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Tracksters end season in Eugene

With the sun blazing across the discus ring, Brandon Jasmin didn't think his second throw in the preliminary round was good enough to make it into the finals.
   The Crook County junior scratched on his first effort and this one was measured at 141--2, short of his 156 personal best.
   "I felt ready physically, but mentally, I've never been here, so I couldn't quite get into the right frame of mind," he said.
   His third throw was over the 150 mark, but wide left, out of the sector and out of bounds.
   It didn't matter.
   Jasmin's second throw was good enough for ninth place in the preliminary round. The top nine were headed to the finals.
   "It was kind of a big relief, because I knew I had three more throws and the opportunity to throw to my potential," he said."
   Jasmin whirled the discus to a mark of 145--3 in the finals, good enough to earn him an eighth place finish and a medal for his efforts.
   Jasmin may not have felt good about the throw, but it was enough to put Crook County on the scoreboard. The top eight finishers in the competition earn team points.
   "It didn't feel right and it didn't look right. It was just luck that it made it that far," he explained.
   Jasmin claimed the lone medal for Crook County at the Class 4A track and field state championships, held Friday and Saturday at Hayward Field in Eugene. Jasmin was one of five CCHS to earn berths to state.
   The CCHS boys team ended the meet with one point and a tie for 50th with Centennial. On the girls side, the team turned in several solid performances, but were unable to score. Benson was the top team for the girls meet with 76 points.
   Crook County head coach Bambi Fraley said she was pleased with the efforts turned in by her team.
   "As far as I know, in recent history, we haven't had five people make it to state," Fraley said Saturday, while sitting in the bleachers at Hayward Field. "I'm extremely proud of the effort everyone put into their performances. I'm pleased with the Crook County athletes being here, competing at such a high level and their desire to put Crook County on the map."
   In the 100 meter dash, Erin Clark began the second heat in lane 1.
   The senior, who went to state her freshman and sophomore years but only in the relay and never in an individual event, finished her heat in fifth place with a time of 12.78, behind the fourth-place 12.73 mark of Camelle Taylor from Jefferson. Deborah Jones of Benson was the top runner in the heat, a time of 12.26.
   "She had a very tough heat," Fraley explained. "She ran better than what was predicted for the lane she was in. You could just see her straining and trying harder than imaginable to overcome the odds."
   For Clark, the opportunity was a satisfying way to finish out her high school career.
   "It's really awesome. It's just being here that's really exciting," she said Saturday afternoon. "I really had a good year, so it's kind of cool that my last meet is at state."
   In the long jump, all three of Rachel Smith's jumps counted. The best leap for the CCHS junior was a distance of 15--10, good enough for 14th place. Rachel Gibbs of Gresham conquered the event with a effort of 17--10.
   Smith earned a spot to state as a freshman in the same event.
   "It was nice to be here, but it would have been nice to jump a little bit farther," Smith said walking off the track. "
   In the girls discus, Jamie Richter topped out with her third throw in the preliminary round. The CCHS senior finished the event in 15th place with a mark of 96--11. The event was won by Lindsay Brisbin of Oregon City, who pulled off a mark of 138--11.
   "I was nervous all the way through," Richter explained. "My throws were good, they just weren't quite long enough."
   The final athlete to participate in the meet was James Siers in the 1,500 meters.
   As the race began, the competitors already started to crowd in. At the 150 mark, Siers was nudged from behind and a spike from a competitor's shoe pierced him in his right leg.
   After the first lap, Siers was nestled into the sixth position in the 18-person field.
   "I thought I was running pretty good," Siers said shortly after the race was over. "I was just trying to stick with the pack and I just couldn't do it.
   Siers finished the race in 15th place, a time of 4:09.61. Winning the event was Tom Manning of Jesuit, who crossed the finish in 3:57.14.
   "He ran really well," Fraley said of Siers. "He ran a 4:09 in a lot of traffic. The second lap pace was 60 seconds. He's not used to a pace like that. I think he ran well and he ran aggressive."
   As a whole, Fraley said she was proud of the efforts displayed by both the athletes and the coaches.
   "All of the coaches were there for them all week," she said.
   "Each coach connected well with their athletes.
   "I really got the impression the athletes were in it for more than themselves. They really wanted people to see Crook County."