MCHS junior qualifies for state Saturday at WSL meet |

MCHS junior qualifies for state Saturday at WSL meet

Joshua Gordon

Garrett Spears

Garrett Spears entered the Western Slope League meet ranked 23rd in shot put for the 4A state track and field meet.

With only the top 18 qualifying for the Thursday through Saturday state meet, Spears needed a personal best to move up in the rankings.

Spears threw 48 feet, 2 inches Saturday at Stocker Stadium in Grand Junction to take second place.

More importantly, the throw catapulted the Moffat County High School junior up the leaderboard and into 11th place — qualifying him for the state meet.

"Garrett really worked hard on his technique," head coach Lance Scranton said. "Throwing is one of the events where you need a lot of repetitions, and we have had trouble with that. Garrett came to me Thursday and said, 'I feel real good, coach.'"

The MCHS boys track and field team took fourth place a year after splitting the league title, and the girls team also came in fourth.

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Palisade High School won for the boys and Battle Mountain High School won for the girls.

Scranton said scoring ultimately came down to numbers.

"Battle Mountain had a lot of girls come out for the team this year, so they beat our girls in pure number of contestants," he said. "For Palisade, they had a lot of guys in sprints, and they racked up points in those events."

The boys 4-by-800-meter relay was one of three events MCHS won Saturday. The team, consisting of juniors Alfredo Lebron, Miguel Molina, Rene Molina and Johnny Landa, ran their season-best time of 8 minutes, 9.86 seconds.

"The 4-by-800-meter relay looked really good," Scranton said. "They had a good day and recorded a (personal record) before the state meet."

Lebron also won the 1,600-meter run and senior Maddy Jourgensen won the same race for the girls team.

Scranton said junior Andy Browning was the surprise performer for the Bulldogs at the meet.

Browning, who had not run many sprint events this year, took third in the 200-meter dash.

"I think Andy's finish just proved how hard he works," Scranton said. "He beat Tyler and ran a great race."

Spears was the only new Bulldog to move into state qualifying position at the WSL meet.

Lebron will compete in the 1,600-meter run, the 3,200-meter run and as part of the 4-by-800-meter relay with fellow juniors Miguel, Rene and Landa.

Jourgensen will run in the 1,600-meter run and the 3,200-meter run for the girls team and fellow senior Lauren Roberts will compete in high jump and long jump.

Scranton said the ranking system has moved attention away from team competitions and more toward individuals.

"Everyone is always chasing times and distances to make it to state" he said. "As coach, it is hard to strategize heading into a meet because it is all about going to state."

The state meet is scheduled to start at 8 a.m. Thursday at Jeffco Stadium, 540 Kipling St., in Lakewood.

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4A Western Slope League meet team results:


(Name — points)

• 1. Palisade — 147

• 2. Glenwood Springs — 143

• 3. Delta — 125

• 4. Moffat County — 121


• 1. Battle Mountain — 182

• 2. Glenwood Springs — 172

• 3. Palisade — 123

• 4. Moffat County — 85

Moffat County High School varsity track and field team’s individual placers Saturday at the 4A Western Slope League meet at Stocker Stadium:

(Name — event — time — place)

• Alfredo Lebron — 1,600-meter run — 4:26.78 — 1

• Maddy Jourgensen — 1,600-meter run — 5:21.22 — 1

• Moffat County — boys 4-by-800-meter relay — 8:09.86 — 1

• Moffat County — boys 4-by-400-meter relay — 3:29.27 — 2

• Moffat County — boys 4-by-100-meter relay — 45.69 — 3

• Moffat County — boys 4-by-200-meter relay — 1:35.75 — 3

• Moffat County — girls 800-meter sprint medley relay — 1:57.29 — 3

• Garrett Spears — shot put — 48’2” — 2

• Lauren Roberts — long jump — 17’3.75” — 2

• Lauren Roberts — 200-meter dash — 27.33 — 3

• Andy Browning — 200-meter dash — 23.5 — 3

• Ryder Seely — 110-meter high hurdles — 16.35 — 3

• Chet Harvey — triple jump — 40’6” — 3

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