On a roll

Peters runs over competition


Freshmen are not expected to qualify for the state meet in four different events, they're not projected to advance to the finals and they are rarely the favorite to win the state title.

But on Friday, freshman sprinter Jessica Peters did everything she wasn't supposed to do at the Jefferson County Stadium in Lakewood.

"I'm surprised," Peters said. "I wanted to come here and give it my best shot, but I wasn't really expecting this."

Peters put forth strong efforts in all four of her events, but the shining moment came in the 400-meter where she blew past the field en route to posting the fastest time of the day at 57.75 seconds.

"My legs felt pretty good today," Peters said. "I died at the end. I think it was just the heat because I felt pretty good at the beginning.

But Peters left Jackie Strum of Mullen, who finished second at 59.25, in the dust, along with another Mullen runner, Clair Twark, who placed third in the heat at 59.33.

When Peters steps to the start of today's race, she will be facing fellow heat winners Isabel Mendoza of Ranum (58.41) and Jamie Clark of Pueblo South (58.96).

Amy Starkweather or Pueblo County, Jamila Young of Lewis-Palmer, Allison Hawes of Woodland Park and Lauren Matthews of Fort Morgan also will advance to today's finals.

But Peters' success Friday was not limited to the 400.

She also made the qualifying cut in the 200-meter dash after finishing third in her heat. Her time of 25.93 helped put her in the finals.

"I didn't know if I was going to have anything left for the 200," Peters said. "So I'm glad to make it."

Ashely Owens of Liberty, who was in Peters' heat, recorded the fastest time in the event at 24.60. Niwot's Griffin Mathew was second at 24.72 and Andrea Keliiholoka on Hinkley came in third with a time of 25.22.

Peters just missed advancing to the finals of the 100-meter dash, which was won by Owens. Peter's placed 10th (the top 9 advance) in that event with a time of 12.92.

If running in those three events wasn't enough, Peters also placed seventh in the high jump.

Lewis-Palmer senior Amy Bladow jumped 5-foot, 5-inches to win the event.

She was followed by Dawn Higginbotham of Cheyenne Mountain who placed second and Sterling's Danielle Krier in third.

Peters went out at 5 feet tying Ashley McNamee of Niwot and Conny Berger of Montezuma-Cortez for seventh in the meet.

Steamboat's Hannah Gary also competed in the high jump but failed to place in the top 14 jumpers.

Triple jumper Missy Chotvacs, a Steamboat freshman, placed 10th at her first state meet with an effort of 33-6.75 Fatima Maddox won the meet with a jump of 39-02.5. Jennifer Hooper also competed in the 3,200-meter run but did not get a time in the meet.


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