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AREA BOYS TRACK: Reichling takes 6th; Whalen advances
Times photo: Mark Nesbitt Black Hawk senior Tyler Whalen finished third in the 400-meter dash prelims, qualifying for todays finals.
LA CROSSE - On the football field, Darlington senior Jeff Reichling was a bull of a fullback to tackle.

In the ring during the discus at the WIAA Division 3 state track meet at the University of La Crosse's Veterans Memorial Sports Complex, Reichling had visions of finishing better than the fifth place he took last year. Reichling threw the discus 147 feet, 1 inch to finish sixth to just medal and earn a trip to the podium. Albany senior Nick Patchen finished seventh with a throw of 143-10.

"It was just the distance I was disappointed with," Reichling said. "I would have liked to have had a better showing today. I think that will fuel me in the shot put tomorrow (Saturday) and I will be hungry and ready to go at it."

Black Hawk senior Tyler Whalen finished third in the 400 preliminaries in 51.25 seconds to qualify for today's finals. Darlington sophomore Alex Erickson took fifth (:51.87) and will join Whalen in the finals. Whalen finished 15th in the trials in the 200 (:23.93), failing to advance.

"You will have tough competition no matter who you are going against," Whalen said of the finals in the 400 today. "You just have to put your heart into it going into the finals."

Darlington's 1,600 relay team of Jordan Bryson, Trynton Schwartz, Jordan Heinberg and Erickson are chasing a state title in the event after finishing fourth in the prelims with a time of 3:32.62.

Erickson teamed up with Tucker Wiegel, Schwartz and Bryson to take fifth in the 400 relay with a time of (:14.94) to qualify for the finals.

Albany's 3,200 relay team of Jacob Short, Tyler Conley, Simon Lundegard and Jake Lincicum finished 10th with a time of 8:31.56.

"We thought this was our best year," Lincicum said. "We thought this was our best season for the 4x800. We were just too far out of it."

Short took 14th in the 3,200 with a time of 10:59.59. Lincicum will run for another medal in the 800 today.

The Redbirds' 800 relay team of Bryson, Braden Zywicki, Wiegel and Schwartz took 13th in the prelims with a time of 1:34.69, but didn't qualify for the finals.

Darlington's 3,200 relay team of Aaron Stauffacher, Markus Garrison, Kent Miehe and Heinberg finished 13th with a time of 8:33.70.