At Saturday's Western State Colorado University -- Gunnison High School Combined Invitational track meet Saturday, the Paonia girls track team set 10 season-best marks. In the process the four-time defending state 2A champions scored 134 points to win the 13-team event. Class 2A Buena Vista scored 130 points to finish second, and 3A Gunnison placed third with 111 points.
Senior Sophia Anderson set two season-best marks. In the 200-meter dash Anderson re-set her own school record of 26 seconds set on April 8, with a winning time of 25.53 seconds. Anderson also won the triple jump with a season- and personal-best mark of 37 feet even.
Emily Pieper hit a season-best 16 feet, 9 inches to win the long jump.
Junior McKenna Palmer also hit two season-best marks. In the 100-meter hurdles Palmer won the event with a time of 17.28 seconds, topping her season-best time by 62/100ths of a second. Palmer was also among a contingent of Paonia athletes who competed Friday at the Coal Ridge Invitational in New Castle, where she set a new personal best mark of 16 feet, one-half inch to win the long jump. At Gunnison she placed second after clearing 15-11.25.
Also in the triple jump, McKenna Hartigan hit a season best mark of 31-8.25 to place fourth.
In the 400m run at Gunnison, Brooke Hillman placed third with a season-best time of 1 minute, 2.75 seconds. The girls 4x100m relay team posted a season-best time of 52.87 to finish second behind Buena Vista's time of 52.55.
In throwing events Sabrina Leighton placed fourth in the shot put with a mark of 31-11.0;
In the 300m hurdles Alexandra Eaton placed fourth with a time of 53 seconds, and freshman Lyla Hayutin-Baril placed sixth with a time of 53.95. In the 3200m run, Katya Schwieterman won bronze with a new personal record of 14:44.33, and finished ninth in the 1600m with a PR of 6:32.21. Kassidy Rapke placed seventh in the long jump (13-07.00).
Paonia also won the 4x200 relay (1:50.30), and 4x400 relay (4:24.24), and finished third in the 800m sprint medley relay (1:59.21).
In the men's competition, Caden Meilner was the top placer in the 3200m run at Gunnison with a new personal record time of 11 minutes, 16.69 seconds. Meilner also won bronze in the 1600m run with a time of 4:53.18, and finished sixth in the 800 run (2:11.35).
Blake Benson won silver in the discus with a throw of 139-06, Warren Minerich placed fourth (128-03), and Cyrus Malek-Madani placed fifth (122-02).
Minerich also won silver in the shot put with a throw of 44-10.
In high jump freshman Kyle Long cleared 5 feet, 2 inches to place seventh.
At Coal Ridge High School Friday, Minerich placed third in the shot put with a throw of 41 feet, 7 inches. In the discus, Benson placed third with a throw of 128-11, Minerich finished sixth (124-10) and Malek-Madani finished seventh (124.00).
In the 3200m run, Ben O'Rourke set a new personal best time of 12:04.79 to place sixth, and Ethan Bartlett finished seventh, taking more than a minute off of his previous best time to cross the finish line in 12:18.87.
The boys also placed fourth in the 4x400m relay (4:01.94), and sixth in the 4x200 relay (1:44.10).
Paonia will compete this Friday at the Montrose Invitational.