Area tracksters earn state berths | PostIndependent.com

Area tracksters earn state berths

Phil Sandoval

GRAND JUNCTION – Marco Salmen and Terena Leuallen might be at opposite ends of the track spectrum, but both athletes had personal challenges to aim for at Saturday’s Palisade Invitational. Salmen, Glenwood Springs High’s four-year distance event star, wanted to pre-qualify for next month’s state meet in the 3200 meters.Leuallen, a sprinter on the Rifle High girls team, wanted to beat her long-standing rival – Brandi Babin of Moffat County.Both reached, then passed,those goals with ease.Prior to the 3,200 Salmen had qualified for next month’s state meet in the 1,600 meter run, and set a new school record in the process.Salmen’s 4 minute, 23.95 second -place time shattered Chas Salmen’s year-old mark of 4:27.07 by 3.12 seconds. Interestingly, Chas set that school record at last year’s Palisade Invitational.”It was a great race,” Salmen said of the 1600 battle with Thayer. “I was mentally ready and it was fun running with a great runner.”In the 3,200, Salmen flew to a winning time of 9 minutes, 50.11 seconds, his second state-qualifying mark of the day.The race itself came down to a two-person affair between Salmen and Glenn Randall of Collbran Plateau Valley High School. The two runners were the only ones in the field to finish the event in under 10 minutes.Salmen bettered Randall’s 9:51.07 second-place time by almost a full second. Prior to the race, he anticipated a battle with the Class 2A runner. “I expected it to be a tough race and it was a dogfight,” Salmen said.Another dogfight occurred in girls 100 between Leuallen and Babin.A strong start gave Leuallen an advantage over Babin, who kept creeping closer to the Rifle runner as the two reached the finish line.Leuallen won the race in 13.01 seconds, a nose ahead of Babin’s 13.04. “I don’t like people beating me and knew I could get her,” said Leuallen. “But, it was a great competition and I was really excited when I won.”Salmen and Leuallen were the area’s only event winners, but there was an abundance of good marks turned in by area athletes.Demon Jeri Polowchena recorded career-bests in the 100 Hurdles and the Triple Jump, qualifying for state in both events.Polowchena’s mark of 35 feet, 2 1/2 inches earned the senior second place in the Triple Jump. And her 16.29 hurdle time put Polowchena in third behind event winner Rachel Schmucker of Hotchkiss and Fruita Monument’s Katie Lloyd.Junior Amber Sutherland qualified for state for the third straight year in the Shot Put with a personal-best throw of 37-6.”My coach told me that if I’d put my legs into it, the shot was gonna fly – I believe him now,” Sutherland said. “My main goals were just to improve and to qualify for state, but when they announced the mark, I smiled really big, and thought `Oh, Wow.'”Another “Wow,” was uttered by Rifle’s Jessica Warwick, after being informed by Bear coach Justin Price that her 5:43.43 girls 1600 time made her the first long-distance state-qualifier of either sex at the high school in eight years. In the team standings, Rifle finished third in the boys’ meet and fifth in the girls’ meet. The Glenwood girls took seventh place and 10th in the boys’ meet.This week, both teams get to stay in the area.On Saturday, the Bears and Demons, plus 23 other track teams will converge at Glenwood’s Stubler Memorial Field for the annual Demon Invitational. Palisade Track InvitationalSaturday at Stocker Stadium, Grand JunctionBoys’ MeetTeam Scores: 1, Grand Junction Central, 121. 2, Grand Junction, 100. 3, Rifle, 79. 4, Hotchkiss, 65. 5, Moffat County, 64 1/2. 6, Montrose, 55. 7, Fruita Monument, 41 1/2. 8, Gunnison, 33 1/2. 9, Brighton, 31. 10, Glenwood Springs, 24. 11, Cedaredge, 22 1/2. 12, Plateau Valley, 14. 13, Delta, 4. 14, Kennedy, 3. 15 (tie), Olathe & Palisade, 2. 17. Crested Butte, 1.Individual Events(area athletes only)100 – 3, Brian Hileman, (Rifle), 11.66. 200 – 2, Michael Birdsley, R, 22.70, 5. Hileman, R, 23.00. 400 – 2, Birdsley, R, 51.50. 800 – 6, Will Du Bois, R, 2:06.88. 1600 – 2, Marco Salmen (Glenwood Springs), 4:23.95. 1, Salmen, GS, 9:50.11.4 x 100 Relay – 4, Rifle (Marcus Carrion, Kalvin Deere, Hileman, Troy Weiss), 45.88. 7, Glenwood (Joe Schiavone, Brandon Park, Andrew Katers, Matt Wilson), 48.30. 4 x 200 Relay – 3, Rifle (Birdsley, Deere, Hileman, Justin Steffan), 1:35.98. 4 x 400 Relay – 1, Rifle (Birdsley, Jordan Robinson, Chris Black, John Alderson), 3:35.19. 4 x 800 Relay – 3, Rifle (Du Bois, Robinson, Joe Schmitz, Nick Worley), 8:42.46.HJ – 6, Alderson, R, 5-8, 7, Weiss, 5-8. TJ-Alderson, R, 39-2. Shot – Andrew Stone, R, 42-7. Discus – 2, Carrion, R, 127-9, 3, Worley, R, 127-8.Girls’ MeetTeam Scores: 1, Fruita Monument, 108. 2 (tie), Moffat County & Hotchkiss 81. 4, Palisade, 74. 5, Rifle, 72. 6, Olathe, 56. 7, Glenwood Springs, 46. 8, Brighton 45. 9, Grand Junction, 28. 10, Grand Junction Central, 25. 11, Cedaredge, 24. 12 (tie), Crested Butte & Gunnison, 19. 14, Montrose, 13. 15 (tie), Kennedy & Grand Valley 4.Individual Events(area athletes only)100 – 1, Terena Leuallen (Rifle), 13.01. 6, Ali Little, R, 13.42. 200 – 6. Little, R, 26.95. 400 – 3. Little, R, 1:01.41. 4. Leah Hinkey (Glenwood Springs), 1:03.41. 800 – 8, Savanna Beecraft, R, 2:36.70. 1600 – 8, Jessica Warwick, R, 5:43.43. 3200 – 4, Warwick, R, 12:20.96. 100 Hurdles – 3, Jeri Polowchena, GS, 16.29. 6, Megan McKinney, GS, 17.78. 7, Heather Anderson, R, 17.80. 300 IH – 8, Anderson, R, 51.75.4 x 100 Relay – 4, Rifle (Leuallen, Kristina Dahlin, Amber Canard, Brooke St. Pierre), 54.28. 5, Grand Valley (team unavailable), 55.46. 4 x 200 Relay – 5, Glenwood Springs (McKinnie, Angela Gabriel, Hinkey, Abbey Walters), 1:56.71. 6, Rifle (team unavailable), 1:57.48. 4 x 400 Relay – 5, Rifle (team unavailable), 4:29.84. 4 x 800 Relay – 4, Rifle (Beecraft, Lauren Pleva, Krista Wagstrom, Warwick, 10:34.83. Sprint Relay – 5, Rifle (Canard, A.J. Connolly, Little, St. Pierre), 2:00.91. 6, Glenwood (McKinnie, Gabriel, Amber Sutherland, Walters), 2:01.52.HJ – 7, Dahlin, R, 5-0, 8, Montanah Matthies, R, 4-10. LJ-6, Dahlin, R, 14-8. 7, Schnieder, R, 14-6 3/4. TJ-2, Polowchena, GS, 35-2 1/2. 4, Schneider, R, 33-4 1/2, 7, Dahlin, R, 31-3 1/4. Shot – 2, Sutherland, GS, 37-6. Discus – 2, Sutherland, GS, 110-8.


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