DES MOINES — Colo-NESCO’s Lauryn Hill keeps moving up in the world after earning a silver medal in the Class 1A girls’ high jump during the state coed track meet Friday at Drake Stadium.
Hill shared runner-up honors in 1A with Central Decatur’s Emma Atwood a year after tying for third in the event as a freshman. Hill jumped five feet, three inches on Friday to easily beat her 2017 state effort of five feet even.
“I was nervous,” Hill said. “At (the qualifying meet) I only cleared five (feet), so I was just hoping for the best today.”
After clearing 4-9, 4-11 and 5-1 on her first attempts, it took Hill two shots to get over the bar at 5-3. The next height was 5-5, which would’ve broken Hill’s own school record of 5-4 set earlier in the season, but like all other remaining competitors, she wasn’t quite able to get over the bar.
“I’m pretty excited about it,” Hill said. “It was tougher competition (this year), so that was good.”
Hill had been battling a hip injury since cross country during her freshman year. She had surgery on it last June, but still isn’t quite 100 percent recovered, making her performance on Friday even more impressive.
“I’ve been really focusing on my power drive before I jump,” Hill said. “That’s been helping.”
West Fork’s Lexi Jones was the 1A girls’ high jump champion. Jones got the win after clearing 5-3 on her first attempt.
The Colo-NESCO boys also picked up points at state in the shuttle hurdle relay.
Matthew Hill, Devin Reed, Kelly Gray and Philip Bower teamed to run a time of one minute, 1.33 seconds during Thursday’s prelims to place eighth and qualify for the finals on Saturday. During the finals, the Royal quartet clocked in at 1:01.53 to end up placing sixth overall.
“We just wanted to come in, run the hurdles clean and do what we do,” Bower said. “Just make sure we get a good start, but we don’t DQ ourselves.”
Being patient was key in a race where jumping the gun is commonplace.
“The scariest thing would have to be getting the timing right,” Reed said. “That way you’re not jumping out too soon, because nothing is more disappointing than getting down to the finish line and (finding out) you really didn’t do anything.”
Gray was happy his team got off a clean race and executed well under a high-pressure situation in the finals.
“I think we did pretty well as a team,” “We came in the first meet running like a 1:07 or a 1:06 and now just qualified for state and did all this in a year. It’s pretty sweet.”
Reed added it was nice to achieve the success as a small 1A program.
“We feel like the underdogs,” Reed said. “We’ve got a whole bunch of big schools that are working out probably way more than we did, but here we are coming in and taking sixth.”
Central Decatur won the 1A boys’ shuttle hurdle in :58.50.
Hill also competed in the boys’ high jump on Friday. He jumped 5-11 to finish in a three-way tie for 10th place.
Danville won the 1A girls’ team championship at state with 56 points. Council Bluffs St. Albert claimed the 1A boys’ title with 64 points.
Class 1A individual results Colo-NESCO
High jump - 2 (tie). Lauryn Hill, 5-3.
High jump - 10 (tie). Matthew Hill, 5-11.
Shuttle hurdle relay - 6. Colo-NESCO (Hill, Devin Reed, Kelly Gray, Philip Bower), 1:01.53.