Senior Jace Reves announced his intent to continue his track career at Emporia State in a signing ceremony Monday at the WHS track.
Reves was a state placer in 2019, finishing 8th in the 800. This season he competes in the 800, 4×4, 4×8, and 4×1, with a solid chance at returning to state in each event.
Reves said he chose Emporia because of the people and the community. “The coaches and athletes were really nice when I visited,” he said. “Coming from a small school to a smaller college community will be better.”
Reves mother Wendy said she was excited about his choice. “We visited a couple of times and it felt like it’s a good fit. The coaches have been interested in him since his sophomore year,” she said.
Reves expects to compete in the 800 next year, but plans to do whatever the coaches ask. “I’ll do the 800 and whatever else they tell me. I’m sure they’ll throw me in the mile or 400. I have a choice between doing cross country or just doing cross country workouts, so I’ll see what I’m feeling when the season starts.”
Reves, who competed in a sport each season of his four years at WHS, said his time as a Charger taught him how to deal with adversity. “Rutledge talked about dealing with adversity in football, and Ulsaker always talked about basketball being a game of runs. We deal with weather and injuries in track. Each coach works to keep us focused, which is something that will probably help me in college as well.”
Track coach Roger Alderman said “Jace is one of the toughest competitors to come through our program. It’s exciting to see him earn the opportunity to continue his track career at Emporia State.”
Basketball coach Christian Ulsaker said “Jace is a true example of what a Wabaunsee athlete should strive to be. He helped the football team to its first playoff win in 37 years. He helped lead a basketball team that finished 2nd in State and he is considered one of the top runners, if not the top runner, on the track team. What Mr. Reves is as an athlete does not compare to who he is as a person. He is kind hearted and exemplifies what it means to be a team player. It was an honor to coach Jace and I wish him nothing but the best in the years to come.”
Football coach Jess Rutledge said it was a privilege to coach Reves for four years. “He was dedicated and never missed a summer session or practice because he dedicated himself to the team and always did whatever he needed to do to help the team. I’ve had him in basketball the past two years and he is the hustle and glue guy that does the nitty-gritty. He dives for every loose ball, defends the best player on the other team, will battle the tallest guy for the rebound, and nobody beats him down the court. It’s phenomenal to watch, and without him, we wouldn’t have had the seasons that we had in football and basketball. That team-first attitude is why he’s now on scholarship to run in college.”
Principal Jan Hutley said “Jace is not only an incredible athlete, but more importantly, someone who is polite and has a good heart. He deserves the recognition of a scholarship and the Emporia State Track Team will be better with him as part of it.”
Reves said the highlights of his athletic career have been playing in a basketball championship and placing in the 800 his sophomore year, but with league, regional and state track meets ahead, he hopes his biggest highlights are still to come.