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Athlete of the week: E/P's DeLange building on strong season

PARKSTON--Jake DeLange is doing a little bit of everything for the Ethan/Parkston boys track and field team. And the Parkston senior is doing it well. DeLange, competing in the high jump, long jump, 110- and 300-meter hurdles, has won at least on...

PARKSTON-Jake DeLange is doing a little bit of everything for the Ethan/Parkston boys track and field team.

And the Parkston senior is doing it well.

DeLange, competing in the high jump, long jump, 110- and 300-meter hurdles, has won at least one event at five different meets this season. He's qualified for the state meet in both the high jump and long jump and is seconds away from qualifying in both the 110- and 300-meter hurdles as well.

"It comes down to Jake's worth ethic and athleticism," Parkston activities director and E/P assistant coach Leslie Rylance said. "He could try just about any event in the field or on the track and he'd be successful at it."

Last week, DeLange won the 110 and 300 hurdles with times of 16.76 and 47.52 seconds, respectively, at the Ethan/Parkston Relays on Friday in Parkston. The state-qualifying standard for Class A 110 hurdles is 16.07 and the 300 hurdles is 42.48.

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"He's just on the brink of breaking standards in the 110 and 300 hurdles," Rylance said. "He's a newcomer in the hurdles and he's enjoyed that event. He's really taking those hurdles on as a challenge."

Just three days before the E/P Relays, DeLange won the won the high jump with a leap of 5 feet, 11 inches and took first in the long jump with a mark of 21-02.25 at the Southeast South Dakota Conference meet on May 10 in Winner.

For his efforts last week and this season, DeLange has been selected as The Daily Republic's athlete of the week, a weekly award voted on by the newspaper's sports staff.

DeLange has the fifth-best mark in Class A for the long jump with his SESD-winning mark of 21-02.25 and the sixth-best leap in the high jump at 6-04.

Rylance noted DeLange's strong basketball season has translated into the long jump pit. He was an all-conference selection and helped the Trojans reach the Region 5A title game. At the Little Missouri Valley Conference meet on May 3, DeLange swept the four events he competes in - long jump, high jump and the 110- and 300-meter hurdles.

"He's got such speed and explosiveness," Rylance said. "He's really worked on his jumping ability for basketball and it's really carrying through this track season. He's got long legs and a lot of height, so he's able to reach out and go for those extra inches."

A multi-sport athlete standing at 6-foot-5 and competing in football, basketball, baseball and track and field for the Trojans, DeLange's versatility and competitiveness gives him advantage in his events.

"If you know Jake, he's an athlete, he likes to compete, he likes to learn and try new things," Rylance said. "He's steadily improving and his times in the hurdle events have gotten better and better."

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While DeLange competed in the high jump at last year' state meet, he didn't place in the event and that's something he'd like to change at this year's state meet. Rylance said DeLange "has some added pressure" in the high jump, but will focus on qualifying for the 110 and 300 hurdles at the Region 5A meet on Thursday in Hartford.

"This year, he's got a different mindset. He's ready to perform and compete," Rylance said. "He wants to place."

Related Topics: TRACK AND FIELDPARKSTON
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