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Athlete of the week: Bon Homme's Kortan sets three Scotland Invitational records

Starting fast is a strength for Bon Homme's Chase Kortan. That's useful when running events such as the 100-meter dash, because sometimes a quick start is all Kortan needs to to run away with a first-place finish. "His first 10 steps are really q...

Starting fast is a strength for Bon Homme's Chase Kortan.

That's useful when running events such as the 100-meter dash, because sometimes a quick start is all Kortan needs to to run away with a first-place finish.

"His first 10 steps are really quick," Bon Homme track and field head coach Byron Pudwill said. "He gets out of the blocks as well as anybody. In the beginning of his races, he cranks it up."

Pudwill said Kortan uses his fast start out of the gate to excel in his top three events, the 100, the 200 dash and the long jump.

This was evident on April 5th at the Scotland Invitational, where he won three events and set meet records in each. Kortan won the 100 with a time of 10.9 seconds, the 200 with a 22.66 and the long jump with a jump of 21 feet, 4.75 inches.

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For his performance, Kortan has been selected as The Daily Republic's athlete of the week, an award voted on by the newspaper's sports staff.

"Obviously, he had a really good day," Pudwill said. "He's a really motivated kid and has determination. He never makes excuses and you know he's going to succeed because he's a four-sport guy. Track doesn't get the ink other sports get, but he's right there in each event."

Kortan also plays baseball in the spring, and has to find a balance with track practice.

"We just have to work it out," Pudwill said. "His dad is the coach of the local baseball team and he's been super supportive and tries to work around practice times. I've usually even heard him say 'Thou shalt get the track workout in before he comes into baseball practice.' It makes a big difference."

To this point in the season, balancing two sports hasn't seemed to have an impact on Kortan. The senior has the best time in Class A in the 100 (10.9) and best jump in the long jump (21-4.75). He also has the second-best time in the 200 (22.7), although Pudwill admitted it's still early in the season.

In 2015, Kortan finished second at the Class A state meet in the long jump with a 21-11, just getting edged by Parkston's Wes Dvorak (22.05).

"He has an unbelievable spring," said Pudwill, who called the long jump Kortan's best event. "The ultimate thing that will make you successful in the long jump is the runaway speed, and he's got that. He'd like to place in other events this year of course, but a big goal of Chase's is to be a state champion in the long jump."

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