CASPER – The Pine Bluffs girls had all but guaranteed themselves of a state championship after the first two days of the Wyoming Class 2A state track and field meet.
Maddie Fornstrom wasn’t about to leave anything to chance, though.
The junior dove across the finish line to take second in the 100-meter hurdles. The effort added eight points to the Lady Hornets total and helped them run away with the crown.
Pine Bluffs finished with 120.5 team points, while runner-up Wind River had 84.5.
The title is the Hornets’ first since 2004.
“I wasn’t really worried about getting hurt, I just wanted to win,” said Fornstrom, who also captured sixth in the 300 hurdles. “I just went for it.”
Fornstrom finished the 100 hurdles in 16.65 seconds. Wright’s Jozi Edwards was nipping on her heels the entire race before nudging ahead on the final hurdle and finishing in 16.61.
“I felt really good until the last hurdle, and I think I just stumbled over it,” Fornstrom said.
Pine Bluffs held a 48.5-point lead entering the final day, which featured just seven running events after all of Saturday’s field events were moved to Friday because of the threat of inclement weather.
The Hornets did their best to ignore the team standings, Fornstrom said.
“We knew we were doing well, but we weren’t keeping up with it,” she said. “Our coaches were trying to keep us from knowing how far ahead we were so we didn’t let up and stop competing.”
Pine Bluffs coach Dustin Lee said his team couldn’t have finished the meet any better.
“I was extremely happy with the way they competed,” he said. “We knew there might not be any suspense with the team score, but we still wanted them to go out and compete hard.
“They couldn’t have done any better than they did. I knew all along we could come out on top if we went out and competed like we’re capable of, and that’s what they did.”
The Pine Bluffs boys took fifth with 58 points. Big Horn won the 2A team title with 168.5.
Hornets senior Seth Tangeman placed second in the 200-meter dash (23.08 seconds), and third in the 100 (11.40). He was edged out by one-hundredth of a second for top honors in the 200 and one-thousandth of a second for the runner-up finish in the 100.
“That’s basically whether I leaned hard enough at the finish,” Tangeman said. “It was quite a finish. That’s just how it goes in the sprints.”
The Burns girls were 12th in Class 3A. Douglas claimed the team title with 94.5 points.
The Lady Broncs’ top finish Saturday came from freshman Emma Gonzales, who was fourth in the 1,600 (5 minutes, 39.18 seconds). Classmate Rylee Ward was fifth in the 100 hurdles (16.87) and seventh in the 300 hurdles (50.81).
The Burns boys took ninth as a team with 31 points. Mountain View won the title with 129.