Track front-runners buckle down for state |

Track front-runners buckle down for state

Shauna Farnell

Most of the Summit High School Track and Field team ended its season with the regional meet finals in Elizabeth Saturday, but a few crossed the wire with results that landed them a spot in the state championships at Jeffco Stadium Friday and Saturday.

“We did really well last Saturday,” said SHS track coach George Keyes. “People like Jessie Glynn went out and ran the 300-meter hurdles better than she ever has and took fourth. All the relay teams were right there with fourth or fifth places, and Preston Johnson, Erin Young and Lani Pusey all made state.”

Pusey, who is a senior at SHS, took third in the open 800 event Saturday.

“She had a great finish,” Keyes said of Pusey. “She ran hard the whole way, but the person in about seventh place put in this huge kick at the end. With about 10 leaders, (Pusey) passed the person who was in second to take her spot in third. When, in life, you can decide whether or not you had it in you for that extra power, these are the times to find it.”

Johnson didn’t run the best 300 hurdles of his career, but “squeaked by” with a state qualifying performance nonetheless, Keyes said. However, Johnson will not compete this weekend due to prior commitments.

Sophomore Erin Young will compete in the state high jump event Friday after twirling over the high jump bar with one improved performance after another this season.

“Erin’s new to high jump, so she’s not completely consistent, but she definitely has a chance at state,” Keyes said. “She’s also someone who seems to keep a cool head and doesn’t get too worked up before a meet. Plus, she’ll come back as a junior and senior to lead the team with a state performance under her belt.”

The SHS team will have its end-of-the-season banquet Wednesday following the state meet. The entire team was helping coordinate the middle school track meet at the high school Tuesday, and state athletes are buckling down for a final top performance this weekend.

“We had a bunch of the team that were real close to making it,” Keyes said. “It’s fun to see there’s a lot of freshmen, sophomores and juniors who will be back next season. Lani definitely has a chance of placing in the 800. State is going to be tough. It’s going to be the best of the best from all over the place.”

Young competes in the state high jump at 12:30 p.m. Friday, and Pusey competes in the 800 at 1 p.m. Saturday at Jeffco Stadium.

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