While it may have been an early season meet, the annual Nike Boise Relays on Saturday at Dona Larsen Park produced some late-season times and marks for athletes from five participating District 6 schools.
Shelley senior Ty Wright joined Rigby’s Mateya Mobley, Rigby’s Nathan Franz, Bonneville’s Colton Reifschneider and Thunder Ridge’s Jessica Moss as gold medal winners at the one-day meet and he achieved a historic personal best in the process. The recent BYU signee cleared six feet, 10 inches to win the boys elite high jump and put himself atop Idaho’s all-classification boys high jump rankings on athletic.net.
Wright was the only jumper left after clearing 6-6 Saturday.
“(Making) 6-8 was a bit of a struggle,” Wright said Tuesday afternoon by phone. “I got it on my third attempt. At 6-10, I got it on my first try. After that, I was very excited because I did not expect that at all.”
Wright’s 6-10 is notable for reasons that extend beyond this season. Per a search of Post Register digital archives, athletic.net data and Idaho High School Activities Association records, it appears Wright is the first District 6 boy to clear 6-10 or higher since Butte County’s Clint Silcock cleared 6-10.5 to win the 2004 2A state meet. Researching this proved to be challenging, as athletic.net records only go back to 2006 and IHSAA records only include results from the state meet.
Wright said he is more relaxed as a senior than a junior, and that approach is carrying over into meets.
“Last year to be honest my season was pretty stagnant,” Wright said. “I kind of maxed out on how I can really coach myself. I was stressed out at getting to higher heights to get into college. The start of this regular school season after I signed with BYU, the stress level went down. I started to have fun again.”
Wright’s next goal is to clear seven feet. A search of Post Register, athletic.net and IHSAA records shows that Idaho’s overall state meet record for boys high jump is 7-1 by Minico’s Tory Bailey in 1993. The last eastern Idaho boy to clear seven feet, per those records, was South Fremont’s Alan Dopp, who was ranked in the top three in the nation by Track and Field News in 1990 for clearing 7-0.75 at the Simplot Games and later 7-0.25 at an outdoor meet. Dopp shared with the Post Register on Tuesday night that his high school personal best was 7-0.5.
“With last week clearing 6-10 on my first attempt, it really takes it off the pedestal as unreachable,” Wright said. “I definitely expect to clear that this season.”
Breaking her own school record Saturday was Skyline distance runner Sariah Harrison. The sophomore placed fourth in the girls elite 3,200 in 11 minutes, 15.17 seconds, which bettered the school record time of 11:16.94 she ran at last year’s 4A state meet. That time puts her at No. 6 in Idaho’s all-classification rankings for the girls 3,200 thus far this season and No. 2 in 4A behind defending state champion Mattelyn Geddes of Twin Falls, who ran a state-leading 10:43.36 in the girls rated 3,200 finals Saturday at the Arcadia Invitational.
“I didn’t really know what to expect when we first headed over to Boise,” Harrison said Tuesday by phone. “When I ran 5:17 for the mile and that was a second off my PR for the mile, I thought I’d PR in the two mile. I had an 11:16 in my mind (for the 3200). I wasn’t expecting it till after it happened.”
Harrison said competing in meets like the Boise Relays early in the season helps prepare her for late-season meets like districts and state. In Saturday’s girls elite 3,200 and 1,600, Harrison raced against state track medalists from Eagle, Mountain View, Ridgevue, Boise, Emmett and Rocky Mountain.
“I was really excited to be in the elite races,” Harrison said. “I like having other people around me to push me. You have to step it up another level to compete with those girls.”
Upon completion of cross-country season last fall, which included becoming eastern Idaho’s first girl to break the 18-minute barrier for the 5k, Harrison said she sought to improve her speed and kick for track season. Harrison said that is going well, and she anticipates competing in the 800 more frequently this season. She competed in it three times as a freshman.
“It has really helped that (Skyline cross-country) coach (Sean) Schmidt has emphasized the 800,” Harrison said. “It’s really helped my mindset and I think it’s going to be good for the season. I’m excited for the rest of the season and to see what I can do.”
I.F’s Athay, Erikson compete at Arcadia
Idaho Falls sophomore Mitchell Athay and senior Zach Erikson competed at the prestigious 52nd annual Arcadia Invitational in Arcadia, Calif., on Friday and Saturday. Competing at Arcadia for the first time, Athay ran a personal best 9:27.78 to place 41st overall in the boys rated 3,200 finals on Friday and a personal best 4:28.91 to place 12th in the boys rising stars mile on Saturday. Erikson, who competed in the boys rated 3,200 at Arcadia as a junior, ran 10:00.08 to place 27th in Saturday’s boys seeded 3,200.