3A speedsters impress, advance at state meet
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
LAKEWOOD, Colorado ” A jump to Class 3A didn’t seem to slow Grand Valley’s Brandi Krieg all that much.
The sophomore, who took fourth in the girls 3,200-meter run at the 2A state track and field meet last year, followed up with a sixth-place performance against 3A competition in 2009. Krieg clocked an 11 minute, 46.28 second time in Thursday’s two-mile final on the opening day of the state meet at Lakewood’s JeffCo Stadium.
Krieg did what she hoped to do coming in, and that was to hold her own against a wildly competitive 3A field.
“It’s tough,” she said, “but it’s only making me better. I just want to get better. If there’s a state title in it for me (at some point), that’s cool.”
Classical Academy’s Kaitlin Hanenburg won the event, finishing in 10:52.67. Basalt’s Chiara Del Piccolo took fourth (11:18.07).
Krieg will stay plenty busy during the final two days at state. She advanced to Saturday’s 400 final by finishing sixth in the preliminaries (1:01.15) and will race the finals of the 1,600 on Saturday as well.
She’s hoping for a better finish in the mile, an event that suits the young Cardinal well.
“I think I’ll be better at that,” she said. “It’s almost like the two-mile is a little too far. The mile’s perfect for me.”
Two other Grand Valley athletes competed in individual finals on Thursday. Joe Joyner logged a top toss of 127 feet, 4 inches in the boys discus to finish 10th and Sam Whelan’s 10:54.25 run in the boys 3,200 netted him a 17th-place finish.
Grand Valley’s boys 4×800 relay took 17th overall (8:57.26) and its girls took 18th (11:20.72).
Cardinals making the finals via top-nine preliminary finishes on Thursday were Colton Cowan (third, boys 110 hurdles, 15.52) and Erin Vanderpool (eighth, girls 100 hurdles, 16.56).
Coal Ridge’s DaLin Murphy hoped to find his way to the podium in Thursday’s 3A boys 3,200. Although he didn’t quite reach his goal, the senior still landed a top-10 finish.
The distance dynamo’s 10:18.66 clocking in the two-mile netted him 10th place.
“I’m OK with my time,” he said. “I finished 10th, a place off the podium, which was my goal.”
Still, Murphy improved vastly over a 19th-place showing in the two-mile at the 2007 state meet, which, before this season, was the last time he ran track.
Murphy still has a shot at the podium with Saturday’s 1,600 final.
“If I can just take a second or two off my time, I’ll be fine,” he said.
Coal Ridge’s boys 4×800 relay team also raced a final on Thursday, taking 15th (8:38.99).
Junior Chelyn McCain produced the Titans’ top preliminary finish, speeding and leaping to first in the girls 100 hurdles with a personal-best time of 15.77. She finished just a hair ahead of Gunnison’s Lindsay Hart.
A strong desire to win drove McCain down the stretch.
“It was really close until the very end,” she said. “I had to do everything to win.”
McCain will take the top seed into today’s final. She’ll also be racing with the Titans’ 800 sprint medley relay team and in the 300 hurdles prelims today.
Coal Ridge’s boys 4×100 and 4×200 relay teams also advanced out of Thursday preliminaries, both finishing seventh.
Roaring Fork senior Jon Araujo netted third place in Thursday’s discus competition, which was dominated by Buena Vista phenom Mason Finley.
Araujo recorded a top heave of 139 feet, 4 inches. He’ll be back in action in today’s shot put competition.
Finley won the discus with a state meet -record toss of 214-1.
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