Justin Rich wins the shot put and discus, while Micah Jury is first in the hurdles

by: ESTACADA NEWS: DAVID BALL - Estacada junior Justin Rich prepares to make his spin during his final attempt in the shot put ring Thursday. He won the event with a heave of 50-feet-9-inches. MILWAUKIE — Estacada junior Justin Rich pulled off double wins in the throwing events to lead the Rangers with 20 points at the Tri-Valley League district track meet last week at LaSalle Prep.

Rich did his damage in the opening hours of the meet, first stopping by the shot put sector where even his poorer throws would have been enough to claim the blue ribbon. He finished with a best effort of 50-feet-9-inches on his final attempt — an effort that drew a collection of awed gasps from the competitors lined up nearby to watch. It also marked a personal-best — one inch farther than his previous record.

“It feels great especially after last year when I kind of spooked myself and didn’t perform like I wanted,” Rich said. “This time I was able to turn the page and focus on what I needed to do.”

However, people needed to arrive early to see Rich’s most impressive throw — it came during warm-ups. The dent left by the throw remained unblemished during the official competition, but coaches measured the mark at the end of the day. It stretched the tape to an unofficial 52-4.

“That was pretty great, but I still have a lot I can work on during this week leading up to state,” Rich said.

About an hour later, Rich walked across the track to the discus ring where he picked up his second win of the day with a heave of 149-5 — beating the runner-up by the height of a single-story house.

Rich holds the fourth-best mark in the discus among all prep levels this season.

Senior Gary Zheol also had a big day in the field, qualifying for state with a second-place finish in the triple jump. He also took fifth in the long jump.

Micah Jury won the 300-meter hurdles (40.27) by .12 hundredths over Molalla’s Brody Olson.

Estacada finished fifth in the team standings with 65 points, while LaSalle won the boys title with a 205 total.

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