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Setting the pace

CENTRAL POINT — The third time was a charm for Andy Monroe.

Competing in only his third high school outdoor 800-meter run, the Crater sophomore dazzled the home fans in the 42nd annual Crater Track and Field Classic Saturday at Dutch Meyer Stadium. He came from off the pace to overtake last year's Class 5A state champion and win in a time that bettered his previous best by more than 7 seconds.

Monroe's time was 1:53.53, just fast enough to nip Bend's Caleb Hoffmanm, whose time was 1:54.38.

Monroe provided one of several highlights for the host Comets, whose strong middle- and long-distance corps recorded four of the eight wins by local athletes.

The Comets also got victories on the boys side from Derek Tripp (1,500) and Walter Vail (3,000). In the girls meet, Monroe's sister, Jordan, cruised to first in the 3,000.

South Medford got a victory from Sara Miles in the shot put, but the Panthers' boys team was dealt a blow when high-jumper Josh Washington — third in the state with a mark of 6 feet, 7.5 inches — pulled up with a knee injury.

Washington slipped while planting his right leg attempting to clear 6-2 and crashed in the pit in pain. He held his knee, received attention, then bounced up and made a couple other attempts before pulling out.

South Medford coach Tim Rupp said he hoped the injury was nothing more than a sprain, but it was too early to tell.

St. Mary's Hunter Rothfus won the high jump. The other local winners were in the boys meet, with Eagle Point's Dylan Perrin taking the javelin and Ashland's Mel Elshalom claiming the triple jump.

Henley (114 points) edged Bend (113.5) for the boys team title, and Bend (201.5) ran away with the girls crown.

Andy Monroe already owned the state's top 5A time in the 1,500 and was No. 4 in the 3,000. He entered the shorter race Saturday to get speed work.

"I knew Caleb was in the race, so I pretty much put my full trust in him to pull me through, and he did," said Monroe. "It was a great race. I really had no idea what to expect."

Monroe stayed with Hoffman until the final 100 meters. The former went to his kick in front of a raucous grandstand and had enough to nudge Hoffman.

"I was pretty confident for some reason," said Monroe. "I was wondering, 'Why am I not dying right now?' I was like, I still have something left, so let's just test it. It turned out pretty good."

Vail is the defending 5A champion in the 3,000, an event he ran once this season with marginal results.

His goal was to put up decent time, "get the bugs out a little bit," said distance coach Justin Loftus.

For the most part, Vail stayed with teammate Erik Olsen as both tried to "push each other," said Vail.

Vail, a senior who earlier in the week signed to run at Rogue Community College, eventually pulled away and won in 8:52.66. Olsen was second in 9:21.44.

Tripp used a strong final lap to set a personal best in the 1,500 by more than 3 seconds. His goal was a time about 10 seconds faster that would qualify him for an upcoming meet in Portland.

In his previous best, he kept a steady pace throughout. This time, he turned over the lead for nearly the first two laps.

"It made it a little harder to come back and get faster," said Tripp, a sophomore.

Eagle Point's Kevin VanDyke was second in 4:16.62.

Rothfus cleared 6-4 to win the high jump. The senior matched his PR, set last year, and is an inch off the 3A state lead.

Perrin uncorked a throw of 168-1 to better runner-up Travis Duke of Roseburg (163-7). It was the senior's fourth win in as many meets, and all of his winning throws have eclipsed 160 feet. He was fifth in the 5A state meet last year.

Elshalom won the triple jump by 2 feet with a leap of 43-7. It puts him fifth among 5A jumpers.

For the girls, Miles had a busy and somewhat eventful meet. The South Medford senior won the shot put at 37-10.75, but her mark was initially and inadvertently reduced by 10 feet when the scorer wrote down the wrong number.

After some discussion it was straightened out, giving Miles the win.

Her best throw came on her first attempt.

"I was excited to throw that far because I was dealing with a lingering back injury," said Miles, whose PR of 38-6.5 came when she placed fifth at state last year.

She hurt her back in the summer, but it got better with rest. Now the pain has returned, although work with a trainer the past week has helped.

"Every event involves twisting and my back doesn't get a break," said Miles, who also was fourth in the javelin (107-5) and eighth in the discus (95-3).

Jordan Monroe aimed for a fast time in the 3,000, and while she didn't hit the 10-minute pace mapped out by Loftus, she notched a PR.

Monroe's time was 10:12.94, good for more than a 30-second win and 2 seconds better than her PR of last year. The Oregon Tech-bound senior has the state's top 5A time.

BOYS

TEAM SCORES: Henley 114, Bend, 113.5, Crater 75, Roseburg 51, Eagle Point 49, South Medford 46.5, Thurston 43, Hidden Valley 41, North Valley 37, St. Mary's 34, Klamath Union 25.5, Mountain View 15.5, Ashland 15, Phoenix 3.

4x100 RELAY — 1, Henley (Seth Andres, Bryce Norris, Conner Noonan, Lake Peterson) 43.51; 2, Bend 44.81; 3, Eagle Point, 44.89.

100 — 1, Bryce Norris, Hen, 11.34; 2, Hunter Comyford, NV, 11.50; 3, Peter Ramsay, Ben, 11.51.

200 — 1, Logan Blake, 22.18, Ben; 2, Kishon Lange, Thu, 23.34; 3, Peter Ramsay, Ben, 23.52.

400 — 1, Logan Blake, Ben, 49.54; 2, Lake Peterson, Hen, 52.06; 3, Daniel Keale, Ben, 52.41.

800 — 1, Andy Monroe, Cra, 1:53.53; 2, Caleb Hoffman, Ben, 1:54.38; 3, Ty Boster, SM, 2:02.81.

1,500 — 1, Derek Tripp, Cra, 4:13.47; 2, Kevin VanDyke, EP, 4:16.62; 3, Luke Ramirez, SM, 4:19.41.

3,000 — 1, Walter Vail, Cra, 8:52.66; 2, Erik Olsen, Cra, 9:21.44; 3, Joel Centeno, SM, 9:40.78.

110 HURDLES — 1, Seth Andres, hen, 14.71; 2, Dylan Castle, Hen, 14.95; 3, Elijah Castro, HV, 15.38.

300 HURDLES — 1, Dylan Castle, Hen, 39.25; 2, Seth Andres, Hen, 39.80; 3, Hunter Comyford, NV, 40.21.

SHOT PUT — 1, Tyler Spence, Ros, 49-9; 2, Josh Martin, St.M, 44-11.75; 3, Trent Snyder, SM, 44-10.

DISCUS — 1, Logan Manni, NV, 148-4; 2, Javon Gill, Cra, 147-7; 3, Josh Martin, St.M, 125-5.

JAVELIN — 1, Dylan Perrin, EP, 168-1; 2, Travis LaDuke, Ros, 163-7; 3, Dalton Rasmussen, Ros, 160-6.

HIGH JUMP — 1, Hunter Rothfus, St.M, 6-4; 2, Raymond Blasquez, Ben, 6-2; 3, (tie) Josh Washington, SM, Robert Eiland, KU, 6-0.

LONG JUMP — 1, Dylan Castle, Hen, 21-5; 2, O'Rion Irving, EP, 20-7; 3, Elijah Castro, HV, 20-4.5.

TRIPLE JUMP — 1, Mel Elshalom, Ash, 43-7; 2, Robert Eiland, KU, 41-7; 3, Elijah Castro, HV, 40-9.

POLE VAULT — 1, Boot Clark, Hen, 14-6; 2, Brady Petz, Ben, 14-0; 3, Tristan Scott, MV, 14-0.

4X400 RELAY — 1, Bend (Logan Blake, Daniel Keale, Ryan Cook, Caleb Hoffman) 3:25.41; 2, Henley 3:25.84; 3, Crater 3:31.25.

GIRLS

TEAM SCORES: Bend 201.5, Mountain View 77, North Valley 61, Thurston 44, South Medford 41, Klamath Union 35.5, Crater 35, Henley 33, Roseburg 33, Hidden Valley 32, Lakeview 27, Eagle Point 24, Ashland 8, Illinois Valley 8, Rogue River 3.

4X100 RELAY — 1, Bend (Charity Wagner, Kaylie Nelson, Maya Hopwood, Sophia Cunningham) 49.38; 2, North Valley 51.33; 3, Henley 51.34.

100 — 1, Maya Hopwood, Ben, 12.50; 2, Baylee Touey, NV, 12.61; 3, Halona Jackson, IV, 12.91.

200 — 1, Baylee Touey, NV, 25.93; 2, Maya Hopwood, Ben, 26.41; 3, Sophia Cunningham, Ben, 26.55.

400 — 1, Sophia Cunningham, Ben, 1:00.31; 2, Helena DeCasas, HV, 1:00.61; 3, Dagny Donohue, Ben, 1:02.93.

800 — 1, Grace Perkins, Ben, 2:24.03; 2, Rebecca Sidlo, Ros, 2:24.91; 3, Ariana Marks, EP, 2:26.12.

1,500 — 1, Mahala Norris, Ros, 4:54.31; 2, Grace Perkins, Ben, 4:59.56; 3, Sage Hassell, MV, 5:05.50.

3,000 — 1, Joran Monroe, Cra, 10:12.94; 2, Kelsey Swenson, MV, 10:44.75; 3, Ariana Marks, EP, 11:12.00.

100 HURDLES — 1, Meagan Bakker, Ben, 16.35; 2, Alycen Reinhart, Ben, 17.11; 3, Madison Schreder, Lak, 17:47.

300 HURDLES — 1, Meagan Bakker, Ben, 48.43; 2, Megan Hoback, NV, 49.12; 3, McKenzie Comyford, NV, 49.15.

SHOT PUT — 1, Sara Miles, SM, 37-10.75; 2, Kayla Rambo, Ben, 36-9; 3, Dani Dunn, Lak, 35-9.75.

DISCUS — 1, Kayla Rambo, Ben, 116-4; 2, Cassidy Hughes, MV, 113-1; 3, Madison Larson, HV, 111-11.

JAVELIN — 1, Cassidy Hughes, MV, 117-1; 2, Ali Laborin, Ben, 116-1; 3, Holly Smith, Hen, 111-5.

HIGH JUMP — 1, Sarah Curran, Cen, 5-1; 2, McKinsey Scharf, Cra, 5-0; 3, Madison Rice, KU, 4-10.

LONG JUMP — 1, McKenzie Davis, Thu, 16-5.5; 2, Meagan Bakker, Ben, 16-3; 3, Caitlyn Hinrich, MV, 15-10.5.

TRIPLE JUMP — 1, McKenzie Davis, Thu, 35-3; 2, Sarah Curran, Ben, 34-6.5; 3, Marinda Stanton, EP, 33-3.

POLE VAULT — 1, Emily Shwoers, Ben, 11-0; 2, Alana Dickson, Ben, 10-6; 3, Shaye Vanderville, Thu, 10-0.

4X400 RELAY — 1, Bend (Meagan Bakker, Sydney Gardner, Yveloute Rea, Sophia Cunningham) 4:10.41; 2, North Valley 4:15.44; 3, Roseburg 4:19.28.

Reach sports editor Tim Trower at 541-776-4479, or email ttrower@mailtribune.com

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South Medford's Sara Miles won the shot put during the Crater Track and Field Classic Saturday at Dutch Meyer Stadium. PHOTO BY ANDY ATKINSON
Crater's Jordan Monroe cruised to first in the 3,000-meter run in the 42nd annual Crater Track and Field Classic Saturday at Dutch Meyer Stadium. PHOTOS BY ANDY ATKINSON