Huskies’ Constien sets school record … again

Battle Mountain's Val Constien powers her way to a school record Friday at the Liberty Bell in Denver.
Bob Shearon | Special to the Daily |

Liberty Bell results

Battle Mountain

Girls, third out of 17 teams

3. Val Constien, 18:35

12. Sydney Gaylord, 19:11

25. Anabel Johnson, 20:04

37. Rychelle Denardo, 20:29

44. Hannah Gaylord, 20:40

Boys, 13th out of 17 teams

36. Cameron Moore, 17:18

42. Josh Braun, 17:28

50 Ricardo Arreola, 17:34

52. Ethan Pence, 17:35

65. Ethan Cotton, 17:51

DENVER — She’s pretty fast. Upon further review, they’re all pretty fast.

Battle Mountain’s Val Constien set the school’s 5K cross country record at Friday’s Liberty Bell meet. She ran in 18 minutes, 35 seconds, knocking Erika Ghent (2004) and Mandy Ortiz (2012) out of the record book. They both had logged times of 18:38.

That was part of big day for Huskies ladies. They finished third in the Liberty Bell’s Division II race — in past years, the Huskies ran in the Division III category. Battle Mountain was only behind two 5A schools.

As for Constien, she joins some exclusive company as the Ghent and Ortiz families are royalty in Battle Mountain cross country.

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‘You can do it’

“I knew I was going pretty fast because I was in a lot of pain for most of the race,” Constien said. “I really didn’t know I was going fast enough for the school record until 800 meters to go, when (Huskies coach Rob) Parish popped out of the bushes, and yelled, ‘You can do it.’”

That would be school record No. 5 for Constien. In addition to the cross country mark, she’s on the board in 800 meters, triple jump, 1,600 relay and 3,200 relay. (She also was part of the school’s distance-medley record, though that is not a CHSAA-sanctioned event.) However you count it, she’s pretty good.

‘More work than ever’

“I thought she had a chance of doing it,” Parish said. “She was in the low 19s here last year. She’s obviously a very accomplished runner, and this summer, she did more work than ever. Her speed workouts pointed toward the direction that she would have a big day.”

All the ladies had a big day. Battle Mountain’s times would have placed it third in the Division I division of the Liberty Bell, thank you very much.

The guys were 13th out of 17 teams. The team placement may not look like much, but look at the times. All five scorers were under 18 minutes.

“The kids enjoy being in competitive environments,” Parish said “ The split between our No. 1 and No. 5 runners was 35 seconds. The boys were swimming in the middle of the back against huge 5A schools. They did well.”

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 and

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