De Soto residents bring home Sunflower gold
Two De Soto High School coaches and two De Soto residents won gold medals at the Sunflower State Games in Lawrence over the past two weekends.
DHS Softball coach and De Soto resident Glenda Williams placed first in the 30-34 age group for the 10K Governor's Cup competition with a time of 59:52.75. Williams' husband, Tim, competed in the men's 30-34 division. The couple saw the Sunflower race as a means to prepare for the Motorola Marathon in Austin, Texas in February.
"It was a pretty good race but kind of hilly toward the end," Glenda Williams said. "The heat was a big factor in this race."
In the 5K Governor's Cup race, De Soto resident Mark Taylor's 22:36.55 finish was good enough to win a gold medal in the 35-39 age division.
Last weekend, DHS assistant track and football offensive line coach and former Kansas University thrower Darin Schmitz won the hammer throw (50.48 meter) and received a silver medal for a 43.82 meter discus throw. A triple threat in the 19-29-year-old division, the 25-year-old Schmitz also competed in the shot put. He said it was good to be throwing again after a long layoff.
"It felt pretty good and it was the first meet that I felt decent at throwing in," Schmitz said. "I was happy with the distance and it looked good for a comeback. I hope to compete in the Kansas Relays next year as well."
A 1999 Kansas University graduate, Schmitz was competing for the first time with his young daughter, Kelcey, present.
"It was really neat to throw this weekend and see my daughter put her hands up in the stands and say 'dada,'." Schmitz said.
Two De Soto wrestlers won medals in the folkstyle events at Free State High School on Saturday.
Lexington Trails seventh grader Trevor Leahy won the gold medal in the 12-and-under 84-90 pound division by pinning Bryant Petty of Manhattan and two other opponents while Virgel Goodwen of De Soto scored a silver medal in the 230 pound plus 30-39 age division after losing to gold medalist Shane Palmer of Abilene.
"I got a lot of practice in before the season," Leahy said. "I liked competing in the Sunflower State games."
De Soto High School junior tennis player Drew Guntert competed in the 16 and under non-sanctioned singles division at Kansas University's Robinson courts but did not place in the top three.