Huskies win third straight boys district track title

Dakotah Keys won four events and Nick Hall two for the Huskies to pace them to their third straight Val-Co boys track and field district team title Friday and Saturday.

The Huskies suffered a devastating loss as junior Alex Santana injured his hamstring for the second straight year in a row at the district meet. Santana, who had the top long jump in the state 4A division going into districts, was injured on his first jump of the day Saturday in that event. However, despite that setback and the likely points Santana would have scored in the long jump (he finished fifth on that first jump), the 400 and the two relays, the Huskies pulled it out by six points over Philomath, 170-164.

The Sweet Home girls placed third with 156 points, behind Philomath (224) and Newport (178).

The boys finished with four individuals and one relay team state qualifier in 10 events, while the girls are sending one relay team and four individuals in eight events. Then, because Central decided not to field a team in the boys 4×400, Sweet Home gets to go in that one too, Coach Billy Snow said.

“We had a great district meet, let me tell you,” he said. “You have adversity, you work though it, you do what you’re capable of doing and see what happens. They did.”

He said the boys team got off to a good start on Friday and picked up the pace on Saturday.

“They were having fun but they were warming up, preparing themselves physically and mentally,” Snow said of his teams. “That first day on the guys side we were up nine points more than we should have been.”

Even with the loss of Santana, ” I had us at 180, we finished 170,” Snow said. “I was pleased with everything.”

Keys, a senior who has dominated nearly every event he has entered in the last two years of high school, won the 110 hurdles (15.22 into a headwind), the high jump in a person-best 6-5; the pole vault in a personal-best and school-record 15-8; and the long jump (22-8). He was named the Field Athlete of the Meet.

He said he appreciated the turnout of “people from my church, my family and friends” for his final appearance at Husky Field as a high school competitor. “I think that’s what made the team do so well. At home people are relaxed and having fun.”

The other district champion for the boys was sophomore Nick Hall, who won two €“ the 400 (51.28) and the 300 hurdles (41.26), combining with Jake Comstock who earned a trip to state by placing second in that event, as well as the 110 hurdles.

Hall likely would have combined with Santana for a 1-2 finish in the event, as Santana ran 51-18, the fastest time of the day in Friday’s preliminaries.

The 300 hurdles race was competitive as the four top finishers were abreast coming through the turn for home, before Hall and Comstock pulled away down the stretch.

“I was scared to death I wouldn’t make it in the top two,” Hall confessed. “When we were going through the third and fourth hurdles it was going through our minds that we weren’t going to make it.”

Comstock, who finished third in the district in the 300 hurdles last year, said he also wasn’t really running well early in the race.

“It was a four-way tie going over that last hurdle,” he said.

They weren’t the only ones sweating.

“That race in the 300 hurdles, we went from getting nothing to getting the championship,” said Snow, who watched a replay of the race on the monitor in the timing booth.

Coomstock said it “feels good” to go to state in the hurdles plus as lead-off runner in the 4×400, which “puts a lot of pressure” on him, Comstock said. “I’m pretty happy with it.”

Also qualifying for state for the boys was the 4×100 relay team of Alex Coakley, Chris Carpenter, Nick Hall and Keenan Martin, the latter stepping in as anchor for Santana and holding off Philomath’s Zach Trask to get the Huskies to a second-place finish in 45.02.

Martin said he and Hall practiced the baton pass “four times” before it was time to run. He said although he and Trask got their batons at nearly the same moment, he never really saw the Philomath runner.

“I was really nervous,” said Martin, who noted that he went out for track this year because he thought it would help him in his main sport €“ football. “I was pretty happy. I’ve learned that track is a lot more fun than I thought it would be, that it is really more of a team sport than I thought.”

Snow said Martin didn’t know he was going to be running until 15 minutes before the relay.

“We asked him at the last minute,” he said. “He gutted that out and hung on.”

The other Sweet Home state qualifier was Zach Jackson, who threw a three-foot PR in the javelin to finish second with a heave of 171-4. Jackson, who also placed sixth in the shot on Friday, said he had loosened up by Saturday and “it was a lot more fun.”

“I want to place in the top eight and throw over 180,” he said of his goals for state. “I want to score some points for the team.”

Willie Jones placed third in the shot and Jakc Johnson was third in the discus, just missing trips to state in their first year of action in those events. Jones, a senior from New Zealand, won’t be back to throw at Sweet Home, but Johnson is only a sophomore.

Girls qualify in seven events

On the girls side, Maria Kropf ran 12.73 in the 100 to beat Alisha Rowlee of Newport (12.99) in the 100, then won the 100 hurdles for the third straight year (15.72), but finished second to Philomath freshman Sara Ham in the long jump. Ham, who also qualified in the 200 by placing second, leaped 16-4 on her third jump of her high school career €“ her coaches put her in to see if she could score some points €“ and Kropf was unable to catch her with a best jump of 16-0 1/2. Kropf also anchored the girls 4×100 team to victory (50.08), beating the state leader coming into district €“ Philomath (50.30) €“in a time that was faster than Sweet Home ran last year before it moved on to win the state title.

Kropf, who was named the girls Track Athlete of the Meet, said she was disappointed not to win the long jump, but she said she’s hoping for “another four” after winning three individual events last year and anchoring the girls short relay to a state championship.

“I’ll be happy if I come home with three but I’m hoping for four,” she said.

Snow noted that Kropf’s times in the 100 and the hurdles were better than at last year’s Val-Co meet.

“You have to remember that that was cold and into the wind,” he said. “She can run faster.”

Annie Whitfield won the javelin with a personal-best and school-record throw of 134-2 and Carissa Swanson won the 1500 (5:07.35) and qualified for the 3000 by placing second. Olivia Johnson, running on an injured foot, still managed fourth-place finishes in both races and Sami Webb placed fifth in the 1500 and Paige Sanders sixth in the 3000 to put a dent in Philomath’s previous dominance in those events.

Snow noted that the Huskies actually outscored Philomath in the 1500, a first in several years for Sweet Home, and tied them in scoring in the 3000, but the big difference was in the sprints and the jumps, where the Huskies just could not match the quantity and quality of athletes the Warriors had.

“Depth was huge,” he said. “We were short in the sprints. We didn’t have enough depth.”

Whitfield said she was “relieved” to get a big throw off in the district meet after starting the season off with a school-record setting 127-foot throw, raising the record to 128-11 at the end of April, but tailing off a bit for a few weeks toward the end of the season.

She said her plans for state are to focus on Cottage Grove senior Jordan Brunetti, who whose 154-7 leads the division, though Brunetti threw that on May 6 and only threw 139-2 at the Sky-Em district meet.

“I’m hoping to place in the top three and compete with Jordan Brunetti,” said Whitfield, who placed seventh in the state last year as a sophomore.

Also qualifying for state was sophomore Brandi Trewin, who finished second in the high jump (4-10) to Philomath’s Laura Schaudt, who won the high jump and triple jump and placed second in the 300 hurdles to qualify in three events.

“Brandi started putting pressure on those other girls and they just didn’t respond,” Snow said.

It will be the first trip to state for Trewin, who said the district competition crowd of several dozen was the largest she had competed in front of in the high jump.

“That encouraged me,” she said. “I felt a lot of enthusiasm. Normally it’s one or two people.”

The target will be on the Huskies’ backs after two straight boys state titles, but Snow said he likes the way things are looking.

“The pieces are there for state,” he said. “Of course, we’re riding on Dakotah’s shoulders. But I like our chances.”

District Meet Boys Results

Team Scores: (1) Sweet Home 170; (2) Philomath 164; (3) Central 136; (4) Newport 127.5; (5) Taft 42.5.

State qualifiers (top two) plus Sweet Home finishers

* Prelims result

100 €“ (1) Grant Hedrick (C) 11.20; (2) Ryan Silwones (N) 11.86; (5) Alex Coakley (SH) 12.10; (6*) Chris Carpenter (SH) 12.34 (false-started in final).

200 €“ (1) Grant Hedrick (C) 22.54; (2) Ty Phillips (C) 23.32; (9*) Chris Carpenter (SH) 24.92; (11) Sean Potter (SH) 25.43.

400 €“ (1) Nick Hall (SH) 51.28; (2) Matt Trask (P) 52.24; (98) Sean Potter (SH) 54.42; (Alex Santana of Sweet Home was top qualifier (51.18) but did not compete in final due to injury).

800 €“ (1) Jeff Schreiner-McGraw (P) 2:01.86; (2) Quinn Lindley (C) 2:03.47; (6) Joe Stroud (SH) 2:15.18; (7) Chris Thompson (SH) 2:15.97; (8) Luis Garcia (SH) 2:17.27.

1500 €“ (1) Jeff Schreiner-McGraw (P) 4:20.80; (2) Josh Seekatz (P) 4:23.094; (6) Chris Thompson (SH) 4:36.67; (8) Casey Keys (SH) 4:45.41; (9) Kyle Hummer (SH) 4:54.77.

3000 €“ (1) Josh Seekatz (P) 9:17.09; (2) Boone McCoy-Crisp (P) 9:34.62; (5) Daniel Danforth (SH) 9:55.02; (7) Kyle Hummer (SH) 10:21.92; (9) Brett King (SH) 10:27.90.

110 Hurdles €“ (1) Dakotah Keys (SH) 15.22; (2) Jake Comstock (SH) 15.94; (4) James Myers (SH) 17.13.

300 Hurdles €“ (1) Nick Hall (SH) 40.90; (2) Jake Comstock (SH) 40.92; (9*) Dakota Snow (SH) 49.27.

4×100 Relay €“ (1) Central 43.74; (2) Sweet Home (Alex Coakley, Chris Carpenter, Nick Hall, Keenon Martin) 45.02; (3) Philomath 45.26; (4) Newport 48.63.

4×400 Relay €“ (1) Philomath 3:31.59; (2) Central 3:32.70; (3) Sweet Home (Nick Hall, Keenan Martin, Sean Potter, Jake Comstock) 3:33.96; (4) Newport 4:01.57. Sweet Home qualifies for state after Central withdrew.

Shot Put €“ (1) Jesse Peters (C) 49-2 3/4; (2) Allan Miller (C) 42-7 1/2; (3) Willie Jones (SH) 40-5; (6) Zach Jackson (SH) 37-08 1/2; (9) John Connelly (SH) 35-6 1/4.

Discus €“ (1) Oshay Dunmore (N) 132-2; (2) Dallas Kay (N) 131-3; (4) Jake Johnson (SH) 106-4; (5) Christian Whitfield (SH) 104-0; (6) Patrick Long (SH) 107-7.

Javelin €“ (1) Kerrick Roach (P) 185-6; (2) Zach Jackson (SH) 171-4; (4) Patrick Long (SH) 143-3; (8) Keenan Martin (SH) 134-9.

High Jump €“ (1) Dakotah Keys (SH) 6-5; (2) Chris Crowell (P) 5-10; (7) Taylor Mauch (SH) 5-6; (9) Dillin Buhlman (SH) 5-2.

Pole Vault €“ (1) Dakotah Keys (SH) 15-8; (2) Zach Brown (N) 13-6; (3) Oshay Dumore (N) 13-6 (automatic qualifier); James Myers (SH) No Height.

Long Jump €“ (1) Dakotah Keys (SH) 22-5 1/2; (2) Oshay Dunmore (N) 21-5 1/2; (4) James Myers (SH) 18-5 1/2; (5) Alex Santana (SH) 18-5 1/4.

Triple Jump €“ (1) Thomas Lovejoy (T) 41-1 3/4; (2) Gabriel Mendenhall (C) 40-8 1/2; (4) Keenan Martin (SH) 37-7 (6) Taylor Mauch (SH) 36-11.

Girls Results

Team Scores: (1) Philomath 224 (2) Newport 178; (3) Sweet Home 156; (4) Central 65; (5) Taft 15.

State qualifiers (top two) plus Sweet Home finishers

* Prelims result

100 €“ (1) Maria Kropf (SH) 12.73; (2) Alisha Rowlee (N) 12.99l; (4) Jessika Stewart (SH) 13.89; (10*) Natasha Perry (SH) 14.83.

200 €“ (1) Audrey Hellesto (P) 24.80; (2) Sara Ham (P) 26.59; (4) Jessica Snow (SH) 27.77; (7) Jessika Stewart (SH) 28.54; (10*) Devyn Makin (SH) 28.78.

400 €“ (1) Audrey Hellesto (P) 59.89; (2) Jacey Grimstad (N) 1:02.20; (5) Jessica Snow (SH) 1:04.08; (6) Carissa Swanson (SH) 1:06.29; (7) Sabrina Davis (SH) 1:08.09.

800 €“ (1) Barry McLaren (P) 2:31.52; (2) Taylor Huffman (P) 2:31.70; (6) Caroline Amendola (SH) 2:45.07; (9*) Christina Ulmer (SH) 3:00.95; (10*) Jill Mahler (SH) 3:01.03.

1500 €“ (1) Carissa Swanson (SH) 5:07.35; (2) Annette Marinello (P) 5:08.62; (4) Olivia Johnson (SH) 5:18.46; (5) Sami Webb (SH) 5:21.18.

3000 €“ (1) Annette Marinello (P) 11:14.47; (2) Carissa Swanson (SH) 11:20.30; (4) Olivia Johnson (SH) 11:30.89; (6) Paige Sanders (SH) 12:27.10.

100 Hurdles €“ (1) Maria Kropf (SH) 15.25; (2) Sam Moore (N) 16.32; (6) Annie Whitfield (SH) 17l.47; (7) Kaitlin Keenon (SH) 17.70.

300 Hurdles €“ (1) Taylor Patterson (P) 48.24; (2) Laura Schaudt (P) 52.82; (7) Caroline Amendola (SH) 58.02.

4×100 Relay €“ (1) Sweet Home (Jessica Snow, Jessika Stewart, Annie Whitfield, Maria Kropf) 50.08; Philomath 50.30; (3) Newport 51.54.

4×400 Relay €“ (1) Philoamth 4:09.28; (2) Newport 4:13.89; (3) Central 4:18.54; (4) Sweet Home 4:29.25; (5) Taft 4:46.23.

Shot Put €“ (1) Cherilyn Bunker (N) 36-8; (2) Andrea Mortenson (C) 30-7; (6) Laura Mauer (SH) 26-11; (7) Chloe Muir (SH) 26-10; (8) Macy Cockrell (SH) 26-3 3/4.

Discus €“ (1) Cherilyn Bunker (N) 110-11; (2) Kacie Hargett (N) 101-0; (5) Laura Mauer (SH) 85-6; (8) Macy Cockerell (SH) 77-10.

Javelin €“ (1) Annie Whitfield (SH) 134-2; (2) Kacie Hargett (N) 120-3; (6) Kishya Davis (SH) 92-2; (7) Josie David (SH) 89-5.

High Junp €“ (1) Laura Schaudt (P) 5-4; (2) Brandi Trewin (SH) 4-10; (9) Dawnita Justham (SH) 4-2.

Pole Vault €“ (1) Hollie Doyle (N) 10-6; (2) Morgan Annable (N) 9-11; (3) Joy DeVos (P) 9-11 (met automatic qualifying standard); (5) Caroline Amendola (SH) 7-0; Kaitlin Keenon (SH) No Height.

Long Jump €“ (1) Sara Ham (P) 16-4; (2) Maria Kropf (SH) 16-0 1/2; (5) Devyn Makin (SH) 15-9; (8) Kelika Kaniaupio (SH) 14-2 1/2.

Triple Jump €“ (1) Laura Schaudt (P) 36-10 1/2; (2) Rylee Marshall (P) 35-6; (6) Annie Whitfield (SH) 31-5 1/2; (7) Kaitlin Keenon (SH) 31-3 1/2; (9) Sarah Hawkins (SH) 28-11 1/4.