East meets West as (Duebrook's) Olsen and (Newell's) Leber clash for Class B distance dominance


By Rich Winter

At the 2017 state cross-country meet, Newell senior Delaney Leber pulled ahead of Duebrook junior Josie Olsen in the final meters of the 5K course in Rapid City. Three seconds separated the pair who have raced each other a number of times over the years, usually at the state meets. 

As we head into the first day of the South Dakota state track meet, it looks like Olsen and Leber could clash on the track, not once, but twice.

Early Friday, the 4x800's go down...

Pre-qualifying times:

Duebrook - 10:00.13 

Newell - 10:14

Duebrook has a stacked girls team and will likely run away with the team title at state, but this 3200 meter relay could get interesting. 

The Dolphins have two horses at 800 meters

1.DeBeer, Shaylee2:25.84Deubrook Area (Fastest time in Class B)

2.Olsen, Josie 2:26.04Deubrook Area (Second fastest time in Class B...won't run the open 800)

But, Leber is that rare distance runner that has some serious speed. At the 2017 state track meet she easily won the 800 and 1600, finished 2nd in the 400 and anchored the Irrigator's Medley relay team to a state title. 

Her times this spring don't reflect how talented this young lady is...YET?
400 meters - 59.77 - Fastest in Class B

800 meters - 2:27 - 4th fastest in Class B

1600 meters: 5:29 - 4th fastest in Class B

Let's just say if the Irrigators can keep the margin between them and the Dolphins at 5 seconds in that 4x800, anything is possible on that anchor carry. 

Delaney Leber's state meet:

4x800 Friday morning

400 prelims Friday afternoon

Medley relay (I think, could be the open 800) - Friday late afternoon

1600 meter run on Saturday

Josie Olsen's state meet: 

4x800 - Friday Morning

3200 meters - Late Friday afternoon

4x400 relay - Last event of the day

1600 - Saturday.

And that's the one where the true BOSS of Class B distance will be determined. 

No teammates, no baton, no handoffs...Line em up and see who's in better shape...

The thing is, Olsen and Leber might not even win the 1600 because it is a tough, deep field and a day after a tough Friday...

The Contenders: 

1600m Run

1.Olsen, Josie 5:25.84Deubrook Area

2.Luze, Reese5:26.34Colman-Egan

3.Fairley, Maddy5:28.44Gayville-Volin

4.Leber, Delaney5:29.93Newell