LAUREL — A day earlier, Savage's Brooke Reuter had a premonition about the impending and highly anticipated 100-meter finals at the Class C state track and field meet: "It's going to be close," Reuter said Friday.
That turned out to be the understatement of the season.
Reuter and Manhattan Christian's Jadyn VanDyken engaged in the best and closest race of the meet on Saturday in the girls 100. After a lengthy review of a photo finish, Reuter's time of 12.61 was just enough to eclipse VanDyken's 12.62 and give the Savage sprinter her second consecutive title in the event.
Reuter, who said she had been chasing the formidable exploits of the Montana State-bound VanDyken all year, would later go on to defend her championship in the 200 meters to cap what was an emotional day — and the emotional end to a weekend that saw her break her own Class C mark in the 100 trials on Friday.
"Amazing. It's kind of unbelievable. I just got done crying," said Reuter, her voice cracking. "I'm happy. I'm really, really, really happy."
How the Class C girls 100 final looked between Manhattan Christian’s Jaydyn VanDyken and Savage’s Brooke Reuter with about 5 meters to go.— Greg Rachac (@gregrachac) May 27, 2023
Photo finish. Officially: Reuter 12.61, VanDyken 12.62. Incredible race. pic.twitter.com/WZVP9sN5Ci
Of the closeness of the 100 finals, Reuter said, "You just keep telling yourself, 'Go, go, go. She's right there.' And then you lean at the end and just ... fingers crossed."
The race produced the most intense moment of a day that saw the Plentywood girls win their second consecutive team championship with four competitors.
Wins by Emma Brensdal in the shot put and Audrey Sampsen in the high jump, on top of a stellar meet by teammate Annie Kaul, helped secure 75¾ team points to get past second-place Manhattan Christian with 66.
Individually, Roberts' Taylee Chirrick put her stamp on another outstanding day. Chirrick broke Class C records in both the 400 and 800 on Friday and followed those with a record in the 300 hurdles — a time of 43.06 to overtake another mark by former Big Sandy great Kourtney Danreuther.
"I just kind of wanted to come in and do the best I could," said Chirrick, who transferred to Roberts this year from Class AA Billings West. "I just told myself that it's my main event of the day and my favorite race and to just go out and do what I can."
Meanwhile, Manhattan Christian's boys captured their first track championship in school history in runaway fashion.
Depth allowed the Eagles piled up 81 points. Another Shaphan Hubner title in the 1,600 meters and a victory in the long relay were Saturday's highlights. Belt came in second in the team standings with 48 points.
"We pretty much had two or more people in each event," Hubner said after his team posed with its hard-earned hardware. "It's good to push each other. It's the first time we've done this, so it's special."
Class C boys state champions from Saturday were:
- Brenden Fetter, Chinook, 100 and 200
- Shaphan Hubner, Manhattan Christian, 1,600
- Stockton Zimdars, Park City, 110 hurdles
- Johnslee Pierre, Lustre Christian, 300 hurdles
- Memphis Black, Belt, shot put
- Josiah Hambira, Lustre Christian, high jump
- Caiden Sekuterski, Cascade, triple jump
- Lustre Christian, 400 relay
- Manhattan Christian, 1,600 relay
Class C girls state champions from Saturday were:
- Brooke Reuter, Savage, 100 and 200
- Shelbi LaBrie, Whitewater, 1,600
- Claire Bucklin, Sunburst, 100 hurdles
- Taylee Chrrick, Roberts, 300 hurdles
- Emma Brensdal, Plentywood, shot put
- Carrie Taylor, Scobey, javelin
- Audrey Sampsen, Plentywood, high jump
- Ayla Janzen, Twin Bridges, triple jump
- Manhattan Christian, 400 relay
- Manhattan Christian, 1,600 relay