By Rongi Yost

Outlaws compete at state track meet


Last updated 5/24/2022 at Noon

The return to Hayward Field for the first time since 2018 gave high school track--and-field athletes from across the state a look at the world-class facility and a chance to experience the fabled magic of the place.

“The kids were in awe when we walked on Thursday afternoon and saw the stadium for the first time,” said coach Dennis Dempsey. “It’s unbelievable.”

Six members of the Sisters Outlaws team competed May 20-21 at the OSAA Track and Field Championships, with mixed results.

The lone boys competitor for Sisters, Taine Martin, came into the meet on a high note having matched his best high jump mark ever at districts at six feet, but was not able to replicate the feat at state and bowed out after clearing 5 feet, 8 inches.

“Taine is still a district champion even though things didn’t go as well as he would have liked, and he has given the team plenty to cheer about,” said Head Coach Cailen McNair.

On Friday, Ella Bartlett came close to her best time on her way to 11th place (11:23.78) in a very talented field of 3,000-meter runners. Sophia Stubblefield of Phoenix High School won the race in 10:31.00 as nine girls dipped under the 11-minute barrier.

Later that day, Hollie Lewis managed her season best in the long jump with a mark of 15 feet, 9.75 inches to earn a spot on the podium in seventh place. Elizabeth Grandle of Molalla soared to the win with a leap of 17 feet, 3.5 inches.

On Saturday, Gracie Vohs started the day for the Outlaws in the pole vault and finished fifth with a clearance of nine feet. Anna Wilson of Cascade was the only girl to clear 10 feet to take the top spot, which was the lowest winning height in recent memory. Vohs and Lewis teamed up with Ila Reid and Nevaeh McAfee in a loaded 4x400- meter race to conclude the meet. League rivals Philomath (4:03.64) and Cascade (4:07.63) took the top two spots, and Vohs overcame the anchor runner from Henley to put the Outlaws in fifth place in 4:14.06.

“For our 4x400 team to place fifth after not even being in the top 10 two weeks ago is something for those girls to be proud of,” said McNair.

McNair called the weekend a memorable experience for his athletes and the coaching staff.

“We quietly absorbed the atmosphere and the fact this was our last performance of the year as we walked into Hayward Field,” he said. Athletes posed for pictures and joked with each other, and we found old friends amongst the competition. The best part is the kids bonded as a team and represented SHS in a positive manner.”

Philomath scored in eleven of the seventeen events on its way to the girls’ team title with 87 points, well ahead of the other three trophy winners Marist Catholic (69), Cascade (57), and North Valley (44). Sisters scored a total of 10 points.

The Marshfield boys won the 4A boys team title with 57 points, edging Henley (52), while Siuslaw (45) and Mazama (43) rounded out the top four.


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