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home : sports & recreation : sports & recreation May 26, 2018

5/15/2018 1:20:00 PM
Girls track and field sending contingent to state
Kate Bowen takes the title in the 1500 in Sky-Em District by Jerry Baldock
+ click to enlarge
Kate Bowen takes the title in the 1500 in Sky-Em District by Jerry Baldock

The Outlaws are heading into state as District by Jerry Baldock
+ click to enlarge
The Outlaws are heading into state as District by Jerry Baldock

By Charlie Kanzig

The Sisters Outlaws girls' track and field team will be well represented at this week's OSAA State Championships following stellar performances at the Sky-Em District meet held May 10 and 12 at Reed Stadium.

The host Outlaws stormed to the team title as they seemed to thrive under the home field advantage.

Eight Outlaw girls qualified in a total of eleven different events. The top two finishers in each event at district, along with athletes who meet automatic qualifying standards earn the right to compete at the OSAA Track and Field Championships scheduled for May 18 and 19 in Eugene.

The Outlaws scored big from the outset on the first day of competition May 10. Ryliereece Morgan secured the first state meet qualification as she battled with two other athletes in the high jump competition that resulted in three girls punching their tickets to state.

Morgan finished second after clearing 5 feet 1 inch. The winner, Matelyn Ladd of Cottage Grove, had a season best of 5 feet 3 inches and Emilia Carpenter of Elmira met the automatic qualifying standard by jumping 5 feet even.

Another sophomore, Kate Bowen cruised to victory in the 3000 meters, clocking 11:03.71. Her season best of 10:19.88, which set a new school record, ranks second in the state among 4A girls.

Runners Natalie Sitz (11:59) and Emma Parkes (13:15) also came through with big points for the Outlaws in the 3,000, finishing fourth and seventh respectively.

Morgan was back in action and ended up battling her own teammate to win the long jump competition. Samantha Silva took the lead early in the competition with a lifetime best of 16 feet 5.5 inches, which met the automatic state qualifying mark, but Morgan came back with mark of 16 feet 8 inches to claim first.

"What a great day for Samantha and for us to get two jumpers on to state," said head coach Jeff Larson.

Saturday began well for the Outlaws as Erynn Ricker, Shelby Larson, and Abi Busick swept the top three places in the pole vault, sending Ricker and Larson to state.

When running events started the Outlaws really began to flex their muscles, sweeping to a season best time of 50.06, second best among all 4A teams. The foursome included Ricker, Mandi Calavan, Morgan, and Silva.

The Outlaws went 1-2 in the next two events to take total control of the team race. Kate Bowen led throughout the 1500 and Anna Bartlett found on last surge to get by Anika Thompson of Junction City, as the pair finished in 4:55.05 and 4:56.93 respectively.

The school record in the 100 meters fell to Mandi Calavan in the next event as she exploded to a time of 12.48 seconds. Erynn Ricker also ran a career best to finish second in 12.68.

Ella Cole punched her ticket to state in the 400 meters following her second place finish in 1:01.80, a personal record. Anna Bartlett qualified with a win in the 800 meter (2:28.84) for her second personal record of the day.

Calavan followed up with a second place finish in the 200 meters where she got pulled to a second school record of 25.81 seconds.

"Mandi had an amazing day, setting not one, but two school records," said Larson. "And, Erynn Ricker scored 26.5 points by herself to give her a total of 117 district meet points in the past four years. Those two seniors really come ready to compete."

When the running events ended, the Outlaws had qualified athletes in everything but the two hurdles races and the 4 x 400 meter relay, in which they placed third.

The final qualifier for the Outlaws came in the triple jump, where Morgan finished second with a mark of 34 feet 5 inches, just 1.25 inches from behind the winner, Kennady Laing of Elmira.

The Outlaws had plenty of winners, but the team score came from the depth of the rest of the team, according to Larson.

"It truly was a team effort to score that many points," he said. I am so pleased with the entire team's effort.

Some of the other scorers for the Outlaws included Amy Hills and Emma Horner, who finished fourth and seventh respectively in the 300 hurdles, Meaghan Greaney who picked up sixth place points in the discus, and Hills and Alexa Stewart who went seventh and eighth in the 400.

"That's four district titles in a row for us, which is very gratifying," said Larson.

Teams from the 4A, 5A, and 6A classifications all compete in Eugene May 18 and 19 at Historic Hayward Field, making it a track and field smorgasbord for fans. The 1A, 2A, and 3A levels compete on May 17 and 18, also at Hayward Field.

With a large number of qualifiers headed to Hayward Field, Larson believes his squad could be in the hunt for a top-four finish.

"It's going to be fun to see our kids compete against the best teams in the state," said Larson.

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