American Implement Western Kansas Team of the Week: Pfaff with 15-foot vault for Minneola; Denison with solid marks

Mason Pfaff broke his own school mark with a 15-foot pole vault.


Minneola senior Mason Pfaff has consistently been one of 1A’s top pole vaulters in the last three seasons. In 2021, he finished sixth at the state track meet. Last year, Pfaff cleared 13 feet, 6 inches and took third at state. Pfaff held the school record and has committed to the Pratt Community College track and field program.

At the April 18 meet at the Ashland Tom Gilmore Relays, Pfaff shattered his own school record with a 15-foot clearance. Additionally, Madi Denison won the shot put by more than three feet with a 34-5 mark. Pfaff also captured the 110 hurdles in 15.96. James Littlewood was second in the discus with 134-4 and first in the shot put at 46-6.

On Tuesday, Sports In Kansas’ Carol Swenson released his updated statewide honor roll. Pfaff is sixth for all classes with the 15-foot clearance. He is second in 1A behind Dighton’s Max Neeley’s 15-4 mark. Neeley, a Pittsburg State commit, is a two-time defending state champion.

Last year at state, Denison was ninth in the shot put. Two years ago, Denison was 14th at state in the shot put. Denison is one of the state’s top basketball players and is a two-time all-state selection, including SIK second team all-state this winter. The 5-foot-10 Denison has cleared 1,000 career points, consistently tallies a double-double and has committed to Hutchinson Community College basketball. She was also a SIK all-classes defensive player of the year finalist.

At the April 21 James McMillan Rebel Relays at Montezuma, Pfaff won the pole vault with a 14 foot clearance. Littlewood was third in the discus with a 123-8 and won the shot put in 44-7. Junior Maiya Shelor was second in the 100 hurdles. Denison was fifth in the shot put with a 32-5. Also at that meet, Jetmore-Hodgeman County’s Kalyn Washburn won the javelin with a throw of 133-3, a new school record.

At the April 14 Spearville track meet, Pfaff cleared 13-6 to win the pole vault, while Littlewood won the shot put in 44-9.5. Denison was third in the shot put in 34-1.

Pfaff has an opportunity to win Minneola’s first individual track and field title in 18 years, per KSHSAA archives. Since 2000, the best finish for Minneola track came when John Buchanon won the 1A high jump in 2005.

On the girls’ side, distance runner Jayda Minor had two seconds in ’14, along with one second and one third in ’15. Those are the best finishes for Minneola girls since 2000.

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