Many of the state's best prep athletes were on hand at East High School Friday for the first day of the annual High School Coaches Association Track and Field Invitational.
The invitational, one of the biggest meets in the state and open to all athletes, is a non-scoring, state-qualifying competition. It concludes Saturday.Bountiful's Stephanie Reading dominated the girls' field events, winning both the shot put and the javelin. The senior, who is the defending 4A state champion in the shot put, finished ahead of Roy's Laura Weaver with a toss of 38 1/4-feet. Weaver's throw of 34 3/4-feet easily earned her second while teammate Stephanie Willener was third.
Reading edged out Aimee Rice of Alta to win the javelin with a throw of 122-8 1/2 feet. Rice finished with a toss of 121-1 and Kim Tulane of Bonneville was third at 114-1 1/2.
"I'm really excited," Reading said of her double win. "I haven't been throwing well lately, but this time it worked out. I knew I had to do it."
Orem's Brian Rowley won the long jump, hitting 22-8 1/2 feet. Chad Knowles of Alta was second and Maurice Frazier of Tooele was third. Knowles also placed third in the boys' discus, finishing behind Biff Williams of Box Elder and Ruben Tiogisala of Bonneville. Williams set a school record with his winning throw of 162-2.
It came down to a jump-off between Debbie Gibby of Box Elder and Cedar City's LaraLyn Johnson in the girls' high jump. Both competitors hit 5-foot-3 but Johnson won in a tie breaker. Michelle Godfrey of Bonneville was third.
The only individual-running final held Friday was the 3,200-meter run. The boys' competition came down to Viewmont runners Ryan Anderson and Mark Johansen. Anderson edged out his teammate, finishing in 9:31.51 and improving his time by nearly nine seconds. Johansen was right behind him at 9:33.37. Travis Anderson of Cedar City was third at 9:42.30.
"He's got better endurance," Anderson said of his teammate. "If I can stay with him I do okay. This is the first time I've beat him in the two mile."
Bingham High freshman standout Lynette Peterson won the girls' 3,200 in a time of 11:10.78. Peterson, a national champion in both the 1,500 and 3,000, outdistanced San Juan's Tara Laws (11:24.28) and Orem's Julie Sorenson (11:32.93). Becky Bybee of Mountain View turned in a gusty performance, running in her first race of the season. The senior, despite undergoing surgery to correct constantly cramping leg muscles and in turn missing four weeks of training, finished fifth.
Bybee joined Melissa Marcov, Diana Pyne and Erica Timm to comprise Mountain View's winning 4 x 800 meter relay squad, they swept past Cottonwood and Orem to win the exhibition race. The Orem team of Nathan Davies, Travis LeBaron, Chad Wood and Chris Daniel won the boys' 4 x 800 event.