GIRLS STATE TRACK AND FIELD: Benson's Smith flies to 100, 200 titles; Lincoln's Pittman wins 300 hurdles
- Jason Vondersmith
- Portland Tribune - Sports
Southridge edges Jesuit for team title; Cardinals third
EUGENE - Benson senior Kayla Smith blew away the field twice on Saturday, capturing the Class 6A girls 100- and 200-meter titles at Hayward Field and earning female athlete-of-the-meet honors.
She broke her own state-meet record in the 200 and totaled 31 points in four events over the two days.
The 6A girls team title came down to the final event, the 4x400 relay, with Southridge at 56 points and Jesuit at 55 1/2.
Southridge led the race from start to finish to win the crown with 66 points. Jesuit took second in the relay - three seconds behind Southridge's 3:53.01 - to wind up with 63 1/2 points.
Lincoln was third in the 4x400 and wound up third as a team with 52 points.
McMinnville was fourth with 38, and Benson - led by Smith's three individual titles and anchor leg on the fifth-place 4x100 relay - garnered fifth place with 37 points.
Smith won the 100 in 11.84 seconds, but because that race was wind-aided, the mark won't qualify as a meet record (LaReina Woods ran 11.90 in 1989 for Corvallis).
"It was all right. I could have done a lot better," Smith said of her 100 run.
She flew to the 200 title in late afternoon, dominating from start to finish and clocking 24.01, better than her state-meet winning time of 24.18 a year ago.
"I got my PR (in the 200) for the first time this year," she said. "It was a pretty good day. I can't complain."
Southridge senior Kelsey Hones was second in both events, in 12.13 and 24.85.
Smith got off to a decent start in the 100 - but not the great jump she was hoping for - as she repeated as queen of the short sprint.
"I just didn't drive as hard as I did in prelims," said Smith, who has signed a letter of intent to compete for Illinois, "but I ran a faster time today, and I won."
Smith also won the 6A long jump championship on Friday with a PR of 19-0 1/2.
"I was a little tired today," she said after the 200.
In the 100, Lincoln runners took third (senior Arlisha Davis, 12.29) and sixth (junior Tiarra Pittman, 12.44).
The Portland Interscholastic League celebrated another champion when Pittman showed her strength, speed and stamina to take the 300 hurdles in 43.51 - a personal best by about 1 1/2 seconds. The busy Cardinal competitor ran down South Salem junior Kelsey Moe (44.06).
"I didn't think I could do it," Pittman said. "I just forgot about the hurdles and ran. After the race, I still couldn't believe I won."
At the start of the day on the track, the Lincoln 4x100 relay team reclaimed the Class 6A title, with Davis, sophomore Haley Stewart and juniors Kema Harvey and Pittman finishing in 48.01 seconds on the second and final day of the meet.
Lincoln had won the event two years ago and placed second to St. Mary's Academy last year.
"We didn't come out with our best time, but we got it done," Pittman said. "It's always good to win a relay. We're happy to be back on top. We want to win it again next year."
Pittman had the lead when she got the baton for the anchor leg.
The field otherwise was fairly bunched. Southridge took second in 48.96, with Jesuit third at 49.09, Central Catholic fourth in 49.17 and Benson fifth in 49.21.
"We knew it was going to be a tough race," Pittman said.
Pittman anchored Lincoln's 4x400 crew, which also included senior Megan Macoubray, Harvey and Stewart.
Central Catholic junior BryAnne Wochnick finished strong to take runner-up honors in the 400. She ran 57.37, trailing only Gresham freshman Ify Onyima, who clocked 57.01. Grant junior Kayla Greer was sixth in 58.85, with Lincoln's Harvey seventh in 59.00.
Jesuit's girls, trying to repeat as 6A team champs, got a 1-6 finish in the 1,500, with cross-country champion Annemarie Maag winning in 4:33.17 and Payton Schutte placing sixth in 4:43.69.
Franklin junior Julia Fonk took fifth in 4:33.38 and Lincoln senior Betsy Kolberg was seventh in 4:43.93.
Maag, a sophomore like Schutte, was in great shape throughout the race and began pulling away from Lake Oswego junior Tate Murray, the eventual runner-up, with about 200 meters to go.
Maag, third in the 1,500 a year ago, doubled in this year's meet, having won the 3,000 on Friday.
She said her legs "felt pretty tired" on Saturday, but her time was satisfying because "my goal was 4:35 or under."
The 1,500 was a bigger accomplishment, too, she said.
"It's like, how long can you keep up with a really brisk pace," she said, "and everyone was more tightly packed than in the 3,000, where we didn't have as much competition."
Fonk came back to finish third in the 800. She kicked past a couple of runners and was timed in 2:16.82. Southridge senior Chloe Steinbeck won in 2:16.32.
In the 400, Cleveland sophomores Jalen Tims and Katie Purdy finished seventh and eighth, respectively. Summit sensation Kellie Schueler took the 400 in a state meet-record 54.60, after winning the 100 in a state-meet record 11.78. Both previous marks (55.04, 12.01) were set last year by Schueler, a junior who is unbeaten in three state meets.
Schueler won the 200, as well, in another state-meet best of 23.94, with Jefferson senior Deanna Emanuel third in 25.58. Schueler's old record was 24.54, set last year.
Emanuel grabbed fifth place in the 100 in 12.70.
To cap the day, Schueler led Summit to victory in the 4x400 relay - her 12th gold medal in 12 events during her high school career.
Cleveland (Purdy, junior Kara Batdorff, freshman Elise Pippert and Tims) finished fifth in the long relay.
Summit took home the team title with 81 points. Hermiston was second with 46.
La Salle senior Laura Schmitt won her third consecutive 400 crown, running 57.27 to beat her closest challenger by more than a second. She won in 57.39 last year and 57.41 two years ago.
Schmitt came back and nearly took the 200, too. She closed ground late in the race and made a lean at the finish line, but was judged to be second in 25.72 to Tillamook junior Robin Smith's 25.71.
Schmitt and La Salle took fifth in the 4x400 relay to close the 4A meet.
La Salle was 12th as a team with 22 points. Gladstone took 10th with 23. Henley won at 75 1/2, and Marist was second with 51 1/2.