As border wars go, today's version at the Lapwai track was much more amicable than say, Russia and the Ukraine. The athletes competed hard in the races and field but, true to form for small schools, they mingled and chatted with each other in the infield between events. The annual Border Wars Track Meet drew 11 teams from Idaho and five teams from Washington. Asotin continued its strong early season form, winning both the men's and women's titles this year, though by closer margins than the last couple of meets.
For the men, that was the lone Washington entry in top five teams as Idaho schools Kamiah, Prairie, Logos, and Kendrick filled up the points totals to top the list.
For the women, it was more challenging for the Idaho teams with Prairie, Logos, TO-GP, and St. John-Endicott in the top five.
Racing started with the 3200m for both the men and women.
Thomas Weakland (Asotin), Peter Spencer (Prairie), and Brady McKay (Asotin) led the field out with the Logos team in tow and quickly separated themselves from the rest of the pack.
McKay led the first two laps before his teammate took over. Weakland ran strong for the next five laps as Spencer stayed right off his shoulder. The Logos runners, Sage Pratt and Jonny Handel, closed on, then passed, McKay on the fourth lap. An experienced junior, Spencer waited until the backstretch of the gun lap to make his move, a powerful surge to open space between him and the freshman from Asotin. Spencer won handily with a 10:05. Logos placed three runners in the top six as sophomore Josiah Anderson finished with a solid performance behind McKay.
Lucy Eggleston made short work of the women's 3200m race, carving out a large lead early and pushing hard through the finish. Heather Siegel (St. John-Endicott) took second and Katarina Stephenson (Asotin) took third.
Unlike Wednesday, I managed to catch more of the field events, including the women's pole vaulting. Megan McCain of Asotin was competing for the first time while Skylar Smith (Pomeroy) easily won the vault, clearing 8'00".
Mike Martinez (Asotin) won the men's side, hitting 11' while Trey Pfefferkorn and Clayton Stamper (both from Clearwater Valley) placed second and third. Pomeroy locked in the next two spots with solid vaults from Memo Morphin and Cole Mayfield.
Mayfield took third in the high jump as well, tied in height but not attempts, with Kristian Carpenter of Nezperce. Darcy Stamper of TO_GP won going away. Not switching to the flop until the bar got to 5'0", Stamper skipped the jump at 6'0", coming back to clear 6'2" before moving on to his other events. A well-rounded field athlete, Stamper took fifth in the discus and shot put. Olivia Pakootas continued her winning ways in the women's high jump. Pearl Blachly of Pomeroy took second and Erica Johnson of Logos, third.
The points from sprints was spread out across the field. The men's 200m had ten teams represented in the top ten positions with Lucas Arnzen (Prairie) dropping below 24 seconds for the top spot. Nearly as splintered, the 100m featured six different teams in the top ten with Arnzen winning here as well in a time of 11.74 seconds.
The women's 800m showed that history can repeat itself, only faster. The Eggleston sisters again dueled to the finish. Madeline moved to take the lead from Lucy at the 200m mark and opened up a two step gap. Lucy covered the move though and, again on the last straightaway, eked out first place, this time by .37 seconds.
Chandler Teigen started with the rest of the field for the 800m. That was the last time anybody stayed close as he dominated the 800m with a 1:58.64. Logos continued its srong showing in the distance events by picking up second and fifth places while Nezperce picked up third and Asotin filled the gaps in the top six with Brian Strobel crossing in fourth and Spencer Williams in sixth.
The 1600m followed a similar line. Teigen ran a 4:31, 13 seconds ahead of Peter Spencer of Prairie. Thomas Weakland (Asotin) and Brian Strobel ran well and the Asotin distance crew did a significant job of helping to secure the team win.
The relays reflected the strengths of the Prairie and Logos women's teams as they split the relays. The Logos women, in particular, seemed to function well in the passing zones with crisp exchanges. They won the 4x100m and the medley. Prairie took the 4x200m and 4x400m relays.
Kamiah held the lead dog position in three of four relays. St. John-Endicott edged them in the medley but, even then, they gathered in the second place finish. If the Asotin strengths are the distance and throwing events, Kamiah counters in the sprints, relays and general competence in the field events.
Logos men grind away in the running events with solid team work. They don't win the events but they place well and accumulate points.
Prairie, on the other hand, relies on the speed of Lucas Arnzen (100m, 200m, 400m winner), the endurance of Peter Spencer (3200m winner, 1600m second), and the jumping ability of Parker Whipple (1st triple jump, 3rd long jump.)
The TO-GP team has a pair of terrific leapers in Pakootas and Stamper and a cadre of young racers in the distance events that just need a little time and seasoning to learn how to race.
And, speaking of athletes to watch as they learn to race, Chaye Uptmor from Prairie is a young lady who has the potential to develop into a very solid middle-distance runner. She was only three seconds behind the Egglestons in the 800m. Not shabby for a freshman.