Divisional Sweep

Manhattan Christian swept the Western C Divisional titles Saturday in Missoula.

After sweeping the district meet a week ago, Manhattan Christian continued its postseason dominance over the weekend in Missoula.

The Eagles swept the Western C Divisional with the boys winning by more than 70 points and the girls holding off Seeley-Swan for the title 104-95.

Head coach Laura Arthun noted it’s the first time in program history that Christian has won both championships at a divisional meet.

“We are looking forward to a successful state track meet. Success isn’t really defined by winning, but by how well each of our athletes compete, and the effort they give to perform their best,” she added. “We can’t really control the outcome of what happens at state or any other meet, we basically just give it our best and see where we come out when the points are tallied.”

The state meet will be held in Missoula May 28-29.

Christian’s boys tallied 112 points powered by victories in six events, including two by Matt Kenney. The senior won the 800 and 1,600-meter runs with times of 2:08.53 and 4:44.38, and added a runner up finish in the 3,200 (10:50.97). He also ran a leg on both of the winning relays.

Tebarek Hill won the 400 with a personal best time of 53.21 and was fourth and fifth, respectively, in the 200 (24.37) and 100 (11.88). The sophomore also ran legs on both relays, which posted season best times.

Oren Arthun was the Eagles’ other individual winner, finishing in 10:13.46 in the 3,200. The freshman was the runner up in the 1,600 with a personal best time of 4:45.48.

Devan Walhof also shined in the distance races, placing second in the 800 (2:09.39) and third in the 1,600 with a season best time of 4:48.45. The senior also ran the opening leg of the 4x400 relay (3:40.03).

Seth Amunrud contributed to the team scoring with a pair of fourth place finishes in the long (18-04.50) and triple (39-01) jumps, while Nathan Adams was second in the pole vault at 11-feet.

“I was really impressed with the way our guys competed this weekend. Thomas Boscha opted out of his personal events to focus on the men’s sprint relay team after a slight pull in his groin. The team ended up setting a new season best and won the event,” said coach Arthun. “It is this kind of selflessness that propels teams to be champions. I’m very proud of his leadership and his work ethic throughout this season. He leads by example and I’m proud to have him on this team.”

On the girls’ side, sophomores Alexis DeVries and Jadyn VanDyken combined for 56 points to lead the Eagles to victory. DeVries posted the team’s only individual win, clearing the bar at 8-feet in the pole vault.

“We had a really strong headwind in the event all day, so we battled through and got our jumpers in the pit,” said coach Arthun. “Hailey Prester was the real wild card in the vault. She ended up getting a PR under very difficult conditions and placed third. I was so thrilled for her. We have been talking about her making a big breakthrough and today was it.”

DeVries added runner up finishes in the 100 (17.02) and 300 (49.41) hurdles, and ran legs on both relays with the 4x100 winning and the 4x400 taking second.

The sprint relay, which also consisted of Eliana Kuperus, Prester and VanDyken, posted a time of 50.89 to edge Seeley-Swan (51.21).

“The girls’ 4x100 relay was one of the weekend’s highlights,” said coach Arthun. “We have trailed them all season in the event and got some really beautiful handoffs to run as fast as we did.”

VanDyken notched runner up finishes in the 200 (26.58), 400 (1:00.13) and triple jump (33-11) and set a personal best en route to placing third in the 100 (12.95).

Ava Bellach also placed in multiple events after taking third in both the 1,600 (5:46.23) and 3,200 (13:14.31) and fifth in the 800 (2:32.03). The sophomore set personal bests in the 800 and mile.

Kuperus set a personal best in each of her events en route to placing fourth in the 200 (27.33) and 400 (1:02.39), and finishing fifth in the 100 (13.24). The senior also competed on both relays.

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