Berthoud Weekly Surveyor | Covering all the angles in the Garden Spot

Williams wins half-mile at state!

May 24, 2023 | Community News

Courtesy photo
Junior Jaycee Williams pumps her fist as she crosses the finish line in first place of the 3A girls 800-meter run at JeffCo Stadium during the state track finals.

By Kristi Leonard
The Surveyor

Berthoud High School (BHS) junior Jaycee Williams won the 3A 800-meter run at the Colorado State Track and Field Championships last weekend. She pumped her fists as she crossed the finish line in victory and relief. The first-place finish was extra special for Williams who has placed second in the event the past two years.

But it looked like it might not happen two weeks ago when Williams was crashed into and stepped on by a boy who was sprinting down the infield during warmups at a meet. She spent the past two weeks rehabbing with spike marks on her thigh and a swollen leg. However, Williams is strong and able to push herself beyond what others can. Besides the 800-meter run win, she earned three other state medals at the state meet. Williams captured fourth in the 1600-meter run and seventh in the 3200-meter relay with Marie Cabrera, Bella Miller and Sydney Slauson. Along with Ellie Harper, Slauson and Paige Farman, she also helped the 1600-meter relay team set a new school record with a third-place finish.

Farnam has overcome challenges of her own this year. She missed all last year due to a hip injury and has been working herself back into form this track season. At state, she qualified for the 200-meter dash, 400-meter dash, 1600-meter relay and the long jump.

Farnam took two jumps in the long jump, matching her season best of 17 feet 2 inches, and noticed her hip beginning to hurt. She stopped jumping, hoping the mark would be good enough. And it was — Farnam placed third in the event. On the final day of the three-day state track meet, Farnam placed fifth in the 400-meter dash. Shortly after that, she was scheduled for the 200-meter dash as well as the 1600-meter team relay. In a tactical move, Farnam dropped out of the 200-meter dash to save her strength for the relay. The move paid off as the relay team shattered the old record of 4:03.04 which was set in 2004 with a new school record time of 3:59.55.

In the finals of the girls 100-meter hurdles, Brooke Nelsen missed setting a school record by 3-hundredths of a second. The sophomore ran 15.64 seconds, placing third. She also placed fifth in the 300-meter hurdles and the 400-meter relay with Maddie Kenner, Harper and Sydney Hardy. Nelsen also ran a leg on the ninth-place 800-meter relay team with Adrianna DeGesualdo, Kenner and Harper.

The girls sprint medley relay was run in the rain on Thursday afternoon. DeGesualdo, Gabby Staley, Myla Albillar and Slauson placed seventh after a slippery baton caused a bad handoff. Slauson finished off her sophomore season placing ninth in the 1600-meter run with a time of 5:14.69.

Senior Gracie Flores placed sixth in the shot put but struggled at the discus ring and placed 17th. It seems every year that most athletes have trouble with the discus ring at JeffCo Stadium. Less than 22% of athletes who competed in the discus this year, threw personal best distances and most of those were the 14th through 18th place seeds. Second-seed Izabelle Froien had a rough day as well, finishing in 12th place. Freshman Audrey Gravestock got state experience in the discus and finished in 16th. On the boys side, junior Trevor Moore threw 14 feet less than his best but was able to capture fourth place.

Last year, Spartan’s long-distance ace Tate Bothun got the flu the week of the state meet. He tried his best but finished at the back of the race. This year, with something to prove, Bothun lowered his school records in the 1600-meter (4:19.93) and 3200-meter run (9:34.34) again, finishing in fourth and seventh respectively. Scott Clark had a pair of 10th-place finishes in the same races. Afton Cooper was 17th in the 3200-meter. Freshman Aidan Malherbe broke the two-minute barrier in the 800-meter run with a time of 1:59.06 making him the fastest freshman in the 3A classification. Bothun, Clark, Malherbe and Wyatt Schmidle placed sixth in the 3200-meter relay. Malherbe, Schmidle, Alex Pygott and Ben Klopper placed 18th in the 1600-meter relay.

The first day of Jayden Michaelis’ trip to the state meet ended up being quite eventful. First up for the sophomore was the 800-meter relay, where BHS missed the finals by half a second. With less than 30 minutes rest, Michaelis was in the starting blocks for the 110-meter hurdles preliminary.
He was expected to cruise into the finals, but in the preliminaries, a competitor in the lane next to him hit the final hurdle, knocking it into Michaelis and causing him to fall to the ground. Instinctually, he got up and finished but his time was out of the qualifying field.

Head BHS track coach Blaine Voth filed a protest and Michaelis was awarded a run-off against the final qualifier, which would occur after all the other heats for the hurdles were completed. The other competitor did not show up for the run-off, so Michaelis had to run a full flight of hurdles alone to meet the qualifying standard to advance to the finals. The fans in the grandstands were clapping and cheering him on. All alone, he ran the third fastest time of his career and earned a spot in the finals.

The next morning, Michaelis was up early to run in the 400-meter relay. The competition was fierce, with 12 teams finishing within 39 hundredths of one another, but BHS missed qualifying for the finals. However, Michaelis didn’t have much time to process that as he had to prepare for the preliminaries in the 300-meter hurdles, in which he ran his second-fastest time, easily making the finals. At the finals on Saturday, Michaelis hit the first three hurdles in the 110-meter race and finished in eighth place. Later in the day, he placed fifth in the 300-meter hurdles.

Senior speedster, Kamron Hosier’s shin splints have been bothering him for the past few weeks. But the senior was trying everything he could to keep the pain manageable enough to run in his final state meet. He finished fifth in the 100-meter dash, eighth in the 200-meter dash, 12th in the 800-meter relay with Jayce Newbill, Pygott and Michaelis and 15th in the 400-meter relay with Kasperbauer, Pygott and Michaelis. Hosier provided invaluable leadership on the boys team this year.

The girls team finished in fifth place and the boys finished in eighth. This is the best finish by a BHS boys team in a long time. The future looks bright for BHS track and field with the Spartans only losing seven seniors from the state team: DeGesualdo, Froien, Flores, Hosier, Kenner, Miller and Schmidle.

related Community News