Isabel Max said that sometimes Summit craves stiffer competition.
The Storm got that in spades Saturday at the 30-team Summit Invitational, and they were up to the challenge.
The Summit boys team won and the Storm girls finished second in the 10th annual track and field meet, a midseason showcase that included several top teams from Washington and Idaho and a variety of weather conditions. The Bend High girls also proved themselves against a regional array of talent, placing fifth.
Max led the way for the Summit girls, winning the 800 meters in a school-record 2 minutes, 12.85 seconds.
“It’s really cool to have teams from out of state coming here,” Max said. “I like having that pressure of a bigger field, and our team kind of realized that and felt that. It helps us to have that really good competition.”
The boys team title came down to the 4x400-meter relay, and Summit finished second to Oregon City but still managed to edge the Pioneers for the team win with 931⁄2 points to 69 for Oregon City. Timberline (of Boise, Idaho) was third with 58 points.
“I think it was a great performance overall with the number of teams here,” Summit coach Dave Turnbull said. “Really, really happy. I like the suspense of track. I love it when it comes down to a 4x400. You’ve gotta have these opportunities for your kids to raise their game a little bit and see competition you haven’t seen.”
Summit’s Robert Gorman won both the 110 hurdles (15.57) and the 300 hurdles in 39.28, a lifetime best.
“I kind of came into it a little rusty, but after the gun goes off we just do what we’re trained to do,” Gorman said. “It’s definitely one of my favorite meets of the year. There’s a lot of competition and a lot of teams. You really get a sense of what a real meet is like here. We lost all our seniors last year, so we’re a little rusty, but we’ve really been stepping it up lately. If we keep doing that I think we can definitely place at state.”
The Mountain View boys finished 11th with 26 points, Bend was 14th (20), Sisters was 16th (17) and Redmond finished 20th (six).
As the steady wind and rain finally gave way to sunshine in the waning moments of the meet, Bend’s Brady Petz was still pole vaulting. He set a lifetime best by clearing 15 feet, 6 inches, to easily win the event as he eyes a third straight state title.
“I always do pretty well here, especially since the sun came out,” Petz said. “I love this meet. It’s nice because I get a lot competition. At dual meets there’s not a lot of pole vaulters. It’s cool meeting other athletes who jump the same mark you do, and seeing how good people are out of state. There’s some incredible athletes out there who you don’t hear about as much. It gets us ready for bigger meets, and the mindset we need to have.”
Other Central Oregon boys winners Saturday included Summit’s Sam Hatfield in the 1,500 meters (4:03.76), the Storm’s Jack Normand in the triple jump (44-23⁄4) and Mountain View’s James King in the high jump (6-6).
Boise High of Idaho won the girls team title with 1161⁄3 points, Summit finished second with 821⁄2, and South Eugene took third with 72. Fifth-place Bend scored 623⁄4 points and was led by star sprinter Maya Hopwood, who won both the 100 (12.29) and the 200 (26.08).
“It was a great day overall,” said Bend coach Lisa Nye. “There were so many kids that just had really, really strong performances today. Fifth place is a really good accomplishment for our team. We had some really good performances from our boys, too, and some of our kids are stepping up.”
Mountain View’s Jasmine Martin won both the high jump (5-4) and the long jump (17-31⁄4), leading the Cougars to a ninth-place finish with 30 points. Redmond placed 17th (six points) and La Pine finished 18th (five).
The Lava Bears also won the 4x100 relay in 48.44 with a team that included Charli Stewart, Ruby Bishop, Katelyn Jolly and Hopwood.
Nye called her team’s overall results a “good step forward” as they begin preparation for the Class 6A state meet next month at Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham.
“It is good to see kind of where you are against these big schools,” Nye said. “So I think that’s helpful for us. It’s cool to have a big invitational meet on the east side (of the state). It’s one of the few that happens on the other side of the mountains.”
— Reporter: 541-383-0318,