With the championship portion of the Del Norte High track and field team's season two weeks away, the Warriors put themselves to the test at the Prefontaine Rotary Invitational on Saturday.
The meet, hosted by Marshfield High in Coos Bay, Ore., is named after the late Marshfield High and University of Oregon distance star Steve Prefontaine. The meet featured 24 schools from across Oregon and Washington, in addition to Del Norte High.
Senior Katelynn Rowe set a personal best at 400 meters in one of the most impressive performances by a Warrior athlete, clocking 59.46 and winning by more than two seconds.
"She's someone at the college level who's going to develop into a hell of a 400 runner," Escobar said. "She's strong and she's agile and she's powerful."
Sophomore Kayla Costello and Rowe finished 1-2 in the 300-meter hurdles. Costello clocked 47.59 in the race, with Rowe on her heels in 47.71.
"Both kids went back and forth the entire race," Escobar said. "Good one to watch."
Costello, Rowe and freshmen Rachel Rowe and Maddie Critz joined forces to finish second in the girls' 4x100-meter relay, crossing the line in 51.57.
The girls' 4x400-meter relay team needed a pair of runners to step up, and freshman Shauna Naffah and junior Guadalupe Gonzalez filled in admirably. Naffah, Gonzalez, Rachel Rowe and Costello came in second in 4:31.46.
"They ran killer splits," Escobar said. "Those girls came through with an outstanding performance."
Gonzalez set a personal best in the 800 (2:31.66, fifth) and finished third in the mile (5:42.41). Sophomore Katelyn Eninger took fourth in the high jump (4-8), with junior teammate Kaitlyn Clemann coming in fifth (4-6).
Costello (16.97) and Clemann (17.40) scored points for the Warriors with a 5-6 finish in the 100 hurdles, and freshman Karlie Scott (6:03.72) finished sixth in the mile run.
Sophomore Chad Bell set personal bests in the long jump (20-4.75, third) and triple jump (40-0, fifth) for the Del Norte boys. Bell also finished seventh in the 100 (11.89) and tied for sixth in the high jump (5-8) with senior teammate Shawn De Arman and others.
"The amazing thing about him is that he's consistent in both (the long jump and triple jump) and doing them week to week," Escobar said.
Junior David Sathe lowered his personal-best 800 by nearly four seconds, clocking 2:09.53 for sixth place. Senior Victor Martinez's 11-foot pole vault clearance (seventh) was a personal best.Freshman Jesus Lara broke five minutes in the boys' mile run (4:57.50) en route to a seventh-place finish.
Del Norte's next meet is the season's fourth Humboldt-Del Norte League meet, to be held Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. at McKinleyville High. The Warriors will bring full squads but will rest some athletes as a precautionary measure against injury.
"Right now, we have kids ailing," Escobar said. "We need to monitor (their workload) a little bit more."
Reach Robert Husseman at firstname.lastname@example.org .