ALBUQUERQUE — All things considered, things could have gone better for the Portales High track teams.
But as the heat pounded the University of New Mexico track facility Friday and Portales-sized wind highlighted Saturday, the Class 3A track championship wasn’t devastating for either the Rams boys or girls squads.
Jenna Wagner and Alexis Orcutt combined on a nine-point weekend for the girls, putting the Lady Rams in 15th place as a team, and the 1,600 boys relay team finished fourth to put the Rams over double digits.
Wagner was third in the triple jump, while Orcutt took fourth and fifth in the 100-meter hurdles and long jump, respectively.
“It wasn’t that bad at all,” girls coach Sam Lee said. “(Wagner) didn’t match her best personal jump, but she did OK, and Alexis had a really good day as well.”
Wagner said she’d like to win the triple and long jump in her senior year,
“It was OK; I’m not too satsified,” Wagner said. “I need to work on my (final) step going with the triple jump.”
Pojoaque, carrying a roster of nine, claimed the team title with 75 points, well ahead of Robertson (55) and Ruidoso (49).
Portales had its share of rough times on the boys side, with two relays disqualified on Friday. On Saturday, 110 hurdles favorite Cody Small got tripped up by the first hurdle and finished last, but later recovered to take fourth in the 300 hurdles.
“Through the adversity, though it all, our boys competed very well,” Portales coach Glenn Johnson said. “They represented Portales High very well.”
The Rams also got points from Aaron Worten in the 110 hurdles, Devon Stinson in the javelin, and six points between their 800 and 1,600 relay teams. They finished 13th with 11 points, with District 4-3A rival Lovington scoring 64 points to nip Sandia Prep by a single tally for the team title.
Johnson knew it would be a difficult road after the Rams claimed third in 2008, but graduated two athletes responsible for 28 points in Tyler Anderson and Jacob Brady.
“A lot of teams weren’t expecting us to bring back as many kids as we did,” Johnson said. “We came back with a great group of kids, and they competed well.”
The girls lose three seniors, but Lee said Wagner and Orcutt help give the program a solid foundation.