Watkins, Drake and Schultz headline Camp Verde State Qualifiers

Brandon Cruz (far right) takes off with the rest of the lead runners in the 4x800 relay during the Yavapai County track meet at Bradshaw Mountain High School Friday afternoon. Photo by Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->

Brandon Cruz (far right) takes off with the rest of the lead runners in the 4x800 relay during the Yavapai County track meet at Bradshaw Mountain High School Friday afternoon. Photo by Les Stukenberg/The Daily Courier<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->

PRESCOTT VALLEY - Alyssa Watkins, Allee Drake, and Nate Schultz are the only Cowboys to have already automatically qualified for the AIA Division IV State Meet on May 6 at Mesa Community College.

Schultz qualified in the High Jump with a leap of 5 feet 6 inches and both Drake and Watkins qualified in the shotput and discus.

Watkins holds the longest throw in Division IV in the Discus with a throw of 113 feet and 2 inches, and both throwers are ranked in the top 10 of Division IV in the Shotput.

Despite only having three qualifiers so far for the Cowboys, Camp Verde competitors still have one more meet to accomplish the goal of working their win into the State Meet after competing at the Yavapai County Championships on Friday, April 22.

In the meet, the Prescott Badgers took home 1st place in the Men's Division with a total score of 184, while the lady's from Sedona Red Rock took home the top spot in the Women's Division with a score of 169. Camp Verde placed sixth and fifth respectively.

Watkins and Drake, were joined in the top 10 at the meet in both throwing by teammate Shayla Campbell-Kilburn. Campbell-Kilburn placed ninth in the shot with a throw of 26 feet and 1.5 inches and launched her throw in the Discus for a distance of 83 feet and 8 inches, good enough for a fourth place finish right behind Drake.

Jumpers and hurdlers Alana Neary and Laramie Mahan turned in solid performances again for the Cowboys as they have both recently provisionally qualified for the State Meet in the Triple Jump and the Long Jump, but are not guaranteed a spot in the meet.

Neary and Mahan took fifth and seventh in the 100 meter hurdles at the meet, with times of 18.46 and 18.64 seconds. Neary also took 4th place in the 300 meter hurdles with a time of 51.92 seconds.

The two athletes turned their in their best jumps of the year in the Triple Jump. Mahan took fourth in the event with a leap of 29 feet and 4.75 inches and Neary jumped 28 feet and 9.75 inches, good enough for a fifth place finish.

Mahan took 6th in the Long Jump as well with a leap of 13 feet and 8.5 inches.

The relay team of Rie Hibi, Corina Crittenden, and Edith and Eliana Paniagua turned in a third place finish in the 4 x 800 meter race with a time of 11:55.41, which is good enough for a provisional qualifying time for the State Meet, the automatic qualifying time for the event is 11:04.07.

On the boys' side for the Cowboys, the 4 x 100 relay team of Samuel Swick, Jarred Bush, Daniel Carley, and Logan Pratt turned in the top performance with a second place finish in the event and a time of 47.60, about two seconds short of an automatic qualifying time.

Distance runner Joseph Jones continues to turn in solid times for the Cowboys as the freshman took fifth place in the 800 meter dash with a clocking of 2:13.90, his second fastest time of the year in the event.

Matthew Wade, a sophomore, took home 6th place in the discus with a throw of 110 feet and 11 inches.

Wade's longest throw of the season, 121 feet and 10 inches, is just two feet short of automatically qualifying for the State Meet. Wade also took ninth in the Shotput with a throw of 34 feet and 6.5 inches.

Camp Verde heads to the Alhambra Last Chance Meet, Wednesday afternoon, with the first event starting at 3:30 p.m. In order to compete in the meet, the athletes have to have at least a provisional mark for their event.

Provisional qualifiers for the Cowboys include, Luis Valdez in the 400 and 800 meter race, Joseph Jones in the 1600 meter and 3200 meter races, Nate Schultz in the 300 meter hurdles, high jump, long jump, and triple jump events.

Freshman Christopher Holdgrafer also qualified in the long jump. The Cowboys also provisionally qualified relay teams in the 4 x 100 and 4 x 400 events.

On the girls side, Eliana Paniagua in the 800 meter race, Shayla Campbell-Kilburn in both the Discus and the Shotput, Bryanna Truett in the High Jump and Triple Jump, and Laramie Mahan and Alana Neary in both the Long Jump and Triple Jump.

The Cowboys have already qualified three and after Wednesday's meet at Alhambra High School, we will see if any other Cowboys get a chance to compete at the big meet on May 6th.

--Follow Sports Reporter Greg Macafee on Twitter @greg_macafee or contact him at 928-300-1376, gmacafee@verdenews.com

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