Discus champion

Salado’s Ryan Simmons hurls the discus Friday. He’ll be competing in the state track meet for the fourth consecutive year.

Salado senior and discus thrower Ryan Simmons advanced to the state meet for the fourth consecutive year after winning the gold medal at the regional track meet in Stephenville on Friday.

“To make it to state all four years feels great,” Simmons said. “I am excited about returning to Austin.”

Simmons winning throw on Friday was over 171 feet. His personal best is 186-10.

“The wind was pretty bad today,” Simmons said. “I could have thrown it a little farther but I am happy with the throw I made.”

Salado head coach David Simmons said, “Ryan pulled his hamstring a few weeks ago at the district meet. He’s still not 100 percent but he threw really well — especially considering the wind was knocking the discus out of the sky.”

Last year, Simmons finished second at the state meet.

“I know there are quite a few guys that made it to state last year that are throwing over 170 right now,” Ryan said. “There are plenty of good throwers out there. I’ll have to keep working hard to be competitive at state.

“I would love to get a gold. It’s always been a dream of mine. Hopefully, I can do it.”

Salado senior Rachel Hildebrand finished third in the discus on Friday and she also has a chance to make the state tournament as a wildcard.

Another highlight for Salado on Friday was Averi Fischer’s performance in the pole vault. She took fifth with a personal best height of 10-6.

Today, Salado senior Morgan Hill can qualify for state with strong performances in both the 100 hurdles and 300 hurdles.

Hill was also part of the 4x100 sprint relay team which made it to Saturday’s finals. Her partners on this team are Molly Colvin, Jaylee Sebek and Taylor Atwood.

Also advancing into the finals today for Salado is the 800 relay team of Atwood, Sebek, Meagan Hill and Abby Quick.

Contact Allan Mandell at amandell@kdhnews.com or 254-501-7566​ and read his blog at KDHPressbox.com

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