Titans break three school records at Coal Ridge Invitational
The Coal Ridge Titans boys and girls track and field teams might not have finished where they wanted to in the team standings Friday at the 26-team, 790-athlete Coal Ridge Invitational, but the Titans did tie or set three new school records, while also seeing small improvements across the board.
Coal Ridge’s girls placed fourth out of 21 teams with 54.50 points, finishing behind Moffat County (98.50 points), Palisade (74.50 points), and Rifle (67.50 points) in the top three. The Titan boys placed seventh with 43 points, as Palisade won with 92 points, and Rifle placed second with 78 points.
The Roaring Fork girls placed 17th with 10 points.
Head coach Ben Kirk said the team standings were a bit of a shock, but overall he was pleased with his teams and the community as a whole in one of the biggest regular season invitationals on the Western Slope this spring.
“The boys and girls kind of showed our youth today; I think they were a little awestruck with how big the meet was,” said Kirk after the long day in New Castle. “Ours is one of the biggest meets of the year. We had a few kids that did really well, and a few kids that didn’t perform as well as we hoped. Still working on a lot of things as a team like who to put where and in what event, but we’re still pleased with performances today.
“We had lots of little things that didn’t translate into big points, but they were great improvements for us and great to see,” added Kirk. “There were just a lot of little hidden gems. The more I reflect on it, I think we had a really good day. We’re kind of shocked where we were team wise, but I think that says a lot about the talent that was here today; there’s a ton of great competition that came today.
Kirk added that he was simply super happy overall with the meet and the community support, as a number of volunteers helped pull off the nearly 800-athlete invitational without a hitch.
Freshman Peyton Garrison and sophomore Phoebe Young, two standout female athletes at Coal Ridge High School, set or tied school records at the meet, as Young cleared 10 feet, three inches in the pole vault to win the event, while Garrison clocked a 12.80-second 100m dash to tie the school record before then clocking a 25.89 in the 200m dash, finishing second in that event.
The freshman has had a remarkable season jumping from middle school competition last season to varsity competition this season. That jump has been a hard one, said Garrison, but one that’s challenged her and pushed her to reach the heights she has this season.
“I’m a little bit surprised with my performance this season; this is a lot harder competition than what I faced in middle school,” said Garrison after tying the school record in the 100m. “But this experience will go a long way for me. I was pretty surprised to see my time after the 100, but I’m really happy with it, but I want to get faster.”
With Young, the sophomore has continued to set a new school record in the pole vault in nearly every meet this season. Last year, as a freshman Young broke the then-school record of 9’2” before then setting it at 9’3” late in the year. This year, she cleared 10’2” at the Eagle Invitational two weeks ago before clearing 10’3” today at her home meet.
“I missed our home meet last year, so I was pretty excited to compete in it this year,” said Young. “To be able to break the record here at home is awesome.”
The sophomore cleared 10’3” on a new pole that she just started working with this week. Young added that she was pretty nervous to use the new pole in the actual competition, but once she cleared the height she was elated and looks forward to using the new pole the rest of the year.
Aside from the school records on the day for Coal Ridge, the Titans’ girls 4x200m relay team of Mary Bolitho, Ari Cornejo, Maya Mercado, and Natalie Smyte stepped up in a big way for the team. Down three of its top runners for the event, the Titans plugged in some younger runners and saw the relay team nab a second-place finish, clocking a time of 1:52.06 to score some key points for the Titans.
“[It was] great to see those girls step up, take the big-girl relay and get some points,” said Kirk.
In the girls high jump, Coal Ridge saw three jumpers clear 4 feet, nine inches, but it was Marin Simons that finished in the top three for the Titans, winning a jump-off at 4-09.50 to score key points for the Titans.
Sophomore Taylor Wiescamp claimed fourth in the shot put for the Titans with a throw of 34-10.00, closing out the day in strong fashion for the Titan girls.
For the Titan boys, sophomore Moises Contreras was the first one to score points on the day as he placed fourth in the 400m with a time of 53.53 seconds. Hayden Reeder placed sixth in the 300m hurdles for the Titans with a personal record of 44.80 seconds.
Coal Ridge’s boys 4x800m relay had a strong day as Jack Price, Jordan Grant, Stephen Jones, and Gustavo Archila crossed the line in third place with a time of 8:51.60, shattering the group’s personal record of 9:07.01. Grant then grabbed third in the triple jump for the Titans with a mark of 38-08.50, while Damien Spell finished fifth in the shot put with a throw of 41-07.00, closing out the day in style for the Titans.
RIFLE AND ROARING FORK
Outside of Coal Ridge at its home invitational, the Rifle Bears boys and girls and Roaring Fork’s boys and girls had strong individual days.
Rifle junior Delaney Phillips placed third overall in the 200m behind Coal Ridge’s Garrison with a time of 26.63. Sophomore Karisa Coombs followed up with a second-place finish in the 3200m run for the Bears, clocking a time of 13:16.46.
In relays, the Rifle girls really cleaned up as the team of Halie Holmes, Hope Kehr, Maddy Valencia, and Phillips placed second in the 4x100m with a time of 52.18 seconds, while the Rifle relay team of Valencia, Jamie Caron, Ashley Manera, and Phillips placed fourth in the 4x400m with a time of 4:20.50. In the 4x800m, Rifle’s girls relay team of Coombs, Caron, Mackenzie Elizardo and Manera placed third with a time of 10:58.09.
The pole vault saw three Rifle girls finish in the top five as Manera finished second behind Coal Ridge’s Young with a height of 9-03.00, while Emilee Demann and Amanda Green finished fourth and fifth with heights of 9-03.00 and 7-03.00. Valencia then closed out the day for the Rifle girls with a third-place finish in the triple jump with a distance of 32-06.50.
For the Rifle boys, things started fast as Dalton Pruett won the 200m for the Bears with a time of 23.18 seconds. Then, teammate Bryce Schanche won the 400m for the Bears with a time of 52.50 seconds, and Jonathan Hernandez placed third in the 1600m for the Bears with a time of 4:59.61.
In relays, Rifle’s 4x100m team of Embrey Marantino, Schanche, Pruett, and Tanner Vines placed second in the event with a time of 44.84 seconds, before the same relay team then won the 4x200m with a time of 1:33.82. Rifle’s 4x800m relay team of Max Rensberry, Jace Coller, Nicholas Heil, and Hernandez placed second in the event with a time of 8:51.55.
Closing out the day for the Bears, Tanner Cotner placed second in the triple jump and fourth in the long jump with distances of 39-05.00 and 19-03.50, respectively.
For Roaring Fork, Lily Nieslanik placed third in the triple jump for the Rams with a distance of 15-10.25.
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