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HIGH HURDLER: Kayla Rasmussen rushes to a fourth-place finish in the 100-meter hurdles in Eugene. JEF HATACH / Curry Coastal Pilot
Welch, Rasmussen lead Lady Tigers to sixth place
EUGENE — La Grande ran up to sixth in the state 4A track championships, thanks to the efforts of a pair of underclassmen.
Freshman Amanda Welch and junior Kayla Rasmussen helped the Lady Tigers come close to a top-five finish in the team race with strong finishes in several races.
Welch grabbed a second in the 3,000 meters Friday in a time of 10:37.22.
Klamath Union’s Alisha Luna won the state title with a 10:22.23 effort. Welch had to out-kick Katy Potter of Siuslaw at the end to get the silver by two seconds. Potter finished in 10:37.22.
Welch’s finish gave the Tigers an eight-point start in the team scoring.
Welch added a fourth-place finish in the 1,500 meters Saturday with a 4:51.58 effort. Hidden Valley’s Sierra Brown won the state title in 4:44.19, beating the defending 4A champion sophomore Charli Davidson of Scappoose (4:48.30) and led the top three finishers under 4:50. Rose Winters of La Grande placed 13th in the race with a time of 11:45.81.
But it was Rasmussen who claimed a second in the 300-meter hurdles with a season-best of 46.45 seconds. Teammate Haley White was fourth in 47.79. The two Tigers added 13 points to the La Grande point total in just that one event.
In the 100-meter hurdles, Rasmussen took fourth (16.09) while White was right behind in seventh (16.84).
Rasmussen placed eighth in the 100 meters (13.56) for another team point.
Gladstone won the team title for the girls with a total of 65.5 points. Molalla was second with 55 points, while Sisters took third with 52.5 points. Newport was fourth with 51 points, followed by Hidden Valley (49) and La Grande in sixth with 44 points.
Jasmine Smith took fifth in the 800 meters with a 2:23.37 effort that added four points to the team total. Smith also was seventh in the triple jump (33-0.50).
In the 4A high jump, Koryn Wilson placed fifth by clearing 4-11, while Hidden Valley’s Elizabeth Venson made 5-4 for the title.
In Friday’s second heat of the 4x100 meter relay, the Lady Tigers finished sixth in one of the preliminary heats and did not qualify for the finals with their 52.41 effort.
Alora Brown finished seventh in her 200-meter preliminary heat with a time of 27.95 and didn’t qualify for the finals.
In the javelin, Annelese Wiseman placed fifth in her preliminary flight with a 102-11 effort — and 12th overall. The event was won by Sweet Home’s Annie Whitfield with a toss of 141-11.
Kate Tooke placed 10th in the discus with a throw of 98-4.
In the girls 4x400 meter relay, La Grande placed sixth in its preliminary heat but 4:19.98 was not enough to make the finals.
Hancock leads boys
Cullen Hancock was the top La Grande finisher in the state meet, taking fourth in the pole vault by clearing 13-6. He was the top underclasssman to finish behind La Pine senior Deion Mock’s 15-3 effort.
The Tigers finished in a tie for 20th in the team scoring with Sweet Home — both with 12 points.
La Pine edged North Valley and Newport for the team title. La Pine had 48, North Valley followed with 46 and Newport finished with 44 points.
Ontario placed eighth (29), thanks to Joe Delgado, while McLoughlin took 12th. Delgado won both the 110-meter and 300-meter hurdles, breaking the state record in the longer race.
Loran Ackerman was fifth in the high jump, clearing 6-0. He lost fourth place on misses to Patrick Bladorn of Cascade.
Noah Sofe was sixth in the triple jump with a 41-11.75 mark. Sofe also placed 11th in the long jump with a 19-11.75 effort.
In the 4x400-meter relay, La Grande had the 13th-fastest time of 3:42.61.