By Robert Husseman • Sports Editor • 

Fields forever

EUGENE – McMinnville field and track strikes again.

Strong performances by Tim Tatton in the throws and Lucy Bellville and Dakota Buhler in the jumps – and, yes, Tanner Scanlon on the track – paced the Grizzlies to 14th place among boys’ teams and 22nd place among girls’ teams at the OSAA Class 6A State Track and Field Championships, held Friday and Saturday at Hayward Field on the University of Oregon campus.

The McMinnville boys scored 19 team points and the girls scored 11 team points. Jesuit (97 points) was the Class 6A boys’ team champion, while Central Catholic (54 points) edged Grant (53) to win the girls’ team title.

“There’s ups and there’s downs. We had some downs (this weekend).” McMinnville coach Vic Downs said. “It’s a good group of people, the athletes and the coaches. It’s been a good year.”

As he has all season, senior Tim Tatton led the way in the throwing events.

Tatton struggled early Friday, fouling on all three of his attempts in the boys’ shot put and failing to record a mark. He rebounded in the discus with a throw of 163 feet, 1 inch on his second attempt, second only to Drake Brennan of Grants Pass (185-3).

“That felt really good, since last year I got ninth,” Tatton said.

Tatton added five points to McMinnville’s haul in Saturday’s boys’ javelin throw. A headwind early and crosswinds later in the event complicated matters for throwers, but Tatton managed a mark of 179 feet, 10 inches.

“I felt like I could’ve done way better,” Tatton said. “If that wind wasn’t there I could’ve easily had a 200-foot throw. It felt so good coming out of my hand.”

“We asked a lot of him in three events,” Downs said. “He did really well for the team, and for himself.”

McMinnville junior Tanner Scanlon clipped the final hurdle in the boys’ 300-meter hurdles final, but it never slowed him down in a fourth-place finish. Scanlon’s time of

“I just didn’t worry about anything and I ran like I knew I could,” he said.

Scanlon struggled in Friday’s preliminary rounds, finishing seventh and qualifying on time in the 300 hurdles and failing to make the 100-meter dash final. He said he was able to put those races behind him in time for the final.

“I was standing there (on the podium) just thinking about the whole season, just reliving everything,” he said. “All the good moments; the bad ones, too. I’ve been looking forward to this pretty much my whole life. This is it. This is the moment. It was just fun. You’ve got to enjoy every second of it.”

Senior Dakota Buhler capped her Grizzlies career with her first-ever state meet points in the girls’ long jump. Buhler sailed 17-4.75 on her third attempt to take fifth place.

Senior Lucy Bellville cleared 5-2 in the girls’ high jump for the sixth consecutive meet; at Hayward Field, it was enough for fifth place in her event.

“It was just (anxiety) and nerves all this meet,” Bellville said. “With the injury I had at the beginning of the season” – she had barely practiced the high jump entering state – “I’m just glad I made it.”

A pair of first-time state entrants for the Grizzlies scored points in the throwing events.

Sophomore Jalyn Clark-Johnson finished in fourth place at the 2013 Pacific Conference junior varsity championships in the shot put; one year later, she earned a state medal with a personal-best put of 35-9.75 on her last attempt, good for seventh place.

“I saw it land and I was hoping it was going to be a PR because it looked farther than all my other throws,” Clark-Johnson said. “When they said it (was), I almost cried.”

Senior Dominique Burden, who finished third at the Pacific Conference district meet but received a wild-card berth to the state meet when another competitor dropped out, set a personal record in the girls’ discus throw. Her mark of 113 feet even was enough for eighth place and a spot on the podium.

“I didn’t realize how good it feels to get up there,” “It’s nice to be a wild card and make it up on the podium.”

The Grizzlies received one point in the distance races as senior Nic McDaniel finished eighth in the boys’ 800 (2:00.49). McDaniel challenged the race’s leaders early but faded down the stretch in that race and in the boys’ 1,500 final, where he finished 14th in 4:26.67).

Sophomore Whitney Rich, stricken with a bout of illness, also performed below her standard, finishing 11th in the girls' 3,000 (10:54.84) and 12th in the girls' 1,500 (4:54.00).

Also competing for the Grizzlies were junior Bethany Mohler (girls’ javelin; ninth, 119-2), Taylor Petersen (girls’ 200), David Ingham (boys’ discus; ninth, 135-8), Noah Daugherty (boys’ javelin; 11th, 158-7), and the 4x100-meter relay team of Buhler, Montanna Gubrud, Annika Nyquist and Petersen (14th, 50.88).


Yamhill-Carlton track and field

As they have all season long, senior sprinters Suzanne Van De Grift and Sarah King paced the Yamhill-Carlton track and field team at the Class 4A state championships Friday and Saturday.

Van De Grift engineered a sixth-place finish in the 4A girls’ 400 meters (59.30) for three team points, and King added two points in the 4A girls’ 200 (26.18).

Van De Grift and King joined Kayla Archer and Perrin Xthona in the Tigers’ bread-and-butter event, the 4x400-meter relay. All exchanges were clean as Yamhill-Carlton clocked 4:07.06 for fifth place, the relay team’s fastest time of the season.

The Tigers’ nine team points resulted in a 27th-place finish in the team competition. North Valley (65 points) won the girls’ team championship; North Bend (51 points) won the boys’ team championship.

Also competing for Y-C were pole vaulters Zachary Perkins, Mariah Schock and Erin Cline and the 4x100-meter relay team of Archer, Van De Grift, Fana Gottschalk and King (14th, 51.94).

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