The cold and damp conditions didn’t seem to bother Arianna Steiner one bit.
Sky View’s standout distance runner put together an epic performance in the 3,200 meters at the 4A State Track & Field Championships on Friday in Provo. Steiner shattered her own school record as she completed the race in 10 minutes, 50.68 seconds, which is believed to be the fastest time ever by a Cache Valley high school girl in the race.
Unfortunately for the future Utah State runner, it wasn’t quite enough for the gold medal as Bailey Brinkerhoff of Desert Hills was just a little bit better. Brinkerkoff clocked in at 10:46, which was the fastest time of the meet, regardless of classification. Steiner finished with the third-fastest overall time and was less than a second slower than the time the 6A champion posted Thursday.
“It was definitely something that I didn’t think I was going to be able to do, but it’s definitely something I’m incredibly proud of,” said Steiner, whose previous record was a 11:01. “I’m not going to lie, I never really was focused on the 3,200 throughout my (high school) track experience, and I just kind of started focusing on it this year. But I think with the mileage and training I put in, it definitely affected my 3,200 in a really positive way and allowed me ... to do things I didn’t think I was going to be able to do, so that was pretty cool.”
Although she wasn’t able to track down Brinkerhoff, Steiner edged Lehi star Anna Martin for the silver medal, which is a huge accomplishment. Martin, who was in front of Steiner for the majority of the race, destroyed the all-classifications state cross country record last fall with her stunning three-mile time of 17:15.
“I think it was a really cool experience,” Steiner said. “I mean, she definitely pushed me a lot and allowed me to get that time. ... I really didn’t think I was going to be able to beat her in that race, but I got a surge of energy at the end and I was like, ‘let’s go for it,’ so it was a really cool experience.”
Another local girl who put together an outstanding performance was Logan’s Milly Garren. The freshman shattered her own personal record by nearly 10 feet in a loaded girls discus field. Garren settled for fifth place with heave of 114 feet, 6 inches, but was only three feet away from capturing the silver medal.
Garren’s mark would have won the 3A competition and placed second among the 6A athletes. Three of the four 4A competitors who threw farther than the Region 12 champion Friday are seniors.
“It means a lot,” Garren said. “I’ve put in a lot of work after school with my dad. The environment was really great today and everyone was working together. And with all of the hours we’ve put in after school, it paid off.”
Arguably the best thing about Garren’s performance was she was extremely consistent. Five of her six attempts sailed at least 110 feet.
“I take a lot of pride in that,” she said. “It’s just nice to know that as a freshman I was able to be up there with the (best) throwers. They’re really fun to be around and it’s just fun ... to be a part of (that competition).”
In addition to Garren, two other local girls scored points in the discus. Sky View’s Ashlee McUne earned the right to stand on the No. 6 spot on the podium with her mark of 103-9.75, and Ridgeline’s Kaylee Perrett finished eighth (96-9.5).
Mountain Crest’s Alisabeth Apedaile placed fourth in the long jump (16-9.25), one position ahead of Ridgeline’s Aleena Wilcox (16-7.25). Wilcox’s teammate, Tess Lawson, finished ninth (16-1). Wilcox was very consistent as five of her jumps went more than 16 feet.
Logan’s Alex Rasmussen fared well in the 3,200 and picked up one team point for finishing eighth. He clocked in at 9:51.98.
A pair of Grizzlies were runner-ups in the pole vault, which is an exhibition event in the 4A classification. Isaac Phillips vaulted over the bar at 12-0, while Tabitha Hansen cleared the bar at 9-0.
Apedaile gave herself a chance to win three medals at this meet by advancing to Saturday’s finals in both hurdles races. Ridgeline’s Olivia Smith punched her ticket to the finals in the 300 hurdles, as did teammate Halle Livingston in the 100 hurdles. Livingston is the defending state champion.
Other local athletes who qualified for the finals in an individual event were Sky View’s Lydia Duffin in the 400, Logan’s Bracken Taylor in the 400 and Logan’s Damon Simmons in the 200.
Three competitors from the valley ran fast times in the 100, but failed to advance because the field was so deep this year. Those kids were Sky View’s Jonathan Hansen (11.28) and Caleb Christensen (11.32), and Simmons (11.34).
Ridgeline’s Spencer Adams ran his best 800 of the season (2:00.93), while Sky View’s Katyrra Peck broke the 13-second barrier in the 100 (12.98). Ridgeline’s Madison Patrick finished 10th in the 800 (2:25.05).
Orem’s Taye Raymond, the younger sister of former Utah State tight end Dax Raymond, dominated the competition in the long jump. The junior beat her nearest competitor by more than a foot with her impressive effort of 18-10.75.
Future USU football player Cooper Legas was the silver medalist in the javelin (182-0.25). Legas came into the meet as the two-time defending champion.
After six of 16 events, the Sky View girls are in sixth place with 11 points.