Sandoval makes her case as Devils roll |

Sandoval makes her case as Devils roll

You can go back and forth when it comes to Eagle Valley track and field’s defending state champions.

But don’t forget Laura Sandoval. The junior made her case quite convincingly at Saturday’s Battle Mountain Invitational, joining Chris Gamble and Kim Smith with four gold medals each as the Devils romped their way to boys and girls titles.

“This is the year she’s wanted to drop down out of the relays into the open 100 and 200,” Devils coach Jeff Shroll said. “Each week she’s been chipping away at her times. She’s probably the hardest worker in practice and this week it paid off.”

The result was that the Devils ran away from the field with 144 points on the girls side, 47 points ahead of second-place Middle Park. The Devils’ boys easily beat out Middle Park 130-92.

The day started nicely for the Eagle Valley girls with a win in the medley from Sandoval, Shelby Vernell, Katie Wick and Smith. Sandoval went on to win the 100 in 13.04 seconds and the 200 in 27.16. Sandoval made it four with a title in the long jump, jumping 14 feet, 7 inches.

Smith got her own quadruple by winning the 800 by a whopping 15 seconds and the mile by 30 seconds. She picked up her fourth win in the mile relay with Wick, Heather Mann and Jean Romerhauser.

Gamble eased to wins in the 110 and 300 hurdles on the boys side and followed with a win in the triple jump with a leap of 40-10. Gamble anchored the 800 relay with Jay Miller, Wes Griffith and Michael Ray for win No. 4.

That was just one of three wins in the boys relay. In the boys 3,200, Everet Minnett, Dan Lewis, Alex Gamble and Ethan Vroman struck gold. Damien Blackwell, Griffith, Alex Gamble and Ray put it together for first in the 400.

Griffith picked up the boys’ eighth gold with an impressive win in the open 400. Meanwhile, don’t forget freshman Jessica Stiles, who turned heads with a win in the 300 hurdles. Her time of 49.66 was just one second off the Eagle Valley record.

There was plenty of silver and bronze to go around. Jessica Medsker won silver in the mile and bronze in the 800. Medsker also tied for second in the high jump with Mann. The girls 400 of Vernell, Ellie Comerford, Wick and Mann struck silver. Bronzes went to Vernell (110 and 300 hurdles), Mann (200) and Romerhauser (400).

On the boys’ side, the mile team of Damien Blackwell, Griffith, Alex Gamble and Ray took silver, as did Kyle Higgins in the discus.

Brad Gamble gave his family the hat trick when it came to medaling by winning bronze in the 300 hurdles and the long jump. Miller and Ethan Vroman rounded out the Devils’ medal haul with bronzes in the 110 hurdles and 1,600, respectively.

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