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LAKEWOOD — Ismael Sanchez of Fort Lupton wanted a personal best in the triple jump during the state 3A track and field meet May 15 at Jeffco Stadium.
His consolation prize wasn’t bad, though. He finished sixth with a best effort of 40 feet 9 ¼ inches.
“I didn’t PR (set a personal record. I’m a little disappointed,” he said. “It’s the best I’ve done in a while, so I’m pretty happy.”
He cleared 41 feet 4 ¼ inches at the Fort Morgan Invitational early in the season.
I couldn’t get back to that,” Sanchez said. “I have been sick for a while. I missed three meets. They are important. I missed practice, too. I was home being lazy, trying not to be sick.”
Sanchez used his down time during meets this year to watch other competitors and pick up some pointers.
“There are a lot of good jumpers out here with some good form,” Sanchez said. “They’re giving me some good tips. I’ve been making steady improvements throughout the year. Little tips do help.”
Sanchez started participating in the triple jump two years ago. His top distance then was 33 feet. Sanchez finished the season with five jumps that measured more than 40 feet.
“My coach, Ms. (Teri) Kopfman, said I had good strides,” Sanchez said. “I started out in long jump. Then she put me in the triple jump, and it went from there. It’s my favorite event. I’m definitely grateful for that.”