by David Tesitor
HUERFANO — After several weeks of running, jumping and throwing, the final seeding results are in, and the La Veta Redskins will send sixteen members of their track team to the state track tournament this weekend in Denver. John Mall will send four.
Redskin track coach Brandi Menegatti commented, “We have a legitimate chance for several people to get a shot at a state title. I am so pumped.”
The race to state was not an easy one. Going into the league meets, every athlete knew they should not take anything for granted. A strong performance by any athlete across the state could could affect another athlete’s chances of advancing or staying home.
Several of the athletes who were on the brink of qualifying made the cut. Also, some competitors recorded faster times this past weekend which eliminated some athletes from the tracking list. A factor is that final numbers are non-wind adjusted, meaning every athlete who qualified did so on an equal basis, without the benefit of the wind at their backs (or faces).
In separate meets, both the Redskins and the Panthers put up some remarkable performances and placed high.
In the 100-Meter dash, Redskin Ashton Rinker captured first place with a time of 12.75 seconds with the wind. Her final qualifying time of 13.19 was still good enough to maintain her ninth seed. Monica Morgan finished 19th in the league. John Mall Panther Natalie Neece took third with a time of 13.06 seconds, beating her own record by .06 of a second.
Adaina Martinez advanced to the finals and finished 15th. Neece also finished ninth in the 200 meter and sixth in the 400 meter. Neece will compete in those three events at the state meet.
Jacey Day of La Veta advanced to the state meet in the 200 Meter dash. Day placed fourth at league in a time of 27.57. Day’s wind-adjusted time of 27.77 seconds was only .15 of a second ahead of not qualifying. In the 200M, Hannah Everett finished 15th.
Myranda Trujillo, who is the Panthers’ medium- and long- distance runner, was close to qualifying in the 800 and 1600 meter runs but failed to qualify. She finished 14th in the 800M and 13th in the 1600M events. She then competed in the 3200 meter run (approximately 2 miles) for the first time this season and completed the event in a time of 13:08.86 seconds, finishing first in her seed and sixth overall. The time advanced her into the state tournament as the number-seventeen seed. As a result, she and Neece are the only two individual Panther runners to qualify for state. The Panther relay teams were unable to advance.
It was a different story for the Redskin Relay teams though. Both the girl’s and boy’s relay teams will compete in three events. The girls will compete in the 100M, the 800M and the 800 Meter Sprint Medley. They missed qualifying in the 200 meter by .45 seconds. The 4X100M team consists of Haley Hake, Rena Trujillo, Day and Rinker. The 800M consists of Hake, Brandaise Martinez, Sophia Schneider and Victoria Romero. The Medley team is Brenna Ray, Trujillo, Day and Rinker.
The boy’s team will also compete in the 200, 400 and 800M sprint. The boys 4X200 and 400M consists of Brandon Morgan, Adam Ortivez, Josiah Christian, and Blake Warren. The 800M sprint team includes Christian, Morgan, Wyatt Vidamor and Warren.
In the field events, Panthers Krista Cordova and Angelica Souza qualified for the shot put. Cordova finished first in her division and Souza finished third. La Veta’s Brandon Morgan finished second at league with a jump of 21’ 2.25 inches which is his personal best and which missed the school record by a quarter inch. Bradley Vigil also eclipsed his personal best throw in the shot put by over three feet and placed third. Vigil also placed third in the discus.
Editor’s Note: There continues to be some confusion about the record setting performance of some of the La Veta athletes. Our source of information comes from Colorado Mile High Split, which has been recording every track event since 2008. The records listed on the site are based on times posted since 2008. Colorado Mile High Split does not include any La Veta school records prior to 2008, as those records have not been entered into their web site.
We did confirm with Coach Menegatti that three records were in fact broken this year. They are Ashton Rinker in the 100 meter, Josiah Christian in the 300M hurdles and the boys 4 X 400 meter.
Gary M. Vezzani was elected Walsenburg’s mayor in Tuesday’s special mayoral election/recall vote. Preliminary results announced Tuesday night show that both Nick Vigil in Ward