An epic battle between two of the top runners on the Olympic Peninsula capped a highlight reel-worthy — albeit shortened — prep track season on the Olympic Peninsula.
Sequim junior Riley Pyeatt and Port Angeles senior Lauren Larson combined to win five first-place individual and relay finishes at the Olympic League 1A/2A/3A League championships held in Bremerton April 22 and 24 — including a 1-2 finish in the 800 meters.
Larson entered the 800 with the fastest time among 2A girls in the state at 2 minutes, 17.90 seconds, set at an April 17 meet. However, Pyeatt — who had only run the 800 once this season before Saturday’s final — ended up winning with a time of 2:18.17, two seconds ahead of Larson’s 2:20.42.
On April 22, Pyeatt won the 400-meter championship with a time of 57.35, a Sequim school record and the fastest girls time in the state out of any classification, according to athletic.net. The mark also broke her won school record.Pyeatt helped the Wolves placed third at the 11-team meet with 87 points, despite having only about nine athletes on the squad this spring. Central Kitsap, a 3A school, won with 162.25 points. Cullen’s school, North Kitsap, took second at 105 points. Port Angeles’ girls were sixth.
Pyeatt also ran the anchor leg in the Sequim girls’ 4×400 relay team that took first place, as she joined teammate Taryn Johnson, Anastasia Updyke and Maci Cogburn with a winning mark of 4:13.16 — the sixth best mark for a girls’ 4×400 relay in the state, regardless of class size.
Larson, Pyeatt’s friendly rival for the past three seasons in both track and cross country, won the 1,600 (5:09.22) and 3,200 (11:39.05).
North Kitsap sprinter Alyssa Cullen won the 100 — with Pyeatt second, 12.70, a personal best — in a blistering 12.06 seconds — tops in the state in any classification. Pyeatt was second in the 100 with a 12.70 mark, a personal best and the second-best effort in school history behind Samantha Whiteside’s 12.65 effort (2010).
Sequim freshman Jolene Vaara continued to impress, winning the 100 meter hurdles in 16.76 seconds in just her third race in that event; it’s the fifth-fastest time among all 2A girls this season. Teammate Taryn Johnson, also a freshman, was fourth (1768). Both were personal bests.
Johnson added a second place finish in the 300 hurdles, finishing in a personal best 51.23 seconds. Her mark is the seventh-fastest 2A girls mark in 2021.
Vaara was fourth in the high jump (4-6) while Sequim’s 4×200 relay team (Johnson, Updyke, Hi’ilei Robinson and Rileigh VanDyken) took fourth, in 1:58.22.
SHS boys take eighth
Sequim High senior Logan Laxson leaped 21 feet in the long jump, a first-place effort and top-10 among all Washington prep athletes this season. It’s also the fifth-best mark in school history.
Laxson also placed sixth in the 100 with a time of 12.50, a personal best.
The Wolves placed eighth at the league final with 37 team points. North Kitsap, despite only winning two events, took first with team points with 11, followed by Central Kitsap (102) and Bremerton (92.5). Port Angeles was ninth.
Laxson teamed up with Theo McMurray, Adrian Brown and Henry Hughes to take third in the 4×100 relay (45.71 seconds).
Sequim’s Mirek Skov came in second in the pole vault with a height of 9-6.
Brown turned in his season’s best mark in the 110 high hurdles in a time of 17.75 to place fourth and his 46.55 — another PR — earned sixth overall. Hughes added a seventh place finish in the high jump (5-2).
With no state track meet this year, this was the local athletes’ only chance at postseason track and field.