MEEKER I With one track meet left in the regular season, many Meeker athletes have pre-qualified for the 2015 Colorado State Track and Field Meet, with several on the cusp of qualifying and hoping to do so at Saturday’s meet in Grand Junction.
“Just as the season should, hard work is starting to pay off for both the boys’ and the girls’ teams,” Meeker head coach John Strate said after his team’s most recent competition, the Northwest League meet held in Rangely on Saturday.
The Meeker girls’ team finished in fourth place, the boys finished in fifth and both had success, especially two relay teams.
“The most impressive race of the day was saved for last,” Coach Strate said. “The 1600-meter relay team started the day barely in qualifying position for the state meet (top 18 in the state). Maggie Phelan, Sierra Williams, Avery Watt and Madison Russell) not only moved up to eighth place overall in the state, but they also shattered the Meeker High School record with their time of 4:22.”
The boys also started the day on a winning note, when Meeker’s 4×800 relay team, consisting of Austin Russell, Josh Cochran, Marshal Pool and Clay Anderson, ran its way to a league championship with the time of 9:22.
“Currently, the girls’ team is sending the 400-, 800-, 1600- and 3,200-meter relay teams to the state meet,” Strate said.
Senior Sydney Hughes set season bests in all four of her events, taking second in the 100-meter hurdles (17.24), second in the 300 hurdles (48.42), second in the triple jump (33-10) and she finished fourth in the long jump with a distance of 15-5.
Coach Strate said Peyton Burke also had an “excellent day in the 100 hurdles,” coming back from an ankle injury. “She ran a career best of 17.8 and earned third place, punching her ticket to the state meet.
Lady thrower, junior Sarah Gerloff, also had a strong showing in the discus, earning a fifth place finish with a throw of 87-2.
Meeker junior Jacob Henderson continues to improve, setting yet another personal best in the 110-meter hurdles with his time of 16:32, which earned him a fourth place league finish and, according to Coach Strate, he is currently sitting in seventh place in the state in 2A and he placed sixth in the triple jump, with a hop, skip and jump of 38-8.75.
Senior Jake Phelan is one spot out of qualifying for the state meet in the triple jump. Phelan finished fourth in the league meet with a triple jump of 38-8 and he placed eighth in the 100-meter dash.
Pool and Russell are also close to qualifying in the 3200-meter run, where Russell finished fourth after a hour rain delay and Pool placed sixth. Russell is currently two spots away from qualifying.
“This weekend is going to be very telling for our boys’ team as we have numerous athletes close to cracking into the top 18,” Strate said.