Soroco’s Martindale takes 3rd in long jump at state track |

Soroco’s Martindale takes 3rd in long jump at state track

Soroco senior Marissa Martindale finished third in long jump at the Colorado High School Activities Association Track and Field Championships on Saturday, May 21, at Jeffco Stadium.
Shelby Reardon/Steamboat Pilot & Today

Marissa Martindale wasn’t sure if she would be able to compete in the Colorado High School Activities Association Track and Field State Championships after rolling her ankle on Monday, May 16.

The Soroco High School senior was going into the championships as the No. 1 seed in 2A girls long jump.

“I had to make it interesting the last week of high school sports,” Martindale said.

Thanks to a spring snow storm that postponed events, Martindale got one extra day of healing before competing in long jump on Saturday, May 21, in Jeffco stadium, surrounded by small snow piles.

With the chilly weather and a bruised ankle, Martindale finished third in long jump with a distance of 16 feet, 7 ½ inches.

Martindale has been hitting the 17-foot mark all year, coming into the culminating meet with a personal-best of 17-5.5, so she was confident she could hit the elusive number when it counted despite setbacks.

“I knew it was going to be cold and we were just going to have to go with it,” Martindale said. “I came in to do my best.”

She hit 16-3 in the prelims, but was striving for more in the finals. She dug deep and pushed through her thickly-taped ankle, hitting 16-7.5 on her last attempt, earning her third by half an inch.

Martindale will compete in the 4×400 for the Rams, which will take place in a heats-for-time format on Sunday, May 22.

Even without the 4×400 prelims to close the day, Soroco was busy with relays on Saturday, starting the day with the 4×100 prelims. The Rams didn’t make the cut for finals, but looked forward to the 4×200, where the combination of Larhae Whaley, Hailey Minnick, Irene Hoff and Kayedence Bruner finished eighth.

“We definitely got a better time Thursday,” said Whaley. “But overall, we still came home with a medal so I think we did good in that aspect.”

Hayden snuck in front of Soroco early on in the race and held that advantage to the finish, taking sixth. Senior Alison Rajzer was put into the anchor position despite never running a 200 in a meet before.

Rajzer stepped up when senior Jillian Bennett returned to Hayden to not miss graduation on Sunday, May 22. Rajzer qualified for state in the 100-meter and finished 18th. Sure, a 200 was twice the distance, but being as competitive as she is, she wasn’t about to not give it her all.

“She really pulled through for us and we’re really proud of her,” said junior Isabella Simones.

Without Bennett, the Tigers didn’t race the 800 sprint medley relay despite earning the second-fastest qualifying time on Thursday, May 19.

Simones, who competed in the 4×200, also competed in long jump and finished 19th. Soroco’s Bruner earned 13th.

“I feel like I could have done a little bit better,” Simones said. “I think I just wasn’t mentally there and the weather was a bit bad. I don’t like to blame it on not mentally being there. I should have been more prepared. But I’ll remember for next year.”

Additionally, Soroco seniors Sophia Benjamin and Whaley both competed in pole vault and tied for ninth.

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