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Multiple Lions make finals at state track meet

by: MATTHEW SHERMAN Casey Livesay clears the last hurdle in the finals 100-meter hurdles at last week’s state track meet in Eugene. Livesay finished seventh in the event and ran on the 4x100 relay team.

The West Linn track team's season wrapped up with some very positive moments at the state meet in Eugene last week.

The West Linn girls finished in 11th place, missing out on a top-10 finish by just half a point but the team performed very well and lived up to expectations.

To open up the meet, the Lions' 4x100 relay team just missed out on its goal of bettering last year's finish. West Linn's team of Casey Livesay, Cara Boucher, Maria Green and Madison Leek entered the finals with the third-fastest time in the prelims but would take sixth in a very close finish.

Leek would make the finals in both the 100 and the 200 for West Linn. In the 100, she improved from last year's seventh place finish and took fifth place overall with a solid run in the finals from Lane 1.

"I'm pretty excited. I wanted to move up from last year and finish in the top five. I was hoping to get out of the blocks fast and then see if I could catch people," Leek said.

Livesay would also make the finals individually and would end up taking seventh place in the high hurdles in her final high school meet.

But the Lions picked up the bulk of their points in the high jump where both Green and Ellie Clow qualified. Green would match her career-best jump of 5'4" and that was good enough for a third-place finish.

Clow would also match her best clearance, going 5'3" in the event to take sixth place. Of all of the girls to qualify for state for West Linn this year, only Livesay will graduate this year.

For the boys team, two individuals scored points for the Lions. On Friday, Cullen Wannarka wrapped up his high school running career by taking seventh in the 3000. His time in the finals was his best of the season and was just shy of a career best time.

Then, on Saturday, Zach Boyd-Helm ran a very strong 800 and would take third place. The field went out quickly and Boyd-Helm tried not to get over-anxious.

"It went out a little faster than I thought and I tried not to get caught up in it. I just ended up running my own race," Boyd-Helm said.

He made his move with about 200 meters remaining, pulling away from the field to finish by himself just a few strides behind the two leaders.

Boyd-Helm and Wannarka both graduate this spring.