In the sunshine — yes, there was a little of it — in the rain, in the wind and in everything else the weather could throw at them, the Lake Oswego and Lakeridge boys track and field teams took their best shots at the Class 6A state track meet.
The Lakers and Pacers, competing in the state meet at Mt. Hood Community College on Friday and Saturday, May 24-25, sent a total of six athletes (four Lakers and two Pacers) to the event and churned out six top-six finishes. Lake Oswego finished 13th in the team standings with 16 points, while Lakeridge finished 32nd with 6.5 points.
Highlights from the Lakers' successes at state were: senior Matthew Seeley, third in the triple jump; sophomore Aaron Olson, fourth in the pole vault; sophomore Harrison Canfield, fifth in the pole vault; and senior Collin Bracken, sixth in the long jump.
Highlights from the Pacers' successes at state were: junior Luke Neville, fifth in the 300-meter intermediate hurdles; and senior Calvin Migchelbrink, sixth in the high jump and 15th in the triple jump.
Despite the weather, no one got more out of the state meet experience than Seeley. The Laker senior, a week after finishing fourth in the Three Rivers League district meet, stepped up to grab third at state, busting off a personal-best jump of 44 feet, 6.5 inches on his first attempt.
"The jump that got me up there was my very first one and the rest of them were worse than that so I could have done better, but it started raining about halfway through so that sucked, but I'm feeling good," Seeley said. "It's kind of a shame I couldn't have improved on it, but I'll definitely take it."
Olson, a week after finishing second with a mark of 13-0 at the Three Rivers League district meet, broke through for a 6-inch personal best at state, clearing 14-6 to secure his fourth-place finish. Canfield grabbed fifth at 14-0, while South Eugene's Simon Seung Park won the state title at 16-6.
"When I cleared 14-3, I was like 'Oh my God. I cleared it by a lot,'" Olson said, crediting the guidance of LO vault coach Tim Canfield. "Then I cleared 14-6 on my first try. I was very happy with it. It was awesome."
Bracken, meanwhile, battled the state's best in the long jump, eventually placing sixth with a leap of 21-1.25.
"It was a pretty good jump — I thought it might have been longer," he said. "When the competition is good, it really sets the tone. After that, it seemed like anyone could win."
While Lakeridge's numbers were smaller, the Pacers made the most of what they had, with Migchelbrink competing in both the high jump and triple jump. Migchelbrink said he never really felt comfortable during Friday's triple jump competition, eventually placing 15th at 41-8.25, but then came back with a better effort on Saturday, clearing 6-2 to tie for sixth place in the high jump.
"I'm pretty happy because two weeks ago, I didn't even think I'd be going to state," said Migchelbrink, a first-year track athlete who previously won the TRL district title in the high jump. "It was really fun. It felt like you had to step up."
For his part, Neville battled the elements as best he could and eventually placed fifth in the 300 intermediate hurdles with a finishing time of 39.63; event-winner Jaylen Russell of Benson clocked in with the day's best time of 37.61.
The complete team scoring included: Tualatin 74, Sherwood 47, Jesuit 45, Oregon City 41, Westview 27, West Salem 26, Central Catholic 24, Liberty 21, Franklin 21, Summit 20.5, Grant 18, South Eugene 17, McMinnville 16, Tigard 16, Lake Oswego 16, Bend 15.5, Sheldon 15, Sunset 15, Grants Pass 15, Benson 14, Sandy 13.5, Beaverton 12, West Linn 11.5, Roosevelt 10.3333, North Medford 10, Mountain View 10, Forest Grove 10, Roseburg 9.33333, Barlow 8, Wilson 7.5, Centennial 7, Lakeridge 6.5, McKay 6, Gresham 6, Century 6, Madison 6, South Salem 5, Southridge 4, Canby 3, David Douglas 3, Lincoln 2, Clackamas 1, Glencoe 0.333333.
You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.