Evart distance runner posts solid senior season

EVART  — Max Hodges has put an end to what’s been a fabulous running career for the Evart senior.

Hodges, the 2013 state 800-meter champion, set himself up for another big 2014 meet based on his performances at the Division 4 regionals in May. He won the 800 meters in 2:01.08, was the anchor of the first-place 3,200-meter relay team and was second in the 1,600-meter run at  4:44.12.

At state, “I’ll probably just run the 4x8 and 800,” Hodges said. “The mile, I just ran for points today.”

Hodges placed sixth in the 800 at the 2014 state meet.

At the beginning of the year, Hodges was focusing on the 1,600 and 3,200 for the state meet.

“I just wasn’t able to get to the meets where I could actually run a good mile,” he said. “A lot of meets, we didn’t have much competition anyway and didn’t have to run very hard. I’m getting faster. We’ve had a lot of dual meets where I’ve been able to run a slower time to finish first.”

Hodges, who plans on running at Ferris, was confident entering the state meet.

“I want to try to beat my PR of 1:58,” he said. “Anything below that, I’ll be happy with.”

He got the 1:58 at the state meet in 2013. This year, he ran a 2:00.78.

Evart was first in the Highland Conference and regionals and third at the MITCA meet.

The Wildcats graduated strong distance runners from last year.

“We gained a freshman, Josh Woods, and Santana (Scott) has gotten faster from last year so they filled the gaps,” Hodges said.