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This year was a big one for area athletes as they won state titles, conference titles and were honored as All-State selections.
It was an especially big year for area track and field and cross country athletes as athletes from multiple schools took home state titles.
We’ll take a look back at some of the biggest stories and achievements of 2018.
State track meet
The Mid-Prairie girls track team won the Class 2A title and the Mid-Prairie boys earned runner-up at the 2018 state track meet.
They clinched the title with a 1-2 finish in the 1500-meter run by Anna Hostetler and Marie Hostetler. Marie Hostetler won the 3000-meter run and Anna finished third. Anna Hostetler won the 800-meter run. The distance medley of Amber Swart, Cassidy Rourke, Marie Hostetler and Anna Hostetler won the state title after a late comeback by Anna Hostetler over the final lap.
Mid-Prairie qualified in the 4x800 meter relay, Kessa Jones ran the 400 meter hurdles, Abbagail Evans qualified in the 400-meter dash and Mid-Prairie ran the sprint medley relay.
The Mid-Prairie boys medaled in six events, finishing runner-up. Floyd Evans won the Class 2A 3200-meter run. The 4x400 meter relay of Grant Boyse, Cary Schaefer, Quinn Schmidt and Peyton Miller finished runner-up, the 4x800 of Zach Pettit, Marshal Teets, Schmidt and Schaefer finished second. Evans was second in the 1600 and Pettit was eighth. The distance medley of Elmir Ganibegovic, Terrhyn Jacoby, Boyse and Evans finished fourth.
Schaefer and Schmidt ran the 400-meter dash and Boyse, jacoby, Aidan Rath and Miller ran the sprint medley. Kyle Miller finished 11th in the high jump.
Emily Yahnke won the Class 1A long jump with a jump of 17-feet 8.5 inches, hitting that on her first jump of the competition.
Highland earned medals in two relays, the 4x100 meter relay and the 4x200 meter relay. Yahnke, Aly Stokes, Kristy Thomann and Sarah Schneider finished third in the 4x200 and finished fourth in the 4x100. The girls finished eighth in the team competition.
Zack Lasek qualified and threw in the Class 1A discus competition.
Iowa Mennonite had two qualifiers as Levi Geyer ran the 1600- and 3200-meter runs and Suzanna Yoder ran in the 400-meter dash and the 100-meter dash.
Lone Tree’s Brady Dauber took sixth in Class 1A in the long jump. Lone Tree’s Casey Shalla threw in the Class 1A shot put competition and Brock Smith ran in the 800-meter run.
Lone Tree had two relays qualify. The boys 4x800 of Dauber, Harmon Miller, Keegan Edwards and Smith finished 11th. The Lady Lions qualified their shuttle hurdle of Holley Johnson, Zoie Simonson, Chloe Jacque and Emily Feldman, they finished 15th.
State cross country
The Mid-Prairie girls cross country team repeated as Class 2A state champions and Marie Hostetler earned her second individual state title. The win brought a sweep of the girls team running titles in 2018.
Mid-Prairie finished 29 spots better than Williamsburg that day with a total team effort from Hostetler, Mitzi Evans, Ana Fleming, Moriah Brase, Kate Cavanagh, Angelina Evans and Kessa Jones.
Hostetler won the individual title with a time of 18:02, the fastest girls time in any of Iowa’s four classes.
The area had three individual qualifiers at the state meet. Mid-Prairie’s Quinn Schmidt ran a 17:36 to finish in 32nd place overall. He capped his senior season with his best state meet finish.
The other two were first time qualifiers in Highland’s Madison Thomann and Iowa Mennonite’s Leah Bontrager.
Bontrager, an Iowa Mennonite freshman, ran to a 72nd-place finish in 22:16. Thomann finished in 99th in 22:50.
Mid-Prairie coach Mark Hostetler was named Iowa girls coach of the year by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.
Floyd Evans breaks
Floyd Evans marked his name in the Mid-Prairie history books by breaking the school record in the 3200-meter run. Evans won the state title in the event later in the year.
Area athletes competed in seven events during the Drake Relays this year.
Athletes competing for Mid-Prairie included Anna Hostetler, Marie Hostetler, Floyd Evans, Maddie Edgington, Cassidy Rourke, Amber Swart and Abbagail Evans. Highland’s 4x100 meter relay team of Sarah Schneider, Aly Stokes, Kristy Thomann and Emily Yahnke also competed.
The Mid-Prairie boys and girls swept their district meets, with both teams taking first place at Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont.
All Sports Mid-Prairie
Mid-Prairie finished third in the small school category in the Des Mones Register’s All-Sports standings. The award gives points for winning state titles in each of the sports. Mid-Prairie was third behind Iowa City Regina and Davenport Assumption.
Addie Rath hits 1,000
Addie Rath became the fourth in Mid-Prairie girls basketball history to score 1,000 points in a game against Wilton. She was also selected third-team All-State by the Iowa Girls Coaches Association.
Hahn, Slaughter win
Brady Hahn won the Southeast Iowa Super Conference title at 145 pounds and Aaron Slaughter won the title at 113 pounds.
Runner of the year
Marie Hostetler was named the Gatorade runner of the year for Iowa after setting a state-meet 5k record during the cross country season and winning multiple individual titles at the state track meet.
Highland’s Brady Hahn reached the quarterfinals of the state tournament at 152 pounds, but lost to the eventual fifth-place finisher.
Aaron Slaughter dropped his opening match, but won his first consolation match to advance to Friday at the state tournament. He nearly pinned an opponent late for an upset, but fell to a ranked opponent to end his state tournament.
Suzanna Yoder hits 1,000
Suzanna Yoder scored her 1,000th point of her career in a playoff game, Iowa Mennonite’s final game of the season. Iowa Mennonite made a run to the district semifinals before losing to a ranked North Mahaska squad.
Iowa Mennonite reaches
The Iowa Mennonite boys team fell just one game short of a state tournament bid. After a huge comeback win over New London to get Iowa Mennonite into the substate final, Lynnville-Sully got the best of them 52-48.
Despite being down 18 at halftime, the Iowa Mennonite team fought until the end and just came up short.
Iowa Mennonite qualified for the state soccer tournament, making it to the quarterfinals of Class 1A. They lost to Des Moines Christian in the quarterfinals 4-0.
They made it to the quarterfinals by defeating Solon 3-0 in the district final.
Slabaugh golfs at state
Mid-Prairie golfer Paige Slabaugh finished off her career with an 18th-place finish in Class 2A. The two-day meet at Lake Panorama National Golf Course saw Slabaugh shoot rounds of 92 and 91. Slabaugh is now a freshman golfer at Millikin University in Illinois.
Stockstell hall of fame
Mid-Prairie alum Aaron Stockstell was elected into the Iowa Association of Track Coaches Hall of Fame. An 11-time state champion, Stockstell is the most-decorated runner in Mid-Prairie history.
Stockstell ran collegiately at the University of Alabama and the University of Northern Iowa.
Busch Stadium game
Mid-Prairie played the Washington Demons at Busch Stadium in St. Louis this summer. The home of the St. Louis Cardinals was host to the two Washington County teams on June 21 this year.
Iowa Mennonite district champs
The Iowa Mennonite baseball team won the district title with an 6-5 win over Burlington Notre Dame. To reach the district final Iowa Mennonite had upset No. 8 New London 8-3. They fell in the substate qualifier to Lisbon, who was runner-up in Class 1A.
Lonnie Powers elected
into Hall of Fame
Former Lone Tree coach Lonnie Powers was elected to the Iowa Association of Football Coaches Hall of Fame. Powers coached at Lone Tree from 1982-1990 and coached football until 2007, winning 149 games and a state championship at Lone Tree in 1982.
The 1982 title was the first season at Lone Tree for Powers.
Aly Stokes and Chloe Jacque were voted All-State selections during the softball season.
Jacque was selected to the Class 1A third team by the Iowa Girls Coaches Association. She had 27 hits in 59 at-bats and stole a team-high 21 bases.
Stokes as a Class 2A honorable mention selection. She hit .333 and was 15-15 on stolen bases.
Cavanagh 100 wins
Mid-Prairie coach Pete Cavanagh reached his 100th win with a 33-6 win over Davis County this season.
Cavanagh is the winningest coach in Mid-Prairie history, now in his 16th season on the job. Mid-Prairie has had winning records in 12 of 16 seasons under Cavanagh including multiple playoff wins.
After a season that saw Trey Lasek go over 1,000 yards passing and 1,000 yards rushing he was a Class A third-team All-State selection by the Iowa Print Sports Writers Association. He was given an at-large spot due to his dual threat abilities.
Area athletes that signed letters of intent to play college sports included Avery Blauvelt to Wisconsin Lutheran, Addie Rath to Kirkwood Community College, Peyton Miller to Dordt College, Paige Slabaugh to Millikin University, Terrhyn Jacoby to Simpson College, Chloe Jacque to Murray State, Cassidy Rourke to Aurora University and Cole Ours to Eastern Mennonite University.
Highland playoff football
Highland won their first playoff game in more than a decade and the first since splitting off their cooperative program with Lone Tree.
A 14-13 win over Durant came after a blocked point-after try late in the fourth quarter by Brady Hahn. Highland would go on to give eventual state champion Hudson a contentious first half before losing 41-14.
Stokes 1,000 points
Aly Stokes scored her 1,000th career point in a 22-point performance against English Valleys. She becomes the fifth in Highland girls basketball history to reach the mark.