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Timberwolves run strong in opener


Tualatin teams turn in solid marks against Centennial

by: DAN BROOD - WINNING FORM -- Tualatin High School senior Robbie Ellis (center) is on his way to victory in the 110-meter high hurdles race at last week's season-opening track meet with Centennial. Ellis also triumphed in the 300 intermediate hurdles. TUALATIN — Optimism.


High hopes.

The Tualatin High School track and field teams went into their season-opening meet brimming with those elements.

And, at the end of the meet, there sure didn’t seem to be any reason for the Timberwolves’ enthusiasm to damper.

Tualatin opened its 2014 schedule by turning in some strong performances in a non-league dual meet with Centennial, held March 19 at Tualatin High School.

“I’m extremely excited for the season,” Tualatin junior Jasmine Gilmore said during the meet. “I think it’s going to be a really good season.”

“I’m excited to be back out here,” said Tualatin senior Robbie Ellis, who won both boys hurdles races at the season-opening meet.

While last week’s event was a non-scoring meet, the Timberwolves certainly seemed to have more than its share of first-place finishes.

Those victories started with the very first race of the first meet, the girls 4 x 100-meter relay. In that event, Gilmore teamed with junior Aryana Harvey, junior Nicole LaTourette and freshman Jordan Anderson to take first place with a time of 53.0 seconds.

“I was a little nervous before the race,” said Gilmore, who ran the leadoff leg. “We’ve had a lot of switching, and we ended up with two new people, but it went pretty well. We’ve only had one day of practice, so it went really well.”

Gilmore and Harvey ran for the Tualatin 4 x 100 relay team last year. But the Wolves ran last week without their other two relay returnees, senior Laura Taylor, who was taking a college visitation, and junior Ariana Pumpelly, who was out with an injury.

by: DAN BROOD - WINNER -- Tualatin junior Aryana Harvey is first across the finish line in the 4 x 100 relay. In stepped newcomers LaTourette and Anderson, who, like Harvey, played for the Tualatin girls soccer team that won the Class 6A state championship this past fall.

“I thought they did really good,” Gilmore said.

In addition to the victory in the 4 x 100 relay, Gilmore and Anderson tied for the day’s top mark in the girls 100, each with a time of 13.2.

Gilmore and Harvey also teamed with senior Kristi Workman and sophomore Karina Moreland to win the 4 x 400 relay in 4:27.1.

LaTourette ran to victory in the 200 in 27.6 and freshman Kate Intile had a winning time of 5:24.1 to take first place in the 1,500.

The Tualatin girls had winning performances in both hurdles races. Workman ran to victory in the 100 high hurdles in 17.9 and junior Mia de Haan won the 300 low hurdles with a mark of 54.3.

In the field events, Moreland jumper her way to a pair of wins. She triumphed in the long jump with a distance of 16 feet, 5 inches and she had a winning mark of 33-9.5 in the triple jump.

Tualatin senior Lauren Balsiger cleared 9-0 to take first place in the pole vault.

For the Tualatin boys, Ellis saw his offseason work pay off in a hurry, as he ran to victory in both hurdles events.

In the 110 high hurdles, he had a winning time of 16.2. From there, he went on to win the 300 intermediate hurdles with a mark of 42.0.

“I’ve been running and competing in meet for three months now,” he said. “I’m happy with how it went. That felt pretty good.”

Ellis picked up his first win of the year in the high hurdles event.

“I had kind of a rough start,” he said after that race. “My heel hit the first couple of hurdles, but I found my rhythm.”

Junior Matthew Lovos also had an impressive win for the Wolves, as he triumphed in the 1,500 in a time of 4:23.2.

In the 4 x 400 relay, Lovos teamed with sophomore Malachi Seib, junior Billy Calder and sophomore Mateo Sundberg to win with a mark of 3:43.1.

Also on the track for Tualatin, Calder had a winning time of 2:08.70 in the 800 and sophomore Mark French won the 3,000 in 9:49.70.

In the field events, Timberwolf senior Austin Balfour won the discus event with a toss of 116-4. Senior Ryan Wisner had a winning height of 6-0 in the high jump. Senior Logan Work cleared 10-0 to place first in the pole vault and junior Jordan Wilson took first place in the long jump with a distance of 18-4.

Ellis is optimistic that last week’s meet is just the start of good things for the Tualatin boys this season.

“For myself, it would be really good to get to represent Tualatin at the state meet,” he said. “But the No. 1 goal is to get the team back up to the top of the league.”

The Tualatin teams will be back in action Wednesday when they travel to Forest Grove for their Pacific Conference dual meet opener. Field events will begin at 3:45 p.m. and running events are slated to begin at 4 p.m.