Delta sisters finish 4th and 5th in 3,200 at state meet

LAKEWOOD — Rounding the final turn of the Class 4A 3,200-meter state final Friday, Delta High School’s Clarissa Whiting slowed down. On purpose.

This was not the event in which Clarissa is allowed to defeat her sister. The 3,200 belongs to identical twin Cleo, who passed her sister on the final turn to place fourth at Jefferson County Stadium. Clarissa took fifth.

The 1,600-meter race, which the twins will run today, is Clarissa’s — she’s simply been running it longer.

They admit it’s somewhat of a programmed finish.

“I kind of slowed down to let her pass and even losing one second of focus can hurt,” Clarissa said. “But I said, ‘Go, Cleo. Pull!’ “

“But I beat you fair and square,” Cleo added with a smile.

Heather Bates of Discovery Canyon won the event with a 10:55.20.

Cleo ran an 11:23.89 and Clarissa clocked an 11:24.06.

Although there were no area Class 4A or 5A champions from The Daily Sentinel coverage area Friday, a few did place.

Montrose’s Dana Shellhorn took third in the Class 4A 800 run with a 2:18.13. Thompson Valley’s Karina Ernst won the event in 2:10.36.

In the Class 4A high jump, Palisade’s Kane Gunther placed fourth, clearing a personal best 6 feet, 4 inches. Colt Sessions of Cheyenne Mountain leaped 6-6 to win.

Gunther will play basketball next season at Colorado Mesa University.

“It was a good experience,” Gunther said of high school sports. “A lot of fun.”

But he’s not sure if the high-jump success will have him dunking regularly with the Mavericks.

“Hopefully,” Gunther said.

Delta’s Ethan Baier placed eighth in the Class 4A high jump, clearing 6-2.

Baier said he will sign a national letter of intent next week to jump at CMU.

Fruita Monument’s James Lewis, who had the second-longest long jump of 22-9 heading into the Class 5A event, finished 14th, his best jump being 21-1½.

Today, Grand Junction’s CJ Deters will try to become a state champion in shot put, an event in which he has the second-longest throw of the season at 55-7½.


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