LAKEWOOD -- George Washington’s Dior Hall has been a national phenom in the 100-meter hurdles for many years, but accomplished something Saturday that no one in Colorado history had at the State Track and Field Championships.
She ran a 13.09 100-hurdles in the Class 5A finals, smashing the 1996 all-classification record of 13.23 held by Denver South’s Dominique Calloway. The time was the third fastest in U.S. history for a high school girl.
Perhaps the most amazing thing is that Hall’s 13.09 wasn’t even a personal best. The senior holds the national record in the event with a 13.01, a time she ran to win silver at the World Youth Championships last summer. At a March meet in New York, Hall set the 60-meter hurdles national record with a time of 8.11.
On Saturday, Hall put on a show in the first event of the final day of State at Jeffco Stadium in Lakewood. Her competition was Cherry Creek’s super sophomore Ashley Miller, already one of the fastest Colorado girls hurdlers in history herself.
From the gun, Hall and Miller took control but the George Washington star’s speed and picturesque form cruised her past the field to the near sub-13 performance. Miller placed second in the fourth-fastest time in state history, 13.38.
“I just wanted to complete my race plan,” Hall said of her preparation for the final. “Going into finals I wanted to run 12.9, but I ran 13.09. It’s pretty good."
Hall, who has mostly focused on the 100 hurdles and the Patriots’ always blistering relay squads during high school, displayed versatility senior year.
“I split a 54 on the sprint medley (relay),” Hall said. “It was my first event of the year. I was actually not supposed to run as fast as I did, but I felt like someone was behind me, so I felt like I had to go faster. I was really happy with a 54.”
Hall’s performance was enough to help George Washington become the first Colorado sprint medley relay team to break 1:43. They own the all-classification record with a 1:42.98, the top time in America when they ran it.
The Patriots chose not to stack the relay at State, but Hall was certainly busy Saturday. Less than an hour after her 100 hurdle performance, she placed second in the 100-meter dash in a time of 11.69, a new personal record. Pine Creek's Ally Watt claimed the 5A crown in a time of 11.53.
Hall also placed fourth in the 200-meter dash in 24.26 seconds. Watt won the double with a blistering 23.73.
Hall even ran a leg on George Washington’s second place 400-meter relay (47.13). Pine Creek claimed the title in 46.55, a mere .04 seconds off the Colorado record of 46.51, which GW set in 2007.
Hall’s impressive weekend helped the Patriots place fifth in the 5A girls team standings with 51 points. Fort Collins won the state championship with 84 points, four points ahead of Pine Creek.
Elise Cranny-led Niwot won its second straight 4A championship with 66 points. Thompson Valley finished second with 57.5 and Broomfield was third with 55 points.
The Classical Academy won its third consecutive team title in 3A with a dominating 111-point tally. Eaton was second with 82.5 points.
In 2A, Paonia held off a game Hotchkiss 102-86 to claim back-to-back team crowns.
Jennifer Celis did her best to give Hotchkiss a chance at victory with 30 individual points in the 400 (57.84), 800 (2:11.43), and 1,600 (4:58.55) by herself. She also anchored the state championship 1600-meter relay in a time of 3:59.78.
Celis broke her own 2A records in the 800 and 1,600. She closed with a scorching fast kick in both races to beat West Grand’s Tabor Scholl. Celis’ 800-meter race was especially impressive.
“The past few years I would take it on pace and then slow up to make sure I had enough for the kick,” Celis said of her 800-meter state championship. “This year I really just wanted to run my own race. I knew I wanted to break 2:13 this year, but for that race I kind of just wanted to run it to win it and hopefully the time would come.”
One event later, Celis won the 400-meter dash despite admittedly tired legs.
The Hotchkiss star might be a 2A athlete, but will be competing for a big-time college program next season -- Oklahoma State University -- after winning six individual state titles and three relay titles in her career.
In 1A, Shining Mountain Waldorf won an exciting battle for the State Championship with 74 points. Heritage Christian (71), Dove Creek (68), and Vail Christian (65) were all in the mix late into the weekend.
On a day filled with spectacular performances, Hall’s 100-hurdle state championship run stood out. The senior exudes humility and class, but is honest about her long-term goals.
“To make the Olympics in 2016, win, and break the world record,” Hall said of her ultimate dream.
The George Washington star seems capable of anything after a breathtaking Saturday morning at Jeffco Stadium.