Holmes gold

Clinton hurdler Ethan Holmes crosses the finish line .01 seconds behind Linn-Mar's Kyle Dunn during Friday's 400-meter hurdle finals. Despite that setback, Holmes came back Saturday and won the Class 4A 110-meter high hurdles. Matt Pfiffner/For the Herald

The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

DES MOINES — An athlete doesn't always get the opportunity to gain revenge on a rival.

Ethan Holmes got that chance Saturday at the Iowa State Track and Field Championships, and the Clinton High senior took full advantage.

Holmes won the boys Class 4A 110-meter hurdles at Drake Stadium and, in the process, defeated the runner who had denied him of repeating as 400 hurdles champ a day earlier.

Holmes won the 110 hurdles in 14.5 seconds, comfortably ahead of the 14.73 recorded by runner-up Larry Johnson of Cedar Rapids Washington. Kyle Dunn of Linn-Mar, the 400 hurdles champ, was fourth in 14.86. Clinton's Jacob Mangler was also in the race, placing eighth in 15.54.

“Revenge had a lot to do with motivation,” Holmes said. “Having him (Dunn) right next to me in lane four as the top seed was great. This was the kid who upset me, so I wanted to kill him. I didn't dominate him … he ran a good race … he's a sophomore and has plenty of success ahead of him. But I won.”

Holmes said a good start helped him.

“I was the first person to the first hurdle,” he said. “Then me, the Linn-Mar guy and (Urbandale's Jacob) Stroebele were neck-and-neck. Stroebele started to pull ahead and I looked and saw the Linn-Mar guy was out of the picture. But I had to catch up and I snapped my trail leg through, and it was smoother than it's felt all year. That showed with my time.”

Still, Holmes said not winning the 400 hurdles a day earlier bothered him.

“It's still bugging me now,” he said. “Today's win didn't make up for it because I'll always remember not winning the 400 hurdles. But I'll continue to use it as motivation instead of letting it bring me down.”

Holmes also ran the 1,600 relay final Saturday, and the River Kings placed sixth in 3:21.45. Other runners were Mangler, Kaleb Frazier, David Johnson.

“We did what we could and ran our fastest time of the year,” Frazier said. “We were at 3:25 earlier, went 3:23 in the prelims and are now at 3:21. The place wasn't as good as we hoped, but we're happy with the time.”

Clinton added a sixth-place finish in the boys shuttle hurdle relay. Tyler Redman, Zane Pennock, Johnson and Mangler finished in 58.90.

“That's the best we've run all year,” Pennock said. “Our goal was to come down here and place, and we did. For the most part it looked like everyone ran well and didn't hit many hurdles.”

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