Valdez leads Track at State

Six Bobcats qualified for the 2015 CHSAA Class 2A State Track-and-Field Championships, held May 14-16 at Jeffco Stadium in Lakewood, and three-left town with top-ten finishes.

Not a bad percentage at all.

By placing fifth in the girls’ pole vault competition on Day 2, junior Chrystianne Valdez recorded the contingent’s top individual finish, and helped the Lady Cats tie Ordway Crowley County with 4.5 points and share 35th place out of 41 scoring squads.

Ignacio scored three points in the boys’ chase for the crown – via senior Kyle Bailey’s seventh-place high jump on Day 3 – and officially landed in a tie for 36th (out of 40 scoring teams) with, ironically, 2A/1A San Juan Basin League rivals Dolores.

Lyons won the title with 111.5 points, and Cedaredge was second with 100. Loveland Resurrection Christian took third with 61 points, and Telluride (44) and Rye (28) rounded out the fellows’ top five.

The 2A girls’ championship went to Paonia, which racked up 132 points. LHS followed with 73.5, and Ault Highland took third with 65. On the strength of two Championships record-setting relays, CHS ended up fourth (52 points) and Wray was fifth (50).

Valdez cleared 8’1” with her best attempt, and booked 3.5 team points as she matched Kremmling West Grand freshman Ralin Corrales, Yuma sophomore Ashley Stegman and Julesburg-Ovid Sedgwick County senior Marin Olson, but all would have needed to summit another six vertical inches to crack the discipline’s top five (headed by LHS sophomore Brenna Kuskie’s winning 10’0”).

YHS junior Monica Drury also cleared 8’1” but in more attempts, netting her team one point in the process, while WGHS sophomore Gabby Willson also cleared 8’1” but in even more tries and went scoreless.

Bailey, meanwhile, flew over a bar set five feet, eleven inches high, but was well short of the leading 6’5” achieved – quicker than THS senior John Broadhead – by Rye senior Ty Zupancic.

Senior Sky Cotton soared to ninth in the girls’ long jump with a leap of 15 feet, six inches, earning IHS its last team point by almost two inches over tenth-place HHS freshman Maison Tolle (15’4.25”). PHS sophomore Brianna VanVleet was first at 17’9.5”, CHS junior Kenzie Henderson was eight inches behind in second and HHS senior Jamie Clawson took third at 16’10.75”.

Senior Mike Perez unfortunately did not qualify for the boys’ 400-meter finale, but placed 13th in the preliminaries with a 52.73-second dash. Wiggins sophomore Shane Finegan, fourth in the prelims with a 51.24, ended up taking first in the final with a faster 49.32 – making a legitimate run (pun intended) at the 2A Championships’ meet-record 49.09 (set by LHS’ Ryan Boucher in 2013).

Additionally for Ignacio, senior Tyler Riepel ended up 16th in the boys’ pole vault at 9’9”, with classmate Davey Cooper (unable to register a height) following in the standings paced by the 14’0” of Edwards Vail Christian junior Cooper Daniels.


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