The Rocky Mountain Grizzlies doubled up the competition last week as they prepare for the regional and state track meets, competing in Meeteetse Friday and at home in Cowley Saturday.
In the process, sophomore Zane Horrocks not only shattered his personal record in the pole vault, he broke the school record, as well – a record held by his coach, Tobee Christiansen.
“We try to break it up like a regional meet, with different events on different days so the kids get that feeling of going on back-to-back days,” Christiansen said of the two-day schedule.
Horrocks tied his personal record in the pole vault Friday in Meeteetse, clearing 11-6 to win the event, then crushed the mark Saturday at home, clearing 13-6 to place second to Powell’s Brody Karhu, who set a Powell school record by clearing 15-1.
When he cleared 13-6, Horrocks broke the school record set by David Zarate in 1992 and tied by Christiansen in 1996.
“I’ve been talking to Zane for a while about it and told him that’s got to come off of there (the record board),” Christiansen said. “I told him I’d buy him a steak dinner if he broke it. It’s awesome the record fell. As a coach, you want your kids to have that success. I’m glad Daniel (Robertson) and I get to coach a kid that broke it. Zane has a great work ethic in anything he does.”
Coach Daniel Robertson said a key to Horrocks’ performance is embracing and getting comfortable with a new pole, adding that coaches have also worked with his timing in practice.
“He was planting too late,” Robertson said. “We messed with his timing, and he hasn’t looked back since.”
Horrocks missed once at 12-0, then was successful three straight times at 12-6, 13-0 and 13-6.
Not only did Horrocks break records in the pole vault, he set a new PR in the 300-meter intermediate hurdles Friday in Meeteetse, winning the event in 43.34. He was scheduled to run the event again Saturday but was still vaulting at the time of the race, Christiansen said. He did run the 110-meter high hurdles Saturday, placing second with a time of 16.50 after placing third Friday at 17.68.
Following the “like a regional meet” theme, long distance runner Zach Simmons battled the wind to place second in the 1,600 meters Friday with a time of 5:12.75, then placed third in the 3,200 Saturday with a season best time of 10:54.28, which is only a half second off his personal record.
Sophomore Brandon Robison had a strong couple of days. Friday, he placed second in the 100-meter dash with a time of 11.99, then ran 11.64 Saturday to place fifth in a competitive field, where 4/10s of a second separated the top five runners, Coach C noted.
Robison also won the 200-meter dash Friday at 24.4, then won the 400 on Saturday, running the lap in 54.26.
“Branson ran a good 400,” Christiansen said. “He beat Cole Frank (Powell) right at the very end. He was trailing him by quite a stretch and got him at the end.”
Senior Skyler Drewes and sophomore Austin Halem ran the 400 meters Friday and 800 Saturday. Drewes won the 400 in Meeteetse with a time of 51.93, and Haslem placed second in a personal record time of 54.49. Drewes placed third in the 800 Saturday at 2:04.28, and Haslem placed sixth, running the two laps in 2:16.24.
Freshman Landen Stebner placed fifth in the 200-meter dash Friday, crossing the finish line in 26.14, then trimmed the time to 25.99 Saturday, placing 10th. He placed fifth in the 400-meter dash Saturday, coming in at 58.49.
The quartet of Trevor Jewell, Haslem, Drewes and Robison won the 400-meter relay Friday with a time of 46.68, then placed second at home Saturday in 47.65.
Sophomore Trevor Jewell placed fifth in the long jump at Meeteetse, going 17-3½, then set a personal record Saturday at 18-9½, good for fourth place. He also placed third Friday and fifth Saturday in the triple jump, leaping 38-4 and 38-9½, respectively. He cleared 5-8 Friday and 5-4 Saturday in the high jump, placing third and seventh, respectively.
Freshman Kendrick Beckman tied his PR in the long jump Friday at 16-7½ (eighth) and went 15-8 Saturday (14th). He placed sixth in the high jump both days, clearing 5-4 Friday and 5-6 Saturday.
Sophomore Jaxon Jolley had a solid week in the throws, placing second Friday and sixth Saturday in the shot put with throws of 39-9 and 39-5¼, respectively. He placed second in the discus with a toss of 122-3½ Friday and fifth on Saturday at 113-1.
Other throwing results are:
Shot put – Will Kost 34-11 Friday, third, and 34-10 Saturday, 11th; Tyson Christiansen 32-9 Friday, sixth, and 29-7 Saturday, 17th; Carson Robison 26-2 Friday, 11th, and 27-6½ Saturday, 22nd.
Freshman Kiara Jolley was strong in the sprints last week. She placed second in the 100-meter dash Friday in Meeteetse with a time of 13.33 and tied for third Saturday at home in 13.40. She set a PR in the 200-meter dash Saturday in Cowley, covering the half lap in 27.49 to place second.
Sophomore Dakota Watts placed fourth in the 400-meter dash Friday, covering the lap in 1:11.49, then set a personal record Saturday at 1:10.77, placing second. Aubrianne Crosby placed second in the 400 Friday with a time of 1:04.93.
Christiansen said the sprinters will begin to taper a bit over the next two weeks to be fresh for Regionals and State.
Junior Teagan Townsend placed eighth in the 100-meter intermediate hurdles Friday with a time of 21.34 and second in the 300-meter low hurdles at 52.65.
The foursome of Taylin Boettcher, Alexis Minemyer, Townsend and Jolley placed second in the 400-meter relay Saturday with a time of 55.49.
In field events, Jolley set a personal record in the high jump Saturday at home, clearing 4-8 to place third. Boettcher also cleared 4-8 in Cowley and placed second on misses after clearing 4-9 Friday in Meeteetse, winning the event. Minemyer cleared 4-5 Friday, third, and 4-4 Saturday, eighth.
Boettcher cleared 7-6 in the pole vault Saturday to place fourth after going 6-6 Friday (11th). Both Minemyer and Bailee Loftus cleared 7 feet in Meeteetse, placing sixth and eighth respectively based on misses.
Christiansen said the throwers are working hard, and that produced a number of personal records last week. Sophomore Taylor Despain placed third in the discuss Friday and set a personal record with a throw of 87-8½, then placed third again Saturday in Cowley at 76-10. Freshman Brionna Petrich placed eighth in Meeteetse with a personal record throw of 68-8½, then placed seventh in Cowley with a toss of 69-9 another PR.
Isabelle Christensen set a PR Friday at 67-8½ (ninth) and broke it Saturday at 67-9 (10th).
In the shot put, Despain placed second Saturday with a throw of 29-9½, and Petrich threw 25-4 Friday to place fifth and 25-10 Saturday to earn fourth place.
Other girls results are:
100m dash – Micah Jenkins 15.4 Friday, eighth, 15.68 Saturday, 16th; 200m dash – Dakota Watts 32.21 Sat., 14th, Jenkins 33.58 Sat., 18th; long jump ? Aubrianne Crosby 12-4½ Friday (10th); shot put – Isabelle Christensen 23-3 Friday (8th), 24-7¼ Saturday (10th), Hailey Davison 22-11 Friday (9th) and 23-2 Saturday (13th); Kirsten Grohman 22-9 Friday (10th) and 22-4 ½ Saturday (14th); discus – Davison 58-7 Friday (12th) and 56-10 Saturday (18th), Grohman 58-2 Friday (13th) and 57-0 Saturday (17th).
The Grizzlies will travel to Thermopolis Friday for the final meet of the regular season, the Bobcat Invitational. Action begins at 1 p.m.
Shoshoni will host the 2A West Regional this year with construction taking place at the Lander facility. The regional will take place May 10-11.
By David Peck