Cedaredge’s Williams sets three 3A state meet records
LAKEWOOD — Doling out hugs and shaking with victorious passion, Cedaredge sprinter Sierra Williams ran around six family members Thursday, including her great-grandmother, 89-year-old Eleanor Williams.
The senior had just broken the Class 3A state meet record in the 100-meter dash at Jefferson County Stadium, running the event in 11.86 seconds. Thirty minutes later, she anchored Cedaredge’s 800 relay team that in the preliminary and set a 3A state meet record in 1:42.91.
Yet another record was set, this one by Denver’s weather. The thermometer at Denver International Airport reached 92 degrees, breaking the previous record high of 89 set in 1994, according to the National Weather Service.
With the heat and the emotional rush, Williams, a senior bound for Florida State University to run track, felt sapped by her afternoon 200-meter dash preliminary.
She called her start in the 200 “horrible.”
“I’d feel like such an idiot if I false-started at state,” Williams said, “so I was playing it safe.”
Yet, she set another 3A state-meet record.
Her time of 24.53 was 0.01 faster than the previous record set in 2004 by Dimma Kalu of University.
Her 100 time of 11.86 dusted Kalu’s previous record of 12.07.
“After getting the record in the 100, I was so happy and running on such a high,” Williams said, “and now it’s got me kind of drained.”
Williams gets to rest today, though, as she runs her 100 and 200 finals Saturday, the final day of the meet.
The Cedaredge boys, meanwhile, had a placer Thursday, as Miguel Barajas finished fifth in discus with a throw of 140 feet, 6 inches.
The Rifle boys are in solid position to go after its second straight 3A state title. The Bears are in third place with 21 points. The Classical Academy leads with 33 points.
Ryan Moeller took second in the triple jump for the Bears and qualified for finals in the 100 and 200, carrying the third and sixth fastest times, respectively, into the finals.
“I didn’t feel right today (in the triple jump),” said Moeller, whose 44-10 1/2 was bested only by the 47-3 1/2 turned in by John Reynolds of Kent Denver. “It wasn’t a bad feeling; I just didn’t feel great.”
Also for the Bears, Jake Statler, Adam Rice, Tanner Rust and Aaron Wagler placed fifth in the 3,200 relay.
“Not bad for a bunch of kids who grew up playing baseball,” Statler said.
The Paonia boys 3,200 relay team of Trevor Walters, Josiah Spano, Jason Sturges and Ben Justman took second and set a school record in the Class 2A event with a time of 8:20.75.
The Paonia girls, meanwhile, took fifth in the 3,200 relay. Members were Chelsey Reed, Carson Pipher, Braiden Clement and Taylor Polso.
But perhaps the most dramatic 3,200 relay was that run by the Hotchkiss girls, who took sixth in the 3A event.
Freshman Tiffany Clock led off in her first state meet. Nikki Buhrdorff ran the second leg four hours after her flight landed in Denver from Pittsburgh, where she had been at an international science fair competition.
Hotchkiss was in 17th place by the time Natalie Anderson took the baton. She passed six runners.
Anchor Jennifer Celis whipped by five more, and Hotchkiss soon graced the podium.
Buhrdorff doesn’t know how she and Bulldogs’ boys track runner Vikash Hypio, who contributed equally to the science project but did not fly to Pittsburgh, placed at the event.
“I’m just drained now,” Buhrdorff said.
Anderson also placed third in the 3,200 run in 11:35.76. She won the event last year as a freshman.
“It wasn’t exactly what I wanted,” Anderson said, “but with that time I can walk out of here with a smile.”