The Clackamas boys track and field team stepped up.
The Cavaliers went toe-to-toe with powerful Central Catholic during the Mt. Hood Conference district track meet, held Tuesday and Wednesday, May 10-11, at Barlow High School.
In the end, the Rams won eight of the day's 17 events and pulled away to finish first with 338 points, while Clackamas took second place at 274. The complete team scoring included: Central Catholic 338, Clackamas 274, Barlow 160, Reynolds 102, Sandy 102, David Douglas 98, Gresham 96, Centennial 96 and Adrienne Nelson 48.
"We (were) just looking for our school to be able to compete near the top of all the races in the finals," said Clackamas senior Miles Williams, who finished second in the 200 meters, third in the 100 and ran on both of the Cavs' top-three relays.
Williams notched a time of 11.21 seconds in his 100, and came back to post a personal record of 22.56 in the 200.
In the 4 x 100 relay, he teamed with senior David Gesl, senior K.J. Johnson-Gibson and senior Ian Patton to finish second with a 43.30. And in the 4 x 400, it was junior Peyton Peters, Williams, senior Abe Khal and Gesl who took third at 3:28.17.
"It was a pretty good race," Williams said after the 4 x 100. "We are going to state and that was the goal, so we're just looking to improve our time next week."
"I think we did it as planned," Johnson-Gibson said. "I'm just glad that we got to state and I know we can go way faster at state."
The Cavs got two wins at district, with senior Ben Moffatt — he holds the best Class 6A mark in the javelin this year — throwing 192 feet, 11 inches, while senior Ian Patton topped the long jump field with a leap of 21-4 1/2.
"I came in expecting to win. I actually expected to land it on the hill over there, but I came a little short of that," Moffatt said, adding that he was looking forward to state. "It should be really fun next Saturday. … It's my first time at Hayward coming up."
Other top-four finishers for Clackamas were: Gesl, fourth in the 200 at 23.09 and second in the 400 with a PR of 50.13; Johnson-Gibson, second in the high hurdles at 15.19; Patton, second in the javelin in a PR of 170-7 and fourth in the shot at 44-1; senior Noah Preuitt, third in the shot put at 45-11; junior Ashtin Neikes, fourth in high hurdles in a PR of 16.76; senior Mason Williams, fourth in the 300 intermediate hurdles in a PR of 43.43; and senior Josh Murray, fourth in the discus at 128-8.
While Nelson didn't make the same splash Clackamas did, the Hawks still recorded some solid performances in their first-ever MHC district meet.
Foremost among those was junior Vanndon Heard's success in the triple jump and a couple strong finishes by sophomore distance runner Kai Miles. Heard came through to place third in the triple jump at 38-10, while Miles took fifth in the 3,000 with a PR of 9:43.01 and later added a 4:28.50 while placing seventh in the 1,500.
"This whole season I've been trying to get back onto a PR pace, but I hadn't really been able to do that until (the 3,000) when I finally did all the stuff right beforehand and I had the right mindset going into it," Miles said. "It's the first time (I performed well) in track and cross country district races. In both last spring, I hadn't done great so it's a good feeling."
Other top finishers for Nelson came from: junior Kurtis Man, seventh in the triple jump at 36-7 1/2; sophomore Jacob Hayes, seventh in the high jump at 5-4; sophomore Joe Yang, eighth in the javelin at 136-6; and junior Reid Gray, eighth in the high jump at 5-2.
The Class 6A state track and field meet is set for May 20-21 at Hayward Field on the University of Oregon campus in Eugene.
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