Region 9 athletes dominate Day 1 of state championship track meet

Runners compete in the trial heats of the 4A girls 200-meter run at the state track meet, Provo, Utah, May 17, 2019 | Photo by Frank Kay Richards for St. George News / Cedar City News

PROVO — Despite gloomy skies, there were plenty of bright spots for high school track and field teams from Southern Utah on Friday, the first day of the annual state championship track meet at Brigham Young University.

Dixie High’s 4×100 relay team wins its heat in Day 1 trials at the state track meet, Provo, Utah, May 17, 2019 | Photo by Frank Kay Richards for St. George News / Cedar City News

The two-day event features hundreds athletes from virtually every school in the state, spanning all six classifications.

Following the five events that held finals on Friday, Region 9 teams are currently in the top spots in both the 4A girls and 4A boys divisions.

Cedar High’s girls earned 34 points on Friday putting them in first place in the 4A classification, just one point ahead of second-place Desert Hills, which scored 33. Currently in third place is another region rival, Pine View, which has 19 points.

In the girls 800-meter run, Region 9 athletes took the top four spots, with Pine View sophomore Alli Baker winning the race in a remarkable time of 2:08.76, which was just .31 seconds off the state record. Cedar senior Jasie York placed second in 2:14.15, about a half-second off her personal best but still a faster time than all but two other athletes in the state this year. Also in the 800, Desert Hills senior Trinity Schimbeck placed third in 2:19.02 and Hurricane freshman Caila Odekirk took fourth in 2:19.16.

Additionally, Bailey Brinkerhoff, a senior at Desert Hills, won the 4A girls 3,200-meter run in a time of 10:46.24. Fellow Desert Hills senior Abby Monson won the discus with a top throw of 122-10.

Cedar’s Mayci Torgerson placed second in the long jump with a leap measuring 17-7.5.

Meanwhile, in 4A boys, Hurricane leads the way with 39 points on Day 1, three ahead of Spanish Fork’s 36. Hurricane’s Armstrong brothers, senior Caleb and sophomore Joshua, accounted for 29 of the Tigers’ points, thanks to their 1-2 finish in the 800 meters, along with taking the third and fourth spots in the 3,200-meter run.

Winner Brooklyn Syrett of Bryce Valley (center) stands atop the podium with other top finishers in the girls 1A long jump at the state track meet, Provo, Utah, May 17, 2019 | Photo by Frank Kay Richards for St. George News / Cedar City News

Joshua beat his older brother in the 3,200 by two seconds, but it was Caleb who won the 800, his time of 1:56.09 barely edging Joshua’s time of 1:56.30. Finishing less than a second behind the Armstrong siblings were Cedar’s Brady Bettridge, who placed third in 1:56.73 and Bailey Oswald, who took fifth in 1:56.91.

Braden Squires of Desert Hills had the fastest overall 4A times in three separate events: the 100-, 200- and 400-meter runs. The finals of all three races are Saturday.

Other Southern Utah schools faring well the first day of the meet include Kanab, which is leading the boys 2A standings with 51 points, while second-place Millard has 45. In the 2A girls, Millard is currently second and Kanab fourth.

In 1A girls, leader Panguitch has a 69-31 point advantage over second place Milford, while the Panguitch and Milford boys are in second and third, respectively, with Monticello taking a commanding first-day lead. For current meet results, click here.

Check back on St. George News / Cedar City News after the events conclude on Saturday for final results and photos.

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