Tualatin turns it up at district track meet
McMINNVILLE — For the Tualatin High School track and field teams at the Three Rivers League district championships, there were plenty of smiles.
There were plenty of celebrations.
There were plenty of impressive marks.
And, maybe most importantly for the Timberwolves, there will be plenty of them moving on to compete at the state meet.
The Tualatin squads, seemingly peaking at the right times, turned in plenty of strong performances at the Three Rivers League district meet, held May 10 and May 12 at Linfield College.
"I'm so happy," Tualatin senior Kennedy Oleson said with a big smile on her face after she won the girls 300-meter low hurdles event during Friday's district meet smile.
"This is really cool," said Tualatin senior Ashley Slater, who set a new personal-best mark while qualifying for state in the girls long jump event.
Oleson and Slater were among the many that helped the Tualatin girls take second place in the team standings at the district meet with 118 points. That put the Wolves behind only Newberg, which had a score of 133.
In addition to the second-place finish, the Tualatin girls will look to be strongly represented at the Class 6A state track and field championships.
The top two finishers in each event at the district meet, as well as those competitors and relay teams that meet state-qualifying standards, and those who earn wild-card bids, advance to compete at the Class 6A state meet, which will be held Friday and Saturday at Hayward Field in Eugene.
"It's awesome to get another chance to compete there," Tualatin senior Kate Intile, who qualified for the Class 6A meet in both the 1,500 and 3,000-meter runs, said with a smile. "I know I have faster times in me. I really want to enjoy it."
While the Tualatin girls had many strong performances at the Three Rivers League district meet, Oleson had the only first-place finish with her winning time of 46.67 seconds. And it seemed to be an emotional win for Oleson, who not only had a smile on her face after the race, but was already smiling as she went over the final hurdle in the event.
That's because Oleson, who is also a soccer standout at Tualatin, missed the last part of her senior soccer season after suffering a torn lateral meniscus in her knee.
"This means a lot to me," she said. "I worked so hard after I had surgery."
And, with all of that work, she wasn't going to be denied a victory at the district event.
"I came out hard and strong," she said.
After crossing the finish line, Oleson was greeted immediately — almost tackled, in fact — by Slater.
"We both made it to state last year," Oleson said. "And it's great that we're going back again this year. She's a great friend."
Slater earned her state-meet bid in the long jump with a third-place mark of 18 feet, 1.5 inches. Although, things didn't go exactly the way Slater had planned.
"I accidentally ran 20 extra feet on my approach," she said. "My coach tricked me. He measured back from the triple jump board instead of the long jump board."
But it worked. Slater's top mark at district was a personal best by three inches, and a season best by two feet.
"I haven't been under under 17-5 since I started running from farther back," she said.
Intile ran to second place at the district meet in the 3,000 in a time of 10:15.31, and she was second in the 1,500 in 4:41.51.
"It was really good," Intile said after running the 1,500 on Friday. "I felt strong. (St. Mary's Academy senior) Lara (Rix, who won the race at 4:38.78) ran really strong. I was hoping I could stick with her. I pushed her, and she pulled me. But I get another shot at state to be best in the district."
Tualatin junior Makenna Bailey qualified for the state meet in four events. She placed third at district in the 200 in 26.25 and she was third in the 400 at 57.71.
In the 4 x 400 relay, Bailey teamed with Oleson, Intile and junior Madi Lowry to place second in 4:05.45. In the 4 x 100 relay, Bailey teamed with Slater, senior Jordan Anderson and freshman Corona Parker to place fourth at 50.05.
Lowry also qualified for state in the 800 with her second-place time of 2:19.19. Alyssa Workman qualified for state with her third-place mark of 119-5 in the discus.
Also for the Tualatin girls at district, junior Tabitha Shippy was third in the shot put at 34-8.5 and senior Peyton Johnson was third in the triple jump at 34-3.
For the Tualatin boys, junior Adam Klein was a two-time victory at the district meet. Klein won the 3,000 on May 10 with a time of 8:52.47 and, on Friday, he had a winning mark of 4:03.14 in the 1,500.
"That was so much fun," Klein said following his victory in the 1,500. "This year, we have a lot of depth in the distances, and a lot of the guys know each other. We were all really competing."
Klein also was competing, with some help, during the 3,000.
"That was awesome," he said of that race. "All of the Tualatin people were cheering me on. We have so much team support."
Tualatin sophomore Nano Kis claimed a district title in the discus with a throw of 143-4.
Timberwolf senior Ryan Cavinta qualified for state in three events. He took second place at district in the long jump with a mark of 22-3.5 and he ran to second place in the 300 intermediate hurdles in 39.40.
In the 4 x 400 relay, Cavinta teamed with freshmen Andrew McDade and Andrew Payton and senior Sean MacPherson to take third place in 3:28.76.
Also for the Tualatin boys at district, sophomore Nick Sarka was third in the shot put at 46-11.5, junior Kameron Harvey was third in the triple jump at 42-8, McDade was fourth in the 400 at 52.05 and sophomore Jalen Hale was fourth in the javelin at 156-10.
The Tualatin boys finished in third place in the team standings at district with 105.33 points. Newberg was first at 138.5.
Action at the Class 6A state track and field championships is slated to begin at 9 a.m. on Friday. On Saturday, the first field event starts at 9:30 a.m. and the first running event will begin at 12:46 p.m.