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Troy's Palmer wins javelin, triple jump at state

by DAVID ERICKSONHagadone News Network
| June 4, 2009 12:00 AM

It didn’t take long for Troy senior Aaron Palmer to feel the heat on Friday. It was only 9:30 a.m., and he was waiting to compete in the final Class B javelin throw at the state track meet at Legends Stadium.

Because it was the first event of the entire meet, Palmer didn’t have time to get too nervous. That is, until he saw the distance thrown by his closest competitor, Will Dalby of Thompson Falls.

“I saw Dalby had thrown a 196-6, and I hadn’t thrown that far in a couple weeks,” Palmer said. “I didn’t feel good about it. The last couple of weeks have been rough.”

The future Harvard University student withstood the pressure, however, and hurled a monster 204-5 to take the state championship.

“Dalby got me on my heels,” Palmer said. “I don’t like the pressure. I like it to be easy, but I’m happy with it.”

It was the second time this season that Palmer broke 200 feet. He thew 205-4 at the Archie Roe Invitational.

Troy’s boys finished third as a team with 32 points behind Manhattan and Glasgow.

In the high jump, Palmer found himself locked in an epic battle with Dillon Fryxell of Plains. Both athletes had managed to clear 6-6 and now the bar was at 6-7. Palmer knocked the bar off on his first two tries, and had to walk in circles to clear his head for his third and final try. Fryxell nailed his 6-7 jump on his first try.

Finally, Palmer let loose and heaved himself clear of the bar as the stadium went wild. Fryxell just stood with his hands on his hips and watched, shaking his head and grinning when Palmer cleared.

At 6-8, Palmer was already three inches past his personal best. He gave it his all, but barely rattled the pole just enough to knock it loose on all three tries. Fryxell summoned all his strength and cleared 6-8 on his second attempt, claiming the state championship.

Palmer basically came out of nowhere to claim the state championship in the triple jump with 42-5.75.

“That is my personal best,” Palmer said after his winning jump. “Like I said, I’ve had a rough year, but I’m happy I’m doing better when it counts at the state meet.”

Scotty Harper, another Troy senior, finished fifth in the triple jump with 40-6.5 and fifth in the long jump at 19-11.

For the girls, Molly Harpole scored the team’s only point with a sixth-place finish in the long jump. Harpole went 15-7.5 to earn the medal.

(David Erickson is a reporter for The Daily Inter Lake in Kalispell).

Friday-Saturday at Kalispell

Team Scoring

1, Manhattan 64; 2, Glasgow 43; 3, Troy 32; 4, Huntley Project 29; 5, Plains 28; 6, Colstrip 26; 7, Townsend 25; 8, Fairfield 24; 8, Eureka 24; 10, Columbus 23; 11, Red Lodge 22; 12, Deer Lodge 21; 13, Three Forks 20.33; 14, Fort Benton 18.33; 15, Baker 16; 15, Broadus 16; 17, Thompson Falls 15; 18, Darby 14; 19, Forsyth 12; 20, Loyola Sacred Heart 10; 20, Shelby 10; 22, Shepherd 8; 23, Florence-Carlton 7; 24, Cascade 6; 24, Cut Bank 6; 26, Malta 3; 27, Plentywood 2; 27, Big Timber 2.

Troy Medalists

High jump – 2, Aaron Palmer, 6-7.

Triple jump – 1, Aaron Palmer,, 42-5.75; 5, Scotty Harper, 40-6.5.

Javelin – 1, Aaron Palmer, 204-5.

Long jump – 5, Scotty Harper, 19-11.

GIRLS

Team Scoring

1, Choteau 45; 2, Florence-Carlton 38; 3, Malta 37.5; 4, Loyola Sacred Heart 36; 4, Whitehall 36; 6, Thompson Falls 34; 7, Darby 32; 8, Cut Bank 30; 8, Plentywood 30; 10, Three Forks 25.5; 11, Columbus 20; 12, Colstrip 18; 13, Townsend 17.5; 14, Cascade 16; 15, Glasgow 15; 16, Shepherd 14; 17, Wolf Point 12; 18, Huntley Project 9; 18, Red Lodge 9; 18, Roundup 9; 21, Manhattan Christian 8.5; 22, Eureka 8; 22, Manhattan 8; 24, Fort Benton 6; 25, Big Timber 5; 26, Harlem 4; 27, Broadus 2; 28, Fairfield 1; 28, Troy 1.

Troy Medalists

Long jump – 6, Molly Harpole, 15-7.5.