Padilla takes gold in 800 at state track

Christian Padilla stands on the top rung of the ladder after winning the 800-meter run at the AAAA state track tournament.

Christian Padilla stands on the top rung of the ladder after winning the 800-meter run at the AAAA state track tournament.

NMMI Sports Press

Christian Padilla stands at the end of the 800-meter run as his winning time is flashed on the screen behind him.

Christian Padilla stands at the end of the 800-meter run as his winning time is flashed on the screen behind him.

ALBUQUERQUE — Colt track athletes brought home three more medals Saturday at the AAAA state track meet in Albuquerque, led by sophomore Christian Padilla, who took gold in the 800-meter run and fourth in the 400-meter dash. And Sierra Walker got her second medal of the weekend with a third in the 800.

“We did very good today,” said coach Jan Olesinski. “One gold medal, one bronze medal, one fourth place and one eighth place. So we did excellent.”

Both Walker ad Padilla ran in the 800, with Walker taking home third behind East Mountain and Robertson runners.

“It wasn’t the best race for her, but she did well,” Olesinski said. “She competed very well.”

Sierra WAlker runs in the 1,600-meter medley. She took home a bronze medal in the 800-meter run.

Sierra Walker runs in the 1,600-meter medley. She took home a bronze medal in the 800-meter run.

Walker’s little sister, eighth-grader Mia, took 14th in the half-mile race.

Padilla then continued to improve from his eighth-place seeding, edging East Mountain’s Alex Heffelfinger, the defending state champ, by mere 10ths of a second to claim the title.

“He ran a great race. He competed well,” the coach said.

Only an hour and a half later, the sophomore ran in the 400, getting a slightly slower time than in Friday’s preliminaries. He ran a great 300 meters, Olesinski said, but slowed down a bit in the final 100, most likely because he was tired from the 800.

The girls 1,600-meter medley relay also ran a bit slower than Friday, finishing eighth. Olesinski said 100-meter runners Alexandria Rivera and Grace Tompkins ran faster than the day before and Mia Walker matched her time, but Sierra walker ran a bit slower, again because of running the 800 earlier in the day.

And despite the few Colt athletes competing, the high finishes gave each team a respectable finish: the boys took 12th of 19 and the girls 14th out of 18.

“Overall, they competed very well,” Olesinski said. “We had five runners and everybody competed.”

NMMI Individual results
Boys

800-meter run — 1, Christian Padilla, 1:57.25
400-meter dash — 4, Christian Padilla, 50.69

Girls
800-meter run — 3, Sierra Walker, 2:25.17
1,600-meter medley relay — 8, NMMI (Alexandria Rivera, Grace Tompkins, Mia Walker, Sierra Walker, 4:38.62

AAAA Boys, team — 1, Taos, 97; 2, Silver, 74.33; 3, Portales, 48.33; 4, Bloomfield, 32; 5, East Mountain; 29; 6, West Las Vegas, 27; 7, Kirtland Central, 26.33; 8, Hope Christian, 24; 9, St. Michael’s, 22; 10, Ruidoso; 13; 11, Robertson, 12; 12, NMMI, 10; 13, Bosque School, 9; 14, Hot Springs, 8; 15 (tie), Santa Fe Indian School; Shiprock, 7; 17, Pojoaque, 4; 18, Cobre, 3; 19, Zuni, 1

AAAA Girls, team — 1, Hope Christian, 79.50; 2, Silver, 47; 3, St. Michael’s, 38; 4, Sandia Prep, 37; 5, Robertson, 36.50; 6, Ruidoso, 35; 7, Bosque School, 32; 8 (tie), Taos; East Mountain, 31; 10, Portales, 26.50; 11, Bloomfield, 13; 12 (tie), Kirtland Central; Pojoaque, 10; 14, NMMI, 9; 15, West Las Vegas, 6; 16, Hot Springs, 5.50; 17, Shiprock; 4; 18, Cobre, 3

Christian Padilla in the 800

Grace Tompkins ran the second leg in the 1,600-meter run.

Grace Tompkins ran the second leg in the 1,600-meter run.

Mia WAlker competed in the 800-meter run and medley relay.

Mia Walker competed in the 800-meter run and medley relay.

Sierra Walker on the podium after her third-place finish in the 800.

Sierra Walker on the podium after her third-place finish in the 800.

The Colt athletes with their medals.

The Colt athletes with their medals.

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