East Girls and Boys Track and Field secures great success at two back-to-back competitive meets


Photo by Joel Snyder

Jenna Duensing in the blocks at the beginning of the girls 4x100m relay.

On Friday, April 9th, the East Track and Field team traveled to Kearney to compete in the varsity Kearney Invitational meet. East came into the meet excited to compete against some of the toughest competition that they had seen in the season thus far. Apart from East, 7 other teams made the journey to compete in the Kearney Invitational such as Columbus, Creighton Prep, Marian, Kearney, Papillion-LaVista South, and Southwest. Despite the great amount of competition present at this meet and the unfortunate weather circumstances, Lincoln East still secured a lot of success throughout the day.
To start out the running events was the 4×800 relay consisting of Berlyn Schutz, Jordyn Wissing, Izzy Apel, and Jenna Muma. The relay team placed 2nd after running a 10:07.67, just short of Lincoln Southwest who ran a 10:05.40. However, this year the East girls track team currently holds the Class A record for the 4×800 relay with a time of 10:01.08. Finishing out the meet was the boy’s 4×400 relay, composed of Vince Eubanks, Grant Bauman, Malachi Coleman, and DeKendrick McCray, they finished first with a time of 3:36.06.
The East track team also saw a great deal of success in individual running and field events. Annalee-Ventling Brown finished second in the girls-300m hurdles after running a 49.37. In the boys 400m dash, Trevor Hendrickson placed third running a 54.06. Peyton Svehla earned a new PR (personal record) at the Kearney Invitational after running an 11:59.62 in the 3200m run and finishing fifth overall. In triple jump, Malachi Coleman, who currently ranks 4th overall in class A in this event, placed first after jumping 44’ 3.5 and earned a new PR. Sam Cappos, who ranks third in Class A in both Shot Put and Discus, placed first in Discus after throwing a 145’ 7.5 at the Kearney meet. Both the girls and boys track teams finished 4th overall with a total of 65 procured points for the girls, and 73 for the boys.
Less than a week later the Lincoln East track team headed out to Papillion-La Vista South High School on Thursday, April 15th. The competition at this meet was arguably even more intense in comparison to any of the prior meets that East had participated in. Some of the high schools who participated included Lincoln High, Omaha Burke, Omaha Westside, Papillion-La Vista, Papillion-La Vista South, and more. Throughout this meet there were some incredible displays of athleticism. Deja DeFrand, from Lincoln High, who currently ranks 1st in class A for both the 100m and 200m, ran a time of 11.79 in the 100m finals and a 24.52 in the 200m finals. Kaylie Crews, from Papillion-La Vista South High School, earned a new PR at the Titan Classic after running a sub 11 minute 3200m and now holds the number one time in this event across the entire state of Nebraska.
Across the board the East High Track team made significant strides as well. The boys 4×800 relay, consisting of Drew Arduser, Grant Bauman, Isaac Graff, and Joe Volkmer, finished first with a time of 8:26.11. The 3200m race was also highly successful for both the girls and boys team, as Joe Volkmer came in second with a new PR and a time of 9:56.96, and Izzy Apel, who also finished second, recorded a new PR with a time of 11:46.78. Both the boys and girls-track team finished 3rd overall, with the girls earning a total of 74 points, and the boys acquiring 80 points.
As the final stretch of the 2021 track season is approaching, the East High Track and Field team is very excited by the progress they have made thus far. The next varsity meet is the Harold Scott Invite on Thursday, April 22nd which will take place at Beechner Field at Lincoln High School. This is the last meet before the East track team begins the championship stretch, which consists of the city meet, HAC (Conference), districts, and state.