Drew Morris has been too proficient on the 4x400-meter relay team not to let him run the open 400 run.
In his first time in the 400 run at Saturday's Fruita Invitational, the Moffat County High School senior finished third place with a time of 53.10 and proved to his coach, Gary Tague, that his good times aren't just confined to splits on relays.
Tague had decided to enter Morris into the 400 run because of the times he had put up in the relay where he ran legs of the same distance. The move was made in hopes of finding more team points.
Morris' third-place finish helped the Bulldogs to a seventh-place overall finish at Fruita.
"He's a good runner and I figured he could help the team out in an individual event," Tague said. "It was a great finish for a race he never had ran before."
Fruita was supposed to be the second qualifying meet of the season for the Bulldogs but any hopes of sending a runner to state early were dashed with the malfunctioning of equipment. The meet's accu-track, which is a timing device, broke down, making the times run at the meet unofficial for state qualification.
Despite the mishap with timing machinery the Bulldogs kept improving for another meet.
Sophomore Cody Palmer continued to extend his leaps in the long jump at Fruita by jumping his season's best. Palmer jumped 20 feet, 11 inches and into third place in the long jump. Palmer also grabbed a first-place finish in the triple jump by going 42 7 1/2.
"Cody's 20-foot jump in the long jump is a heck of showing for a sophomore," Tague said. "He, like the rest of the team, just keep improving as the year goes on."
Senior Joe Jacobs was also on track for a top showing at Fruita as he tossed the discus the farthest he has in competition this season. Jacobs went 128 feet for a fourth place at the invitational, which is the best he's thrown in competition but not in the year.
Jacobs has thrown way past the 146-foot qualification distance in practice.
"Joe has thrown as far as 150 feet in practice this season," Tague said. "It's an event where everything has to be clicking if you're going to do well and Joe just needs to get everything clicking when he's in competition."