“It’s good experience for them to run against kids their age,” she said. “It’s going to boost their confidence for the varsity level.”
The younger athletes certainly had their share of success.
The throws went particularly well.
Erika Hammond won the shot put at 34-6, while Alayna Geronzin was third at 31-5, then Geronzin (98-7) led a 1-2 finish in the discus, while Hammond threw 90-10.
“We think it helps them confidence-wise to go 1-2,” throws coach Tony Steen said, although three of the four marks would have placed at the varsity level.
There was one negative, though. Geronzin suffered a left wrist injury (her non-throwing hand). She left the meet early to have the wrist checked by a doctor, passing on her final throws.
“It was a freak accident,” Steen said. “She slipped on the grass.”
Kim Kaster won the 3,000 in a season’s-best 11:23.20 and the 1,500 in 5:29.60 (part of a 1-2 finish with Alexis Namer). Elle Tubbs also won twice individually, taking the high jump at 4 feet, 8 inches and the 400 in 1:05.86.
The freshmen and sophomores also won the three relays: the 3,200 in 11:28.75, the 800 in 2:00.14 and the 1,600 in 4:40.40. They also got a second from McKenzie Peterson in the 800, a second in the sprint medley, a third from Hannah Burken in the 200 and a third in the 400 relay.
Wilden said those successes should benefit the Queens more than the varsity points they might have had.
“These kids are finding out hard work is paying off,” Wilden said. “If it weren’t for the juniors and seniors, the freshmen and sophomores wouldn’t be where they are today.”
The hope is that Thursday’s performance makes for even better tomorrows.
MISSISSIPPI ATHLETIC CONFERENCE MEET
1. Pleasant Valley 174; 2. Davenport Assumption 105; 3. Bettendorf 96; 4. Davenport Central 82; 5. Davenport West 74; 6. North Scott 65; 7. Davenport North 45; 8. Muscatine 44; 9. Burlington 29; 10. Clinton 11.