MEEKER I A dozen Meeker athletes will compete in the 2015 Colorado Track and Field Championships starting today in Denver at Jefferson County Stadium.
Meeker senior Marcus Archuleta will also run in the Geoffery Zargoza Special Olympics 100-meter dash on Saturday during the finals.
“Despite the wind, rain and lightning delays, we had a fairly successful end to our regular season this past weekend,” Meeker head coach John Strate said. “The biggest success stories come from senior Jake Phelan and sophomore Austin Russell.”
Phelan and Russell were close to qualifying (top 18 in 2A). According to Strate, “Phelan was sitting one out of state qualifying in the 19th spot going into the weekend,” in the triple jump and Russell was in the 24th spot in the 3,200-meter run.
“Jake improved on his season’s best triple jump with his mark of 40-3 on his second attempt, moving him to 12th in the state and punching his ticket to the state meet,” Strate said. “Austin was able to stay disciplined and hit his goal pace of 10:45. Austin has been struggling with injury all season, so it’s nice to see him have some success.”
Jacob Henderson has also had some success this season in the hurdle events and is the third Cowboy to qualify for the boys’ team, currently sitting eighth in the 110-meter high hurdles in 2A.
Phelan has qualified on relay teams for state but it will be a new experience for Russell and Henderson.
Nine girls will try to score points for the Meeker girls’ team, led by senior Sydney Hughes, who qualified in four individual events, with three other individual qualifiers. The girls qualified four relay teams.
Hughes will compete in the 100- and 300-meter hurdles as well as the long and triple jumps. Hughes has scored team points all three of her previous years.
“Sydney jumped a season-best 16-4 in the long jump, giving her a lot of confidence headed into a highly competitive field at the state meet,” coach Strate said. “It would be great for both the team and her individually to see her go out by placing in four events.”
Sophomore Peyton Burke also qualified in the 100-meter hurdles and is a member of the 4×100 and 4×200 relay teams.
Madison Russell qualified in the 200-meter dash and is on three relay teams.
Halle Ahrens will return to action at the state meet after being sidelined again by a knee injury. Ahrens will run the 100 dash and she is a member of the 4×100 relay. Ahrens qualified for four events last year and placed in all four, but this year, due to injury, she will only compete in two events.
Maggie Phelan, Avery Watt and Sierra Williams are all on relay teams. It will be the first state experience for Watt, Williams and Loran Casias, who earned a spot on the 4×100 relay team with her personal best of 13.56.
Meeker sophomore Julia Eskelson will be a member of the 4×800 relay team along with Phelan, Watt and Williams. Delenn Mobley will be the alternate.
“It should be really exciting to see how we perform—if the weather forecast is accurate and highs are in the upper 70s,” coach Strate said.