Houston's Bethany Korte, third from left, races in the 100 meters at Monday's conference track meet. Korte finished second.

A pair of track athletes will represent Houston High School at the MSHSAA state track meet.

Kyle Jones and Bethany Korte each qualified for a pair of events by finishing in the top four at Saturday’s sectionals in Hollister. Jones finished third in the long jump and fourth in the high jump. Korte was third in the 100 meters and fourth in the long jump.

The state meet is Friday and Saturday in Jefferson City.

Jones, a sophomore, jumped 20 feet, three inches to finish third in the long jump. The leap established his new personal record by eight inches.

“He really built up speed on the runway, which is key, and then he had a great jump,” said Houston track coach Chris Edwards. “He finished it right, without falling backwards.”

In the high jump, Jones cleared 6 feet.

“It’s very exciting to take a sophomore to state in two events,” Edwards said.

Despite windy and rainy conditions, Korte ran a career-best 12.68 in the 100 meters to qualify for state.

This is the first full track season for Korte, who last year split time between the softball and track teams. She missed a majority of the meets due to games.

“We had worked hard all week on keeping her running straight down the track and not veering throughout her lane, and it really paid off,” Edwards said.

Korte also qualified in the long jump with a leap of 15-8. Her previous best jump of the season was 15-4.

“She had a great jump where she was able to put it all together — a great run-up and a great landing,” Edwards said. “She’s been so much more consistent in her run-ups this year and that has made a lot of difference.”

The girls’ 4×100 relay team missed qualifying for state by a mere 0.01 seconds. The team of Danielle Pounds, Kaitlyn Kell and Bethany and Taylor Korte was edged out by Willow Springs — a team it had defeated at every meet this year — for the final qualifying spot.

“We’d beaten them at every meet so far, but they got us on this one, and they earned the position,” Edwards said. “We didn’t have a bad exchange or anything, they just got us this time.

“The four girls were very disappointed, but they have nothing to be ashamed of. They had a great season, and they were a lot of fun to coach.”

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