Seven select Lovell High School athletes attended the BYU Invitational High School Track and Field Meet Friday and Saturday in Provo with coaches Joshua and Caleb Sanders, while the rest of the team went to the Meeteetse Invitational Friday afternoon with coaches Daniel Robertson and Bob Weber.
The decision to take some athletes to Provo was made in an effort to allow the athletes to see better competition than they would have at the all-class Wyoming Track Classic in Casper Friday, as well as better weather.
“It was 80 degrees with no wind,” Josh Sanders said. “It was a well organized meet with very high competition, especially in the running events. Six of the kids placed in 1A-2A and three of them placed overall – 1A through 5A.”
Athletes ran in heats by class on Friday 1A-2A or 3A-4A-5A, and on Saturday the best of the best ran together in the “golden hour” all-class finals.
For senior standout Kim Shumway, the meet with its outstanding competition was just what she needed, Sanders said, as she not only broke her own school record in the 400-meter dash on Friday with a time of 55.89 seconds (her old record set last year was 55.99), she broke it again Saturday to win the all-class race, turning on the afterburners for a time of 55.53 seconds.
She also placed third in the 200-meter dash, running 26.05 Friday and 26.26 in Saturday’s finals. She was named the LHS Female Athlete of the Week for her exploits.
“She had to go fast in the prelims,” Sanders said. “Twenty-six girls ran sub-60 seconds in the prelims. Only one did that at the Track Classic (in Casper). You don’t want to take the chance of not being in the final nine (to run finals). There were girls who ran 58 seconds who didn’t make it to the final heat.”
Sanders said Shumway needed and fed off of the competition.
“When she’s running alone so much it’s not fair to her,” he said. “It’s hard for athletes to push themselves when they’re alone.”
As the top seed coming out of the prelims, Shumway was given lane 5, the best lane on a nine-lane track that also allowed her to gauge the speed of her top competitor, Mesa Weidle of Rock Springs.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better lane,” Sanders said. “The second fastest qualifier was in lane six. We loved that because she’d pull Kim out to make up the stagger and chase her. The other girl has really good speed, and she went out fast. We knew it was going to be a race.
“Kim went out and ran a 26-second 200-meter split, which was faster than her open 200. You could tell she was focused. She prepared herself all day for the race.”
The race didn’t start until around 4:30 p.m., and it was hot, but Shumway found shade, stayed hydrated and visualized the race, Sanders said.
“That’s a long time to wait,” he said. “It was a big deal for her to win it. That’s not a meet you go to and casually win an all-class race.”
Both of Shumway’s 200-meter races were after the 400, but she still found the energy to place high.
“I think she represented Wyoming well,” Sanders said.
Also strong in Provo were juniors Whitney Grant and Chayli McArthur and sophomore Jaclyn Caldwell.
Grant won the 1A-2A pole vault by clearing 9-11, just two inches off of her personal and school record. She was second overall among the five classes.
“She vaulted probably as well as she’s vaulted all season,” Sanders said.
McArthur prequalified for the Wyoming State Track Meet in the 300-meter low hurdles, running the event for the second time. She placed 12th in the 1A-2A prelims but ran a strong time of 50.46 in the tough field. Sanders said she has embraced the event.
“She wanted to do it and approached me,” he said. “She improved her time by a second and a half, and she can still improve her technique, but she has good endurance.”
McArthur also placed seventh in the 1A-2A long jump with a jump of 15-7-3/4.
“It wasn’t her best,” Sanders said. “It was hard to get her on the board. They have stricter rules than Wyoming State. Trying to help her hit the board from the stands is not easy.”
Sophomore Jaclyn Caldwell ran a personal record in the 1,600 meters in Provo to place seventh in the 1A-2A prelims with a time of 5:31.47.
“The (overall) winning time was 4:51,” Sanders marveled. “Jaclyn is getting close to Maria’s (Zeller) school record (5:22.66).”
The four Lovell girls who competed in Provo placed eighth in Class 1A-2A out of 32 teams competing with 30 points.
Perhaps the highlight of the Meeteetse Invitational Friday was the performance of the 400-meter relay team. The quartet of Emily Snell, Trysa Flood, Ameesha Anderson and Caitlyn Lundberg ran a season-best time of 53.75 to place second by less than a second to Cody. The team of Charri McArthur, Shelby Wardell, Flood and Savanna Savage placed third in the 1,600 meters at 4:38.42.
In other highlights, Lundberg placed sixth in the 100-meter dash with a time of 13.80, and Flood was second in the 200-meter dash at 28.44.
Sami Newman set a personal record in the 400 meters by nearly three seconds, placing eighth with a time of 1:12.76, and Madison Harper placed fifth in the 100-meter intermediate hurdles with a time of 18.43.
In field events, Savage cleared 4-7 in the high jump to tie for sixth, and Shelby Wardell cleared 7 feet in the pole vault to tie for second.
Sierra Montanez placed sixth in the shot put with a throw of 27-4.
Despite missing Shumway, Grant, Caldwell and Chayli McArthur, the Lady Bulldogs placed seventh in Meeteetse with 46.5 points, just a point and a half behind sixth-place Wyoming Indian.
Boys in Provo
Sophomore Jacob Newman made a splash in Provo by placing 12th in the 1A-2A preliminaries of the 1,600 meters with a time of 4:44.45, a personal record.
“What a good job he did in that race,” Sanders said. “He’s really been coming on lately.”
Newman also ran a personal-record time of 2:09.65 in the 800 meters to place 23rd in the 1A-2A prelims, even though the race was shortly after the 1,600 meters.
“His legs weren’t there,” Sanders said. “He’s gotten a lot of confidence over the last three weeks.”
Freshman Brandon Teter placed second in the high jump in Provo, clearing 6-1-1/4, a personal record, to place second in Class 1A-2A. He was seventh overall.
“You could tell he felt good,” Sanders said. “It’s a big meet with lots of high-jumpers. He was just relaxed and loose. He almost cleared 6-3. His second attempt was so, so close.”
Junior Cade Bischoff placed seventh in 1A-2A in the long jump, sailing 19-6-1/4.
“If he’d jumped what he’s capable of jumping he would have finished higher,” Sanders said. “He wasn’t happy. He definitely wanted to go 20 feet. Again, we had difficulty getting a good board on a good approach.”
Bischoff also ran in the 100-meter dash prelims and placed 34th in the 1A-2A heats with a time of 12.07, and Teter ran the 200-meter dash in Provo, recording a time of 25.30.
Back home in Meeteetse, senior Brandon Wolvington had a strong meet to earn Male Athlete of the Week honors, Sanders said. Wolvington cleared 5-10 in the high jump to match his personal record and prequalify for State, and he set a PR in the shot put, placing sixth at 40-3.
He also ran the 400 meters for the first time and placed eighth with a time of 59.54.
“I like that he’s willing to do the open 400,” Sanders said. “He had a great meet.”
Junior Drake Welch had a strong meet. He tied for third in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.88, which Sanders said is good for an FAT (fully automatic timing) race. He also won the long jump, clearing 20-3 -1/2.
Freshman Kaleb Mayes won the 800 meters Friday, covering the two laps in a personal-record time of 2:15.19. Merrill Beck was fifth in 2:22.79.
Andrew Mayes ran a personal-record time of 5:21.81 in the 1,600 meters, good for fifth place, and Eston Croft placed fourth in the 110-meter high hurdles at 16.52.
Senior Derek Phelps placed seventh in the 110-meter hurdles at 17.54 and 11th in the 300-meter intermediate hurdles with a personal-record time of 48 seconds flat. Tyler Teter ran a personal-record time in the 300-meter hurdles, tying for ninth at 47.71.
The 1,600-meter relay team of Dylan Ohman, Alex Sawaya, Chace Wilson and Jaccob Mickelson placed sixth Friday with a time of 4:10.44, and the 3,200-meter relay quartet of Kaleb Mayes, Sawaya, Andrew Mayes and Beck placed second with a time of 9:28.47.
Britton Woody set a new PR in the long jump, going 18-7-1/2 to place seventh, and Tristen Snyder was ninth at 18-2-3/4, also a personal record. Croft and Kaleb Mayes tied for ninth in the triple jump, leaping 35-11-3/4, a personal record for Croft.
In the throws, Garet Fowler placed fifth in the shot put with a throw of 41-2.
The Lovell boys placed third in Meeteetse with 68.5 points.
The Bulldogs will attend the Bobcat Invitational in Thermopolis Friday. Action begins at 1 p.m. The meet is the final tune-up before next week’s 2A West Regional in Lander.
Other Meeteetse results included:
Girls Division: 100m dash – Ameesha Anderson 8th, 13.97, Emily Snell 11th, 14.22, Mya Meier 22nd, 15.60, Paige Schmitt 31st, 17.59; 200m dash – Madison Harper 10th, 30.19, Sami Newman 17th, 32.90; 800 meters – Charri McArthur 8th, 2:58.72; 1,600 meters – Afton George 9th, 7:21,37; 100m intermediate hurdles – Kendra Price 10th, 20.59; long jump – Lundberg 8th, 14-4-1/2, Snell 13th, 13-6-1/2; triple jump – Flood 7th, 30-6-3/4; high jump – Myer 9th (tie), 4-5, Price 12th (tie), 4-3; shot put – Sami Stevens 13th, 24-5-1/2, Aly Schneider 23rd, 21-5-1/2; discus – Sierra Montanez 15th, 73-8-1/2, Schneider 23rd, 67-5-1/2, Stevens 25th, 62-9, Schmitt 30th, 53-11-3/4.
Boys Division: 100m dash – Eston Croft 11th, 12.43, Tyler Teter 13th, 12.55, Derek Phelps 17th (tie), 12.65, Britton Woody 20th, 12.69, Tristen Snyder 22nd, 12.74, Richard Mangali 14.98; 200m dash – Mangali 26th, 31.68; 400m dash – Jaccob Mickelson 9th, 59.87 (PR), Dylan Ohman 10th, 1:00.26 (PR), Chance Wilson 16th, 1:05.55; 1,600 meters – Alex Sawaya 8th, 5:34.24; shot put – Daniel Strom 22nd, 35-7, Aaron Monterde 25th, 34-6, Jaret Collins 28th, 33-8, Kyle Burton 31st, 32-5, Calin McArthur 30-4-1/2 (PR), Payton Hetland 28-6, Sloan Colvin 27-0; discus – Monterde 9th, 124-2-1/4, Strom 11th, 121-4-1/4, Garet Fowler 13th, 114-11-1/2, McArthur 18th, 107-7-3/4, Collins 27th, 88-7-1/2, Colvin 30th, 83-9-3/4, Burton 31st, 82-10.
By David Peck