Six Track and Field Members Qualify for State Championships

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Last Saturday, the M-A track team participated in CCS Finals.

In the girls 800-meter race, junior Tatum Olesen placed second. Her 2:10.47 time also broke the school record—which she set earlier this season—by 0.67 seconds.

Olesen, Pflaum, Melani, and junior Cleo Rehkopf hold baton after race

Olesen later commented, “It was really cool to break the record in the 800 and especially because it was at CCS with a lot of fast competitors that helped push me to the end.”

The second place also guaranteed that Olesen will be the only Bear to participate in the state championships for distance.

Olesen said, “I’m really looking forward to getting the opportunity for another competitive race this season with many of the top 800 runners.”

In the 100-meter race, freshman Kei’Niyah Talton came in third out of eight runners with a time of 12.54 seconds. Following Talton was junior De’Auri Ellis who came in sixth with a time of 12.67.

Talton followed up her 100-meter race with a fourth-place finish in the 200-meter dash.

Sophomore Sara Nordlund finished fifth in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 15.28 seconds and eighth in the 300-meter hurdles after breaking the school record the previous week at CCS trials with a time of 45.86 seconds. Junior Annie Pflaum finished the 1600-meter race in seventh with a time of 5:01.03.

Smith qualifies for state championships with long jump

On the men’s side, senior Cameron Johnson finished fifth in the 400-meter race with a time of 49.34, while senior Sherrod Smith came fifth in the long jump, with a jump of 22.09 feet.

Junior Sofia Melani, who ran the 4×800-meter relay at CCS finals and the 3200-meter at trials, reflected on the season, saying, “The energy was great at CCS so it’s really motivating me to get healthy and stay healthy for next season.”

She added, “Our team did a great job of staying consistent with our training. Even when a few of us were out injured we kept with the cross-training. I think we also did a great job of trying to be a team. Even if we all couldn’t be at practice, we would still have fun pasta dinners.”

Junior Jolene Chu, Talton, Nordlund, and Ellis will run the 4×100-meter relay at state. Talton will also run the 100-meter dash and Smith will compete in the long jump. 

The Bears who qualified for state championships will continue their season this coming weekend in Clovis. 

Finn Papenfus is a senior at M-A. He looks forward to writing about sports, politics and other stories. Finn plays golf and watches football in his free time.

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