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If there were any doubts if Milly Garren was the best high school girls thrower in the Beehive State this spring, she seemingly put them to rest in Utah’s most prestigious meet.

The Logan High junior was named the most outstanding female field athlete in the 4A-6A division at the two-day BYU Invitational, which concluded early Saturday evening in Provo. Garren followed up Friday’s victory in the discus (143 feet, 10.75 inches) with another win and personal record in Saturday’s shot put (42-7.75).

Garren ranks first in the entire state in both events and is threatening to break the school records by her older sister Maia, who is a star senior on Utah State’s track & field team.

Garren was one of a handful of local athletes who shined at the annual meet. The Preston boys finished with the most team points (54) in the 1A-3A division. The Indians are in the 4A classification in Idaho, but would be a 3A school in Utah. The other Cache Valley programs competed in the 4A-6A division.

Preston was led by Sam Jeppsen, who followed up his huge PR in Friday’s 3,200 meters (9 minutes, 19 seconds), by anchoring his team to victory in the medley relay and to second place in the 4x400 relay. The senior now ranks second in the entire Gem State in the 3,200.

Jeppsen teamed up with Brecker Knapp, Brayker Smith and Cole Harris in the medley relay (3:37.86) and Tristan Lyon, Knapp and Harris in the 4x400 (3:34.70). Preston now ranks first in 4A in the medley relay.

Another local athlete who showed her mettle was Logan’s Amber Kartchner. The senior followed her up runner-up performance in Friday’s high jump (5-3) by reigning supreme in Saturday’s long jump (17-8.25). Kartchner and Garren joined forced to score an impressive 38 points.

Mountain Crest Alisabeth Apedaile continues to suggest she is the state’s top performer in the 100 hurdles with her winning time of 14.54, while Ridgeline’s Keslie Duersch was the silver medalist in the 300 hurdles (47.86).

Preston’s Taylor Romney was the bronze medalist in the 800 and broke the school record with a current Idaho 4A-best clocking of 2:19.54. Green Canyon’s Cameron Kunz continues to prove himself in the high jump as he placed third with a clearance of 6-4.

Preston freshman Elly Jeppsen came through with the second-fastest qualifying time in the 400 (59.50), but elected not to compete in the finals so she could focus on the 200 and 4x400 relay. Jeppsen ended up finishing sixth in the 200 (26.52) and helping the Indians earn the right to stand on the No. 2 spot on the podium in the 4x400. She was joined on that team by Kylie Larsen, Riley Ward and Romney (4:12.93).

Other local athletes who won medals at the meet were Preston’s Knapp in the 110 hurdles (fourth place, 16.00) and 300 hurdles (third, 42.76), Sky View’s Isaac Larsen in the 300 hurdles (fourth, 40.02), PHS’s Benson Palmer in the pole vault (fifth, 12-11.5) and Kimble Rigby in the same event (fifth, 12-5.5), PHS’s Angelie Scott in the 1,600 (fifth, 5:19), Green Canyon’s Maren McKenna in the shot put (fourth, 36-11.75) and Paige Bagley in the 300 hurdles (fifth, 48.42), and Mountain Crest’s Katelyn Hardy in the shot put (fifth, 36-0.25).

Garren is the star, but Cache Valley has a handful of state level throwers on the girls side.

Preston finished 3-4-5 in the girls pole vault, and those girls were Chakobi Lewis (8-6.25), Madison Wood (7-6.5) and Ashley Lowe-Anderson (7-6.5).

Other local competitors who scored team points were Sky View’s Trey Nyman in the 110 hurdles (seventh, 15.94) and high jump (tied for eighth, 6-0), PHS’s Harris in the 400 (seventh, 53.18) and GC’s Sydney Edelmayer in the 100 hurdles (seventh, 16.99). Green Canyon’s Carter Compton lowered his own school record in the 400 (50.55) and punched his ticket to the finals, but aggravated an existing injury and wasn’t able to compete.

Preston’s Edison Leffler finished ninth in the 1,600 (4:34), as did teammate Riley Ward in the girls 1,600 (5:30), Apedaile in the long jump (16-4.5), Ridgeline’s Savannah Perrett in the javelin (112-7.25) and SV’s Cody Robbins in the long jump (20-10.75). Ward also was 10th in the 800 (2:25.09), as was GC’s Abigail Blau in the shot put (33-1.25).

Other noteworthy performances were turned in by Ridgeline’s Spencer Adams and Green Canyon’s Jackson Monz in a loaded 800 field. Both runners PRed and broke school records as Adams placed 11th (1:56.75) and Monz 12th (1:57.46). Mountain Crest’s Maya Miller ran the fastest 400 by a local high school girl this season, a 59.35, in the preliminary rounds.

WEST SIDE SHINES

It was another good week for West Side, which nearly swept the titles at last Thursday’s Bear Lake Invitational. The Pirate boys blew away the 10-team field with 303 points, while the Lady Pirates finished second to district rival Soda Springs. Soda Springs amassed 291 points to West Side’s 264.

The West Side boys captured five event titles and the girls another four. Andrew Olinger prevailed in the shot put (44-11) and discus (129-4), as did Pirate teammate Letti Phillips in the 100 hurdles (17.46) and 300 hurdles (49.50). Additionally, Phillips teamed up with Aubrie Barzee, Timberly Dean and Madalyn Barzee to win the 4x400 relay (4:32.26).

West Side’s other champions were Bryler Shurtliff in the 200 (22.74), Josh Reeder in the 800 (2:02.51), Easton Henderson in the 300 hurdles (41.99) and Madalyn Barzee in the pole vault (8-6).

Alaina Telford and Kynlee Beckstead tied for second place in the pole vault (8-0), while fellow Pirate Jocie Phillips also cleared 8-0 and was fourth. West Side’s Hayden Robinson was the runner-up in the high jump (5-10).

A handful of Pirates claimed bronze medals individually in Shurtliff (100, 11.42), Henderson (110 hurdles, 16.16), Easton Shurtliff (pole vault, 10-6) and Marissa Clawson (300 hurdles, 52.96).

West Side’s Chloe Keller finished fourth in the 100 hurdles (17.79) and 300 hurdles (53.64), and other teammates who placed fourth individually were Reeder (200, 23.44), Aubrie Barzee (400, 1:04.72) and Natalie Lemmon (long jump, 14-5.75).

Preston brought some athletes to the meet as was led by champion Gage Cordner in the 3,200 (11:25). Cordner also finished fourth in the 1,600 (5:05), while teammate Olivia Tracy was the bronze medalist in the triple jump (32-5).

Jason Turner is a sports reporter for The Herald Journal. He can be reached at jturner@hjnews.com or 435-792-7237.

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