LAKEWOOD - Watching teammate Abbey Glynn sprint around the track with a state title in sight, Mead senior Renee Choksey could hardly contain her excitement.
Choksey was done with her leg of the Class 4A girls 800-meter sprint medley relay at Jefferson County Stadium on Friday, while Glynn was running the anchor leg.
"I started running (toward the finish line) because I wanted to cheer for her and they're like, 'Wait, not yet,'" Choksey said. "I was like, 'Argh, I want to go!'"
Fortunately, the delay was only temporary and when Glynn crossed the finish line, the Mavericks had the green light to celebrate the first track and field state title for girls in school history.
"I can't even express it. It's amazing," senior Alexis Rosas said.
Seniors Sydney Postle, Choksey and Rosas teamed with Glynn, a junior, to post a school-record time of 1 minute, 45.17 seconds in the finals - breaking the mark of 1:47.00 they set in Thursday's preliminaries.
With busy schedules, especially for Postle, who splits her time between track, soccer and rodeo, the Mead foursome had not spent much time together and had only raced as a group a couple of times before state. Those races didn't exactly produce confidence.
"Our handoffs were really bad," Rosas said.
It wasn't until posting the top time in prelims that they felt they could actually bring home a state title.
"It definitely helped, but coming into this race and even state, we came in with a chip on our shoulder and we were just running and staying humble because we had nothing to lose," Postle said. "Coming in and winning the state title is a big deal for us."
Glynn, who held off a late charge from Valor Christian, said the group took some motivation from the prelims.
"After we ran the first race, I felt like we're taking it tomorrow, too," she said. "Everybody has a huge heart on this team and I think that's what really pushed us."
Overall, Mead won four medals on Friday. Hunter Payne placed sixth in the boys 800-meter run, while Sophia Maeda was eighth in the girls 3,200-meter run. Rosas concluded her day with an eighth-place medal in the long jump.