BOISE – It took four years of hard work and heartbreak, but Timberlake senior Caitlyn Nichols finally won gold at the Idaho state track meet.
Now, Nichols and her teammates are coming home as state champions.
Nichols anchored the Tigers’ victory in the 4x400-meter relay, clinching the first girls state title in school history Saturday at Bronco Stadium. The relay quartet won in 4 minutes, 8.14 seconds, dominating the field and shattering the school record in the process.
“This was our year,” said an overjoyed Nichols, who also finished second in the 200 meters and fourth in the long jump. “We knew going into (the 4x400) that this was our shot to finally be state champions, and we did it.”
Timberlake finished with 92 points, topping Buhl (79) and Kimberly (62¾). The Tigers only had one individual champion – junior pole vaulter Sam Simmons – but got big contributions across the board.
Timberlake’s boys narrowly missed bringing home a trophy. The Tigers finished with 51½ points, just 2½ behind Salmon and Kimberly, which tied for third place. Buhl (108) edged Payette (102½) for the championship.
Timberlake had a strong showing in the 110 hurdles as junior Brian Cronnelly finished second in 15.61 and senior Cooper Simpson placed third in 15.85. The Tigers also won the 4x200 relay in 1:32.33 and finished third in the 4x100.
Coeur d’Alene Charter Academy senior Jacob Bowman completed a remarkable comeback by defending his 100 championship. Bowman, who blew out his knee playing 5A football for Lake City last fall, motored to victory in 11.17 on his surgically reconstructed leg.
Bowman also anchored the Panthers’ runner-up finish in the 4x100.
Bowman also finished third in the discus and fifth in the long jump on Friday.
The West Side boys (88 points) and Nampa Christian girls (127) won the team titles.
The Kootenai boys finished sixth. Senior Hayden Kraack was runner-up in the long jump at 21 feet, ¼-inch and junior Brandon Carman finished third in the 300 hurdles for the Warriors.