“It seems like the training is working”
It appears the Titans track team is starting to peak at just the right moment, with regionals coming this weekend and the state meet May 14-16.
The Titans headed to the Tiger Invite in Grand Junction Friday and Saturday, May 1-2. The Tiger Invite attracts some of the top talent west of the Front Range in the 4A and 5A classes as well as a handful of teams from the 3A and 2A classes, such as 2A squad Crested Butte.
Senior Mackenzie Mailly put together yet another strong effort in her hurdle events. Mailly just missed the finals in her first attempt at the 100-meter hurdles but charged into the 300-meter hurdles preliminary race.
Mailly posted a time of 49.81 in her preliminary heat to finish third on Friday and advance to the finals on Saturday.
Mailly slowed up a little in the finals posting a time of 51.05 but still finished in fifth place among the athletes from larger schools.
“Mackenzie had an awesome 300-meter preliminary race,” says Titan head coach Laura Puckett. “It was exciting to see her get to the finals.”
Sophomore Erin Kelly took fifth place in the mile with a time of 5:30.66 and then set a new personal record in the two-mile posting a time of 11:35.64 to finish in second place.
Kelly, senior Emma Vosburg, junior Monica Kinsella and sophomore Hannah Smith teamed up to run in the girls 4×800-meter relay and rallied to a sixth-place finish with a time of 10:38, paced by a solid leg from Kinsella.
“It’s the first time that team ran together,” says Puckett. “We’re excited to see how they perform at regionals. Their chances of making it to states are really good.”
The girls’ 4×200-meter relay team of Mailly, freshmen Skylar Kraatz and Toni Brown and junior Kelsey Beltz pulled together in Grand Junction to post a new school record time of 2:00.26.
Senior Jack Linehan continues his quest to qualify for states in three events. He already reached the big show in the mile and two-mile and is on the cusp in the 800-meters. After running a solid 4:37 in the mile, Linehan followed up with a 2:03.24 in the 800-meters and led the 4×800 relay team to their best time this season of 8:52.
“Jack had solid performances,” says Puckett. “He’s still chipping away at qualifying in the 800 and it looks really good. He’s, by far, the fastest in the region. We anticipate some faster times this weekend.”
Junior Nicholas Harper Johnson had a banner weekend as well in Grand Junction, setting a personal record time of 4:55 in the mile as well as strong showings in the 800-meters and 4×800 meter relay.
“He’s never broken five minutes in the mile,” says Puckett. “He was running really well and had a lot more confidence.”
The Titans head back to Grand Junction this weekend to compete against their 2A regional peers at Stocker Stadium on Friday and Saturday, May 8-9. It’s the last chance for Titan athletes to qualify for the state meet May 14-16.
“It seems like the training is working,” says Puckett. “It’s going to be really exciting to see how we compete against other 2A schools.”