Janice Hellesto, left, won the 200 and Natalie Dunn took first in the 400 at Saturday's Marist Invitational. (Photo by Eddy Pausch)

The Philomath High School girls track and field team won six individual events and two relays Saturday to easily win the Marist Invitational in Eugene. The boys, meanwhile, settled for fourth place with one of its top point scorers out of the lineup but did take first in four events.

Besides those performances along with other entertaining moments during the meet, coach Joe Fulton said many of those on site will remember it for another reason.

Matthews 2nd in decathlon at Summit meet

Philomath High School senior Micah Matthews placed second overall at the Summit Decathlon/Heptathlon meet Friday and Saturday at Summit High School. Matthews broke his own school record with the performance. “Micah had a fantastic weekend — crushing his own school record by 382 points for a total of 5,361 to place second out of the…

“The Marist meet will be memorable for our athletes and spectators due to the heavy hailstorm that caused a 40-minute delay,” Fulton said. “And Marist does not have covered stands.”

Fulton reported no head injuries — only several exceptional performances among the field of nine schools for the boys and seven schools for the girls.

The Hellesto sisters provided some of those exciting moments for the Warriors with half of the individual wins and participation on both winning relays.

Ingrid Hellesto, now a senior, won both hurdling events by fair margins over the runners-up. She took the 100 hurdles in 17.84 seconds and the 300 hurdles in 49.57 seconds. Sophomore Janice Hellesto won the 200-meter dash by more than four-tenths of a second over the second-place sprinter. Both Hellesto sisters ran legs on the 4-by-100 and 4-by-400 relays.

Sophomore Natalie Dunn also ran on both of those relays in addition to her victory in the 400 with a time of 1:02.17. Janice Hellesto was a close second in the race at 1:02.73.

Melea Lattin and Adele Beckstead finished 1-2 in the 800. (Photo by Eddy Pausch)

The Warriors also had a 1-2 finish in the 800 with sophomore Melea Lattin taking first in 2:31.19 and sophomore Adele Beckstead crossing in second at 2:33.03.

Sophomore Anneka Steen gave PHS a victory in the field events by clearing 4 feet, 9 inches in the high jump. In fact, Steen had three top-three finishes at the meet by also placing second in the long jump (14-10.25) and third in the triple jump (30-5.5).

“The high jump was a big surprise as she has never even practiced the event,” Fulton said. “She won with a 4-9 leap but had two very decent attempts at 5-0.”

On the 4-by-100 relay, joining the Hellesto girls and Dunn was freshman Maggie King and together the foursome covered the oval in 52.20 seconds — a winning margin of 3.2 seconds over the runner-up. Lattin, the Hellesto sisters and Dunn ran a 4:20.82 in the 4-by-400 relay and won by nearly 16 seconds.

In addition to the second in the 800, Beckstead also finished runner-up in the 1,500 run with a time of 5:11.33. Sophomore Brooke McDaniel was third in the 3,000 (12:14.65) and junior Madison Juhl was a very close third in the discus (88-4) just 15 inches behind the winning throw.

The meet results as of Sunday evening did not include the pole vault. Fulton said for both the boys and girls, Philomath’s vaulters all cleared a height and most earned personal records.

Philomath’s girls won the meet by a large margin over the runner-up Churchill, a 5A school. Marist Catholic edged Junction City for third, followed by Creswell, Brandon and North Douglas. With the pole vault results missing, the team scoring totals are not accurate. For example, Fulton said the girls should have 180 points — 11 more than what the meet results currently show.

Simon King, left, ran a 53.8 anchor leg to help Philomath to second place in the 4-by-400-meter relay. (Photo by Eddy Pausch)

PHS boys take 1st in 4 individual events

Four different athletes won events for the Warrior boys with sophomore Warwick Bushnell, senior Nixon Mooney, senior Mateo Candanoza and senior Seth Arthurs all notching victories.

Bushnell was the lone sprinter to break 24 seconds in the 200 with a winning time of 23.89 seconds. He also placed second in the 100 in 11.70.

Candanoza won by a fair margin in the 3,000 with a time of 9:29.35, which was almost 5 seconds faster than the second-place runner. In the 400, Mooney turned in a time of 52.88 to win by more than four-tenths of a second. Arthurs took first in the triple jump with a distance of 38-3.5, which was 1 foot, 2 inches better than the runner-up.

The team’s two relays had top-three finishes. The 4-by-100 relay of Arthurs, Mooney, senior Brody Bushnell and Warwick Bushnell was third in 46.36. The 4-by-400 relay of Arthurs, freshman Leo Pausch, junior Lukas Dunn and junior Simon King placed second in 3:49.75.

Senior Mateo Candanoza won the 3,000-meter run by nearly 5 seconds. (Photo by Eddy Pausch)

The Warrior boys finished fourth in the team standings behind Churchill, Marist Catholic and Junction City. Behind Philomath were South Umpqua, North Douglas, Creswell, Bandon and Glendale.

Said Fulton, “Our boys placed fourth but were obviously missing up to 40 points in the absence of Micah (Matthews), not to mention some of our other top kids who were away on vacation.”

Matthews competed in the decathlon at a meet hosted by Summit. Fulton said nearly half of the athletes on the roster for the boys and girls combined missed the meet, which took place during Spring Break week.

Like the girls, the PHS boys will also pick up points when the pole vault results are added. The pending update will not change Philomath’s finishes in the team standings.

Philomath now turns its attention to its own meet, which is scheduled for this coming Saturday. Start times for the meet will be noon for the field events and 1 p.m. for the running events.