Douglas track fielding large contingent at regionals |

Douglas track fielding large contingent at regionals

by Joey Crandall

The Douglas High track and field team secured 20 entries in the upcoming Northern 4A Regional Championships at the qualifier meet at Damonte Ranch Saturday.

“That’s a fair amount to represent the school … more than we have had in the past,” Douglas coach Rick Brown said. “It was a tough day because we had a number of athletes very tired from having prom the night before.

“It was cold too, much colder than we expected, but we still had some kids step up and do what they had to do.”

The Douglas girls’ 4×400 relay squad, which won the regional title last year, qualified with the second fastest time in the region behind McQueen.

“We won our heat, but it was a very slow time compared to what they have been running this year. They got by on their athletic ability, but if they perform like they can this upcoming weekend, it could be a very exciting race.”

Skylar Young, Alicia Sturgess, Nicole Mehrer and Jessica Gorton teamed together to qualify in the event, and the quartet also accounted for nine of the school’s other qualifying spots Saturday.

Young qualified in the 400, Sturgess qualified in the 800 and the high jump, Mehrer posted the top qualifying leap in the triple jump and the 400 and Gorton qualified in the long jump, the triple jump and posted a personal best of 16.85 seconds to qualify in the 100 high hurdles.

Young, Sturgess and Mehrer teamed with freshman Ne’Jae Jackson to qualify in the 4×200.

Perhaps the biggest surprise of the day came from Christine Ward, who qualified in the girls’ shot put and discus.

“She just worked real hard all year on trying to learn the basics and the right technique and it just happened to click,” Brown said. “What a great time for that to happen too. It was just a great payoff for her.”

Ward obliterated her previous best in the discus, logging a toss of 99 feet, 3 inches – 13 feet farther than her former record – to post the No. 3 distance in the region.

She improved her shot put by 2.5 feet with a throw of 30-1 to qualify seventh.

On the boys’ side, Michael Banks recovered from a false start in the 110 intermediate hurdles to qualify in the 300 intermediate hurdles with an improvement of nearly a full second.

Derrick Jenkins and Spencer Lewis each qualified in the 800 and Will Sheerin qualified in the 200.

The boys’ 4×400 team of Sheerin, Jenkins, Lewis and Davey Fisher qualified as well.

Douglas has high hopes for its 4×800 team, which did not have to compete in the qualifier and for a number of underclassmen competing in the two-mile this weekend.

The regional championships will be all day Saturday at Damonte Ranch.

— Joey Crandall can be reached at or at (775) 782-5121, ext. 212.