Cole Sprout ran a state record of 9:01.53 in the 3200 Friday night. File Photo
The sun dipped behind the Jeffco Stadium, covering the track in welcome shadow. Cars sped down the busy streets in the distance, commuters headed home or headed out for the night. Friday night had descended on the Denver metro area. And while the weekend had arrived, just as it always does, history was being made at Jeffco.
Cole Sprout rounded the final curve and pumped his arms. His face was painted in that trademark frown of concentration. Every few strides he glanced up at the clock that loomed above the south side of Jeffco Stadium. He had run nearly all eight laps of the 3,200 by himself, and now there was only 100 meters remaining of solo running.
The crowd was on its feet as the Valor Christian sophomore poured on the pace down the final stretch. The question heading into the final lap was would Sprout run a state record? But now the question looked more like would he break 9?
Sprout emptied out what was remaining in his large tank and ran through the line into the crescendo of the crowd's cheers, and into history.
The time eclipsed Tanner Norman's 9:04.97 from a year ago for a new Colorado state record. Adding to the gravity of his performance, when an altitude adjustment is applied Sprout would have the No. 1 time in the country. He now sits on top of a stacked list of Colorado stars - and he's only a sophomore...
Can he be the first to break 9 in Colorado? Will he do it at state? This year? Where will the state record land by the time he graduates? There's a laundry list of potentials I'm sure we'll see unfold over the coming years, which are sure to be exciting.
And one more thing - Sprout just had to make my bold prediction not so bold once again.
Editor's note: I'll have a more comprehensive recap of the Jeffco League tomorrow.