Benson sprinter leaves records in dust
"Hello, Oregon sports world."
If you hadn't heard of Benson Tech's Micah Williams before, then the youth sprinter who has been up and coming for several years made an impressive introduction last weekend.
Williams, a sophomore, broke the Class 6A meet records in the 100 and 200 meters at the Oregon School Activities Association track and field championships at Hayward Field.
Thomas Tyner's previous record of 10.48 seconds in the 100? See ya. Williams ran 10.42 in the final.
Jack Galpin's record of 21.20 from 2011 (the same year Tyner set his 100 mark)? Buh-bye. Williams finished in 21.19, and remarked that it didn't even seem like he was going all that fast.
Williams, coached by Benson legend Leon McKenzie and noted sprints coach John Mays, overcame a nagging case of turf toe -- and got some revenge against 2017, when injuries slowed him in the state 100 and forced him to scratch from the 200.
The meet had plenty of other stars from Portland schools — and a winning team, by a landslide, in the Jesuit girls. They used depth and four first places to pile up 92 points, scoring in 11 of the 17 events. They wound up with a 50-point margin over co-runners-up South Eugene and Sunset. Lincoln's girls placed fifth.
In the 6A boys competition, Central Catholic (50 points) and Jesuit (37) were third and fourth, behind West Salem (60) and Tigard (54).
Seniors Alex Slenning of Wilson and Will Eaton of Franklin dueled in the 6A distances, with a 1-2 Eaton-Slenning finish in Friday's 3,000 and a 1-2 Slenning-Eaton finish the next day in the 1,500.
Sawyer Christopher, a Lincoln senior, repeated as 6A boys javelin champion, and added a fifth in the discus and sixth in the high jump.
Grant senior Judith Baxter Game captured the 6A girls triple jump, and David Douglas senior Savannah Proske won the 6A girls high jump.
By league, the boys scoring was somewhat close — 112 points for the Portland Interscholastic League, 96 for the Metro, 87 for the Mt. Hood Conference, 178 for the Three Rivers League, 79 for the Greater Valley Conference and 111 for the Southwest Conference.
In the girls meet, the PIL brought up the rear, with only four of its nine schools scoring and the league totaling just 66.2 points. The Metro dominated with 211 1/2, followed by the MHC (133.2), the TRL (122), the SWC (92 1/2) and the GVC (70).
Some schools scored vastly different boys/girls. Examples of boys teams with more points than the girls: Benson, 27-0; Franklin, 18 1/2-0; Central Catholic, 50-6; Oregon City, 27-3.6; and Tigard, 54-18. On the other hand, the girls outscored the boys at these schools: Clackamas, 40-0; Sunset, 42-11 1/2; Centennial, 34-6; and Gresham, 20.6-2.
In the 3A meet, Catlin Gabel had the most total points of any school, with the Eagles girls placing second (65) and boys taking third (52). Blanchet Catholic (67 1/2) edged Catlin Gabel in the girls meet, while Pleasant Hill (62) and Salem Academy (60) went 1-2 in 3A boys.
Catlin seniors Juma Sei and Maya Rayle had big finishes. Sei won the boys 100, 200 and 400, all with PRs (10.70, 21.40, 47.04), and he anchored the winning 4x400 relay.
Rayle swept the girls 1,500 and 3,000 with PRs of 4:33.32 and 9:46.90, and she had the final leg on the second-place 4x400.