Records, near-records and wind-blown records have been the history of Saturday’s Class 5A Track and Field Championships at the UNM Track & Soccer complex.
While the Cleveland boys and Alamogordo girls quickly erased most of the tensions surrounding the team championships, individual athletes were making up for a season of frustration lost to the virus.
âI think a lot of people, after having to stay for a whole year, everyone was just ready to go out and compete,â said Farmington’s Allie Bliss, who has been to multiple events at the same time, but when even managed to get there. 18 feet, 6 inches to erase an Anastasia Daliege of Roswell long jump record set in 2017.
La Cueva’s long jumper Brad Thomas not only broke a record in the boys’ long jump; he did it moments after Luke Wysong of Cleveland broke it.
âA lot of the kids couldn’t compete last year and they’re hungry,â said Thomas. âHungrier than ever now. It’s a beautiful day. No wind. Perfect weather, a great day for PR. I have seen a lot of records. It’s surprising but still nice to see.
Sandia speedster Adriana Tatum would have taken 0.01 seconds off her 2019 100m record of 11.69, but the wind was just a little too strong for that to matter.
Tatum therefore had to settle for helping his Matador teammates Savanna Lawson, Kailey Centers and Zandria Ortiz to achieve a record in the 4 Ã 100 relay in 47.98 seconds, 0.01 seconds ahead of finalist Alamogordo and 0 , 08 seconds on the Sandia brand in 2019 which also featured Tatoum.
Tatum, took the girls’ honors with 19 points to help the Matadors take third place in the overall standings with 51 points, two behind runner-up La Cueva, and closed a big deficit on her final leg.
âI just thought I believed in myself. Hope I can do it and I just ran, âshe said with a chuckle.
University of New Mexico football player Wysong, who lost his long jump record attempt, also narrowly missed one in 100. His time of 10.55 seconds would have supplanted the mark of 10, 64 by Daniel Feltman in 2002, but again the wind was just a little too strong.
Wysong, however, joined teammates Koen Biggs, Evan Wysong and David Murphy to set a 4 Ã 100 record of 41.88, breaking the Storm’s 2019 record of 42.03.
He finished with 26Â½ points for the best point for boys.
âWe’ve been preparing all week and all year, and we’ve all had good times,â Wysong said of the relay. âWe worked hard every day in training, and it all worked out (Saturday). We had our best time.
As for the long jump, that was just one of those things, he said.
âI know Brad, the guy who won. I’m happy for him, âWysong said. âI did my best. I showed up when I had to, but he was the best jumper (Saturday). Nothing to hang my head on.
The head-to-head competition was fun, Thomas said.
âIt was exciting,â he said. âI was running from the long jump to the high jump and when I came back to the long jump Luke Wysong had just set the state record of 23-3, and I had two jumps left to chase it. I started to clap, the heart raced and pulled out a good one. The rest is history.
Thomas’ mark was 23-4Â¼.
As for the team competitions, the boys from Cleveland finished with 132 points, well ahead of finalist La Cueva at 71Â½ and Rio Rancho at 68.
It was the Storm’s fifth consecutive championship and eight of nine, but this one just might be a bit special, coach Kenny Henry said.
âWe were hoping our guys understood how much they meant to us to have to stay motivated for that long,â he said. âOur seniors, literally, were done with school seven weeks ago. Some of them had to postpone their schooling (college). Some of them are already supposed to show up to school and they had to make plans to be here and therefore the fact that they were all willing to do it – and some of them could very easily have said: “I got out of here. ‘ The fact that they were ready to do it will always stay in my mind that they made that commitment to our team. â
Alamogordo’s victory in the girls’ category was the first since 2017 and the fourth overall.
“Everyone is feeling that and with the past 16 months it’s hard to describe right now, but seeing the looks on the girls’ faces right now is priceless,” said the coach of Alamogordo Jason Atkinson. âAnd to finish their year and the seniors, to finish it this way after what they all went through last year, that is priceless. I don’t think you can put it into words.