Coal Ridge’s ascension from bare-bones track program to Class 3A title contender on display at Jeffco Stadium | PostIndependent.com
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Coal Ridge’s ascension from bare-bones track program to Class 3A title contender on display at Jeffco Stadium

Coal Ridge’s headliner is Peyton Garrison, a Montana State commit who won four state titles last year and can add four more this weekend

By Kyle Newman
The Denver Post
Coal Ridge High School junior Peyton Garrison pushes across the finish line in as the Titans’ 4x400 relay team took gold at the 2021 3A State Track and Field Championships in Lakewood. Garrison is returning to state this year with a strong contingent from CRHS.
Cody Jones/Post Independent

LAKEWOOD — When the husband-wife coaching tandem of Ben and Meggie Kirk took over Coal Ridge track in 2006, it was a bare-bones program at a new school on the western slope.

But the Kirks had a blueprint that morphed Coal Ridge into a perennial Class 3A power. The Titans girls won the program’s first title last year, and are in contention to repeat again at this weekend’s state meet at Jeffco Stadium.

“We’ve seen it grow each year from the first year, when there were 17 kids on the whole team,” head coach Ben Kirk said. “We went from just trying to qualify someone to state, to trying to qualify a team, to trying to place a team, to top five as a team, to winning a couple individual events.



“In 2013 and ’14 our boys were second two years in a row, so that was our first, ‘We’re there.’ Getting to see that progression has been so cool. It feels like we have really worked and built that, and obviously having athletes with God-given talent helps.”

Coal Ridge’s headliner is senior Peyton Garrison, a Montana State commit who won four state titles last year and is expected to add four more this year in the 100 meters, 200, 400 and one of the relays (either the 4×400 or the 4×800 medley, wherever the Kirks decide to put her for the finals). Garrison set the state record in the 400 during Thursday’s preliminaries with a time of 54.71 seconds.



Click here to read the full story from the Denver Post.


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