Several Crimson Tide athletes turn in personal best performances as the regular season draws to a close

Leah McClain had a busy track meet last Wednesday.

Just five days removed from a long day of competition in the Elden Kellar Invitational, the Glencoe sophomore contested four events in the Crimson Tide’s dual meet at Forest Grove.

McClain won three of them, helping the Glencoe girls post a 78-67 victory over the Vikings and even their Pacific Conference dual meet record to 2-2. The boys lost 88-57 to fall to 1-3.

“It was a pretty good day,” McClain admitted after the meet.

McClain’s three victories came while the meet was still in doubt. She teamed with Cassandra Acosta, Caprina Crocker and Dominique Mossman to open the meet with a win in the 4x100-meter relay, in 50.92 seconds. A short time later, she cruised to first place in the 400 meters, winning by more than three seconds in a season-best 1:03.75. And in her specialty, she finished first in the 300 hurdles in 48.66.

“The 300 hurdles is my race,” McClain said. “It’s my favorite one. It’s really fun, and so I just go out and have fun and focus on my footing and my form.”

After the outcome of the meet had been decided, McClain took second place in the 4x400 relay along with Ruth Teklu, Sabrina McGowen and Chloe Harris. With her standout sophomore season starting to wind down, McClain is not done yet.

“I’m really stoked about this season,” said McClain, who owned the conference’s fourth-best time in the intermediate hurdles entering this week. “It’s been going really well, and so I’m going to try to qualify for state.”

McClain’s trio of wins helped the Glencoe girls take first place in 11 of the 17 events. Rosie Hunker was a two-time winner in the 100 hurdles (17.08) and 200 meters (28.13). Acosta ran 12.93 to win the 100 — a .30-second personal record and the third-fastest time in the conference entering this week.

And Kari Zickel was less than two seconds off of her personal best in the 1,500, which she won in 5:11.97.

In the field, Madeline Buss won the javelin (102 feet, 11 inches), Lauren Roof took the high jump (4-10), Jessica DeBord placed first in the pole vault (8-6) and Harris topped the field in the triple jump (32-1).

While the Tide boys did not win their side of the meet, they did post some nice highlights, led by Chris Acosta, who swept the 100 and 200 meters, and also ran on the winning 4x100 relay. Acosta surprised even himself with his first-place finishes.

“I never usually win those,” he said after the meet.

Just prior to his win in the 100, he watched Cassandra Acosta, his twin sister, win the girls 100 in a personal-best time. Then he went out and replicated those feats in his own race, finishing in 11.47 — a .33-second improvement for him and just ahead of Forest Grove’s Ricky Torres, who was clocked in 11.62.

Acosta’s winning 200 time of 23.63 also was a PR. In the short relay, he teamed with Joel Biamont, Cody Newsom and Ben Davis for a victory in 45.59.

“I was definitely hoping to run 11.5, 11.4 before districts, because we have a fast Pacific Conference now for the 100,” Acosta said of his performance in the shorter sprint.

In the long relay, Newsom teamed up with Ryan England, Trebriel Larry and Josh Melanson to win in 3:31.02, while Aaron Larson took first in the javelin (144-9) and Will McCourt prevailed in the pole vault (10-0).

Other Glencoe boys winners were England in the 400 (51.89) and Abraham Teklu in the 800 (2:07.68).

Larry led the Crimson Tide’s efforts at the Nike/Jesuit Twilight Relays, staged last Friday evening in Beaverton. The senior ran 11.16 — a considerable personal best, by .33 seconds — and placed fifth in the 100. He also teamed with Ryan England, Cody Newsom and Josh Melanson for a 13th-place finish in the 4x400 relay, clocking 3:27.17.

Also on the track, England, Mason Rouches, Abraham Teklu and Brian Gerig were 11th in the 4x800 relay in 8:28.48. In the field, Aaron Larson threw 162-7 in the javelin, good for 16th place and a personal best by 11 feet.

Jessica Lantz, McClain, Zickel and Teklu were 13th in the distance medley relay in 13:52.90 to lead the girls team, and Madeline Buss was 14th in the javelin at 109-2, a PR by 17 inches.

This Wednesday, the Tide hosted Hillsboro, Tualatin and McMinnville for the final dual meet of the season. The conference district meet is scheduled for next Thursday and Friday at Tualatin.

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