mark was good enough to take fifth place points.
Another Tiger senior, Audrey Walker, carved out a gutsy 300m hurdle performance. The defending state champion in that event fell off her winning time from a season ago turning in a 50.55 sixth place mark.
Walker also anchored both the 4x100m and 4x400m relay teams. Neither group finished in the top eight scoring positions.
The speed team of Makiah Holmes, Brooklyn Carlton, Whittney Clark, and Walker bettered their seed time by nearly 2 seconds. They completed the one lap cooperative in 55.89.
The other relay was peopled by Delilah McKusker, Clark, Jones, and Walker. Again the effort was an improvement over their seed time but falling short of the top eight. The Tigers collective 4x400m run was 4:36.55 compared to their district advancement of 4:46.27.
Mansfield qualified 14 total participants to the state competition. Included among those were Rylea Weaver who finished 11th in the shot put at 30’ 4”. Corrina Wesley jumped 29’ 1.5” in the triple jump for 14th place.
Rose was 12th in the women’s 3200m run. She was clocked at 13:35.95. Clark was 13th in the triple jump at 29’ 8.5”, and 16th in the long jump at 13’ 2.5”. Walker cleared 4’ 6” in the high jump for 13th place, and 12th in the 100m hurdles at 18.69.
Mansfield’s regular season is now over. The 3A Region 1 West conference champions will now move forward to the state heptathlon on May 16 and 17. Jones and Walker will represent the Tiger team.