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Hanson Beavers bring home Class B boys track and field title

“I was flowing with adrenaline,” Hanson senior Thailan Hallman said. “The adrenaline got a hold of us and it was a lot of excitement throughout our whole team.”

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The Hanson boys track and field team won the Class B state track and field championship on Saturday. (Ryan Deal / Republic)

RAPID CITY -- Saturday’s Class B boys state track and field finale couldn’t have been scripted any better.

It came down to the final event and Hanson needed 10 points to move ahead of favorite Viborg-Hurley, which had a nine-point lead entering the 4x400-meter relay.

The Beavers claimed the relay with a time of 3-minutes and 30.36 seconds, giving them the 10 points. Viborg-Hurley, meanwhile, finished ninth place and that allowed Hanson to capture the state championship by one point.

The final scoreboard read Hanson 79, Viborg-Hurley 78.

“I told my boys if we compete well, we will have a shot,” Hanson coach Tyler Payer said. “I have been saying maybe their points were a little more solidified than ours, but it was a perfect weekend for us. I couldn’t ask for anything better.”

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The O’Harra Stadium crowd let out "oohs" and "ahhs" when the final standings were posted, while Hanson celebrated its first state championship since 2006.

“I was flowing with adrenaline,” Hanson senior Thailan Hallman said. “The adrenaline got a hold of us and it was a lot of excitement throughout our whole team.”

Hanson built a 69-56 lead over the Cougars entering the 200-meter run. Viborg-Hurley racked up 22 points behind Angel Johnson (first), Chase Mason (second) and Carter Gust (fifth) in the event. Hanson failed to score a point in the event, giving Viborg-Hurley its 78-69 advantage entering the final relay.

Hanson’s quartet of Noah Price, Sutton Dewald, Luke Haiar and Hallman cemented the state title with the 4X400-meter relay. Irene-Wakonda finished second in 3:34.74.

Viborg-Hurley finished ninth in 3:39.86. Howard (3:39.17) and Deubrook Area (3:39.51) finished seventh and eighth, respectively.

“Irene has been battling us well all year and they ran well,” Payer said. “We ended up winning it and we said Viborg can’t place and they got ninth. It was a perfect storm.”

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Hanson's Thailan Hallman competes in the 800-meter run at the Class B state track and field meet Saturday in Rapid City. (Ryan Deal / Republic)

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Hallman amassed 18 points in the 800-meter run and 400-meter dash. He captured the 800-meter run with a school-record time of 1:57.89. It was also the Gold Medal Award, which is presented to the best “finals” performance from all athletes in an event, regardless of class.

“It felt amazing,” Hallman said about his 800. “Looking up at the clock on the home stretch and seeing I had a chance to win this throughout all classes … It was just a great feeling. I knew I had to push through that last 50 meters.”

He also finished second in the 400-meter dash behind Freeman’s Collin Helma, who finished in :49.43 seconds. Hallman clocked in at :49.58 seconds and broke his own school record in the event.

On Saturday, the Beavers also scored big points in the field events. One day after winning the discus throw, Hayden Bahmuller placed second in the shot put. He finished second with a personal-record toss of 48-feet and 2 1/2 inches. Bahmuller was named the Class B boys most outstanding field athlete.

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Hanson's Hayden Bahmuller competes in the shot put on Saturday at the Class B track and field meet in Rapid City. (Ryan Deal / Republic)

Hanson’s Colton Dillon also boosted the team score in the event. Dillon (46-0 ¼) took fifth as the duo combined for 12 team points in the shot put.

“That put him at third place for a while and two other kids popped off,” Bahmuller said about his teammate’s throw. “So it put him down to fifth, which is really good for us. It helped us out a lot.”

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In the long jump, Price and Haiar combined for 13 team points. Price took second with a school-record jump of 21-5 ½ for eight points. Price was seeded 20th at 19-7.

What got into Price?

“It’s the state meet and the adrenaline,” he said.

Haiar (20-8 ¾) placed fourth and scored five points. He was seeded 13th entering the event at 19-11.

Payer said the 25 combined points in the long jump and shot put were “massive.”

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Hanson's Noah Price competes in the long jump at the Class B state track and field meet on Saturday in Rapid City. (Ryan Deal / Republic)

“Hayden Bahmuller was the only one coming in rated top eight in the shot and then all of a sudden our two kids go nuts over there and then two kids got nuts in the long jump,” Payer said. “That put it up there for us.”

Hanson is just the third Class B boys team since 2013 to earn the state title with 70 or more points. Viborg-Hurley won the 2019 state title with 76 points and Herreid-Selby Area recorded 71 points in 2013.

“It feels really good and everyone did what they were supposed to do to win,” Price said.

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Hanson's Luke Haiar competes in the long jump on Saturday at the Class B track and field meet in Rapid City. (Ryan Deal / Republic)

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