City High 4x800 Team Headlines Strong Relay Day For Little Hawks at District Meet

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Photo by Jeff Yoder

Ryan Murken

Your Prep Sports

IOWA CITY – When JP Rethwisch helped the City High 4x800 team clock a 7:57.9 at the Forwald/Coleman Relays two seasons ago he figured it was the first of many sub-eight-minute efforts in the event during his prep career.

Instead it was the only time Rethwisch was a part of a 4x800 team to crack the eight-minute mark.

Until Thursday.

In his final appearance at Raffensperger Track Rethwisch anchored the City High 4x800 squad to a title in 7:55.21 at the Class 4A, District 2 meet.

“Two years ago we ran 7:58 at Forwald and that always seemed like a barrier that we couldn’t get past,” Rethwisch said. “When I looked up at the clock when I passed the finish line it was the best feeling ever.”

The 7:55.21 clocked by Rethwisch and fellow seniors Jimmy Momberg and Lucas Firmstone and junior Daniel Brown was more than 11 seconds better than the groups’ previous season best.

It was the seventh best time in City High program history and better than eight seconds faster than runner-up Cedar Rapids Prairie.

“We knew it was possible all along, we just had to put all the pieces together,” Momberg said. “We have had some guys who have a lot of potential just missing the mark at certain meets but we always had confidence in them to bounce back and tonight we managed to put some passion and heart into it and put the pieces all together.”

The 4x800 title was part of a strong relay performance for City High which added a title in the 4x100 and a runner-up finish in the 4x400.

Momberg finished runner-up in the 800 as City High earned four automatic qualifying spots for the state track and field meet next week at Drake Stadium in Des Moines.

Based off times reported on Quikstats the Little Hawks would enter the state meet with top-six times this season in all three of their automatically qualified relays.  

“We just haven’t been able to get some things together but I had this feeling at conference or this meet we were going to get those times to where we were sure they would be,” City High coach Mike Moore said. “We aren’t going to have a ton of stuff there but we are going to have some things that can go out there and compete with the best in the state and maybe have some placewinners in there.”

The relay success started with the 4x800 team.

Rethwisch, Momberg and Brown all returned from last year’s 4x800 squad that finished seventh at the 4A state meet in 8:00.11.

The group entered the season with high expectations but meet after meet went by without that breakthrough performance.

Still, Rethwisch said no one doubted they were a state championship caliber group.

“We knew we had the guys to do it,” Rethwisch said. “It was just about going out and all doing it at the same time.”

Momberg figured the breakthrough would come at the Drake Relays.

Instead City High placed 12th in a time of 8:11.5 while Cedar Rapids Prairie won the Drake Relays title in 7:56.84.

City High took more than 14 seconds off its Drake Relays time while outdistancing the runner-up Hawks.  

“We knew that Drake Relays wasn’t what we wanted,” Momberg said. “Even at the beginning of the season our goal was to be competitive at Drake and it didn’t come together on that day but coach always says happiest in May so we were very happy tonight.”

The win in the 4x800 was just the start for the City High relays.

City High cruised to a win in the 4x100, taking more than second off its previous best time by blazing a 42.86.

The Little Hawks closed the meet with a runner-up finish in the 4x400 in another season-best effort of 3:21.93.

“We were really happy with how we finished it,” City high senior Max DePrenger said. “Coming off that 4x100 I was stressing out about it because I thought I was going to be dead tired but I felt a little like a warmup before that 4x400.”

The 4x100 team of Zach Jones, DePrenger, Malik Kimber and Devonte Foster was impressive in just its second time together this season.

City High finished neaerly a second in front of Western Dubuque which was second in 43.51.

“I was hyped for it, because I knew what we could do in the back of my mind,” Jones said. “I know if we brought it we were going to do good.”

Jones and DePrenger turned around to place second in the 4x400 with Firmstone and Brown.

City High finished just .20 off the pace of Dubuque Senior but earned an automatic trip to state with the runner-up finish.

"Once I started running I was just thinking try to keep my pace and don’t worry about anybody until the final stretch,” DePrenger said. “When we got to the final stretch I just cut it loose and tried to get our team in a good spot and everyone did great. We felt good about it for sure.”

Class 4A State Qualifier

At City High

Team scores – 1. West High 135; 2. Cedar Rapids Prairie 127; 3. Dubuque Senior 118; 4. City High 87.5; 5. Ottumwa 84; 6. Western Dubuque 83; 7. Dubuque Hempstead 61; 8. Burlington 42.5

Individual Results

(Automatic State Qualifiers; Area Placewinners)

100 – 1. Dylan Kutsch (DH) 10.94; 2. Austyn Casillas (OTT) 11.07; 3. Devonte Foster (ICH) 11.21; 7. Tahj Williamson (ICH) 11.58

200 – 1. Austyn Casillas (OTT) 22.17; 2. Dylan Kutsch (DH) 22.33; 3. Devonte Foster (ICH) 22.62;

400 – 1. Austin West (ICW) 48.93; 2. Austyn Casillas (OTT) 49.92; 4. Gabe Caruthers (ICW) 52.82

800 – 1. Mike Jasa (CRP) 1:58.03; 2. Jimmy Momberg (ICH) 1:59.46; 4. Jeff Garbutt (ICW) 2:01.27; 7. JP Rethwisch (ICH) 2:03.44

1,600 – 1. Jalen Hildebrand (DS) 4:27.07; 2. Kolby Greiner (ICW) 4:28.96; 6. Ethan Goers (ICW) 4:32.48

3,200 – 1. Kolby Greiner (ICW) 9:35.77; 2. Jalen Hildebrand (DS) 9:37.13; 6. Ry Threlkeld-Wiegand (ICH) 9:54.75; 8. Will Conrad (ICW) 10:28.19

110 hurdles – 1. Dakota Brimmer (DS) 15.22; 2. Freddie Hosch (WD) 15.44; 3. Cole Mabry (ICW) 15.51; 5. Oisin Leopold (ICH) 15.67; 7. John Aschenbrenner (ICH) 16.0

400 hurdles – 1. Austin West (ICW) 53.83; 2. Angelo Romagna (DS) 54.15; 4. Cole Mabry (ICW) 56.78; 7. Noah Kabat (ICH) 58.99

Sprint medley relay – 1. West High (Jackson Steburg, Dante Eldridge, Andre White, Austin West) 1:32.74; 2. Ottumwa 1:33.39; 6. City High (Devonte Foster, Bryce Hunger, Malik Kimber, Sila Lulinda) 1:40.05.

Distance medley relay – 1. Dubuque Senior 3:33.41; 2. Western Dubuque 3:36.06; 4. City High (Max DePrenger, Daniel Brown, Zach Jones, Caden Turnbough) 3:38.98

Shuttle hurdle relay – 1. Cedar Rapids Prairie 57.31; 2. Dubuque Senior 58.71; 5. City High (Malik Kimber, Max DePrenger, Zach Jones, Oisin Leopold) 58.91; 7. West High (Austin Geasland, Ryan Gudenkauf, Caden Fedeler, Jason Lu) 1:02.35

4x100 – 1. City High (Zach Jones, Max DePrenger, Malik Kimber, Devonte Foster) 42.86; 2. Western Dubuque 43.51; 8. West High (Joe Dixon, Fabian Brown, Tyuss Bell, Orin Cantu) 45.45

4x200 – 1. Dubuque Senior 1:29.92; 2. Cedar Rapids Prairie 1:31.12; 5. West High (Fabian Brown, Tyuss Bell, Caden Fedeler, Andre White) 1:34.3; 7. City High (Tahj Williamson, Luke Young, Cole Milder, Dean Wortman) 1:37.5

4x400 – 1. Dubuque Senior 3:21.73; 2. City High (Daniel Brown, Lucas Firmstone, Max DePrenger, Zach Jones) 3:21.93; 4. West High (Ethan McAreavy, Jeff Garbutt, Dante Eldridge, Gabe Caruthers) 3:26.66

4x800 – 1. City High (Jimmy Momberg, Daniel Brown, Lucas Firmstone, JP Rethwisch) 7:55.21; 2. Cedar Rapids Prairie 8:03.91; 4. West High (Jeff Garbutt, Ethan McAreavy, Ian Prescott, Osman Salama) 8:05.44.

Long jump – 1. Austin West (ICW) 22-4; 2. Taven Harris (BUR) 21-3 ¼; 6. Keyshawn Trice (ICW) 20-2

High jump – 1. Grant Kelchen (WD) 6-1; 2. Caleb Fuller (CRP) 6-0; 4. Tevon Williamson (ICH) 5-10; 7. Doug Burtch (ICH) 5-8  

Shot put – 1. Landon Green (ICW) 56-7; 2. Jason Simon-Ressler (WD) 52-10; 3. Jonathan Gannon (ICW) 51-10; 7. Raphael Hamilton (ICH) 44-8 ½

Discus – 1. Jonathan Gannon (ICW) 168-10; 2. Kaden Schilling (CRP) 149-11; 3. Ethan Postler (ICW) 148-4; 7. Levi Sherod (ICH) 128-5