Last year, both the Lake County women’s and men’s track & field teams won the Frontier League Championship. This year, having graduated a significant number of seniors, the Panthers came in as the underdog to a strong Platte Canyon program. The league championship was held at Jeffco Stadium in Lakewood on May 5, and the close competition made for an exciting day.

The girls team was led by Keira King, who won all three distance events. She ran 2:39 in the 800m, 6:08 in the 1600m and 13:54 in the 3200m. King also anchored the 4x400m relay. Together with teammates Maya Mendoza, Indigo Olsen and Ella Bullock, the team finished second in 4:49. For these impressive accomplishments, King was chosen by the Frontier League coaches as co-Athlete of the Year.

Many of the Panthers’ points came from distance events. The 4x800m relay team of Indigo Olsen, Violet Hill, Brynna Lenhard and Tal Sheleg were victorious in a time of 11:50. Hill took second in the 1600m with a time of 6:19, and Lenhard finished second in the 3200m with a new personal record (PR) of 13:56.  Ella Bullock placed third in the 1600m (6:27) and fourth in the 800m (2:44). Grace Bunch passed three girls in the last 200m and broke through the three-minute barrier.  She ended up fifth in 2:59. Clara Kirr, having completed the girls soccer season, ran the 3200m, cut one minute off her time from last year and placed fourth in 14:31.

Senior Morgan Holm became the first female to complete Jumper’s Paradise. She took fourth in the pole vault by clearing 7’1,” fifth in the triple jump with a mark of 27’11.25,” seventh in the high jump with a height of 3’10” and eighth in the long jump with a leap of 11’7.”  

Jaycee Windorski cleared 4’8” in the high jump and claimed third place. Windorski was also fourth in the triple jump with a PR of 29’3.”  Maggie Roeder was the third Lady Panther to score in the high jump. She also made it over 3’10,” but placed fifth because she had less misses in the competition.  

Susie Bullock finished third in the pole vault (7’11”) and Avery Milne was sixth (6’5”). In addition, Susie Bullock placed sixth in the 300m hurdles with a PR of 1:03 and seventh in the triple jump with another PR- 25’6.5.”  Amara Olsen snuck out a seventh place in the 300m hurdles (1:04) and eighth place in the 100m hurdles (22.12).

All three Lake County athletes scored points in the women’s discus. Joci Holbrook took second with a toss of 77’6.” Emily Romero threw 56’2” and finished seventh, while Geonna Bowers took eighth place with a new PR of 50’0.” Holbrook placed eighth in the shot put with a mark of 21’7.”  These three ladies are seniors and will be leaving a team void behind them.  

Mendoza and Indigo Olsen both set PRs in the 400m dash, finishing third and fifth respectively with times of 1:09 and 1:10. The timer quit working during Makayla Arellano’s heat of the 200m, so she had to run the event again. On the second attempt, Arellano ran under 30 seconds for the first time with a new PR of 29.95 seconds and a sixth place finish. Arellano was also sixth in the 100m in 14.31 seconds.

Krysta Roeder, Maggie Roeder, Arellano and Mendoza teamed up for the 800m medley relay.  They placed third in 2:10. The 4x100m relay team of Arellano, both Roeder ladies and Windorski finished fourth in 57.33.

In the end, the Lady Panthers scored 166.5 points, coming in second to Platte Canyon’s 178 points but ahead of Bennett’s 164 points.

Lake County’s men’s team also had the winner of the Athlete of the Year award — Jace Peters. Peters entered the meet with the top mark in six of the 14 individual events.  Since he was only allowed to run four events in the competition, he chose to win the 800m (2:11), 1600m (5:09), the 3200m (11:50) and the pole vault (10’11”).

Senior Ivan Hinojos wrapped up his track career with two new PRs and second place in both the discus (109’2”) and the shot put (38’7.5”).  Sophomore Jonathan Valdez took third in the shot put (36’1.75”) and third in the discus with a new PR of 100’3.” Eli Durand achieved a mark of 34’2” in his first ever shot put competition, which was enough for fifth place. Troy Baker took seventh in the discus with a toss of 88’11.”  

It only took one triple jump (a PR of 38’) for Ivan Liewer to solidify second place in that event. Liewer also managed second in the pole vault (10’5”) and third in the high jump (5’4”) and completed his Jumper’s Paradise with a long jump of 16’9.25.” Anthony Harris finished third in the pole vault by clearing a new PR of 10’5,” and senior Angel Fierro’s triple jump of 34’5.25” earned him sixth place.

In the 110m hurdles, Lake County athletes took second, third and seventh places. Durand accomplished a PR of 19.32, Kaden Osborn ran 20.04 and Oscar Rosales finished in 21.34. Osborn was also third in the 300m hurdles with a time of 48.60- a new PR.

Abel Gonzales, who had only run one 400m under 60 seconds in his life, finished the lap in a speedy 57.61 seconds and fifth place. Obed Tarango took second in the 400m in 54.38, while Javier Lazaro ran 58.99 for seventh place in the same race.  Tarango was fifth in the 200m in 24.55 seconds, while Lazaro was seventh in 25.29.

The 4 x 400m relay team of Lazaro, Cody Hall, Durand and Tarango took fourth in 3:47. Jaime Castillo, Joseph Gutierrez-Martinez, Barrett Poupore and Gonzales ran the 4 x 800m relay, finishing in 10:15 and fourth place. Evan Vigil, Canaan Hall, Martin Garcia and Matthew Wilson teamed up for the 4 x 200m relay, which was fifth in 1:53. Jason Ayers took the place of Garcia and joined the rest of the 4 x 200m team for the 4 x 100m relay.  They were seventh in 53.16 seconds.

In the final team results, Platte Canyon pulled out the win with 189.5 points. Lake County was second with 168.5 points, but the Panthers doubled the points of third place Bennett, who had 84 points.

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