JEFFERSON CITY • Stunning as it was, Cardinal Ritter's Charles Jones wanted more.
Winning the 800-meter race wasn’t enough. Setting the Class 3 record wasn’t enough. Running the fourth fastest time in the nation, and turning in the best time by a sophomore, wasn’t enough.
No, Jones had bigger things to chase down. He wanted the overall record. And he wanted it as a sophomore.
“I was kind of disappointed,” the 6-foot-2 Jones said.
Jones’ time of 1 minute 49.96 seconds carved up the old Class 3 record of 1:51.25 set by Willard’s Jason Pyrah in 1987. Jones was focused on taking home the overall state record of 1:49.89 set by Parkview’s Billy Rainey, also in 1987.
Jones has spent this spring season blistering whatever track he stepped on and making people remember him. It was no different here at Dwight T. Reed Stadium on Saturday as his record-setting performance left mouths agape and spectators gasping. Even his fellow competitors were in awe of him.
Jones plans to continue dropping jaws this summer. He wants to chase down as many national records as he can. Records are his motivation. He even shared them with his Ritter teammates.
The Lions rolled to the 3,200-meter relay record on Friday and, on Saturday, took home another mark in the 1,600 relay. With Jones running the anchor leg, James Williams, Jonathan Henderson and Terrone Garner steamrolled the field in 3:17.24. The old record was 3:17.64 set by Berkeley in 1989.
That’s the same group of guys who raced to the 3,200 relay record in 7:50.58. The scary part is both Jones and Henderson are sophomores, while Williams is a junior. The Lions are very much in the mix to put another trophy in the case and break their own record.
“We’ve got two more years,”Henderson said with a smile.
BARTELSMEYER BLOWS AWAY THE FIELD IN 1,600
Amos Bartelsmeyer couldn’t wait any longer. About 400 meters into the 1,600 meter run, he had to go. The MICDS junior picked up the pace and then left the field in his wake as he cruised to the Class 3 state title in 4:14.66.
Bartelsmeyer, who’s trying to earn an at-large bid to the Dream Mile, a top-flight meet in New York City the second weekend of June, needed to hit a qualifying time of 4:09. The slow start to the race all but ended Bartelsmeyer’s attempt. He can, however, hit the timing standard at next week’s Festival of Miles at St. Louis University High School.
“After the first 400, I had to take it for myself,” Bartelsmeyer said.
It would have been hard for Bartelsmeyer to hit the standard without anyone pushing him. He’d expected the field to be faster, but with Festus standout Drew White struggling (he finished fourth in 4:26.33) Bartelsmeyer was on his lonesome.
After taking third in the 1,600 last year, the move up the podium proved sweet to Bartelsmeyer.
“It feels different,” he said with a grin.
He also took third in the open 800 and posted a wicked time of 1:52.76 but was bested by Jones and Warrensburg senior Kellin Loch.
Bartelsmeyer said he enjoys running with Jones, because he knows he has someone to try and keep up with.
“With (Jones) in the race I’m going to try and stay with him,” Bartelsmeyer said.
ELLIOTT'S DAY PROVIDES MOTIVATION
Ezekiel Elliott came to the state meet dreaming of gold.
He left with his dreams shattered.
The John Burroughs standout was kept off the top of the podium by Grandview dynamo Dapo Akinmoladun. The Nebraska-bound Akinmoladun took home top honors in the 110 hurdles in 13.56 and the 300 hurdles in 37.34.
Elliott was the runner-up both times as he finished the 110s in 14.13 and the 300s in 37.61.
It was just a year ago that Elliott got the best of Akinmoladun in the 110s for the state title.
“I’m very disappointed. It’s a very disappointing meet,” Elliott said. “This is very humbling.”
The difference between second and first could have come just after the gun went off. Elliott said he didn’t feel good coming out of the blocks.
“My starts weren’t good at all,” he said.
Elliott said he’ll spend the summer working on his hurdling and preparing for his senior year on the gridiron at Burroughs. The Bombers have made back-to-back Class 3 title game appearances.
He said he’s taking a page from his football coach as he approaches his postseason plans.
“My football coach always says the oldest thing in the world is the last play,” Elliott said. “You’ve got to keep going.”
U. City’s Emmanuel Price was third in the 300 hurdles in a time of 38.60.
GRANDVIEW RUNS AWAY WITH TEAM TITLE
Grandview, of Kansas City, cruised to its second straight Class 3 title with 64 points. Platte County was second with 44. Hannibal was third with 42, while Jennings finished fourth with 36. Festus was fifth, Ritter was sixth, Burroughs was seventh and U. City was eighth.