City Speeds to Indoor State Championship

Ford Washburn ‘22 hands off the baton to Ammon Smith ‘22.

Lauren Koch and Lucy Thompson

The City High boys track team brought home a first place finish at the Indoor State Track Meet on March 14th. Along with earning the top spot, the team broke the school record for the 4×800 meter dash. Noah Carey ‘23, Ammon Smith ‘23, Truman Thompson ‘23, and Ford Washburn ‘23 earned a time of 8:08.23. Many athletes placed first in their events, and among these athletes are juniors Akili Mattox, Ford Washburn, and Ammon Smith. The boys discussed how they felt going into the meet. 

Akili Mattox ‘23 said “I did not expect to jump that far. It was my first meet because of my knee. My goal was to jump 19 feet high and I ended up winning the meet which is pretty cool.”

Akili Mattox ‘23 recently came back from a knee injury.

“I was on the bike for two weeks straight. I couldn’t squat or anything”, said Akili Mattox ‘23. 

Junior Akili Mattox placed first in the long jump with a score of 20-9.25. 

Ammon Smith ‘23 describes his initial thoughts about the meet.

“I was able to look at the heat sheets, and I saw that there was one of the guys that I was racing a lot last year. He’s always been right up there next to me, so it was nice to know that there’s another guy there who’s running some fast times.” 

Ammon Smith ‘23 placed first in the open 800 with a time of  1:57.92. 

When asked about the team dynamic, the boys described the changes from last year’s group. 

“I would say after last year, obviously we didn’t have any [events]. So going into last year, none of us were that familiar with each other. This year we’ve become a lot closer.  It’s a better team atmosphere [during] the practices”, said Ford Washburn ‘23.

Looking forward, the boys discussed their individual and team goals.

“As a team, I think we can win state. We’re ranked number one in the preseason. I think we’re following up to that ranking”, said Akili Mattox ‘23.

“We’re easily one of the top teams in the state. We just performed so well in the indoor state meet, I think we have a really good team this year. And for individual goals, I want to win a state title in the 1600 or 3200,” said Ford Washburn ‘23.

One of the boys’ strongest events this year is the 4×800. The boys commented about the changes they made to improve the relay from last year. 

“A lot of extra work, last winter I didn’t run at all. Going into this winter, after a good cross country season, I started running a lot. Truman ran too, and Ammon ran for Iowa speed. We definitely worked a lot harder in the winter to prepare for it.”

In addition to the top finish in the 4×800, other athletes who finished first in their events are Matt Schaekenback ‘23  in the high jump, Jovan Harris ‘22 in the open 400, and Taeshon McDaniels ‘22 in shot put. City’s 4×400 relay also placed first; the team consisting of Jovan Harris ‘22, Truman Thompson ‘23, Matt Schnaekenack ‘23, and Ammon Smith ‘23. 

Coach Moore gives his thoughts about the team win.

“Our performance during our indoor season, especially the Indoor State Meet, proved that we are on track to have a very successful season.”