CHENEY - After finishing a disappointing seventh in the 400 meter dash, Grandview's James Vela bounced back and won the 800 meter run to secure an individual State championship and help the Grandview boys place fourth out of 51 teams and take home a trophy.
"This is the first time in a long time we've brought home a team trophy from state," Grandview Coach Jared Lind said.
Vela predicted he would open up with a 58-second lap in the 800 meter run. He beat that. "Vela ran a very smart race," Lind said. "He won by 10 meters and he had a lot left at the end."
After winning his individual State championship in that event, Vela teamed up with Juan Razo, Francisco Valencia and Brandon Artz to win the 4 x 400 relay.
Valencia started things off with a 57.0 split in the first leg. "It's very important to get a good start," Lind said. Artz took a full second off his time. When he handed the baton off to Razo, Grandview was in second place. After Razo was finished, Grandview was in first place and had a 10-yard lead when he handed off to Vela, who ran a 50.9 split.
"We got the State championship, destroyed the school record and the victory moved us to fourth place by a half point," Lind said of the relay victory.
Grandview's Leon Knights finished second and medaled in the long jump with a distance of 21-3/4. He tied for sixth in the high jump when he cleared 5-10. Knights also medaled in the triple jump with a distance of 41-5.
"He scored us some very important points," Lind added. "We're excited to see what happens with him next year."
Razo placed fifth in the 300 meter hurdles. Out of the nine events the Grandview boys entered, they won two and medaled in five.
In the seven events the Grandview girls were entered in, they managed to medal in two of them.
Grandview's Tonhya Wysong placed sixth in the pole vault. "She was a standout," Lind said. Wysong broke the school record of 9 feet when she pole vaulted 9-9.
"That was impressive," Lind added. "She was on a new pole and it's very difficult to adjust to that. She was able to adjust quickly and that helped her with her height. She cleared 8-6 at Districts and improved to 9-9 at State."
Teammate Kealey Johnston medaled in the triple jump when she finished in seventh place with a distance of 33-7. "We're excited to see what she does next year," Lind said. "She's only a sophomore."
Lind said his girls competed well and brought down their times but some weren't good enough to make it to the finals.
"It was a perfect end to the season," he added. "We brought home a team trophy and a couple of State titles."