A year ago, Denver East had a commanding victory by more than doubling the second place team. With only losing five returning point scorers, and bringing back three point scorers at 5A State, including Arria Minor, it will take something unheard of for them to not win again. The battle for second place could be really close between Northfield, Thomas Jefferson, and Denver South however.
The best thing about championships is all the surprises in the individual events when kids are peaked, excited, weather is good, and are dreaming of running great to end the season or setting themselves up for state!
In the 100 and 200, Minor won last year. As long as she is competing in both again, I think it's safe to say the two-time state record holder will win again. Kyairra Reigh from Denver East has the second best PR's in the 100 and 200 and good indoor times this year, but didn't run any open events last year at DPS League so we will have to see what happens.
Nya Henderson from Denver West is the third best returner on time for the 100 and the third best on place, and the fourth and third, respectively, in the 200. Michelle McDonald from Denver East coming back from a great freshman year is the fourth and third best returner on time in both events.
These four girls are the ones to watch in the 100 and 200 and depending on who runs what events any of them could be a league champion.
In the 400, Minor would be the favorite but did not run it last year at this meet. Reigh would be a lock for first if Minor doesn't run, but as mentioned above she competed in no open events last year. Ashley Gilliom from Denver South who is the returning league champion as a freshman would be the favorite to win if both East girls sit out again, but Kiona Gibbs from Northfield has a PR within .05 seconds so we can't count her out either.
In the 800, three girls went under 2:30 last year and all return. It could be a toss-up between the East pair of Lindsey Weyant & Anna Lucy Buddenhagen, and Esther Cornish from Denver North. The returning champion, Weyant, has the best PR so would be the favorite.
In the 1600, Abigael Howard from Denver East and Esther Cornish have PR's below 5:30, but Isla Anderson from Denver North is the returning champion and neither of the above girls ran the 1600 last year at the League championship. Delaney Gilfillan from George Washington was second last year and has a PR below 5:40 along with her teammate Alexandra Emerson. Laura Romero who runs for Denver East now, is in that range as well.
This race could be another toss-up depending on who runs it.
In the 3200, Abigael Howard won last year as a freshman and has the best returning time (11:42). Alexandra Emerson and Laura Romero both have PR's under 11:55 as well.
In the 100 hurdles, Zion Smith from Northfield is far and away ahead of the field with a PR of 15.00 and finished fourth at state last year. Helen Maley from Denver East is also ahead of the rest of the field for a likely second.
In the 300 hurdles, Helen Maley and Zion Smith are again in their own tier, but Helen is the returning champion and has a faster PR by .80 seconds so she is the favorite for the long hurdles.
In the shot put, Blake Peters from Far Northeast only competed in one meet last year, the league championship and won. Daija Robbins from Thomas Jefferson is the second returner from last year, and has the second best returning PR so she would be the favorite depending on if Peters competes in track and field again this year.
In the discus, Daija Robbins is the returning champion and has the furthest throw by far with 111-0 that sent her to state and is the favorite. Muniratu Tanko from Denver South was second last year and has the second best PR of 88-2.
In the long jump, Alicia Santos from Northfield won last year and holds a PR of 16-6.75, Dayana Brown from Thomas Jefferson has the furthest returning mark from the HS season with 17-1. Nya Henderson didn't jump at all last high school season but in a meet after the season she jumped 17-7.5, so she has the furthest mark. As far as the jumps go it's an event where favorites can get upset based on so many factors so this event is hard to predict, but these three girls should be the main contenders.
In the triple jump, Brown is the top returning jumper from the DPS league championship and has the furthest returning jump of 36-0.25. Nya has a mark of 33-7.5 and is the second returner in both distance and time.
Only four girls competed in the high jump last year and Alicia Santos won and is the favorite with a returning jump of 5-2 with the next highest jumpers 6" below.
In the relays, Denver East is the favorite in all events depending on who they run. They didn't run the sprint medley last year but set a state record, so it just depends.
This meet looks to be a good one this year with a lot of really talented returning girls that will be hungry to improve their times, jumps, or throws.