DES MOINES — Just enjoy the experience.

Vinton-Shellsburg coaches Aric Chvala and Heather Kalous pushed that message through the three-day Class 3A state meet to their 10 athletes who qualified to participate at Drake Stadium.

“I’m happy that they had the experience of getting to be there,” Chvala said of a boys team that brought two individuals — CJ Rickels and Logan Zearley — and a couple handful of runners for two relays.

“Once you’re there, it’s just work hard but enjoy it and take it all in. Be proud of yourself. You can always want more, but the experience of being there is what I’m glad they got to have.”

Rickels unfortunately injured his knee during warm-ups for the high jump and wasn’t able to compete. Chvala noted the atmosphere — a drizzle Thursday morning made the high jump area wet and slightly slippery — didn’t seem to play a factor.

“CJ is second all-time in Vinton-Shellsburg in the high jump and it’s just sad to see that he wasn’t able to finish this last competition,” Chvala said. “We were ready, he looked good going into it and it was very unfortunate.”

Zearley placed 23rd in the 110-meter hurdle preliminaries, clocking 16.89 seconds.

The 400-meter relay team of Elijah Kalous, Landyn Rowe, John Engler IV and Alontae Wilson placed 22nd in 45.61. Engler, Rowe and Wilson were joined by David Lapan-Islas and placed 23rd (3:46.64) in the distance medley relay.

The Vikettes’ three field event athletes placed between 14th and 15th.

Abby Bartz was 14th in the shot put at 36 feet, 7 inches, Kayla Griffith was 14th in the high jump at 5 feet and Brylee Bruce was 15th in the discus at 106-11.

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