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Eaglecrest Plants Their Flag in Niwot

Peace Warah out leans fellow anchor leg from Mountain Vista to reclaim the top spot in Colorado the 4x100m Relay. Photos by Tim McDonald.

It was a beautiful day at Niwot High School on Saturday, March 30th, and the Raptors took full advantage of the sunshine and expanded event entry limits to show off their depth and talent against a stacked field of great programs from around Colorado in the Niwot Invitational.  Overall, 54 personal records were had and 12 All-Time EHS Top-Ten performances achieved by the Raptors in the meet hosted by perennial 4A powerhouse Niwot High School. 


The Ladies

The girls took the week to refine their execution after dominating meets the previous week, and still inadvertently came out 7th of 27 teams at the Niwot Invitational.  The emphasis the ladies placed on their event execution paid off in the form of 32 lifetime bests.

Junior Kaitlyn Hendrian made her season debut in the Shot Put after missing the first month of the season while rehabbing a softball injury.  She did not waste the much anticipated opportunity, tossing the shot 34’10”, a 7” lifetime best.  This would place her 3rd in the meet, as teammate McKenna George went 35’9” for 2nd.  Senior Addie Schmitt increased her lifetime best in the Discus for the second week in a row, tossing it 96’5” and grabbing the #10 spot in school history.

Junior Sophie Raimer jumped up the EHS All-Time list to #5 by vaulting 8’5”.  Eliana Santos equaled her PR in the High Jump at 4’6” and took 6th place in the meet.

Ellie Shaw leads the way in the 800m

The 4x800 squad of Kaylee Burns, Abby Sullivan, Kam Rhodes, and Ellie Shaw turned in a season best (and EHS #10) time of 10:55.86 to take 2nd place in the distance-heavy meet.  It was an impressive performance by the ladies on a big stage. 

In the hurdles, Padilla & Patton’s crew registered 6 PR’s.  Krisha Khadka and Natalia Barchino-Cubas ran lifetime bests in both hurdle events, as Kennadi Dreiling and Olivia Sarmiento turned in PR’s in the 300’s. 

The 100m Dash saw four PR’s had by Amari Pickett (13.48), Tatum Gratrix (12.88), Malanya Gaines (13.07), and Rachel Carlsen (13.23).  Jaylynn Wilson led the way with a season’s best time of 12.7. 

Freshman Jenna Winn finishing the 1600m.

Jenna Winn took the top finish for the Raptors in the 1600m, clocking a EHS #8 and PR of 5:50.86.  Abby Sullivan, Vanessa Jorgensen, and Caitlyn Gesualdo also ran personal best times in the event.

The 400m Dash didn’t disappoint, as Jaylynn Wilson clocked a season best 58.97, and PR’s were had by Malanya Gaines (61.47) and McKenzie Keppy (69.39).  In the 800m, three Raptors PR’d- Mia Silva (2:49.16), Leann Ochs (2:57.48), and Kaylee Burns (2:43.82). 

Zenobia Witt controlling the curve in the 200m Dash

Four Raptors ran under 27 seconds in the 200m, with Zenobia Witt leading the way in 26.07, placing 8th.  Wilson ran a 26.13 (SB), Gaines a 26.55 (PR), Carlsen a 26.88 (PR), and Eliana Santos a 28.73 (PR).  Carlsen impressed as the Raptor’s top hurdler took the day to display her flat speed in the sprint events (100m, 200m, 4x400) and added the Long Jump to her load.  Her 15’11” PR in the Long Jump placed her tied for 6th with teammate Giannah Bighorn, who also counted the mark as a major PR.  Kelly McQuaid reeled off the fastest 8 laps of her career, clocking a 14:57.40 PR in the 3200m.

A hurdler, a sprinter, and two distance runners capped off the day on the track in the 4x400, as Carlsen, Winn, Gratrix, and Shaw inspired their teammates to build a human pyramid as they cheered them around the track.  

The Girls Athlete of the Meet was Rachel Carlsen.


The Fellas

Gutierrez, Hoffman, Keppy, & Asare show off their hardware after winning the 4x800

The Raptor men decided at the beginning of the week that their goal was to bring home the championship trophy from Niwot, and that is exactly what they did.  They were able to outscore many of the top teams in Colorado, including Mountain Vista, Cherry Creek, Niwot, Valor Christian, Northfield, Windsor, Chatfield, Denver East, and one of Wyoming’s top teams (Cheyenne Central).  It was a statement that the boys were eager to make as they know that they have assembled one of Colorado’s deepest and most versatile teams.

Points were racked up in the field, where the boys scored 40 of their eventual haul of 97.  Kael Weatherby continued on his recent tear, taking 4th in the Discus and 6th in the Shot, just off his PR’s in each event.  Parker Roche took the 9th spot on the EHS All-Time list in the Discus with a toss of 128’3”, placing him 6th in the meet. 

Cam Chapa leaping to points in the Long Jump

Warah (4th), Asare (5th), and Chapa (6th) scored major points for their team in the Long Jump, as did Johnson (3rd) and Tizazu (4th) in the Triple Jump.  Johnson’s leap of 42’7.5” places him #9 in school history, joining Tizazu on the list.  Jayden Diggins took 3rd in the High Jump with a 6’2” clearance, which was a PR and moved him to #5 in school history.  

The fellas started off the meet by winning the 4x800 in convincing fashion.  Gabe Gutierrez, Brady Hoffman, Evan Keppy, and Thierry Asare combined for a season’s best of 8:22.54. 

Two places were earned by the boys in the 110m Hurdles.  Savon Johnson took 6th in 15.72, and Sophomore Cameron Bell placed 5th in an All-Time EHS #9 time of 15.62.  Bell and teammates Yannis Lokakao and Elijah Quinones all PR’d in the 300m Hurdles as well. 

Thierry Asare brings home the 4x800

Junior Noah Brown took 2nd in the 100m with a PR of 10.72 (EHS #3 All-Time), which is now the top wind-legal time in the 5A classification.  Eric Hill also PR’d with an 11.09.  The 4x200 squad of Burke Withycombe, Johnson, Cory Jackson, and Cam Chapa garnered 8 more points for the Raptors by taking 2nd place. 

Many PR’s were had by the Distance boys.  Brayden Roe in the 3200m (12:04.24), Aeden Sullivan (5:12.15), Roman Yoder (5:08.25), and Evan Keppy (4:56.14) in the 1600m, and Yoder in the 800m (2:26.61). 

Noah Brown takes the first step of the fastest 4x100 relay run so far this year in Colorado

The largest reaction from the crowd came during the 4x100m Relay.  The Raptors battled to the wire with a great Mountain Vista team, besting them at the line by .02 seconds thanks to the impressive composure and lean from Senior Peace Warah.  Brown, Eric Hill, and Jeff Poku combined with Warah to reclaim their #1 Colorado ranking in the event (42.07, EHS #4 All-Time).  The squad will continue to refine their exchanges on their quest to better the school record and bring home a State Championship in the event.   Warah and Hill each followed this up with PR’s in the 200m, running 22.19 and 22.27, respectively, placing 3rd and 4th.  Those times place Warah 4th and Hill 7th on the All-Time EHS record board in the event.     

At the end of a long and taxing day, the boys 4x400 Relay showed up and showed out with their teammates going crazy on the infield.  Dionjae Ross led the way with a big time leg, splitting 51.65.  Bode Adelake started off the relay, and Joe Steiner and Burke Withycombe brought it home (running the second quarter-miles of the day), and then proceeded to claim the team trophy for the Raptors.  The Niwot Invitational traveling trophy will spend the next year at the Nest before the boys take it back up and attempt to reclaim it for another year. 

The meet champs show off their trophy.

The Boys Athlete of the Meet was Savon Johnson.

The Raptors are back in action on Friday April 5th at the B-Town Bash.

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