The People's Tribune

Van-Far Indians Are Class 1 State Champs

The Van-Far Indians and Lady Indians who qualified for state track traveled to Jefferson City High School at Adkins Stadium on Friday, May 19 and Saturday, May 20 to compete in the Class 1 MSHSAA Championship.

The Van-Far Indians scored 68 total points to become the Class 1 State Champions for 2017.

Two school records were broken over the two-day meet. Parker Wallace broke the record of Stevie Wheeler in the 800-meter. Wheeler set the record in 1982 at the state meet his junior year also. The previous time was 51.6 and Wallace ran a 51.3 for the new record.

The 4×200 relay of Jacob Garner, Parker Wallace, Verlyn Johnson, and Sharrod “Boomer” Connor broke the school record with a time of 1:31.85. The previous record was held by Bryan Davis, Mickey Davis, Mike Gibson, and Eric Smith set in 1986 with a time of 1:32.7.

Van-Far Indians Head Coach Kevin Ballwin commented, “We knew going into the meet that we had a chance of winning it all if we performed well. I told the kids that our goal for the meet was to focus on the things we had control of and not worry about what everyone else was doing.”

He noted the team focused on one event at a time.

“Many times teams get so caught up is winning the meet that they fail to focus on each individual event,” Ballwin said. “As the meet progressed it became obvious that we were going to win. The hard part was to stay focused and continue to do our best until it was final.”

He noted that he is proud of the team.

“Their work ethic and attention to detail is impressive. They definitely deserve to be state champions.”


100 Meters – Sharrod “Boomer” Connor, 2nd, 11.41.

200 Meters – Sharrod “Boomer” Connor, 2nd, 23.26.

800 Meters – Lathyn McMorris, 2nd, 4:27.62.

1600 Meters – Lathyn McMorris, 2nd, 4:27.62.

3200 Meters – Lathyn McMorris, 3rd, 10:13.69.

300 Meter Hurdles – Trevor Crider, 8th, 43.19.

4×100 Meter Relay – 1st, Jacob Garner, Trevor Crider, Parker Wallace, Sharrod “Boomer” Connor, 44.58.

4×200 Meter Relay – 1st, Jacob Garner, Verlyn Johnson, Parker Wallace, Sharrod “Boomer” Connor, 1:31.85.

4×400 Meter Relay – 5th, Parker Wallace, Alex Flowers, Verlyn Johnson, Trevor Crider, 3:33.90.

4×800 Meter Relay – 6th, Tyler Robinson, Samuel Hazel, Lathyn McMorris, Trevor Crider, 8:35.55.

Pole Vault – Jacob Garner, 9th, 10-09.


1600 Meters – Jayle Jennings, 11th, 5:53.06.

3200 Meters – Jayle Jennings, 14th, 13.46.71.

Discus – Jordan Garner, 14th, 97-03.


Van-Far R-I School District invites the community to the Spring Athletic Awards on Friday, May 26 at 5:30 p.m., to celebrate celebrate the Indians state track championship.

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