Constien, Izzy Calabrese lead Huskies on final day |

Constien, Izzy Calabrese lead Huskies on final day

Battle Mountain's Val Constien takes it out in the 1,600 meters at the state meet in Denver on Saturday on her way to setting a school record and finishing sixth.
Bob Shearon | Special to the Daily |

DENVER — Battle Mountain had firsts, lasts and more to come in its final day at the 4A state track and field meet at Denver’s Jeffco Stadium.

Val Constien finished sixth in the mile with a time of 5 minutes, 4.14 seconds. That is sizzling, and, yes, a school record.

“Put that up on the (record) wall with a nail,” Huskies coach Rob Parish joked.

Record are meant to be broken, but when Constien was a freshman, the record was 5:21.

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“That’s a video game time, 5:04,” said Parish, who has coached the program since 2000. “I was writing down split as Val was running and thinking about when the boys were trying to break 5 minutes in a mile.”

The reason Parish makes the comparison is that he views Constien’s time as a college coach would. Run at roughly 5,280 feet, 5:04 is considered under 5 minutes in the eyes of, say, the CU coaching staff. In a related development, Constien will be running for the Buffs next fall.

Keeping it in the Pac-12, Niwot’s Elise Craney won the 1,600 in a stunning 4:47.54. She’s off to Stanford next year, so, perhaps, Constien and Craney will see each other again.


Constien joined forces with Isabelle Calabrese, Sofia Calabrese and Katie Matarese for eighth in the 1,600 relay. They came around in 4:00.77.

“It’s great the way the Calabreses work together with Val and Katie,” Parish said. “Val and Katie have been cornerstones of this program.”

This makes for some fun trivia. Since Battle Mountain moved to 4A in 2000, name the only two athletes who have scored in four events in the one state meet? That would be Constien and Isabelle Calabrese. Constien scored in the 800, 3,200 relay, the open mile and the 1,600 relay. For Calabrese, a junior, it was the 1,600 relay, the 3,200 relay, the 300 hurdles and the pole vault.

Calabrese made it so by taking eighth in the pole vault with a leap of 10 feet. She was also eighth in the 300 hurdles with a time of 46.19.

“It’s so competitive to make the meet in the first place,” Parish said. “It’s big to make the podium in any event, much less four. They are tremendous athletes.”

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934, and @cfreud.

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