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April 13, 2013
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Titans senior in a club of his own

PEACH VALLEY, Colorado - Raul Oyarzabal joined the club - the 40-Point Club that is.

The Coal Ridge High School senior was part of three winning relay teams and nearly broke the 23-second barrier in the 200 meters, helping the Titans boys earn the team title at the Coal Ridge Invitational track and field meet Friday at Coal Ridge High School.

"I'll try to get down into the 22s next week," said Oyarzabal, whose personal-best time of 23.01 seconds is ranked No. 3 in Colorado's 3A classification. "It was a pretty good day."

Indeed.

Oyarzabal anchored the Titans' 4x100 relay team, which includes Michael Shaw, Jorge Hernandez and Gunnar Pagni, that nearly posted a two-second victory with a time of 44.63. He was the lead leg in Coal Ridge's winning 4x200 relay team, which won in 1:31.19. Running the anchor leg of the 4x400, he fell behind Eagle Valley's Hunter Burnham by nearly 10 meters before passing him for good with 100 meters remaining, helping his team win in 3:27.03.

"I just tried to pace myself," Oyarzabal said. "I wasn't worried at all."

The Titans won the team title with 149 points, with Eagle Valley (113) and Cedaredge (73) following. Coal Ridge's point total of 95 in the girls meet was good enough for second place behind Delta (111).

Oyarzabal wasn't the only successful sprinter for Coal Ridge in the 15-team meet. Hernandez won the 100 in 11.26, and Edgar Enriquez took first in the 400 in 52.21.

Junior Andy Bowles also had a great day for the Titans, breaking his own school record in the 110 hurdles with a winning time of 15.20. He finished second in the 300 hurdles to Dante Markley of Cedaredge, but his winning leap of 6 feet, 4 inches in the high jump was tops in the event by a wide margin.

On the girls' side, Coal Ridge swept the sprint relays, winning the 4x100, 4x200 and 4x400. The Titans' 4x400 team of Paige Ryan, Mariela Martinez, Alicia Hampton and Amber Bowles won the event in 4:14.42, which was nearly a nine-second margin over second-place Montrose.

Rifle's boys and girls track and field team, which has had its fair share of injuries this season, got a convincing win from Joey Kuheim. The senior won the discus with a winning throw of 124-6, which she admitted could have been better.

"I wasn't worried so much about the place as I was the distance," she said. "It just didn't go as far as I wanted it to today."

Kuheim wasn't the only weight person who placed high for the Bears. Brayden Smith, who popped off a personal-best put at the Poudre Invitational on April 5, had a second-place mark of 44-10 on Friday. His mark at the Poudre Invite was 46-4 3/4, which is a distance he'd like to pass in time for next month's state meet.

"I had a four-foot [personal record] in my last meet," Smith said. "Last year I just kind of glided. This year it's more of a slow, controlled movement with a power explosion at the end. It's made a lot of difference."

jmitchell@postindependent.com


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The Post Independent Updated Apr 13, 2013 01:02AM Published Apr 13, 2013 12:59AM Copyright 2013 The Post Independent. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.