Soroco’s Chloe Veilleux wins first track state title, with more events to go
LAKEWOOD — Chloe Veilleux finally got her state championship in track.
Veilleux, a senior at Soroco High School, won the Class 2A 3,200-meter run with a time of 11 minutes, 45.44 seconds during day one of the state track meet on Thursday at Jeffco Stadium in Lakewood.
While Veilleux has one state title in cross country from 2016, the closest she’s come to winning state in track was last year when she took second in both the 1,600 meters and the 4×400-meter relay and third in the 800 meters.
Veilleux kept a sizable lead for the majority of the race, until Lyons freshman Quin Gregg passed her with less than two laps to go. Gregg previously edged Veilleux out of second place at the state cross country meet this past fall. On the final straight, Veilleux had her revenge.
“She beat me in cross country, so that went through my mind and was actually motivation,” Veilleux said. “I don’t want to let her beat me, again. This is my last chance. I just thought to stick right behind her and out kick her in the end.”
Veilleux returns as the third seed in the 800 meters on Friday, May 17, and will aid in the 4×400-meter relay’s return to the finals. She runs the 1,600 meters against Gregg again Saturday.
“Kind of what I expected out of Chloe,” Soroco head coach David Bruner said. “That’s why we put her in because we thought she had a chance to win them.”
1. Chloe Veilleux, Soroco, 11:45.44
2. Quin Gregg, Lyons, 12:01.38
3. Audrey Maroney, Rye, 12:13.3
6. Makenna Knez, Hayden, 12:26.55
Eight freshmen competed in the Rams’ relays but did not see the performances they wanted.
The Soroco girls sprint medley team of sophomore Skyler Clark and freshmen Sophia Benjamin, Irene Hoff and Marissa Martindale crossed the line in 15th place. The 4×200-meter relay team of senior Grace Beaty, Hoff, and freshmen Erika Sjoblom and Izzy Sanchez finished in 17th. Neither advanced to finals.
The girls 4×800-meter relay team of freshmen Betsy Veilleux, Alena Switzky, Eden Mayer and Clark placed 16th in the final. Benjamin also competed in the 100-meter hurdles, where she ran a time of 17.73 seconds to finish 13th and not advance to the final.
“I think our freshman were a little bit nervous, truthfully,” Bruner said. “We’re still sitting where we can be in the top five even with some things we didn’t get done today.”
Soroco junior Kourtney Bruner qualified for the finals in the 200-meter dash, running a time of 27.09 seconds. She is the ninth seed going into Saturday’s final. Bruner also ran in the preliminary rounds of the 100-meter dash, where she did not advance to the finals with a time of 13.55 seconds.
“Kourtney and Chloe finished the day off, and that’s expected because they’re juniors and seniors,” Bruner said. “Hopefully, the freshmen won’t be as nervous because we’ve been through one day of this.”
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