Adam Knepper and Carson Nauman pace each other at the start of the 3,200-meter run at the Cascade Co-Ed Early Bird Invitational, April 1.

It’s been a good start to the season for Cascade’s boys’ track team as the Cougars earned sixth place in the 13-team boys’ division of the Tipton Early Bird, March 30, and won five events at the Cascade Co-Ed Early Bird Invitational, April 1.

“We treat these early season meets as workouts and that’s what we want out of them. I want them to work on their conditioning and get used to the competition because they’re going to run 100 percent harder here than they will in practice,” said Chris Curry, head coach. “We’re excited. The kids are excited. Their attitudes have been great.”

Tipton took first place at their meet totaling 84 points with Camanche (71) taking second followed by Central DeWitt (69), Beckman (58), Solon (56) and Cascade in sixth (52). North Cedar (46) took seventh ahead of Mount Vernon (39), Clear Creek-Amana (27), Maquoketa and Easton Valley were both 10th (25) with West Branch (20) at 11th and Iowa City Regina (10) 12th.

The 4x400 team of Cole Miller, Jonah Manternach, Jackson McAleer and Isaac Nava finished in 3:40.90 to claim the only event win for the Cougars, but it started a great showing by relay teams at the meet. Tanner Simon, Nava, Manternach and Jack Menster were second in the 4x200 at 1:37.34 while the 4x100 team of Simon, Menster, Mason Otting and Luka Rickels was fourth in 46.93 as was the 4x800 squad of Miller, Manternach, Adam Knepper and Carson Nauman (9:08.56).

Heading the individual events for Cascade were Menster second in the 100 at 11.42 and Miller

second in the 400 at 55.45.

McAleer took third in 110-high hurdles in 16.11 and Knepper was fourth in the 800 in 2:18.46.

The team racked up three first-place finishes in relays and two individual events at their home meet.

For the second meet in a row, the Cougars won the 4x400 but this time the team of McAleer, Manternach, Miller and Nava crossed the line in 3:36.48.

Simon, Menster, McAleer and Nava won the 800-medley in 1:39.95 and Rickels, Otting, Miller and Knepper took first in the 1,600-distance medley in 3:59.36.

Cascade also finished second in four more relays: Miller, Manternach, Vic Kauder and Davis Trumm in the 4x800 (8:56.09), Keegan Lamey, Reece Drew, Brennan Booth and Ben Fransen in the shuttle hurdle relay (1:21.56), Simon, Nava, Manternach and Menster in the 4x200

(1:41.80) and Otting, Rickels, Juan Alvarado and Trever Finzel in the 4x100 (48.75).

Menster won the 100 in 11.46 with Simon taking fifth at 12.01. McAleer was first in the 110 hurdles at 16.00 and Lamey eighth in 22.97.

In the 3,200, Knepper took third in 10:51.87 and Nauman fifth in 12:08.61.

Kauder was third in the 800 at 2:17.97 and Nauman fifth 2:19.97. Kauder also earned eighth in the 400 in 59.53.

In field events, Booth took third in the shot put with a toss of 40-4.5 and Kaleb Topping seventh with his throw of 38-0.

Kodey Miles was fifth in the discus at 115-5 and Topping eighth 108-4.

Otting was sixth in the long jump at 15-6.5.

“After just two meets I can tell that we are really putting some things together,” said Curry. “I know it’s early, but this is probably the best group of guys we’ve had together in a long time and I can’t wait to see how far these guys go.”