By Jeremy McDonald
STAYTON, Ore.– As they lined up for the first, and fastest heat, of the 100 meter dash, three PacWest Conference opponents were lining up against one another.
In Lane 7, Chemawa’s Milo Loya. In Lane 4, Salem Academy’s Wilson McLean. In Lane 1, Scio’s Caleb Shockey. All three know each other well. Shoot, all three were talking to one another prior to the start of the race as they finished stretching out.
With a week before Districts at Kennedy High School in Mount Angel, Friday’s Regis Twilight Invitational served as one last tune-up race before the big races start this upcoming week.
“It’s awesome because I’ve never raced against Wilson and Milo, they’re great buds so it’s pretty cool to race against them for sure,” starts the Loggers Shockey. “Mentally, I don’t know if I can do much more physically, but mentally for sure.”
The respect runs deep for the runners, Loya and McLean the seniors for the Braves and Crusaders and Shockey the up-and-coming rookie as the freshman after a successful Middle School career down in Logger Country about 15 minutes south from where they were at getting into their blocks.
“I’m really excited, it also really helps that I’m really close with Caleb and Ismael (Milo), so it’s always nice to race against them and it’s really like a Pre-District for some of us right now racing here is what is going to look like at Districts,” said McLean.
“I mean, we’re all stack up well against each other plus (Colton’s) Evan (Rasor) and I’m really excited to see how it shapes out because we’re all four really great competitors and I wish we all could go to State because we could do really well and place really high in State at the same time.”
They got into their blocks and the signals are called out with the gun being fired to start the race, McLean was just nosing ahead with Loya at his heels behind him in the middle of the pack of runners as both runners held their line to the finish-line for their heat.
“The 100 went pretty good,” said Loya who finished third in the 100 meter dash in a PR fashion of 11.53. “I think they’re trying to push me. They’re making me start faster and making me strive for it. They’re not going to give it to me, they’re going to make me fight for it, we’re all going to fight for it.
“I’m pretty ready for Districts, I’ve been ready.”
McLean finished first in the heat and first overall with a 11.36 time. Shockey, battled through an minor leg injury as he took seventh in the 100 meter dash in 11.78.
“It was like the last 20 meters when I really felt it, but it’s just a mind game. I try to block it out when I’m run. But I kept up so as a freshman it’s not too bad,” laughed Shockey who finished sixth in the 200 meter dash and threw Discus and helped the Logger 4×100 team finish fourth in the meet.
Loya finished fifth in the 200 meter dash and PR’d in the Javelin (146-feet-seven-inches). Teammate Clement Afterbuffalo placed sixth in the 1,500 meter and fifth in the 3,000 meters (9:47.42 PR).
McLean won the 200 meter and 300 meter hurdles as him and The HeadBand Gang won the 4×400 relay while the 4×100 relay team finished fifth.