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Skyview goes out in style; so do Simmers, Rowe

Beth Bragg
Jacklyn Jaronik of Colony clears four feet 10 inches as she competes in the girls 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Spencer Mitton, of South High, Riley Moser, of Juneau-Douglas High, and Colton Pulver, of Wasilla High compete in the 1600 during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Patrick Stanton of Valdez competes in the boys 1A2A3A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Jordan Sondergaard, of Glenallen, Anthony Griffith, of Eileson, and Devin Light, of Haines compete in the 100 meters during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014. Anthony Griffith won the event.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Jared Welch of Lathrop clears a height en route to winning the boys 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond. He cleared six feet six inches for the win.
Erik Hill
Taylir Kueter of Bartlett competes in the girls 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Charles Sudduth, of West Valley, won the 100 meters during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Mark Fisher of West competes in the boys 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Leroy Elliott of West clears a bar in the boys 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond. He placed third in the event while also taking a break to compete in hurdles preliminaries.
Erik Hill
Briahna Gerlach of Glennallen approaches the finish line to win the 1A2A3A girls 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Victoria Joslin of Delta Junction finishes the girls 1A2A3A 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Laura Kromrey of Seward spins to a win in the 1A2A3A girls discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond. Her mark of 99 feet 9 inches claimed the event by over five feet.
Erik Hill
Levi Thomet, from Kodiak, on his way to a win in the 1600 during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Bryce Hellman of Bartlett places second in the boys 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Isa Ramil of Sitka spins to a fourth-place finish in the 1A2A3A girls discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Patrick Stanton of Valdez competes in the boys 1A2A3A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Rekia Hueton of Su Valley competes in the girls 1A2A3A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Jordan Sondergaard, of Glenallen, Anthony Griffith, of Eileson, and Devin Light, of Haines compete in the 100 meters during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014. Anthony Griffith won the event.
Bob Hallinen
Austin Monzon of Anchorage Christian Schools takes a break from the high jump to compete in the boys 1A2A3A 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Austin Monzon of Anchorage Christian Schools takes a break from high jumping to compete in the 1A2A3A 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Mark Fisher of West competes in the boys 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Amir Williams of Anchorage Christian Schools claims second place in the girls 1A2A3A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Briahna Gerlach of Glennallen, left, and Taylee Nyquest of Thorne Bay race to a one-two finish in the girls 1A2A3A 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Laura Kromrey of Seward spins to a win in the 1A2A3A girls discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond. Her mark of 99 feet 9 inches claimed the event by over five feet.
Erik Hill
Bryce Hellman of Bartlett places second in the boys 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Madison Ealum of Anchorage Christian Schools competes in the girls 1A2A3A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Daniel Tatarenko of Delta Junction competes in the 1A2A3A boys 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Kaleb Korta of Galena wins the 1A2A3A boys 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond. Korta pulled away over the last couple laps to claim a 15-second win over runner-up Daniel Serventi of Grace Christian School.
Erik Hill
Rekia Hueton of Su Valley competes in the girls 1A2A3A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Austin Monzon of Anchorage Christian Schools takes a break from the high jump to compete in the boys 1A2A3A 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Brian Peters of Anchorage Christian Schools competes in the boys 1A2A3A shot put at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Laura Kromrey of Seward spins to a win in the 1A2A3A girls discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond. Her mark of 99 feet 9 inches claimed the event by over five feet.
Erik Hill
Amir Williams of Anchorage Christian Schools claims second place in the girls 1A2A3A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Briahna Gerlach of Glennallen, left, and Taylee Nyquest of Thorne Bay race to a one-two finish in the girls 1A2A3A 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Howie Hubbard of Seward competes in the boys 1A2A3A shot put at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Allison Gonzales competes in the long jump during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Lina Heinrichs of Hutchison High School of Fairbanks attempts five feet in the high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond. She cleared four feet 10 inches to claim the title in the 1A2A3A event.
Erik Hill
Madison Ealum of Anchorage Christian Schools competes in the girls 1A2A3A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Daniel Tatarenko of Delta Junction competes in the 1A2A3A boys 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Amy Yi of South competes in the girls 4A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
D'Rhema Alston and Venessa Tufaga celebrate their teams win in the 400 meter relay during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Allie Ostrander of Kenai runs to a new state record in the 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond. Ostrander clocked 10:13.87 in the 4A race to win by 58 seconds over Maddie Hall of Thunder Mountain.
Erik Hill
Brian Peters of Anchorage Christian Schools competes in the boys 1A2A3A shot put at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Jenna Mixson of Dimond competes in the girls 4A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Allie Ostrander, from Kenai High, broke the state record in the 1600 during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Liam Juhl of Tri-Valley School in Healy throws to a win in the boys 1A2A3A shot put at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond. Juhl posted a mark of 46 feet four inches to win by nearly three feet.
Erik Hill
Howie Hubbard of Seward competes in the boys 1A2A3A shot put at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Allison Gonzales competes in the long jump during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Presley Coryelly of West Valley competes in the girls 4A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
The 4A boys, including Tristan Sayre, of West Valley, at left, leave the start line the 1600 during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014. Levi Thomet, from Kodiak, won the event.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Ceil Dunleavy of Wasilla clears the bar at five feet two inches to win the girls 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Amy Yi of South competes in the girls 4A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
D'Rhema Alston and Venessa Tufaga celebrate their teams win in the 400 meter relay during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Kaia Michalsen of Ketchikan competes in the girls 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Taylor Sims, of Dimond High, wears a mask as she prepares to run in the 2x400 meter relay during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014. The Dimond relay team won the event. Alston was wearing the mask because of the smoke and dust in the air. Alston removed the mask before the race.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Devin Light of Haines attempts to scissor his way over the bar in the 1A2A3A boys high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Jenna Mixson of Dimond competes in the girls 4A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Allie Ostrander, from Kenai High, broke the state record in the 1600 during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Kiana Harding of Kenai Central competes in the girls 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Charles Sudduth, of West Valley, is on his way to a win in the 100 meters during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Maddie Hall of Thunder Mountain checks her splits as she runs to a second-place finish in the girls 4A 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Presley Coryelly of West Valley competes in the girls 4A discus at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
The 4A boys, including Tristan Sayre, of West Valley, at left, leave the start line the 1600 during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014. Levi Thomet, from Kodiak, won the event.
Bob Hallinen
Jacklyn Jaronik of Colony clears four feet 10 inches as she competes in the girls 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Spencer Mitton, of South High, Riley Moser, of Juneau-Douglas High, and Colton Pulver, of Wasilla High compete in the 1600 during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Levi Thomet of Kodiak cruises to a win in the boys 4A 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Kaia Michalsen of Ketchikan competes in the girls 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Taylor Sims, of Dimond High, wears a mask as she prepares to run in the 2x400 meter relay during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014. The Dimond relay team won the event. Alston was wearing the mask because of the smoke and dust in the air. Alston removed the mask before the race.
Bob Hallinen
Taylir Kueter of Bartlett competes in the girls 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Charles Sudduth, of West Valley, won the 100 meters during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Ashley Logan of Grace Christian School claims third place in the 1A2A3A girls discus with a mark of 91 feet seven inches at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Kiana Harding of Kenai Central competes in the girls 4A high jump at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Charles Sudduth, of West Valley, is on his way to a win in the 100 meters during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Victoria Joslin of Delta Junction finishes the girls 1A2A3A 3200 meters at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill
Levi Thomet, from Kodiak, on his way to a win in the 1600 during the 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
High school students compete in The 2014 Track & Field Championships at Dimond High School on Saturday, May 24, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Zach Taplin of Cook Inlet Academy launches the shot en route to a second-place finish in the boys 1A2A3A event at the ASAA / First National Bank Alaska 2014 Track and Field State Championships on Friday, May 23, 2014, at Dimond.
Erik Hill

Instead of seeing their final state track and field meet go up in smoke, a couple of Class 1-2-3A athletes and one soon-to-be-history team went out with a bang Saturday at Dimond High.

On a day when concerns over air quality prompted officials to speed up proceedings rather than let thickening smoke from Kenai Peninsula wildfires force an early end to the meet, Skyview High produced an individual champion and earned four other medals in its final appearance at the state track meet.

Next school year, Skyview becomes a middle school and the majority of the high school kids who went there will enroll at nearby Soldotna High. Panthers will become Stars, and rivals will become teammates.

Wearing their purple singlets for the last time, the Panthers claimed medals in three relays and two individual events.

Micah Hillbish won the 800 meters and placed third in the 400 meters for the boys, while Hallie Landess, Heather Tolliver, Hayley Ramsell and Jessie McNamara placed second in the 400-meter relay and third in the 800 relay and 1,600 relay.

"A medal was one of our goals," said Tolliver after she and her teammates grabbed third place in the 800 relay.

"We want to go out with a bang," chimed in Landess. "So we can be, like, remembered."

A pair of Anchorage athletes made their senior years memorable by powering their teams to state championships.

Anchorage Christian's Nate Simmers won the 400 and long jump and placed second in the discus Saturday to go with his triple jump title on Friday to carry the Lions to their second straight team championship. Kayla Rowe, who was second in Friday's triple jump, won the long jump and grabbed second in both hurdle races to help Grace Christian to their fourth straight state title.

The championships continued the two schools' dominance of 1-2-3A track. In the seven years since the Alaska School Activities Association created a separate competition for small schools, ACS and Grace Christian have captured 12 of the 14 state titles awarded.

ACS boasted the meet's most dominant athletes -- Simmers and Tanner Ealum, the only three-time individual winners.

Simmers spent half the morning in a golf cart going back and forth between the long jump pit and the discus ring, which were a couple of football fields apart from each other. He wound up with a personal-best, winning jump of 21-3.25 and a second-place throw of 41-0.25.

Then he cooled his heels for a few hours until it was time to run the 400, which he won in 51.53.

"Waiting for the 400 kills me the most," he said. "It's harder than the other events, because those are actually fun.

"...I like the jumps and I like the throws. I became a thrower so I wouldn't have to run as much."

Leave the running to Ealum, a sophomore who blew past the competition in the girls 100, 200 and 400.

A 4-foot-10, 95-pound blur -- "I have a lot of muscle," she said -- Ealum put up times that would have made her a contender in the large-school races. Her 12.74 in the 100 was .04 off the winning time in the Class 4A race; her 25.36 in the 200 was the same as the winning time in 4A and her 58.50 in the 400 was .06 faster than the winning time in 4A.

"I just pretend that everybody is right by me," she said. "Your goal is to PR, and I have to envision girls around me."

Ealum and the Lions did their best to end Grace Christian's reign as state champs, but in the end the Grizzlies prevailed again. Rowe, who has ended every year of her high school career by helping the Grizzlies to a state championship, said there was something special about the most recent title.

The team was about half its usual size this season -- "Everyone went to soccer," Rowe said -- so it wasn't the powerhouse it had been in Rowe's first three years.

"In years past, it's kind of been a guaranteed win," she said. "This year we had to set goals and (put) people in events where they can get points.

"We're all in it together. It's sounds cliched, but we're all here to support each other."

Though soccer's popularity may have deplete Grace's numbers, a former soccer player provided crucial points for the Grizzlies.

Junior Ashley Logan, a goaltender for the soccer team as a freshman, won the shot put and finished third in the discus. Her winning throw in the shot put traveled 35 feet, 3.25 inches, a vast improvement from her sophomore season, when she was throwing in the 27- to 29-foot range.

Logan is already looking ahead to next season, when she wants to challenge the school record of 36-8.5. To do that, she said she'll have to do more weight training than she did this year.

"A foot is a lot," she said. "That's an eight-pound ball that you're throwing."

The 1-2-3A meet produced a bounty of double winners.

Among the girls, Briahna Gerlach won the 1,600 and 3,200 for Glennallen, and Izabelle Ith topped the 100 hurdles and the triple jump for Petersburg.

For the boys, Eielson's Anthony Griffin took the 100 and 200 titles, Seward's Tanner Berry swept the hurdle races and Galena's Kaleb Korta swept the distance races.

Gerlach was part of an impressive showing by Glennallen, which has less than 200 K-12 students but garnered four state titles at the two-day meet. Beside Gerlach's triumphs, the boys won the 1,600 relay and the girls won the 3,200 relay.

Berry's win was also a win for Moose Pass, the tiny town about 30 miles down the highway from Seward. On Friday, the girls discus title went to Laura Kromrey, who is also from Moose Pass, which only has an elementary school.

Korta, a one-man team from Galena, twice fended off serious challenges in the final half of the 1,600 to collect his second championship. On the first corner of the third lap, Homer's Pedro Ochoa tried to overtake him but Korta accelerated once Ochoa was on his shoulder. At the same spot in the fourth lap, ACS's Austin Monzon briefly pulled ahead of Korta, who shifted into a higher gear and won running away.

"I just felt like I had a lot left in the tank, and I didn't want to give up the lead to them," Korta said.

Galena doesn't have a track and the school doesn't have a track team, so Korta's family paid his way to the region and state meets -- Korta has competed in a grand total of four track meets in his life, regions and state this year and last year. But Korta said the school and the town provide plenty of moral support.

"The community is 100 percent behind me," he said. "They've supported me through this entire thing."

Reach Beth Bragg at bbragg@adn.com or 257-4335.

Team Champions Through the years

Class 4A

YearBoysGirls

2014 Dimond Colony

2013 Kodiak Dimond

2012 Bartlett Wasilla

2011 Dimond Wasilla

2010 Bartlett Dimond

2009 Bartlett Dimond

2008 Bartlett Dimond

2007 Kodiak Bartlett

2006 East West Valley

2005 Juneau-Douglas West Valley

2004 East East

2003 Dimond East

2002 Dimond West

2001 Bartlett Lathrop

2000 Colony Bartlett

1999 Colony Bartlett

1998 Dimond East

1997 Palmer Soldotna

1996 Chugiak Soldotna

1995 Palmer East

1994 Soldotna Chugiak

1993 Lathrop Chugiak

1992 Bartlett Chugiak

1991 Bartlett Dimond

1990 Bartlett Chugiak

1989 Bartlett Bartlett

1988 Chugiak East

1987 Chugiak Bartlett

1986 Bartlett Bartlett

1985 Bartlett Bartlett

1984 Bartlett Bartlett

1983 Bartlett Bartlett

1982 Bartlett Bartlett

1981 Bartlett Bartlett

1980 Bartlett Bartlett

Class 1-2-3A

YearBoysGirls

2014 Anch. Christian Grace Christian

2013 Anch. Christian Grace Christian

2012 Grace Christian Grace Christian

2011 Seward Grace Christian

2010 Grace Christian Anchorage Christian

2009 Seward Anchorage Christian

2008 Grace Christian Anchorage Christian


By BETH BRAGG
bbragg@adn.com