GJ’s Deters, Harris place 5th and 6th at state in discus
LAKEWOOD — They stood on the podium at Jefferson County Stadium on Thursday, both wearing the basic, gray T-shirts with the simple, black letters: “GJHS track & field.”
“The tiger on the back is pretty cool, though,” DeShaun Harris said.
Unlike their black-and-gray shirts, Harris and CJ Deters let their performances in discus gain attention for their school during the Class 4A-5A portion of the state track and field championships Thursday.
Deters, a senior who will throw at Weber State, placed fifth with a throw of 154 feet, 3 inches in the Class 5A meet. Harris, a junior, went 151-5, placing sixth.
The meet resumes today. Grand Junction is in seventh place with nine points. Bear Creek is leading with 24 points.
Deters and Harris will compete in the shot put Saturday.
It was fitting they placed back-to-back after pushing each other to throw farther throughout the season.
“If we hadn’t had each other, we wouldn’t be nearly as competitive,” Deters said.
And they used a method typical of high school athletes.
“We’d pick on each other,” Harris said. “Like call each other out on a throw. Like, ‘I beat you there. Think you can throw farther?’ “
On Thursday, Deters noticed early that Harris was not getting enough height on his throw — another advantage of having a teammate nearby.
“It’s supposed to be about a 45-degree angle,” Harris said of a proper discus throw. “Mine were at 30.”
That changed, and after Deters bettered his personal record by three feet, Harris increased his distance to place right behind Deters.
Whitney Jackson was another Tiger who stood on the podium. Jackson leaped a personal-best 17-4 in the long jump to place eighth.
“This time I had almost everything together — almost,” Jackson said. “My speed was good. But I missed the board, and more. If I’d have hit the board, I could have gone 17-9.”
Grand Junction’s 800-meter relay team of Jackson, Sydni Brandon, Sabrina Trujillo and Jamie Derrieux did not make the finals, but their 1:44.31 time set a school record.
Derrieux did not qualify for the 100 hurdles finals, placing 13th with a time of 15.84.
In the girls Class 4A 100 hurdles, Montrose High School’s Abi Grace McGee came into preliminaries as the No. 12 seed and the field’s only freshman. But she made Saturday’s finals, her time of 15.73 putting her in the eighth of nine spots.
Not bad for her first state experience.
“It’s a little overwhelming,” McGee said. “Just because you’re going against all the fastest people.”
McGee’s finish came just before the girls 400 dash preliminary, when, during the race, a rabbit dashed down the ninth lane, running at the oncoming sprinters. Arapahoe’s Joy Dafoe, in Lane 9, nearly stepped outside her lane trying to avoid the bounding bunny.
“I thought it was kind of funny,” Dafoe said. “That’s just a race. You don’t know what to expect. You don’t expect to see a bunny either, but then you do.”
In the boys 4A triple jump, Delta High School’s Ethan Baier, who had the fourth-best jump coming into the meet, placed 10th, missing finals by one inch.
“Jumps can be unpredictable,” Delta coach Joe Mack said. “And that’s what happened today.”
Baier, a senior, will also compete in the long jump and high jump.