Newell swept each of her individual events, taking first in the girls 100 meters (12.11), 200m (24.66) and 400m (56.02) meter races.
“To be honest, I felt like the beginning of the year was all about redeeming myself and coming and winning, but now I just want to have fun,” said Newell, who will join the track team at the University of Kansas in the fall. “I stressed myself out a lot trying to live up to those expectations so now I’m just having fun and going out there and running as fast as I can. It just shows that I can have fun and still compete. It feels good.”
Newell wasn’t the only one having fun with her performances as Reed coach Dale Moss said he enjoyed every second of her races.
“It’s been a privilege coaching her,” Moss said. “You don’t get those type of athletes everyday. She made me a better coach because I had to learn more to be able to put her in a position to compete and do the things that she has. She’s a unique person all around and what she’s done for us in her four years is amazing.”
A handful of Raiders will be joining Newell at state.
Freshman Yasmin Thigpen also turned in an impressive effort, earning state berths in both the 100m and 300m hurdles. Thigpen took first in the 100m hurdles with a time of 15.27 while taking second in the 300m hurdles in 46.49. She will also be joining the Reed girls 4x200 relay squad along with and Tiare Fonoimoana, Kara Day and Newell. The team took first in 1:43.10, good enough for a new region record.
On the boys side, a pair of Raiders took two of the three spots to be represented by the North in shot put. A throw of 53-feet 7.25-inches by Brent Kelly was only outdone by a toss of 54-feet 10.25-inches from Austin Corbett as the seniors finished first and second.
Cody Forman also punched a ticket to state, finishing second in the boys 1600 meter run in 4:29.42.
In the boys pole vault, Jacob Striejewske took third for the Raiders with a jump of 13-feet, a personal best. Marty Hargrove, Eric Espiritu, Will Lyons and Victor Gbenjo combined to grab a second-place spot in the boys 4x100 in a time of 43.06.
For the other Rail City school, two student-athletes will be making the trip to Las Vegas as Spanish Springs will send Katie Peters and Shamir Geisinger.
Geisinger took third in the 200m dash with a time of 22.17 while just missing out on state berths in the 100 and 400m dashes, finishing fourth in both events.
“Shamir did a great job today,” Spanish Springs coach Winston Mora said. “All of his times today were improved times for the season, so that was good. He broke a school record in the 200m. So it was a good day for him.”
Peters will join Geisinger in representing the Cougars in Las Vegas as she finished second in the girls 1600 meter run with a time of 5:16.92.
McQueen High School took both the boys’ and girls’ team championships, finishing with totals of 148 and 109 points respectively. For the boys, Reed finished fifth with 69 points while Spanish Springs came in eighth with 35 points. On the girls side, Reed came in sixth with 71 points while 19 points put SSHS in tenth.