If you can names the girls of this row of the Liberty Bell 3200 start, you're up-to-speed on Colorado distance. Photo by Jeff McCoy.
Sooner or later, it had to happen. Maybe the wind had been up here and there. Maybe there'd been a few cold meets, but, all things considered, the rate of meet completion without cancellation or postponement was extremely high by recent standards for Colorado this spring. But this weekend was payback. Due to the lateness in the season, most of those meets will be made up on Monday, but it's still both an interruption and a disruption for a lot of teams.
Before Saturday's postponements and windfest (for the meets that did go in spite of conditions), however, it was a pretty productive week of track and field. Here's a quick look at last week's rankings meet action:
I like Dan Betz. He's helped me a lot with this site. He deserves better than he got for his big home meet this weekend. And, judging by the number of Greeley-area schools looking to get into the Greeley Central make-up on Monday, there are a lot of other people who were hoping for more out of this meet. It's tough to extract much of value from these meet results, but there are a lot of teams better than what they were able to show on Saturday. It looks as if the Brush and Estes Park distance girls came prepared to make a statement, but I'm able to read little beyond that.
Contrary to a post on the forum and the title of an article about the meet, this meet was not devoid of wind. It's just that the wind was not a distraction, at least not until the 200 finals. At that point, it did become something of a distraction, but not before then. And, truth be told, Garry Berry Stadium is the best place between Denver and Dutch Clark to hold a meet on a windy day. Unless the wind is hard out of the south Garry Berry is nicely protected from the wind. There's no place in Colorado Springs I'd rather take my team to run.
The biggest items of note for this meet are not one, but two, 4A all-time throwing marks. Kiah Hicks goes 156-3 in the discus and Megan Patterson 45-11.25 in the shot put. And there were more great throws behind them. You could go to a lot of big invitationals across the nation and never find better girls throws than what Coronado hosted on Friday night. Both marks sit high on the national rankings boards.
Coronado also aimed to put together some top-tier 1600 fields and were pretty successful in that effort. The girls' 1600, in particular, more than lived up to the hype. Fear the Liberty Lancer 4x800 if you haven't started already.
Holy Family should get major kudos for hosting as many meets as they do. In many respects, it's a headache to put on a meet, but the Holy Family folks keep doing it. Thanks for that (even from someone who has never made it to one of your meets)!! Some of the opposition would probably like you to let someone else win when you invite everyone else over to play, but you won't hear that complaint from me.
That rumbling you keep hearing from over in the direction of Arvada is not seismic activity. It's just the Faith Christian guys throwing heavy objects. Derek McCartney and Grayson Bundick are among the best in 3A and it has to be nice to have each other to work with in practice. Their 1-2 and 1-3 finishes in this meet are likely indicative of more to come. And, maybe the reason that the Faith distance guys got so fast is that they occasionally have to run through the throwers' practice area. In any case, Fortney and Yeager-squared will be heard from at the state meet.
Okay, they didn't finish this meet over the weekend. It won't wrap up until Monday. But there were some very nice performances in the Friday session.
The boys 3200 did not live up to the time expectations, but there is still opportunity for those times to come. It was still a good race between Winter and Kincaid, though Winter clearly got the better of this round. Sydney Scott and Erin Hooker gave Eleanor Fulton a tussle for a while (and may have eventually paid for that indiscretion), but Fulton still reigns as queen. And, it's beginning to look like Kelsey Lakowske won't be part of the picture this spring.
If you can't get excited for the sprint and hurdle finals coming up on Monday, you definitely haven't looked at who all qualified, or at what their qualifying marks were. Here is a link to the prelim results. Reading those is a better stimulant than five cups of coffee. Most notable among the prelim marks was a wind-legal 21.21 200 by Gavin McHenry. That, folks, is fast for a high school 200. All the more so when the temperatures are as cool as they were Friday evening.
Remember a discussion last week about great sprint marks coming in bunches at the same meet? It happened on Friday.
I'm still hoping for a complete set of results from this meet, but I did enough nosing around to find out that not all of the great girls throws on Friday were in Colorado Springs. The Montrose Invitational had a few of their own. Ashley Lingo and Bryanna Music, that would be your names going up in lights for the weekend!
And, in case you're not starting to read the handwriting on the wall, there would appear to be a critical mass of really good 4A girls throwers headed toward the state meet in three weeks. Something to think about as you plan your circuit of the events.
Also take note of the 800 posted by Jennifer Celis of Hotchkiss. This means that Sam Berggren no longer has the #1 ranking in the 3A girls 800. Great mark, but beware of waking sleeping giants. It looks as if we may have another big showdown in the 3A girls 800 this spring--the old guard versus the new.
This meet may have suffered from the wind more than any other this weekend. Loveland's girls, however, seem to be able to find ways to win no matter what the conditions.
And, reports from the shot put venue are that the wind was not blowing steel balls back into the faces of the throwers. Quite the contrary, in fact.
And, for some reason, I keep wanting to call this meet the Rocky Road Invitational. Maybe they should think about changing the name and getting an ice cream sponsorship. Or maybe a coaches' Rocky Road Mile in place of a dinner break? Have the coaches run a competitive mile during the meet break. Only, it's run by stopping at each lap to down a small bowl of Rocky Road ice cream. Three bowls, one mile. Just a thought.
Dove Creek may take the prize for being the smallest school to host a rankings meet this spring. I'm not sure of that, but they're definitely in the running. I suppose Cheyenne Wells would be in the running as well. In any case, Montezuma-Cortez High School was good enough to provide the track.
Dolores may not be too happy about me making this observation, but if you are a 2A school wanting a scouting report on the Dolores girls' team, the results from this meet hide just about nothing. Six or seven small teams means that just about everybody in the lineup for Dolores shows in the results.
Interestingly, Mancos wins the boys' title without the services of Eric Lewis. I, for one, am hoping we see Lewis back in action before the state meet. He will make 2A middle distance a lot more interesting if he's there.
In a way, it's almost a shame that Walsh and Springfield have to come all the way to Denver to settle things on May 19 - 21. But, if they settled it in Baca County, there's a bunch of people who would never get to see how good a 1A boys track and field team can be.
Right now, Walsh and Springfield look like the top two contenders. And they've had some pretty good contests already this spring. Like the others, this one came out with Walsh on top, but Springfield manages to stay close enough to keep in interesting. What's starting to concern me, though, is that it's been a while since I've seen Laken Alley's name in the results. My thought about that is much the same as the thought expressed above about Eric Lewis. It will be a better 1A state meet if Laken Alley is running.
And your weekly Daniel Weirich update reads like this: 56-8 and 163-4. The boy is getting some good coaching out there in Eads. They must be feeding him well, too. In case you were wondering if the Weirichs are a one-dimensional family, I offer up this note of interest: the girls 800 at this meet was won by an Emilee Weirich in 2:32.95. To borrow a phrase out of my childhood that has since fallen out of favor, "Put that in your pipe and smoke it!"
Last on this week's tour of the state is the Strasburg Invitational. Like a couple of other meets, it had the unfortunate distinction of being scheduled on Saturday.
Several meet records were set in spite of the conditions, however. No meet mark was as noteworthy, however, as the 16-1.75 (-3.6) long jump posted by Makenna Linn of Bennett. If she can back that mark up in weeks to come, that definitely puts Linn among the 3A upper echelon. Makenna Linn is definitely a new name on my 3A radar screen. Always nice to pick up new names!
If you appreciate the javelin, Jason Brown of Limon threw a pretty nifty 135-0. That extends his own meet record by 21 feet. And that is a nice piece of improvement in the span of one year.