Bryce Risner stood tall in his bright red tights and matching top near the bottom of the track. He eyed the high jump bar, which stood at 6-1, then back over to the far side of the infield bleachers where another heat of the 300 hurdles launched off the starting blocks.
The Glenwood Springs senior was somewhere near the middle of a big day which produced a state-leading personal best in the 110 hurdles, and two near-PRs in the high jump in the 300 hurdles.
He waited for the high jump bar to be reset to 6-3 before his go at the height, while keeping a watchful eye on the progress of the 300 hurdles just across the field.
Within moments he had cleared 6-3, and his only other competitor at the height was the towering figure of Grant Redmond, who was perhaps the only person taller than Risner in the competition. But the duel would have to wait, because Risner was quickly running across the field for the start of the final heat of the 300 hurdles.
A minute or so later the gun shot, sending a light smoke into the air, and there was Risner, cruising over the hurdles alongside teammate Wyatt Ewer.
The two Demons had complete control over the field and were stride for stride heading down the final straight with Ewer an inch or so up on Risner. The inch proved too much for Risner to overcome on this day, and the result was sealed with Ewer taking the win in 40.79 to Risner's 40.95.
The runner-up finish would be Risner's second of the day, as Redmond went on to win the duel in the high jump with a staggering 6-5 clearance - that's No. 1 in 2A, and No. 8 in all-classifications. Risner's 6-3, which came in the middle of managing his attention between the high jump and heats of the 300 hurdles, stood a solid second place.
Despite his two runner-up finishes, the Glenwood senior's biggest performance came just a few hours earlier, in the 110 hurdles.
Risner dropped his 4A state-leading mark by nearly a quarter of a second, running 15.27 in the preliminary heats. He went on to win the event in the afternoon, running 15.56.
The senior clearly made the most of perhaps the last home meet of his high school career, and he wasn't the only one tallying a big day, as the Demon Invitational played host to some of the state's best.
When the sun had set to the west, one thing was clear: the Demons of Glenwood Springs High had every intention of protecting their home track, and claiming both team titles.