American Implement Western Kansas Team of the Week: South Gray girls continue all-sports success; legit 1A title contender

South Gray girls have had across-the-board success in ’22-23.


Montezuma-South Gray girls have continued an impressive school year with a strong start to the track season. SG girls won 1A state cross country, captured 33 matches in volleyball and went to the 1A-1 state tournament in basketball. The Rebels will be a high-level state contender in 1A track this spring.

In cross country, South Gray had three all-state runners. Sophomore Kylie Stapleton finished fifth in 21:17.67, sophomore Gwyn Jantz took sixth in 21:23. Freshman Jacee Deges was 15th in 21:55.14.

Stapleton and Deges have enjoyed standout track performances. That includes a win at the 19-team Spearville Invitational last Friday. SG posted 108 points, well ahead of runner-up Larned’s 82.5 points.

Stapleton posted a 17-foot leap in the long jump. She won the 100-meter hurdles in 16.12 seconds. Stapleton won the 800 by more than 10 seconds in 2:20.98. Junior Jacelyn Huelskamp posted a 300-meter hurdle title in 49.80. She helped the SG 1,600 relay to a title in 4:26.54. That is the best 1A time by more than five seconds.

The 800 time is by far the best 1A mark, per track historian Carol Swenson’s statewide Sports In Kansas honor roll. No other 1A runner was under 2:25.

Five-foot-10 junior Vi Helm won the high jump with a leap of 5-2. Deges captured the pole vault with a 9-foot clearance. The 3,200 relay won 11:09.30.

On March 28, Stapleton collected the 800 title in 2:28.10 at the Cimarron meet. In the 100 hurdles, she was second with 17.82. She also collected the long jump in 16-10.5.

Helm also won the high jump with a 5-2 mark and was fourth in the triple jump with a 31-8.25. Deges was second in the triple jump with a 32-7.75 and third in the pole vault with a 9-foot clearance.

In the javelin, Lakin Goossen and senior Alleris Granados finished 2-3, respectively.

Last season, Stapleton was the 1A runner-up in the 800 with a 2:24.74 and second place in long jump with 17-2.25 leap. She took ninth in the 100-meter hurdles with a 16.71. The 1,600 relay was seventh in 4:21.34. The girls finished tenth in 1A with 25 points.

South Gray volleyball went 33-7 last season with Helm a key hitter and Huelskamp the team leader in digs.

SG girls’ basketball qualified for the 1A-1 state tournament and finished 17-7 with Helm as the Rebels’ top scorer and rebounder. Stapleton was first in blocks, second in scoring, second in steals and third in rebounding.

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