Simply Stellar Weekend for Colorado at Simplot Games

2015 proved to be a very strong year for Colorado at the Simplot Games.

They're done splintering the track for another year, but Colorado's delegation splintered it better this year than they have in several years.

Finals for all Simplot events except the weight throw come on Saturday, but a foreshadowing of what was to come was offered by Haley Showalter with her winning throw of 57-11.75 in that event on Thursday.

The flood of spectacular performances for Colorado got underway on Saturday with Miguel Molas' win in the 60. After finishing third in prelims, Molas came through with a 6.91 for the win. Javan Lanier finished third, also under seven seconds at 6.95. The time establishes a new PR for Lanier in the event.

Lanier's high school teammate Austin Campbell also set a new event PR with a 22-3.25 in the long jump, good enough for sixth and the best long jump mark by any Colorado high school athlete this indoor season. Campbell came back later for second in the high jump at 6-7.

Preston Roche added another Colorado-best mark for the indoor season with a fourth-place mark of 49.43 for the 400. That, too, is a PR mark, either indoor or outdoor, for the Poudre High School senior.

Ryan Younggreen came one-hundredth of a second short of tying his PR mark in the 60 hurdles in a third-place effort of 8.08. Andrew Barlow's 14-6 in the pole vault took second place but also came up short of a PR indoor mark for the Monarch vaulter.

Noah Riley was yet another who visited some new territory. Although his 4:27.19 in the 1600 didn't get him onto the podium, it did shave about five seconds off his PR for Colorado's lone competitor in the event finals.

It was much the same story for the girls, only perhaps a little longer.

Like Younggreen, Shayna Yon missed a win, and missed a PR by .01, in the 60 meters, but it's hard to walk away from a 7.49 and second place to LaurenRain Williams and call it a bad day. Alexis Groce, Audra Koopman, and Maya Evans also medaled in PR territory at 7.56, 7.60, and 7.62, respectively.

Carly Lester established a new indoor PR for the 200, taking second in the event at 24.74. And, the fifth-place finish for London Evans at 25.06 was a huge new PR for the 200--either indoor or outdoor.

Becca Schulte's 56.68 led the Colorado contingent in the 400 and established a new indoor PR for the Fort Collins junior. At this point, she has only run faster than that at last spring's Colorado state meet.

At 2:15.71, Riley Cooney's fourth-place effort in the 800 shaved about a quarter second off the best 800 girls time for a Colorado athlete for the season.

Tabor Scholl dominated both prelims and finals of the 1600 to walk away with a new 1600 PR at 4:56.32. And, it's worth noting that Pocatello is at 4400 feet of elevation.

While missing a PR mark, Emily Sloan did top the Colorado results for the 60 hurdles at 8.72. Doing that at Simplot is no small feat for the Rock Canyon freshman. The mark was good enough for fifth.

Makenzie Patarino found two more inches at the end of her pole than she'd ever seen before, going 11-6 for third in the pole vault.

Audra Koopman and Maya Evans were both a little short of PRs in the long jump. But, 18-7.75 and 18-6.75 were good enough for second and third places.

And, later in the day, Haley Showalter just missed a second event title in the shot put. Although Showalter ended up second in the event, her best throw of 44-6.5 was just shy of two feet beyond her previous best mark in the event.

As a final note, we'll recognize the Fort Collins Track Club 4x200 girls. The quartet took first place with a blazing indoor time of 1:39.78.

For these, and for many more, it was a most memorable weekend in Pocatello. With the completion of this meet, the indoor season comes to a close for almost all of Colorado's high school athletes. In the days to come, we'll publish some analysis pieces on the indoor season just concluded. I will also add a photo or two to this article as they become available to me.

Meet Results, Photos, and Athlete Interviews