GRESHAM — Morgan Hopkins called the 2018 season her “scratch year,” one in which she had success but wasn’t able to improve her personal-best throwing marks.
The Lebanon senior surprised even herself by winning the 2017 shot put state title, but similar results didn't come a year later.
Hopkins put all that behind her Saturday, winning another championship with a shot put toss of 38 feet, 6½ inches. She followed that up with a second-place finish in the discus later in the day at 112-9.
“It was a great feeling knowing that I was able to learn from last year, grow from it, mature and do better this year,” Hopkins said. “It was a good learning experience and I’m happy with how this year turned out.”
Hopkins was a state runner-up in the discus in her first year qualifying for state in that event.
West Albany’s Alyssa Walls was fourth in the shot put (36-1½) and discus (111-6). Crescent Valley’s Sierra Noss was sixth in the discus (110-5).
West’s Tiffany Forrest was third (35-1½) and Sydney Beers sixth (34-3 ½) in the triple jump.
The Bulldogs scored in nine events Saturday and in 11 of 17 events to claim third place and a team trophy with 41 points.
“They came to perform and they did a great job. I’m proud of them,” West coach Kerri Lemerande said.
Lemerande saw her team put up quality times and marks at the Mid-Willamette Conference district and compared those to the rest of the state.
The Bulldogs were third in a form chart using season’s best results. The top four teams at state get trophies.
“I knew it would be close, but I knew we would have a chance,” Lemerande said.
In a strong showing by the Mid-Willamette, North Salem won the meet with 119 points and Silverton was second with 68.
Bulldogs sophomore Emily Stefan made the state meet in two individual events and as a member of West’s 4x100-meter relay as a wild card – berths based on district results used to fill event fields – and took advantage of her opportunities.
Stefan made the finals in the 100 (eighth, 13.01) and 200 (seventh, 26.87) after anchoring the Bulldogs to fifth in the short relay (50.73).
I couldn’t be too mad making the final in both,” she said. “I wish the times were better but the weather is not good at all.”
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Stefan was all smiles when talking about the relay.
The team, which also included Monica Kloess, Madyson Hellem and Forrest had a bad handoff at the district meet but was still able to make state.
The Bulldogs won their heat in Saturday’s timed final.
“I am so happy with how we did,” Stefan said.
Corvallis’ Madeline Nason finished her freshman season with fourth in the 1,500 (4:47.96) after taking third in Friday’s 3,000 final.
Crescent Valley’s Sunitha Black was fifth (personal-best 4:50.63), West Albany’s Annie Berry sixth (4:54.86 PR) and Lebanon’s Isabella Ayala eighth (4:55.38), all wild-card entrants.
Nason won the 1,500 and was the 3,000 runner-up to Black at the district meet
“I’m excited about my season. It went really well,” she said.
Black, a sophomore who was second in the state 3,000, said Saturday’s race was different than she was used to because of the fast start.
But it produced another PR for her and good feeling about her state experience. Qualifying for the 1,500 for the first time was a good step forward.
“I think it went real well overall. I’m really happy to be here,” Black said.
Berry, a junior, was also sixth in the 3,000 with another personal best.
“I was real happy with both my races, especially with my kick at the end of both of them,” she said. “I’m excited for my senior year, for both cross-country and track.”
In the 800, Crescent Valley’s Geneva Wolfe was fifth (2:21.17) and West’s Sienna Higinbotham eighth (2:23.86).
Placing sixth were West’s Bethany Marteeney (1:01.07, PR), Corvallis’ Wendy Hare (100 hurdles, 16.68) and CV’s 4x400 relay of Jada Foster, Wolfe, Ellie Herber and Ava McKee (4:12.24).