Yampa Valley athletes dominate Clint Wells Invitational in Craig
Craig — On a beautiful spring day in Craig, athletes from across Northwest Colorado competed at the Clint Wells Invitational hosted at Moffat County High School.
The home Bulldogs had a good day, running away with a points title for the girls team and a second-place finish to Grand Valley for the boys.
Moffat County freshman Kayla Pinnt had another big day, notching wins in the 100-meter, 400 and 4×100 relay. In the 100, the freshman was not up against any of the elite sprinters she has seen in Grand Junction, but Pinnt won in 12.51 seconds, her fastest time of the season and the fastest in 3A track this year.
“I thought I ran it in 13-something,” Pinnt said about the race. “But then my dad came over and told me what I had done, and I was really happy. I wanted to make it to state, but now I feel like I can go and win it.”
The open 400 was Pinnt’s first of the season. And while she was disappointed in her time, the 64.55 still was good enough to win by almost 4 seconds. Pinnt wants to get more experience in the race to try and take it on at the state meet, as well.
Another state champion contender, Jorge Valdez, of Hayden, didn’t disappoint in Craig. Valdez cleared 6 feet to win the boys high jump. Although he has made 6-4 this season, Valdez said he was satisfied with winning the event.
“It’s not my best, but it was still good enough to win, so that’s good, I guess,” he said.
But Valdez will not be satisfied with 6 feet the rest of the season. He has relied mostly on athletic ability to get this far and said improving on his form will be important to meet his goals.
“There are some jumps where my form is great, and then the next one, it’s off,” he said. “I need to work to make that more consistent. My brother (Rene) has the school record; that’s 6-6. So I’d like to get there.”
The most exciting finish of the day came in the boys 100, when TJ Shelton, of Meeker, beat Kelly Campbell, of Moffat County, by 0.01 second. Campbell would have a good day the rest of the way, running for Moffat County to wins in the 4×100, 4×200 and 4×400.
Josie Rossi contributed to a third-place team finish for the Soroco girls by winning the 800. Rossi took a commanding lead early in the race and held off the competition in 2:32.64.
Moffat County doubled up with wins in the 1,600 with Eryn Leonard at 5:58.09 for the girls and Jarrett Johnson at 4:59.62 for the boys.
Soroco’s Nic Paxton took second place in the long and triple jumps. In the boys high jump, Moffat County’s Miguel Cruz cleared a career-best 5-8, beating out Soroco’s Bjorn Carlson for second place.
Gaven Spears and Dylan Villa delivered in the throwing events for Moffat County. Villa tied for first, and Spears was third in the shot put. Spears was first and Villa was second in the discus. Emily White posted personal bests in the shot and disc, taking fourth and third, respectively, for Moffat County.
Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 970-875-1795 or nwaggenspack@CraigDailyPress.com
Sharing thanks, enjoying some laughs, and shedding a few tears are an indicator of the emotional levels that always seem to come with Moffat County High School graduation.