BLUE DRAGON TRACK AT JAYHAWK CLASSIC
When: Friday-Saturday, January 25-26
Hutchinson CC Sports Information
The 2018 track and field season – both indoor and outdoor – produced a number of highlight moments for the Hutchinson Community College women's and men's track and field teams.
The 2019 teams have the potential to match last year and maybe surpass 2018.
After weather forced the cancellation of the Highland Challenge last week, the Blue Dragons will open the 2019 indoor season this weekend at the Jayhawk Classic at the University of Kansas' Anschutz Sports Pavilion. Events each day start at 2 p.m. on Friday and 9 a.m. on Saturday.
Starting his 35 season with the Blue Dragons, head coach Pat Becher likes the makeup of both teams from the solid group of returning sophomores to the talented group of incoming freshmen.
The following is a quick breakdown of the 2018-19 Blue Dragon track and field teams:
Total athletes: 42 (17 sophomores, 25 freshmen)
Returning All-Americans 8 (5 from 2018 track season, 3 from cross country)
Athletes to watch:
Anthony Gallardo – Finished third in the NJCAA Javelin. Posted ninth-best Javelin throw in team history 2018 KU Relays (203-9).
Myles Hansen – Finished sixth in the NJCAA outdoor pole vault at 14 feet, 7 1/4 inches. He is the defending Region VI Indoor pole vault champion.
Denilson and Donovan Whitmore – The brothers are part of Hutch's school record 4x100 relay team and 4x400 indoor relay team. The 4x100 set the school record of 40.38 seconds, but missed the finals by .04 seconds. Donovan also qualified for the national outdoor championships individually in the 100 and 200 meters and Denilson qualified in the 400 meters.
Elijah Smith – Smith was part of Hutch's indoor 4x400 relay school record team with the Whitmores. That time, which was 3:14.42, was seventh best at the indoor nationals last season.
Andrew Kibet – Kibet, a freshman from Kenya, became Hutchinson's first-ever individual cross country national champion this past fall. He won 5 of the 6 races contested and tied the school record for 8,000-meters at 24:01.
Sylvester Kibarar – Another Cross Country All-American, who posted the 10th-best 8,000-meter time in school history of 25:07. He placed 21st at nationals.
Brett Hillabrand – The third 2018 Cross Country All-American, who had the 20th-best time in team history at 8,000 meters of 25:35. Hillabrand was 40th in the 2018 NJCAA Championships.
Total athletes: 28 (17 sophomores, 11 freshmen)
Returning All-Americans 3 (1 from 2017 track season, 2 from cross country)
Athletes to watch:
Hannah Smith – She returns after a one-year hiatus and returns as the school-record holder in the hammer throw. That record throw of 160-5 was achieved at the 2017 NJCAA Outdoor Championships at Gowans Stadium.
Gabby College – She was a USTFCCCA All-American at the 2018 NJCAA Cross Country championships, placing 33rd in the championship event. She posted the third-fasted 5,000-meter time in team history of 19:06.56.
Sarah Patteson – She was also a USTFCCCA All-American at the 2018 NJCAA Cross Country championships, placing 39th in a time of 20:39. Patteson owns the 20th fastest time in cross country history of 19:40.43.
Lesayo Ewoi – In her second cross country event of the season, Ewoi broke the 5,000-meter return with a blistering time of 18:29.1. Injuries down the stretch slowed Ewoi in the final month of cross country season.
Jewell Bolden – A sophomore transfer was a four-time state 100-meter hurdle champion and three-time state long jump champion at Andover Central High School.
Aileen Gomez – The sophomore ran two seasons for the Blue Dragon cross country team and qualified for the 5,000 meters at last year's national outdoor championships
Patteson and Gomez along with returning sophomores Saw Ahmara and Caitlin Schlickau are returning national qualifiers in the indoor distance medley relay and 4x800 relay from 2018.